“What do you mean she’s depressed?” Madam Comfort asked with an incredulous expression.
“Madam, your daughter attempted to kill herself because she is sad and the sadness is affecting her emotionally.” The doctor elucidated.
Madam Comfort clapped her hands together in disbelief
“So,you are saying my daughter is mad,eh?” She shouted.
“No ma, please don’t get me wrong. What I mean is that, psychologically your…”
“Thank you doctor for your big grammar…” Madam Comfort said cutting off the doctor.
Madam Comfort beat her chest with her perfectly manicured hand for effect.
“I know it is the American film Irene is watching that is too much, all these jargons you are saying is for oyinbo children
and my daughter is just trying to be naughty but don’t worry I know what to do, I will teach her a lesson she will never forget.”
“Ma, that’s not the…”
“Oh! Shut up,” Madam Comfort snapped and the doctor flinched.
“What do you know eh? You want to teach me how to train my child.” Madam Comfort hissed before taking a dramatic gait out of the doctor’s office.
Irene knew she was in the soup the minute she spotted the beautiful doctor with an angelic smile and the scowl on her mother’s face. Without sparing Irene a glance, madam Comfort stormed to the car where Irene was waiting.
“God, please help me.” Irene muttered as her mother got into the car.
Neither mother nor daughter spoke throughout the thirty minutes drive to the house. The tension in the air was thick, almost choking Irene.
Irene was too scared to speak. Madam Comfort was simply too furious to acknowledge her naughty seventeen year old, cheap attention seeker of a daughter.
No sooner had Madam Comfort parked the car than Irene jumped out and began her purposeful stride to the house.
“Young lady” Madam Comfort cold voice rang out, halting Irene in her steps
“Ye…Yes…mummy,” Irene stammered.
“Do you think you can make me lose all the money I was supposed to make in the shop yesterday and today and go scot free, you have made a very stupid decision and you will bear the consequences. Shebi, the doctor said you’re mad, don’t worry I will wring that madness out of you today,” Madam Comfort said as she pulled off her head gear and her wrapper, leaving just her knicker and blouse on as she pounced on the poor girl.
Irene wailed, pleaded and screamed until she had no more strength in her but Madam Comfort wouldn’t stop. She dragged Irene by her hair while kicking her around.
When madam Comfort paused to remove her expensive wristwatch from her hand, Irene made a run for it.
So deep was her fear of being caught by her mother, she didn’t watch where she was heading. She just kept running until she ran straight into a moving vehicle.
Madam Comfort who had taken after the poor girl spotted Irene lying on the road in a pool of her own blood. Her neighbours who were aware of madam Comfort’s true nature,how Irene was constantly abused not only by her mother, but madam Comfort’s numerous male friends spoke up.
“I guess you’re happy now. She’s dead now, you won’t have anyone to kick around anymore,” Mrs Ovi, an elderly woman, said with a look of disdain on her face.
“A witch, that’s what you are,” Mama Tunde shouted.
The neighbours were still insulting Madam Comfort when the doctor came with the police.
She knew Madam Comfort intended to hurt the girl but she hadn’t expected to see the girl’s corpse.
Tears streamed down her cheek as she knelt beside Irene. She is far gone,the doctor realised when she touched her.
“It’s easy to stand here and condemn her, you can blame her for killing her daughter but you all played a part in it because you were aware of everything Irene was going through but you kept quiet, you killed a beautiful soul because you were minding your business which is really no business at all. When are we going to learn to actually love our neighbour and be our brother’s keeper, we don’t have time to help but we can gossip and condemn. May God help our frozen hearts,” the doctor said amidst tears.
As the neighbours left in twos and threes, Madam Comfort was arrested and the doctor tearfully carried the corpse to the morgue tearfully.
Six days later, Madam Comfort was released. The police said after all the investigations conducted, madam Comfort was found innocent and was acquitted.
Little Irene died for nothing.
My dear readers,
#ThisisNigeria where mental health is treated with levity, if you say you are depressed, people will just laugh and ignore you.
#ThisisNigeria where material things are given higher value than human emotions.
#ThisisNigeria where people refused to speak up early to save lives until the last minute, when its too late.
If we don’t treat the injury while its still fresh, it will only become worse.
Please lets rise, and become our brother’s and sister’s keeper.