BEFORE I DIE: FINAL EPISODE (Run Away)

????????????????????????????????????????????????????I am thoughtless. I am just blank. I’m not angry. I’m not happy. I’m not depressed. I don’t know what I am feeling. I don’t even know what I feel towards Mum, but I know it isn’t a good feeling. It is that kind of feeling you don’t clearly understand, but somehow causes you to end up making bad choices, as long as they help you feel better.

How could she? I thought they understood me? Should I blame it on ignorance? Maybe she really doesn’t know what she is doing? Maybe it’s my fault in the first place? If I hadn’t gone and bagged me some HIV, this wouldn’t have happened.

I simply turn around, away from her, and return to my room to lie down. Whatever I am feeling however didn’t let me be. I’m not at rest, but I can’t place my hand on anything to be the reason. Nothing seems to matter. I plug in my ear phones and start listening to music. I don’t know if that helps, because I am still feeling those things.

The look on my sister’s face is saying, “I’m so sorry, I really am. Would you let me help you feel better in any way I can?” She has done me no wrong though. She is just being herself. She can easily feel what someone else does, but she knows this is one of those times I don’t want to talk to anybody. So even if she wants to help, she can’t.

For some time, I stop speaking to anyone at home. If I am called on, I don’t answer. Mum is avoiding me, a very wise decision on her part anyway. I remember one of the questions that is eating me up. “If this could happen, what will be next?” I don’t know the answer to that question, but one thing is certain. I am not going to stick around to find out. I have to run away.

I replay that morning over and over in my head. I recount meeting Mum in the kitchen. I say welcome to her. She asks me about my sleep. I tell her it is my sister who woke me up. And then…

Mum: Ok. Oya, take.

I am not kidding when I say I froze. Elsa was already somewhere in my head singing “Let it go”. I stand there, staring at her outstretched hand. It turns out I am not the only one who was struck by the Immobility Spell. My sister, who is behind me, freezes too, staring at Mum as I am.

The woman is holding out to me a soap dish, a new towel, a new sponge, a plate, a cup and spoon.

I am still staring. I can’t speak. So my sister does.

Sister: Mummy, what’s this?

Mum: What do you mean by ‘what’s this’? Do you want him to pass it on to everybody in the house?

With this response, my sister shuts her mouth. I cannot tell if it is due to the fact that she has seen reasons with Mum’s action, or if she just can’t deal, or if she feels like her trying to help has made Mum say something worse and she doesn’t want any more baggage of that sort on her conscience.

I turn and walk away.

Mum calls out to me. I don’t respond. My sister does too. I don’t respond either. After lying in bed for awhile, listening to music, I finally put on shorts and throw on a tank top, grab my phone and leave the house. I take a walk, with no destination in mind, hoping for some distraction. I walk past a bar, where a match is showing. I go in and order for a bottle of Heineken. I sit down and watch the match. I’m not a drinker, and I don’t like football. My phone starts to buzz time and time again, as my sister calls me relentlessly. I do not pick her calls. I focus on the match. I don’t want to think of anything for now. I just want to push it aside.

Ola calls me too. Normally, he’s the only person I can talk to at times like this, but I just don’t want to talk about it, to talk about anything.

Ola is a new guy I met. He reached out to me actually. He’s been following my story on Kito Diaries, and decided to reach out. We started talking and connected strongly. We haven’t met face to face, but we are trying to work something out. And lately, he’s been my rock.

I don’t know what I am going to tell him if I pick his call, so I don’t. I order another bottle of Heineken. I am beginning to feel it. After a while, I order the third. I have always thought alcohol makes you forget, because this isn’t working; my mind is still not at rest. I pick up what is left of my almost-drunk self and leave the bar. I walk back home.  I go straight to my bed.

When I wake up, it is 7:25PM. I remain in bed. I can hear the murmur of everyone’s voices from the sitting room. I don’t feel like being in their midst. I need to think. But strangely, I feel bereft of any thought. It is ironical. Earlier, I wanted not to think, and my mind buzzed with a million mentations. Now, it is drawing a blank.

I am going to run away. I just can’t wait to find out what is next in store for me.

My sister comes in to check on me.

Sister: Bobby, are you okay?

Me: I’m fine.

She stands there for a while, looking at me.

Sister: Did you drink?

I don’t answer her.

Sister: Bobby?

Me: I just told you I’m fine, didn’t I?

Sister: Ok. Your food is on the table.

Me: I’m not hungry.

Sister: I know you’re not happy, but remember the doctor told you not to skip meals. Think of your health.

