They lower Sola’s casket into the ground amidst tears and wails.
The rain pours but no one cares. Heads bowed…shoulders hunched.
I watch as the dirt hits the casket.
I wipe the rain mingled with tears from my face.
I must be strong…. for him, I promised him I would be!
“From earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust…..”, the priest intones.
His voice slowly fades as my mind flashes back to the first day i met sola…..
Donating blood was not something I had ever thought of doing.
I had a morbid fear of needles….and blood.
We had been asked at our church to volunteer for a blood drive at the general hospital that was the only reason I was at the hospital that day.
I was tense and this made it difficult for the nurse to insert the syringe.
“Don’t worry, its not painful”, she said as she finally inserted the syringe in my vein.
I closed my eyes, flinched, then I relaxed as the pain subsided.
I had dozed for about 5minutes when I woke up to find a gorgeous bald shaven young man looking at me.
He smiled, then winked as I suppressed a yawn. I let out an embarrassed laugh.
” Hi”, we both said at the same time.
“JINX”, I shouted.
For the next 5mins he had to shut up while I ranted about how horrified I was about needles. He nodded at the right times, made sarcastic facial gestures…he was hilarious. I soon released him and we had a splendid intellectual/idiotic chat.
His name was sola and he liked to golf….weird (I thought). He also played in an orchestra.
We swapped numbers.
We talked everyday, visited ourselves and were soon inseparable.
7 months later, I was sure I loved him and he loved me too. We started dating and he proposed 5 months after.
Wedding preparations started and one month to our wedding we went for the usual tests.
The doctor told us we were okay and we could get married.
I was elated.
Some days to the wedding, sola came back from work looking dazed.
“Sit down”, he said.
He told me that the doctor had called him after we saw him to come for more tests.
Apparently, that the lab results had shown an abnormality in his white blood cell structure.
The doctor hadn’t thought it important enough to mention during our visit.
However, he had carried out further tests on blood and fluids collected.
He needed more tests to be run so sola had been called back for a spinal tap.
That same day, he had received another call from the doctor.
The doctor had discovered that he had a rare form of cancer.
His body had shown no signs but the cancer was in its advanced stages. There was no available cure. He was given a time span of 5 months to 1 year to live
Both of us were crying by the time he was done.
“The wedding will have to be called off”, he said.
I looked at him like he was mad.
I said I would go on with the marriage. We decided not to tell anyone what was wrong till the signs became very obvious.
On the wedding the priest read the vows….
“…for better for worse, till death do us part”
Tears rolled down my face…
The wedding guests beamed and whispered among themselves, “tears of joy”.
Three months later, he suddenly collapsed and was rushed to the hospital. We finally told our families what was happening….
On the day he died, we held hands, sobbing quietly….
He told me that he’d always be with me.
“You have a good heart…pure, sincere and loving. Don’t stop being kind. Smile all the time. I pray you love again.”, he said, as he wiped my tears.
“Please don’t go”
Through my tears I watched as he closed his eyes in what I presumed was a nap. I put my head by his side and slept….
Waking up to find he had died while I slept, ripped me apart. My world collapsed…..
Its been a month since his death.
Leaning against a mango tree far from the mourners, I watch as the grave is filled up.
I feel so lonely….like I’m the only person left in the world.
I wipe my tears again.
I must be strong!
For him, for me, for her.
I rub my slightly protruding belly as I turn away from the graveyard and walk back to my car.