Yetunde gave birth to a healthy boy. Even though she prayed this birth would bring a girl to add to the 3 boys she had, she was grateful she made it through another delivery.
At 3 years old, he was like her other sons who were now 5, 7 and 9. Just that, he was reserved. And, he cried whenever he was presented with a toy gun.
When he was 11, he showed no interest in playing football. He would rather stay with her. Sometimes, she would coax him to go play ball with his siblings and their child friends outside. When he didn’t oblige, she would force him.
His brothers complained he didn’t like playing with them. Since he preferred playing ten-ten with the girls, he was no longer their friend. She told them to always remain friends. He was their youngest brother. They had the responsibility to take care of him.
When he turned 16, all his brothers had girlfriends. She asked him if he fancied any girl. He replied that he wasn’t interested. She was puzzled. She didn’t understand what he meant, but she patted his head and told him the right girl would come along. He looked depressed. She didn’t understand why. She assumed he would grow out of it.
The next day, he came back home with a bleeding nose. His angry brothers had left the house to confront “the friend” who made their blood bleed.
She cleaned him up. She made him talk. They hadn’t spoken like this before. Everyone called him strange and teased him for being feminine. The boys that beat him said he was a fag and he was still using his fineness to carry their girls. He wasn’t even interested in the girls.
His brothers returned home and said it was his fault. They had taught the culprits a lesson, but it was still his fault. The following day, they dragged him to a local gym so that he would loose his thin frail self. They got him a girlfriend so that other girls would leave him alone.
He did as he was told. And, she swore she saw improvement in his mood, and in his relationship with his brothers.
Then, it happened.
His brothers came home without him. They thought he was home. They had heard something in school and wanted to question him about it.
She received a call from the principal. She needed to be in school the next day. By evening, she called the principal. Her son wasn’t home and she wanted to know why.
She picked her keys and drove to the school with her eldest son.
The principal narrated that Yetunde’s youngest son had been caught kissing a senior boy.
Yetunde wanted to know the where abouts of her son.
They didn’t know. He ran away. They assumed he had run home.
She pulled her ankara scarf off her head, screaming my son, my son, my son oh! Give me my son.
As if she regained a certain composure. She turned to the boy who was accused of kissing her son. She asked why he hadn’t run away instead, why he led her young innocent son astray, why he stood there while her son was gone.
She slapped him. She demanded for her son. But, he kept silent. The silence pained her. She pulled his shirt, ripped the buttons. She demanded her son.
She heard someone mention to calm down. She went mad. She emptied the principal’s table. Who was it? That person would be the one to go out into the wickedness of the world to bring back her son.
She looked into her eldest son’s eyes. She saw her youngest son. She felt herself grow weak. She collapsed into his embrace. She felt his sobs, she felt his breath, she felt his heartbeat and wished it belonged to her youngest son.
He would return to her. She felt it. The police said they had to wait for twenty four hours before they could issue a statement. They had not considered that her son would not have dinner, he may not have shelter. He may have been kidnapped. She prayed he was alive.
One week had gone. He wasn’t home. The promises from the police had begun to sound like black noise.
Two weeks. Nothing.
Three weeks. She organised a novena with the help of her parish priest dedicated to the return of her son.
Four weeks. Her husband would be back from the States. What would she tell him? How would she explain it? Where could she find their youngest son or hide from having to confront her husband?
Her husband called to say he would be at the Murtala Muhammed Airport by 2pm. That was just two hours away. She instructed the house maid on what to make for lunch. She looked in the mirror. Her all black outfit expressed only a portion of how she felt. She picked her phone to call the driver.
There was a loud bang from the main gate. Then, someone was shouting. She heard the name of her youngest son and madam from whoever was shouting?
Could it be?
Her chest began to feel heavy. It couldn’t contain the new speed of her beating heart. She raced down the stairs and out her door.
It was him.
She ran up to up to him and hugged him. Then, pulled him away and slapped him. How could he be so callous? Where had he been all this while? What had she done to deserve such treatment?
There was a stranger who stood with him. He explained everything.
For his 23rd birthday, she organised a surprise party. He came home with a friend. He introduced his friend as his best friend. She liked his friend. He made her son happy.
After then, whenever his friend came to visit. She didn’t care about what they did behind his closed door. All she cared about was that her youngest son was home.
Enjoy my Blog.
You are Awesome.