Her voice was shaky as she talked to me, she was sobbing. Her daughter was 8years old, had spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy. She also had siezure disorder. You may say she had all the toppings, just like my angel Ziim has. Hm..Mrs B called this morning to give me the news that her daughter passed on last night. I am here, so I said I would visit when I get back homw. One hour after she called, I called her back, spoke with her for a while and asked to speak with her husband. She gave the phone to him, for like forever he could not say a word. When he found his voice, all he could say was; it is well, God knows best, she has gone to rest.
Mr and Mrs B were introduced to me about a year half and ago, not long after I started the Cpcenter. On their first visit, I allowed us to have our cry, yes, sometimes we cry. Mrs B blamed the doctor that delivered her of the baby. Ok, I said, we can not say for sure if the doctor made some error, but whatever, Miss B is here and this way, we need to move forward. They used to go for physiotherapy when they could. Miss B had two younger siblings so Mrs B is not able to take her often. Mr B is always busy at work. I told them that they could bring Miss B to Cpcenter, it will not only give Mrs B some free time, but Miss B is sure to have some needed sensitization and therapy. Mr B said that the center is far from them and that Mrs B does not have a car, he would save money and buy a car for Mrs B so that it will be easy for her.They had a therapist came home to work with Miss B for N6,000 per session, yes six thousand naira a session of one hour, three times a week!
When we started this therapy that we are doing,I called the couple, told them about it and said I could teach Mrs B the exercises and she could do that on the child at her spare time or she could bring her to the center and we do that for her. She said she would find time. I did not hear from them anymore. One day Mr B called asking if I have information on stemcell, he wants to save money and take the child for stem cell therapy abroad. He went further to say that they have discontinued the services of the therapist as they were not seeing any improvement in Miss B. Information on stem cell abound on the internet I told him, it is a procedure I am not interested in. But how is Miss B? He was not quite coming on her state.
One Sunday after mass, I went with Ziim to pay them a visit, call me busy body if you like. They gushed at Ziim; ha she looks so well and prety. Na that therapy we dey do now. I was not happy with what I saw and I told them so. Mr B, I know you said you were saving money to buy a car for your wife to make it easy for her to bring Miss B to Cpcenter, now you are saving money for stem cell. While all these are in process, would you not be doing something for Miss B so that she will still be here when the money is save up? I hope you keep your neuro appointments to review her siezure medications? We have not been for a while, I have to get a doctor to give us a refral letter to be able to go back. That is not a problem Mr B, I can arrange for a doctor to do that, if you or Mrs B come to the center, I will call my friend and ask him, his office is not far from the center. That was about five months ago. I did not hear from or see them since then. I got busy. Once in a while when they cross my mind, I tell myself that may be they have gone to DR for the stem cell and they were going to walk in one day in the center with Miss B in tow sans Cp.
Now this news!!! I do not know what may be going on in their minds. Many a time, we fail to do the small things we can today that could make a different in someone’s life beacuse we are waiting to do the big things. It is like refusing to send my child to a public school which I can afford now because I am saving money to send h/her to one of those big private schools. There is no gainsaying that when I save up the money h/she would probably be too old to start school from the begining and those schools would not admit h/her. Instead of making a difference in people’s life, we rather wait to make a difference. Of course there are always lots of
reasons excuses for the wait just like the biblical wedding feast guests, each guest had an excuse to be absent.
There is no denying the fact that parenting a child with Cp is an overwhelming task. Most times you are at a loss at to how and where to start. Which therapy to follow. It is tiring. You want me to say that it is not? But the solution is not to do anything or to wait till you can do a big thing. Doing something, whatever it is does not guaranty that the child may not die if it is the will of God, but you want to be able to say that the child died while “I was doing something and not while I was waiting to do something big”. You want to be able to say that you did all that you possibly could, that you put up your best fight. Yes, honestly that is what this mama here is doing. I want to wake up ten, twenty years from now, Ziim still where she is now and I can say painfully,but with some sense of satisfaction; I did all I could, small yes, but that’s what I could with what was avaliable to me. That is why I am not waiting, rather I am making a difference not just in Ziim’s life, but in the life of those children in CpCenterand even that of their families. Waiting to make a difference is like postponing the good deeds you can do which can change someone’s life today. Are you waiting or making a difference even unto your brother, neighbour,friend………? I think you should make it now, not wait.