I don’t say anything else to her. After a while, she leaves. After another while, Dad calls me. I go out to answer him.

Dad: Why aren’t you eating?

Me: I’m not hungry.

Dad: Did anything happen?

Me: No.

Dad: You just decided not to eat?

Me: I’m not just hungry.

Dad: Ok.

I return to my room. I have made the decision to run away, but a lot of things are involved. Where will I run to? What will I eat? How will I cater to myself? I will need money, won’t I? I don’t have time to answer all these questions. I need to leave as soon as possible. I am not at peace at home anymore. I decide to go stay at Rowland’s place for a while. Perhaps, I can find my way from there. But that will be the first place they will look for me. I don’t even tell Ola about what I am planning, because I know he will try to stop me. I didn’t want to be stopped.

I have an admirer who has been asking me to come visit at Enugu. I figure this is the best time take him up on that offer. I check on him. He is pretty excited about me coming over. I start packing my bags with silent purpose. I don’t want anyone to ask me any questions. I am going to need money. I don’t have a job or any savings. I can’t ask anyone for money. I could ask my sister and she would give me, but I don’t want to entertain her questions.

I decide not to ask, but to take it.

My bags are now packed. It is just the money holding me back. I’m not a master thief, but I have seen a lot of Hollywood movies, and I know a successful thievery takes planning and timing. I know Dad and Mum go out to jog every early morning, and that seems like the perfect time to strike.

I sleep with one eye open, trying to stay alert for when my parents will leave for their morning run. Finally the moment is here. Adrenaline pumps into my system. My heart is beating fast. I keep checking to be sure they have left. When I am convinced they have, I walk into their bedroom. I can’t see clearly in the unlit room. Or perhaps, my partial blindness is because of the amount of adrenaline in my system. My hands are shaking. I just want to get this over with.

My plan is to filch some money, grab my bags and leave for the park at once. Before my parents are back from their run, and before others wake up, I’ll be gone. With my shaking hands, I unzip Dad’s purse. I can see a wad of cash in it. I look behind me, then back at the money in the purse. The thought that this money may not be his crosses my mind. I ponder for a while, suddenly unsure about this. But I need this. I really needed this.

Taking a deep breath and steeling my mind against any doubt, I dip my shaking fingers into the purse to grab whatever amount I can. And then…

Sister: Bobby! What are you doing?

THE END

Written by Bobby

47 thoughts on “BEFORE I DIE: FINAL EPISODE (Run Away)

  1. i really understand the pressure bobby’s under but i think he’s going too far. He’s at a point where he cant afford to make any mistakes. He should calm down and think more rationally. I really think Ola’s what he needs now.

  2. You feel betrayed I know and I totally understand, but two wrongs dont always cancel out each other. They often stack up! Taking a few days off away from home at this point is not a bad idea, but tell your family you want to travel. Wait i thought you had an apartment somewhere, go there and stay for sometime before coming back.

    I really feel your pain, a shirnk taught me something recently; when people do certain things and fall short, they did what best they knew to do in the situation and you have to forgive them knowing that they did what they thought was best only that they were wrong.

    Be strong bobby!

    • I agree but not with the part about letting his folks know…until he’s done it.
      OAN Uncle ‘admirer’ is mosdef is NOT what he needs/needed.

      I used to live by what ur shrink said until I realised it was and still is a bad excuse n license for people to be selfish. I couldn’t refuse ‘kind gestures’ even when it hurt. I also realised they did those things out of sympathy not EMPATHY. They wouldn’t av done that if they had bin in my shoes. Ask me what I want. Don’t presume.
      I kuku always 4give them but it doesn’t get beta

  3. Coming out to your parents about your HIV status is honestly a bold step, am HIV positive and till today none of my friends or family knows about my status. For 5 years now I think only 5 persons knows about my status, and it hasn’t been a funny ride though. I’ve though of many ways of ending my life and truly attempted some but am still breathing till this second. Running away will never solve/end whatever crisis you think would be coming. All I can say is, stay back and prove that you are indeed a wonderful creature. You really don’t know how I Love you. Stay back and be MY FABLOUS HERO

    • Henry,we bless God that you are still here and breathing. I don’t know what the circumstances around you might be to warrant the thought of suicide but I’m sure that if you ponder things anew you will see more than enough reasons to be happy for life. Kings,princes, servants,men of high and low estates all have their low moments. I have mine.You have yours. We all have issues with life situations but when one takes time to count God,s blessings on us and place them side by side with our cares and problems,we cannot but thank God. I have met sick people who wished that it was HIV+ that they had.Please, look at Bobby, he inspires strength, tap from it but please don’t learn the act of stealing from people’s wallets from him.lol.

