About two decades ago, on the night of 21st September when people were deep in sleep, in a village located at the heart of Kericho, a mother of five woke up with pangs of pain splitting through her lower abdomen. It was time.
The party made way to the district hospital where they had been to for prenatal checkups and stuff. She and Dr Apacha had become acquainted with one another. She wanted no other doctor to attend to her. Otherwise, that baby wasn’t coming. Then hell broke loose. Power went out. And almost soon after, Dr Apacha called to confirm that she was out of town.
The contractions were getting closer by the minute. They had not yet settled on whether she was comfortable with Dr Taptulmo, the only available doctor at that time, to attend to her. She thought it would be weird for him to see her. Or her pathway for babies. Dr Taptulmo would attend to her anyway. Besides, there was no time to think when the water broke.
A bed and hospital uniform were quickly assigned to her. In that pitch darkness, she silently swore that that was the last baby she was going to have. The wrenches seemed to have been moving lower and lower. As they did, they got more intense. It got hot. She wanted the windows all opened. But then this was a labour room, and it was ebony dark outside.
A few minutes before midnight, the eagle landed. It was a girl they named Chepkirui. Chepkirui for someone who was born when people are asleep.
Okay. It probably wasn’t all that dramatic. But that is how I imagine my birth was like. You know hyperbole, don’t you? That does not mean that there is no truth in today’s piece, though. There is. Like my name is Chepkirui. And it means born at night. The rest is imaginary.
ALSO, READ; Say Cheese.
Yesterday was also 21st September. Its been two decades of wondering how birthdays ought to be celebrated. 21st September has come and gone twenty-two times now, but I still don’t how to celebrate these days. It isn’t very clear. Party or no party? Dress up or comfortable wear?
All I know is that I love them reflective. I love them introspective and appreciative of all that has been. Last week, I thought I should write down twenty-two things I am grateful for this year. That idea took to the air when I realized that twenty-two was a number too small to number all the things one could be thankful for in life. I kept listing things. Things and people I feel indebted to. Things that make me feel lucky. And people that make me feel like I don’t need luck after all. People who stayed, by choice.
Just before I cut my cake yesterday, the power went out and I wanted it back so badly because I didn’t charge any of my devices. I thought I would have time to write an article later in the evening after the guests had left. The guests left alright, but the blackout did not. Not until today in the morning, when we were all asleep.
So, as fate would have it, I don’t have any story for you guys today. I never really did. It makes me glad that you did show up and are still reading anyway. Thank you. You, dear reader, were on that list I made.
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Until next week, I will be out doing things that people who just turned twenty-two do.