Grandma wasn’t her buoyant self anymore. Her effervescent nature has gradually fizzled out. She has drifted into a shadow of her former self. A debilitating illness dealt her this blow. Oh, Grandma!
This has gone beyond the ordinary. The affliction has eaten deep into her veins. Her laughter has ceased. Her smiles dry and wrinkled. She was almost inaudible when she tried to speak. I could hear her struggle to tell me things. But each time, her voice faded away. And each time this happens, I felt a tear from my eyes trickle down my cheek.
Grandma has spent months going in and out of the hospital. It hasn’t been easy times for anyone in the family, especially Mama. Everyone takes a turn to care and cater for her. Her condition has left us all drained out.
That evening, I cast my gaze upon her. Like someone doing a thorough scrutiny of something dear. Her throat was parched and her lips chapped. What’s with this ill-health? It was obvious now, that time is ticking fast. Only the gods can bring her back as she seems to be sliding below the surface. She was 80 years and the ageing process was rather too harsh on her.
Reddened on the face, from her recent flu, she managed to swallow the morsel in her hand. The bowl of pounded yam sat in front of her. It was her favourite soup. Nsala soup (Pepper soup). Specially prepared for her with the herbs from her small garden. She tasted the soup and her face scrunched up. Then she pursed her lips and turned her mouth downwards. Her wrinkled face tightened. And she pressed her flaky lips together. The kind of expression that follows the taste of sour food or unpleasant smells. The Nsala soup has been cooked with utazizi leaves, a bitter herb that is a delight on a normal good day. But today wasn’t a good day.
Not long after this unhappy situation. It happened. Grandma was taken adrift from her family. She bowed to the eerie wind. The grim reaper has struck again. All I do now is to take an occasional trip down memory lane. Her death triggered a series of questions within my soul. It was a turning point for me.
Submitted for the Daily Prompt – Adrift.
Peace and Love!
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