If You Can't Help, Don't Hurt! Episode-1

If You Can't Help, Don't Hurt! Episode-1

A Story by Homason

A Nigerian-african tale of the prowess of Amaka, a young school leaver.

If You Can't Help, Don't Hurt!
By Homason.

Amaka had one of the most horrible experiences any growing child could have with a single parent. As the only child, life was neither sweet nor fair for her but she comforted herself that challenges are only temporal and without them life may not be meaningful. She had stayed three years at home after graduating from an Adventist Comprehensive high school in Elele. She took a job as a sales girl for different enterprises, including boutique, pharmacy, super market to mention just a few. During this time, She purchased a university basic form to go into the university with the money she saved. Amaka was very brilliant and beautiful, and these often cost her whatever she ventured into. She gainfully got admitted into the university of Port Harcourt to study Micro biology. Her single mother fried and sold beans-balls (Akara) and yam every evening to make earns mint. Amaka would assist her mom when she returned from classes. During holidays, Amaka would secure and do farm works for people in order to pay her school fees and for upkeep. She also sold roasted corn by the road side whenever it was the season. To say things were too difficult for them would be an understatement. Because of the inconveniences from home chores, Amaka performed poorly in some courses and managed to scale through from level to level. All through her schooling, her course advisers never called her for an advice neither did any lecturer show concern in her poor results. During her final year in 2014, she decided to secure accommodation and live on campus so that she can have more time to study and clear outstanding courses to enable her graduate with her mates. Her mom didn't support the idea of living on campus - away from home, but Amaka insisted it was the better option. She came home on weekends to assist her mom on certain tasks and her mom always appreciated this.
One horrible weekend, as Amaka returned home, she saw her mom on the bed wrapped in sheets. She dropped her bag and dashed down, her body was as hot as boiled water when she felt her skin. Her mom explained the ill-health had just began suddenly. Quickly, Amaka ran out to get some drugs in a nearby chemist. All through the weekend, it wasn't easy for Amaka and her mom as they both battled with the ill-health. It became more serious that Amaka had to frequent returning home and going to school daily. Weeks later, the ill-health persistently became frightening. Amaka had to miss classes and, subsequently, exams as well to take her mom from one hospital to the other. Initially, her mom had disliked and refused to be taken to a hospital (because she feared they hadn't the money to pay for the bills). But Amaka disobeyed her when the sickness became critical. As usual, they'll call their family doctor who will come and administer drip or prescribe drugs and mother will be fine, but this time nothing worked. They've spent two days in the hospital and #10,000 for tests yet there was no sign of recovery. Some friends kept calling from school to inform her of tests and exams she has missed but she wouldn't take her calls further than she already did. So frustrated, Amaka rested her heavy head sideways beside her sick mother's bed. Quietly, tears rolled slowly from one eye to the other down her chin. "Commot for there..." The silence broke, a nurse harshly excused Amaka just to take a temperature test. Some minutes later she said: "This girl, u wan kill ur mama? U never go pay the money? Amaka, wiping her tears, said to her in a tearing voice: "Aunty-Nurse, abeg help us, all our money na #10,000 we get." But she was hushed by the nurse: "No b me u go tell dat one-o. Go tell doctor." And she walked away.
Well, Amaka met with the doctor at the corridor but he also gave his excuse not to continue her mother's treatment unless the total bill of #46,000 was completed. "Forty-six thousand? Ewh!" Amaka said and also pleaded with the doctor to accept the much she had but the doctor clarified; "look, young lady, i'm not the owner of this hospital, neither i'm I the drug manufacturer, you're a beautiful girl and you can make money with that." And he walked away too.
Helplessly, Amaka left the hospital to meet family and friends for help, but only the later gave her #6,000.
Besides their frying pans and cooking pots, her handset, wristwatch and the wall clock were the only valuable things worth selling in the house. At last, all she had at hand was #30,000, she quickly went back to the hospital. The hospital had refused to proceed further treatments on her mom just as they said, unless the money was paid in full, and her mom yet laid unattended. Amaka went straight to the doctor's office, but, she was welcomed by a stranger. Another doctor had resumed his 'shift' for the day's work. It was a routine in that hospital for workers to put in, at least, six hours of work, in the morning, afternoon or evening periods, before closing for the day. Anyway, Amaka greeted and explained herself. He brought out some files, asked for her name and opened one, then he began to gaze and flip through. After a couple of minutes he said: "Yes, your bill was #46,000 and you have paid only #10,000, do you have the remaining #36,000? ("Like seriously? Is that all he could say? He didn't even talk about my mom's health or even sympathize with me? All he's after is the money?" I guess this would've been Amaka's thought). Well, she reluctantly replied, "sir, I have gone round to relations, friends and even strangers in search of the complete balance, I even had to sell some of our properties in order to raise what I have here. It should've been #36,000 but what I have is #30,000, please, save my mothers life first. I'm a student and she's a petty trader, with her health restored we can work harder and come back to pay you the left over amount." Hushed again, the doctor said: "Look, young lady, this is not a charity organization. I don't care whatever you are or whatever you've done, just complete the money and we can begin treatment. Please, I have other patients waiting for me, if you'll excuse me." And he walked away.
Hurt, so hurt was Amaka at this point.
At last, Here was the bill, so much fought for, just with a difference of #6,000?
Sadly, Amaka walked slowly back to her mom, she held the hands of her beloved mother, both shedding tears uncontrollably. No one could console each other, nobody to console anybody, and so, her mother gave up the ghost..
Watch out for Episode-2
coming soon...

© 2018 Homason

Author's Note

Further thoughts:
– She didn't die because of Amaka's disobedience for bringing her to the hospital, no. She died because she was Hurt (heart broken). When Amaka returned back to her, she could see the bulk of money but she saw that it wasn't enough for the doctors to Help (save her life). If you can't Help don't Hurt!
– Have you hurt someone before and you think it was just little? Have you been hurt before and was told "that small thing hurt you?"
– How often do you find yourself strong and healthy, eating balanced diet, going to school and doing a lucrative business or job yet you have no time to thankGod, yet you complain over little challenge and not satisfied with yourself? Don't you know that your case is better than some others'? I think you need to have a rethink about life - to be grateful and happy with what you do and what you have. To know that, like Amaka and her mom, no condition is permanent. Things may change suddenly/abruptly/impromptly against us, but we must face our situation and put-in our best even to the last of our breath.
Foot Note:
This story is a fiction. All names, characters and places cited here are purely fictional. Any resemblance here is merely a coincidence.

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Added on June 16, 2018
Last Updated on June 25, 2018
Tags: Africa, Nigeria, Patience, disappointment, strife, pain, hardwork, confusion



Port Harcourt, Christianity, Nigeria

Humble and friendly. Writer and composer. Author of the book "Before You Quit: A Recipe for Success." Likes to play football and table tennis. Upholds the Golden Rule. more..

Time! Time!

A Story by Homason