[Content warning: multiple sudden deaths, including a stillbirth]
I am traumatized! I have been living in fear and my heart is so full of anxiety for no particular reason! I don't even know where to begin. The past weeks have been a very challenging and traumatizing time for me and my family.
My family was so happy last month because it was my birth month and that of my son. We were all so excited and counting down each day, more so as it has been so long since I saw my family last, due to the COVID-19 lockdown and many other challenges in 2020. Then came very exciting news from my husband's elder brother: his wife gave birth to a beautiful baby boy on the 4th of August. The whole family was so happy, and my kids were super excited for their uncle.
Sad...sad...sad! It was so sad and disheartening on the 6th of August just two days after the baby was born, on my son's birthday we received a call from my brother in-law saying his wife just died that morning. She died two days after her cesarean section. Then came all sorts of questions: When... Why... What???? I still can't wrap my head around it.
We all accept the fact that we can't change anything and that God knows it all! We move, so they say, we keep on moving, right?
COVID-19... I was very sick from July 21st for over a week, but got better after so many treatments for typhoid and malaria. Sick again, the first week of September, I started having the same symptoms all over again and this time was worse than the last.
I reported at a volunteer job as an HIV mentor-mother in one of the government's general hospitals on August 24th. Then came COVID-19; I fell very sick again in the month of September just less than a month after I was treated for typhoid and malaria. I just convinced myself to go take the COVID test on the 3rd of September. On the 7th, I was at the hospital where I volunteered and I just saw a funny text message saying I should call one doctor for COVID home care. I was shocked and was just wondering what that means, because no one told me my result as of that time. When I eventually called him, he just asked me lots of questions, which I gladly answered, because at that point I could not even describe how I was feeling. After my conversation with him I received another text message saying I am positive for COVID-19! He told me to first send my details to a particular cellphone number. I did and he then sent me another cell phone number to call a pharmacist. He in turn requested that I should go and collect the COVID medicine from a district hospital very far away from home and far from where I took the test. I went to collect the meds and commence treatment.
Just as I was trying to get over this COVID, my younger brother called to inform me about his pregnant wife being admitted in hospital for high blood pressure. She was due to deliver in the next month. The following day he called again to tell me that the baby died in his wife's womb. The doctor was going to section her, but to my surprise, she was not sectioned until almost a week after they discovered that the baby had died. It was a heartbreaking situation.
On the 17th of September, in the evening, my husband called me to tell me that his elder brother who lost his wife came to visit us, my brother in-law himself called me to say hello and to let me know that he is well taken care by my husband and 14 year old son. On the morning of the next day, I called to check on them, and my husband said his brother was still sleeping because they had all-night prayers. Then at 7:08 my husband called again. He was weeping saying his brother just died in his arms. They were in the living room together with my son.
Tears will not stop flowing from my eyes even as I write this blog. It is so disheartening and I just don't know what to do. This is a man that lost his wife last month, their first child is a three year old girl and there is the one month old baby boy. With all the hardship situation in Nigeria, it makes me asked God, "Why?" And that He, God, should at least spare one of these kids' parents. The kids are presently with my husband's elder sister; she is almost 70 years old.
All of this is making me even forget to take my HIV meds these days. I am numb in my brain, my thinking, I am so uncoordinated these days, I find it difficult to remember some little, little things. And the fear of being infected again with COVID!
I am very sad, but during this week being able to attend A Girl Like Me Facebook conversations lifted my spirit. I was happy to hear the good news of our sister Ci Ci's delivery of her baby girl. A big Congratulations to Ci Ci, may God be with us all.