Continued from Will mentioned you #2
Later that night, I’d call my mother and tell her everything that had happened during the day. She’d tell me to show compassion and understanding towards Will and his family. ‘He needs that now more than ever,’ she’d say. We would talk about other stuff, like her health, and whether or not she’s eating well and taking her medications on time. My mom is living with hypertension and Type 2 diabetes. Thus I make sure to check on her regularly to make up for not been able to live with her permanently. Ever since I started my secondary school education and had to move from Asante Mampong, all the way to Kumasi, both in the Ashanti region, I would always rush back home to see her every vacation.
I must admit, it was pretty hard making that transition in the beginning. But having lived and schooled in Kumasi for the past three years, and graduating from Kumasi Anglican Senior High School; I now consider it my second home. Not only can I navigate certain corners of Kumasi’s most indigenous areas and her markets, I’ve also made some legitimate friends for a lifetime, like my best friend, Pamela. Pamela and I now work together as primary school teachers in this private school in my area, called Amazing Grace. I’ve been teaching there for the past three years after S.H.S hoping to gather enough money for my tertiary education. I don’t enjoy teaching so much but I have no other choice at the moment.
Early the next morning, I get to the hospital around 6am, right when visiting hours start. A smiling Mrs Sue welcomes me—I can tell she’s glad I made it .For the record, I have a mild dislike for hospitals. The environment, for me, is too glum, and I feel downcast anytime I visit hospitals. That’s why I try to make myself stay away from them to the best of my ability.
Anyway, we get to the male ward and there are a number of beds occupied in almost every room except the place is not crowded with sick, groaning men in pain. Most of them have people over by their side because of course, it is visiting time. Will is in the last but one room in the ward, Room 9. There are about eight beds in here after I do a quick count but currently, only three are occupied, so his room is quieter. Will is in Bed 6 here, and the other two patients are in Beds 1 and 3.
The man in Bed 1 is not so young. Even as he is lying down, I can see he is quite tall, heavily-built and strong, but now, he looks like he wouldn’t be able to kill a fly. As Mrs Sue and I walk past his bed, we greet the two women—one wearing some bright shade of orange lipstick, in complete contrast to her green blouse and light blue jeans and the other, a plump figure with heavy cheeks and fleshy arms, having her hair tied up in short box braids. I hear him say his body is in so much pain it feels as though it doesn’t belong to him anymore.
On the other hand, the man in Bed 3, is a rather old man, probably in his seventies or late sixties. Almost all his hair is grayed out with a few black strands dispersed among the gray. Two middle-aged men, a young girl in faded black jeans and an ash-coloured T-shirt, together with an old woman with a sullen face, are the ones by his side. It’s obvious the old woman—who is not so old like ‘grandmother-old’—is the man’s wife and the others, I’m unable to tell. They could be his children, nephews, nieces, whatever.
Again, Will is fast asleep, which I presume is as a result of his drugs, like Mrs Sue had said the last time. Later, I’d find out he was faking most of the sleep because he was not ready to see me. Now, sitting beside him, I ask Mrs Sue how she found me, and why Will’s father hasn’t shown up since the whole incident.
‘Will’s father is at home. He refuses to come with me anytime I ask, and I don’t want to force it either. He’s been deeply hurt and troubled by all this, and he thinks he is responsible for what has happened. The truth is, he just wanted to be a good father, he didn’t mean to push him so hard. He loves Will a lot, and I hope he comes to know that,’ she sighs.
‘I think he knows that,’ I say, staring at Will. Certainly, he knew.
‘Oh, and about finding you, I searched through his phone’s contact, after I found the note he left. I was hoping to find a contact but I didn’t. Instead, I found an address where the contact was supposed to have been. I decided to come find you, and it didn’t take long to do so, with the help of one Mobile money agent I saw lodged under a tree closer to the Kotei School Park, who delightedly showed me your house. After knocking for a while, a short velvet-skinned woman with a child strapped at her back, came out of the opposite room, to tell me you weren’t around. Apparently, she didn’t know where you’d gone either. I thanked her and left saying I’d come back next time. That’s when I decided to come very early the following day.’
‘Oh sorry, I attended a colleague’s wedding on Saturday.’
‘It’s no problem dear. How were you to know something like this would happen?,’ she says smiling.
‘I should probably be on my way or I’ll be late for school. It seems this guy isn’t waking up anytime soon,’ I say while checking the time—it is forty-five minutes past six. Whew. Time sure moves fast.
‘Yeah right. Thank you so much for coming Fafa. And also, you know you don’t have to come everyday right?,’ she says, her smile filled with gratitude.
‘I know. Have a nice day Mrs Sue.’
On my way home from school, later in the day, I think about Will and wonder when I’ll have the chance to talk to him. ‘Would he want to talk to me?.’ I pray for his earnest recovery because there is so much I want to ask him.
The next morning, I wake up quite late, at 7:15am. I had spent last night watching series of Ghanaian movies that had started showing around 9pm and ended up sleeping very late. I am not that late in terms of getting to work if I hurry up, but that would mean not going to see Will this morning. I call Mrs Sue, on my commute to the school and tell her I’d pass by in the evening.
In the evening, I get there and find the ward emptier than previously. It doesn’t take me long to notice the absence of the old man, the one who’s probably in his seventies. Mrs Sue tells me he passed on in the middle of the night; that so she heard from the nurses when she came in in the morning. I feel a slight pang of sadness spread across my heart.
‘This is why I hate hospitals. There’s always bad news lurking around the corner,’ I say to her in a sad tone.
She nods in agreement and shrugs, suggestive of our helplessness towards the situation. ‘Only God knows best,’ is what she’d say later.
We move on from the topic; I ask about Will—who’s still faking sleep anytime I’m around—and she says he’s a lot better now and could be discharged anytime soon. I leave my greetings, as well as the bag of fruits I’d bought for him with Mrs Sue, for when he wakes up. I ask to take my leave after few minutes of mundane talk about life and loss.
I wouldn’t realize until so much later, how fond I have grown of her. How in so many ways I find in her the mother I don’t have here with me. Besides, I’d thought she was a friend of my mom’s the first time we met, and I would tell her that. She would smile and say she’d felt the same way too—that I’m like the daughter she never had.
Around 4pm on Wednesday, almost getting to the end of my day, I receive a call from Mrs Sue. She tells me Will has been discharged, and that they are already home. With a joyful heart and a beaming smile, I shout ‘We praise God!’ into the phone. Almost as if reading my mind, she invites me over to their house, and says I’m welcome to pass by anytime. She then thanks me for everything I’d done for her and her family these past days. Although I tell her it’s nothing, I’m glad she did invite me. For some reason, I wanted to know them more, both her and the mysterious Will.
Hi there lovely reader,
Thanks for reading another episode with me today too
Stay tuned, the story continues.
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Also, eat well, stay healthy, stay alive. Have a nice day