The Story Of My Life – Aremo Olalekan
The tears rolled down my eyes as I walked the dark street that night. I took the right turn that led to the house of a friend that I was going to see by default, I had been to that house many times, morning, afternoon, night, so I could walk there with my eyes closed. Though I was walking to her house, my mind was focused on one thing, and it was this that brought tears to my eyes. What made it worse was that there was no way I could change it.
If I was the only one suffering from this act I could bear it, but I wasn’t and that made it a lot worse. My hands went instinctively to my eyes to wipe off the tear that hung midway on my cheek. Everything just doesn’t seem to be normal, was the normal thing not for tears to flow freely from your eyes and slide all the way down your cheek, why was mine hanging, or wasn’t it?
I was close to the house I was going, about two buildings from the house, now, I can’t even remember if I eventually arrived at my friend’s place or not, in fact I don’t remember all that happened between the time I was two houses away to the time I was once again on my way back home that night. Did I turn back or did I really get to their house, I’m not sure. My mind was clouded with guilt. I was getting depressed. I didn’t think my living was worth anything. That night, I started thinking of embracing the tag “boy that was born by mistake”. That night I wish I was never born.
I looked at myself, I was always struggling to get things done. I grew never knowing how to play football. What even triggered this sort of introspection I was in tonight? I do not know.
My birth itself was a controversy in itself. From the time of my conception, my presence brought agitation, rift and discord to the heart and lives of many. Call me the son of the sword or something related, you won’t be far from the truth. My presence was capable of halting a life dream. My presence was capable of tearing mother and daughter apart. My presence in the womb had the possibility of tearing a home apart. My presence, right from conception was a total disaster.
My young mother had the dream of being a great nurse, she wanted to pursue this path of life and her mother encouraged her greatly. She was walking in this path until she met a young man who would eventually be my father. She fell in love with him, one thing led to another and she got pregnant of me. My father was married! That would have being great news except that my father wasn’t married to my mum at this time, he was married to someone else and there was a child in the mix.
Polygamy wasn’t new where he came from, he was an honorable man and he was determined to do the right thing; marry my mother. My maternal grandmother after giving my mum her dose of motherhood stings, supported my mother’s desire to marry the father of her unborn child. He eventually did, making her the iyawo of the house. The two wives were to live separately, thankfully the arrangement worked. I caused all this and I was born into it. I had to live with it.
School is a very compulsory part of life, at least from where I come from, and though at the time the slogan for my state was ‘fountain of knowledge’, I definitely wasn’t a definition of that, I was more like the ‘abyss of knowledge’. I had a penchant for large numbers so much that my report card could testify. I was a regular with positions like 22nd, 21st, 17th and such. I remember a drawing of a car that I found later in my pile of books one day. I had drawn a car with squares and circle,, it was a treasure for me at a point. Olodo is the fitting description of what I was, scratch that, it should be OLODO.
I guess there are just some people who are born with brains while some of us are supposed to clap for them and applaud them as they collect all the awards and accolades. As much as I thought this, something inside me refused it. I wasn’t interested in competing with anyone’s position, I was more particular about being celebrated. If academic excellence is what I need to be celebrated, then I guess I’ll give it my best shot.
I gave it my best shot, yet, I failed.
To Be Continued