WHEN THE FIELDS YIELD NO MEAT
Urgh! I hate hospitals! The smell of blood, injections and drugs that hangs in the air always nauseates me. More reasons I can never be a nurse.
But my mom is sick. She is frail and fragile. The doctor says it is a terminal illness. What that means, I can’t say. She is in so much pain that I cannot bear to look at her.
Is she going to die? No! My mom cannot die. She is the only one I have. She is my life and my being. I cannot afford losing her.
Tears stream down my face. I remember the distress she went through in my dad’s hands.
Theirs was not a happy marriage. Although my mom is a good Christian like Ayodele’s parents, my dad was not. We lived in fear of him. My mom was his punching bag.
Every night, he would come home drunk and pounce on her. I still don’t know why he always did that. I would shout and cry, begging him to leave her. Then I would run to our next-door neighbours for help. Most times, they rendered no help. They were tired of my parents’ constant quarrel. Who would not be anyway? I would rush back to my parents and with my tiny hands; I would try to pull him from her. But, what can an eight-year-old girl do?
I would tend her swollen face afterwards. I always felt sorry for her. I prayed to God to rescue her from the constant assault. And He did. My dad passed away. Even though my mom says his death is not as a result of my prayers, I know it has something to do with it.
My eyes light up as I think about it. God answered my prayers two years back. That means He can heal my mom if I ask Him. I close my eyes in excitement. “God, I know you can heal my mom. She taught me that if I have faith as small as a mustard seed, I will have anything I ask from the Lord. I believe You can, please heal her.”
I open my eyes and glance at my mom on the bed in the intensive care ward. Her eyes are closed and I can see her writhe in agony. I look away and stand from my seat in the waiting area. I need to go to the hospital chapel and pray more. God will not let her die. He has all power and understanding. He can heal. He can save. He will give me us miracle.
Five hours have passed. I stand up and amble out of the chapel. I have a smile as big as the moon on my face. God will surely heal her. My prayers cannot go in vain.
I sing as I saunter towards the ward.
All things bright and beautiful
All creatures great and small
All things wise and wonderful
The Lord God made them all.
That is my favourite among the songs Miss Olatooke, my class teacher, taught us in school. I clap my hands and do a small dance as I sing. Anyone seeing me will think I just bought my Christmas dress.
I stop in my tracks as I reach the entrance of the ward. Why is my mom covered with a cloth? Is she cold? Why is she lying still like that?
I rush to her. “Mom, what is wrong?” I shake her, fear creeping into my voice. One of the nurses runs to me.
“AyoOluwa, this is not allowed.” She tries to hold me but I dodge.
My lips quiver. “What is wrong with my mom? Why is she covered? Why is she not talking?”
“I…am sorry, Ayo. She is…dead,” the nurse replies sadly.
“No, no, noooo,” I whimper as I try opening her face. The nurse holds my hand, stopping me.
Hot tears trickle down my cheeks. “No, my mom cannot die. She can’t. Tell me this is a joke. Tell me this is a dream,” I shriek as the nurse drags me away.
Today makes it 14 years since my mom died. I clutch her picture to my chest and stare at the piece of paper in my right hand. Even though the paper is rough, it is very dear to me because it holds the words of my mother to me.
My eyes fill with tears as I read:
My dear AyoOluwa,
This last stage of the cancer is something else. The pain is unbearable. I know death is inevitable. Moreover, God has told me that I will soon be going home to meet Him.
I ask God several questions. Who will take care of you when I am gone? What will be your fate? I can’t trust you with my sister, Adesola. However, God has reassured me that He will take care of you. I don’t know how but I believe He will.
I leave you with Habakkuk chapter 3, verses 17 and 18: Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stall: yet I will rejoice in the Lord. I will joy in the God of my salvation.
AyoOluwa, no matter what happens to you in life, never forsake the Lord. Don’t ever doubt His love for you. Things may go from bad to worse; life may not treat you well, but never ever stop trusting Him.
Hold these words dear to you. I love you but Jesus loves you more.
Your sweet mom,
I am 24 now. Life has thrown a lot my way. However, this I always remember: that even when the fig tree does not blossom and the fields yield no meat, GOD IS EVER FAITHFUL.
Yeah, I know it has been a while here. I also know this story looks like the last one I posted.
I am sorry for not showing up. I have no excuse anyway. I just wanted to focus on other things.
I edited the story to make it look interesting. Actually, I wanted to submit it for a contest, but the theme was changed.
A lot has happened this year. I want you to know that no matter what, God is faithful. He is always good. Keep that in mind.
Thank you for reading through. Anticipate more inspiring stories. God bless you. I love you but Jesus loves you more.