I peeked into Facebook yesterday and read about the tragic death of a man at the hands of his wife, then I saw a post by a friend of his and shut down for bit.
You see, there was a man who meant the solar system to me for all of my life. He wasn’t just blood, he was close friend, adviser, bridge over troubled waters and the fun guy who basked in our hugs and told us the craziest stories (Storytelling runs in all my families). He didn’t get to see my twentieth birthday- he drove from Owerri to Ife to see me on the day I turned 19- that was the last time I hugged him. He was there three days later while we huddled in the car that would take us to Lagos- that was the last time I saw him, as the car pulled out of the compound.
We would talk on phone in the next few months more than we’d done in the preceding year, about me killing rats and the stress of pharmacy school, about his failing health and living with the devil. I’d tell him to leave- as I’d done for two years, as nearly everyone else had told him to. To run away
“Computer, you’re still a child” He would sigh.
“I can vote and be voted for, I’m an adult.”
Teenage adult, not yet full adult. Wait until you are 21.”
He would change the subject, talk about other things- especially about how I would graduate and get him the best drugs and I would let the matter float. One afternoon in March, I got a call from my dad that shattered my heart. I can still remember how my father’s voice shook as he told me the news, I can still remember every word from that one-sided conversation, and the screaming that followed.
I can’t begin to imagine the devastation rocking the family of the slain man, a special person gone just because he married the devil’s favourite daughter. How guilty his close friends must feel, especially the person(s) who escorted him to the pharmacy to get treatment after his wife attacked him the first time. Thousands of what-ifs will be sacrificed as their minds will churn with grief and regret, it is not a thing to wish an enemy.
I hope she- the murderer, gets locked away for a long time and that the silly defences I have seen this evening on Facebook and the postpartum depression that S thought might fly- when we talked about it this afternoon, will get shut down. But seriously, how do you stab a man multiple times and attempt to cut off his penis while he was ASLEEP in self-defence? And how do sane people actually accept it and even put it out here. If I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes, I wouldn’t have believed such stupidity could be spewed.
In the here and now, there is nothing more important than life. Not money, not marriage not societal standing. Marriages that end in tragedy always have a build-up, it is rarely ever sudden or a result of snapping. It’s the result of endurance, stubbornness and “what will people say” coming together to end a person’s life. There aren’t many things more painful than a needless death, I know this first hand.