The Sea Of An August 23rd

I had decided;earth needed me no more. There was to me a punishment and I was willing to accept it.The angel of death beckoned,and I was ready to heed the call. It was time to let him hold my hands and lead me to my beloved,my living. I had decided,the world was empty,void of joy and happiness. Every moment spent without ‘my living’,reminded me of how lonely he was,how long he’s been waiting,waiting for me to join him. We took an oath,’for better or for worse…in sickness and in health’,I defaulted. He held on to a thin rope of hope,but like a spineless gander,I snithed it. I offered Hades his soul. I killed him,my very own husband.

August 23rd slipped in on us in bed. And like every other birthday of mine,Yomi was to serve me breakfast in bed. Fully awake,I tossed over,knowing he wouldn’t be there. Heaven knew what he had in store for me. Thinking of the upcoming piggy ride when I had to sit on his back and how like a horse,he’ll take me round the living room,made me giggle. I was soon able to perceive the mouth watering aroma permeating the bedroom. Eager to know what he was cooking,I tip-toed my way out of the bedroom,through the living room and decelerated my footsteps when I got to the kitchen. My brain was active now Oat? No,not oat! It definitely wasn’t oat! Pancake? No! 

Then it hit me.I was just about giggling when he turned. He had that lopsided smile on;that one that silently said,”Guess what?” I smiled curiously. Turning off the gas,he came to me.

“Come with me my love”,he had said,pulling me outside with him. I went along with him but resisted when I noticed he wanted me to get into his car.

“Come on”,he had urged me on.

“I’m in my night dress!”

“You look beautiful”,he assured,giving me a fast kiss. I complied and he got in almost immediately. Our destination remained unknown to me,but the drive didn’t seem to end. At last, we came to a stop at the beach, looking out unto the sea.The sun was just beginning to say hello. ‘What better way to start a day as important as this?’…so I thought,but if only all stories had happy endings. Yomi gave me that piggy ride at the beach,in my nighty! He kissed me hundreds of times and showed how much he loved me. He read me poems, made my hair and took a dip with me. But he never came home with me. The tyre…the tyre had come off on its own. The beeping sound of the echocardiograph sent my eyes flying open. My head hurt so badly,so much I winced out loud. 

Yomi…Yomi…where was he? 

Lucifer was playing games with us! He wasn’t backing down. When I tried to move,the pain that shot up my arm made me numb. I recall screaming so loud until a nurse came running in.

“Yomi…where is he?”


“Where is he?!”

I could taste blood on my lip,thick blood. But I didn’t care,I needed Yomi. I needed to know how he was doing. I needed to hear him talk to me. I needed him to be there with me. But no one was bringing him to me! No one…no one.
I awoke from what seemed like a five minutes sleep. It was like that nurse hadn’t injected me,like I hadn’t fallen asleep,only now, papa sat in front of me.


“My princess,shhh…”

“Where is Yomi?”, I managed to ask.

“He’s doing fine,I promise.”

I nodded and soon went unconscious again.

January 1st peeked in,only this time it came with a new calendar. Two years and Yomi still lay in coma,and I by his bedside. He had healed,but his brain bid him no sovereign.He was with me,yet away. Two years,I had waited patiently,visited his ward, read him novels and most times,spent the night by his side. Two years I had worked my body and soul out to pay for his life support. Two years I had exhausted all that was left of our property.I had sold practically everything we owned,everything we ever had.I couldn’t even afford the rent anymore. I finally understood how fast a person’s dream could be swallowed up.Two years gone,and I could hold him no more. The doctors kept ranting about how I was defaulting on payment,and how Yomi had no hope of survival.Its funny how doctors who take oaths to save lives turn out to be monsters who care nothing about their patients. The money,it was always about the money.I needed help,it wasn’t forth coming.I wrote letters, I sent mails to organizations,agencies,and even the state government,but no response came.I was lost. I knew my Yomi was in there,holding on. I knew he had the will to live. I knew he wanted so bad to come back to me. I knew all of this,and yet,I consented to euthanasia. I let him die. I failed him. I gave up on him. I sent him six feet under…I let Lucifer win. 

And so…

“Here lies the body of Tokan Rhoda,daughter,wife and sister,drowned in the sea of an August 23rd. If ever you find this piece,speak to my father,tell him of my love for him. And my brother…tell him to do good to those who deserve it.”


Okunlola Azeezat Olayinka


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