  4. What your mother needs is for someone to enlighten her. Who told her HIV can be passed in any of those ways? *serious face palm* Even if it’s that contagious…..the discrimination was just too crude and shocking. Don’t take your daddy’s money. If any money should be taken, it’s your mum’s. Na she cause this wahala. Take that money and come and spend the Easter with me. You will definitely feel better by the time your leaving…..hehehehe. And why did you end this ? This is the only thing I read on this blog apart from Sex and the City. *sad face*

  5. Family- Always the first to alienate you when the going gets tough.. I’m really shocked that people still think you can transmit HIV by using the same utensils used by a carrier in this 21st century..
    And why is this the end biko?? This is not fair

      • Generalization this.. generalization that!! One can not say anything this days with.. The word ‘Generalization’ thrown in the frame at every instance… you people should take several sits back abeg! (I have nothing against you James, this is just how I feel about the issue right now)

      • Trust me pinky! If Max can be less of a monster (pun not intended) and more of human.. You definitely will see more of me on her side.

      • I’ll just stick to what I’ve said before

        I’m not sure what type of families some people on here have that they have such a pessimistic/bleak view about them.

  6. *straightface* seriously runing away aint d best choice bob! And trust me d best place u can be at dis point is with ur family!!! God will surely see u and others facing any challenge through *bighug*

  7. Your mum acted to her degree of understanding and I think she just wanted to protect the rest of the family. She wasn’t being malicious. It’s alright to feel what you’re feeling but don’t do anything rash. Hopefully will help her understand some things.

  8. We all have a story to tell. This is your own. Am not good at giving sympathy. No. I have my own stories but i refused them to stop me. This is your story. This is your life now. This is how I face issues, may sound harsh but it’s my reality: what’s happened has happened, I don’t care that it happened, I only care about how I live through it and with it. You have life pal, rewrite your story. Give yourself the chance.Acting this way isn’t going to help, I may not be in your shoes but I have issues too and I live just fine. So, be strong

    • Zephallon..1st of all, i wasnt seeking sympathy. I was just telling my story. How u react to it is clearly your decision. 2ndly, even superman has a weakness, no matter how strong u are , there would be moments of weakness. embracing these weaknesses and rising above them is a process, a process only a few have the courage to go thru. During that process there would when u should cry, so u wont have to cry those tears much later… if i cry now, and i go thru this again, and i cry about i again, then you can say “acting like this wont help”…but for now, let me cry the tears am supposed to, its making me stonger. #JustBeingReal

  9. Awwww Bobby! Don’t go all ‘Looking’ on us! Give us a great series and pull the plug abruptly! Anyway, thanks for sharing this amazing journey with us.
    You probably may not know how much you inspired and helped some of us with this brave venture.
    Hope it makes a return sometime soon! Well done and keep being amazing and strong!

  10. Its hard enuff knowing that there is a risk of unintentionally infecting them without having such kind of reminders. Sad. I do understand ur mom’s fears. But I’d av done it subtly

  11. Amazing that the very story that brought me and got me glued to KD is finally ending. #SadMuch
    I’ll so miss it.. I always look forward to it every Tuesday!
    Amazing! Amazing! Thanks for encouraging us and making have a feel of how it is living with HIV.. I hope God continues to grant you strength and Grace as you write a new story for your life.

    That said..
    I couldn’t help but notice a few irregularities in your stories. (From previous episodes) I thought you had a support team.. A groups of 4 Frnds? What happened to them? I thought you were serving and you had a crib (the place you had Nepa Bill issues) to yourself? How come you have no place to go now? And a whole loads of other irregularities in your stories.. Please if you can reconcile this part of your irregularities.. I would be most grateful. #AskingForMySanitySake as I want to beleive every bit of your story.
    Your mum tho* without saying much.. She was ignorant at best. She was confused and reacted the best way she thought she could. (Sadly it was wrong what she did)
    Bobby be strong and don’t run away.. Just follow all the good advises KDians have already given. Bless up bro!

    • You say you’ve been a fan of the series. Some of your questions makes one wonder how avidly you read it. He spoke about his NYSC in the episode past. If there’s ‘a whole loads of other irregularities’, how will he iron them out if you won’t outline them?

      • I definitely won’t be getting my answers in peace without a tone of displeasure.. would I?!
        Okay!

