One would have thought that when you decide to “live in the now” as in live in the moment, all things that should
make force one to think worry about tomorrow will sort of vamoose. Hm.. they won’t let me be.
Sunday, Ziim and I were at mass, of course you expected we went. Yes we were at the 6am mass. No news, that’s your regular mass. Right again. After mass we did some socializing, talked with this doctor who is showing interest in what we do at the CpCenter, took his email address with a promise to send him links on things we are considering doing in the center. Then we went over to chat with my brother at the priory side. By the time we were ready to go, I noted that we had spent about 20mins extra, hm. Nonye you have to hurry home, morning medication and breakfast, then sleep for Ziim, you know you woke her up at 5am, making her loose two hours of sleep. Amazingly she did not complain, this babe can be nice when she wants to!
Oh. please somebody needs to let the pastor know that this new parking arrangement in the parish is really good, it has not only brought sanity to the place, it has allowed for parishioners to socialize after mass. Before that, I would not have had the luxury of doing what I just did as I would have had to hurriedly move to give room for people attending the next mass to park.
I was in a good spirit as we drove off, should be, just heard mass didn’t I, and remember, I am living in the now. A young man was waiting for me to give him a ride, he lives on my way, have been doing that for a couple of Sundays now. I like taking on people in the car to see if and how Ziim reacts to their presence.
Traffic was light, in a short while we were close to that place called Empire. As I made to turn into western avenue, I saw this beautiful lady, she has this type of complexion that makes most men go weak on their knees, or sign off their fortune just to be with such beauty. She is beautiful. She was on the opposite side, a young boy of about eight or nine was with her, she was in a wheelchair, the boy was holding onto the wheelchair. She looked too young to be the mother of the boy. You would not believe what happened, yes, that is true, I just saw an older Ziim sitting on that wheelchair, and I said to no one in particular, that lady can not be a beggar! Like I said she was on the opposite side so I could not stop right away and talk to her. Ha.. that could be Ziim tomorrow that voice said to me. Nonye, live in the now! But my mind, thought and even being just raced to tomorrow. What is that lady doing there with that young boy? I dropped off my passenger, made a U turn and practically raced to the lady. By the time I was almost where she was, I saw a taxi pulling up by her, I started hooting my horn and I got the attention of the taxi driver and I made sign for him to go. I drove up to the lady; good morning, where are you going ? Church. Which church I will take you. St. Dominic’s. St Dominic’s? that is my church, I am just coming from the first mass. Which mass are you going? 7.15am. No, you are very late, you may have to attend the 8.30 mass, because by the time I left the church premises, I heard them singing the gloria in the 7.15 mass, so you are very late. That’s ok I will attend the next one. Good. The young man helped wheel her near the door, she got into the car and the boy and I tried to put the chair in the trunk of the car. We could not lift it for it was quite heavy. For one tiny second I thought of Ziim in the tomorrow, stop Nonye live in the now. Did you not say Amen to the prayer that she may not need a wheelchair even as a teenager? Hm… I asked a by stander to assist us, he did, trust Nigerians, he even offered some prayers for us.
As we go, I ask some questions; I understood that she had polio as a child, her father is dead, mother is a petty trader, she dropped out of school due to lack of sponsor, she has an OND in business administration, the young boy with her helps her get around, she has no job, but she does something, sometimes sells recharge cards. We got to the church, I dropped her off, took her number. I will spare you the details of the drama that went on between I and the church traffic wardens before they agreed to open the gate of the then empty YCC car pack so that I can drop her inside. I took her phone number and went home. Amazingly again, Ziim was just calm, no complain even as I have eaten deep into her time. As soon as we got home, I quickly attended to her, giving her her medications and breakfast. Ideally she should sleep after breakfast but she would not sleep, I was tired, I tried to sleep, but I could not sleep too. My mind was on that lady. Was Ziim’s mind on her too?
After lunch I called her on the number she gave me and asked if Ziim and I could stop by her place, sure she said. I
wanted needed to find out more about her, how she copes, how come she could not get a sponsor etc. We visited her, we talked and I came out honestly frightened of tomorrow. My thinking is; if people with polio which I consider a milder issue to Cp have it this tough in this country, how about people with Cerebral palsy, especially those that are grossly involved like Ziim?.
She told me that she comes out every Sunday at that point where we saw her to take taxi to church. And nobody gives you a ride? There a lot of parishioners that ply that route. Ha., she goes, I even stop them, I shout church, St. Dominic’s when I see cars with rosary hanging on the front mirrors, but no one stops. I said nothing, I was thinking of how to at least offer some sort of assistance. Then I asked her if she can change her mass to 8.30am, we can also change so that we pick her in front of her house about 8.15am, it’s less than 5mins drive to the church. She said it’s fine. I know this will entail a few things for us, for instance, we have succeeded in securing a permanent seat sort of in our regular mass, we may have to fight to get that spot. That’s fine, we may not even need to fight to get the spot, but the joy of assisting this lady will make up for the fight.
As we set for home, much as I want to live in the now, I could not help thinking of tomorrow and how the social services will affect Ziim and her likes. I think of tomorrow and I and poised to as much as I can do whatever I can to help Ziim’s tomorrow to be better.