    • Kindly revisit past episodes. Read them again but this time keep your mind free of presumptions and the “loads of irregularities” will disappear @ Teflondon. Your response to James on family was quite disappointing. The fact that your family (which I doubt) will turn against you in your low moments doesn’t mean that other families will do same to their own. If you don’t love your family, others do. If your family don’t love you other families love their own. That’s what James is saying. Any argument against it is simply mischievous

  12. I decided not to comment on this series anymore as obviously it leaves my spent and vulnerable because of the raw emotions that hit me anytime i click on it…..that said!

    Our Parents are not aware of the pain we go through as per living in this time and era maybe because theirs was never like this,so it is unfathomable to them when ‘we’ take some drastic decisions which may not be the best thing at that point of our anger but then it seems the only available route of escape.

    Coming out to your Parents about your status was the bravest thing ever.Stand and prove to them that you are beyond what they imagine and would what to paint of/for you using your pain as paintbrushes…….

    Bobby please stay strong for me cos the words that you spoke to me last week was the only reason i did not run away from home yesterday but instead i stay up in my room after crying my eyes out and putting my anger to paper………

    *Looking at the Admin sternly and i wonder why ‘he’ allows my stories to go stale and breed motes in ‘his’ archives*

  13. Dear Bobby,
    I have read most of your entries in this series and what immediately struck me was the degree of resilience you have always exhibited; a refelection of the caliber of your person. You were human and had your weak moments. But you were mostly superhuman, as so became a fount of inspiration. That, my friend, was if I may say, the process of your transcendence. By raising yourself over pain and triumphing over it, you became a standard; a beacon of hope; a refreshingly different story; a light in darkness. We looked up to you, like the parched earth looks to the heavens for rain, and you didn’t only rain, you poured.
    I wish to draw your attention to a situation that has arisen, that aims to take from you your transcendence, that aims to pull you down into the gutter with the rest of the hopeless and broken; a situation that threatens to take from us rain and inspiration. That situation is called “more pain”. And only two things can be the outcome.
    First, you can fall. And keep falling and be a mere mortal like the rest of us. Oh we would never ever judge you because we understand and we share this pain in one way or another. If you fall back to the ground we will welcome you and together lick our wounds and hope for inspiration tomorrow.
    Second, you can rise! You can prove your power over circumstance by giggling in the face of danger. Its no small feat; achievable only by the great ones. It is our earnest wish that you remain above, transcendent and inspiring. Life has happened to you, as it happens to all of us. But what happens to you is only half the story. HOW YOU REACT to circumstance is a decision that is impossible to escape. So I ask you, what are you going to do? Remember, your deed is a statement of who you are which will be written by your name in the halls of history. You can choose to be one who flees from battle or one who seeks out ignorance in order to destroy it. YOU ARE WHAT YOU CHOOSE. Choose wisely.
    Remember again that what you choose is not just about you. It is also about many of us who hope because of you. Sounds like emotional manipulation. But isn’t it true?
    Go back to the battle front. Go back and bring us that trophy.

  14. #Transcendence.
    And it’s a (.).

    *Kisses you dearly for this Sensei*
    It’s been a while Adol where have you been holed up in??

  15. I have a heart condition.
    I’ve always pictured myself dropping dead. Always.
    This series has given me life. I mean LIFE.

    Through it all, I’ve pushed people away.
    Betrayed friend(s).
    Become erratic with work.
    Hated Father more.
    Kept writing.
    Kept reading.

    I’ve always thought about running away because I don’t want to see my mother’s eyes fill up with tears every time my pain starts.
    Because I don’t want to see her only child pass away suddenly.
    When this series started, I couldn’t help but admire you Bob.
    I really do.

    Its sad to see this series ending.
    But Thank you. I mean it.

    Don’t mind me though. I’m dramatic.
    You should see my status updates. EL OH EL.

    Enjoy though.
    You’re a darling.

    AND DON’T RUN AWAY. YOU AREN’T SELFISH!

  16. Bobby, I came to the realization that you have found strength and wishes others to tap from the strength you inspires. From your stories one can see the beauty of your family. What your mother did was an act of love garnished with some degree of ignorance. Ordinarily, its not ideal to share things like towels and sponges. That apart, HIV+ patients are always advised not to share towels and sponges with others. Medical personnel here can throw light on this. I would have relayed one or two “cruel” historical events that you could draw more strength and insight from but it might be misconstrued as insensitive to the feeble minded so let’s drop that.Stealing from a loved one is wicked and selfish. I’m not judging you but I have to tell you the truth.

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