The Addict 8
After her university education, she had to return to Nigeria for the mandatory national service. She had thought that she would never have the chance to smoke weed again until she met Moses in the orientation camp. He had opened her eyes to the bigger world of weed in Nigeria – which was stronger than the breed she smoked in the UK. He experimented with various species and she was more than willing to consume the drug.
But now here she was – a psychotic patient – lying on a bed helpless and tied up but sleeping beautifully after a drug-induced sleep.
A proverb said morning comes after a dark night – so it was for the Oyemekuns. Morning came after their troubled night which seemed like a dream. But when the morning sun rose from its beloved home in the Lagos skies, the Oyemekuns were still sleeping. Owo’s drugs were still doing wonders in their system and they needed the rest.
The Hassans were the first to wake up after they heard a light knock on the door of the guestroom. It was past nine and Oropo had come in her usual manner to clean the room and inquire about her bosses and their daughter. After what Ayomide did to her the previous night, she dared not go straight to their room to begin her questions.
Owo nudged Idowu, who was still in dreamland, but after unsuccessfully attempting to wake the doctor, she got up to attend to the door. On opening it, she found Oropo standing at the door eyes glistening with tears. Owo was a little scared but she summoned some courage to ask the maid what could have gone wrong.
“Why these tears this early morning Oropo?” Owo asked. Her eyes which had hitherto been sleepy cleared up. She held the maid by the hand and led her to the nearest seat in the living room.
“The reality of all that has been happening in this house since last night just hit me this morning when I didn’t hear the call from any of the three members of this family. I slept last night thinking by morning everything would have been fine and I would pass it as a bad dream. I prayed to God to make the thing not more than a dream but I guess I have to face the reality ma…” Oropo, who had dropped the broom and duster in her hand, ranted before she was cut off by Owo.
“There is no problem Oropo. Everything will be fine. Every family have their times of challenges. This is the trying times for your bosses, so you have to stand firm by them and be patient with them till it is over.”
“I know that it is the devil that is trying to break the joy in this house and God will not agree to his whims and caprices. I told madam yesterday that it is not a normal thing. It is the handwork of the enemies and they have to come with me to our church where God will use his servant, the man of God, our pastor for the deliverance of Tola. When a home is sweet and happy, the enemies find their ways of pouring sadness and bitterness into it. My ogas are praying o but their prayer is not enough so we have to consult the ones who are closer to God than us in this regard.”
Owo sat with her hand right hand below her chin and watched intensely as Oropo, whose eyes by then was glistening with tears, poured out her spiritual vomit into her ears. The day was still young and she had some time to listen to her before the Oyemekuns wake from their slumber. After the long speech, Owo felt the need to correct the maid.
She said, “Oropo, Tola is not suffering from any afesi or whatever you called what you believed in now. She is suffering from substance-induced psychosis, which is as a result of abuse of cannabis. So she doesn’t need any pastor to flog her and cast out any demon in her. What she needs and will get is psychiatric help.”
The maid would not shift ground.
“Ma, it is still the same thing we are saying. The name you medical people gave it is what you just said. But the fact that the enemy is at work was why she went to abuse the drug in the first place. If the enemy had not got a hold of her and pushed her to the drug, she would not have gone mad now. Prayer will cast out the enemy and reset her brain.”
Owo had had enough and was tired. She stood up without further argument with the maid and returned to the room.
“Go prepare a light breakfast. Your bosses will need it before we go to the hospital and please make it really light. Don’t go preparing rice for breakfast o,” she said as she turned to look at Oropo from the entrance to the room. The maid nodded and Owo closed the door behind her.
Idowu was already awake and was in the bathroom when she returned. She joined him in the bath and they both washed each other as they spoke nothing about the incident of the previous night. Both were occupied with thoughts of what would go down before the end of the day. They knew this was just the calm before the storm resumed its rage again.
After their bath, the Hassans went up the stairs to check on their friends and met the two still asleep. They returned downstairs and were greeted with a breakfast of bread and eggs with steaming cups of beverage. Idowu nodded and thanked Oropo for the meal. Owo on her part went to meet the guard to prepare for the task ahead. They would need to bath for Tola before taking her out of the house. Ahamadu was more than ready.
AT ten o’clock, they heard some movement on the stairs. It was Ayomide who was coming downstairs. Her hair was dishevelled and she was still teary-eyed. Owo went and assisted her down the stairs while Idowu went to the room for Tade, who by then was also awake and back to his senses.
The couples sat in the living room and earnestly waited for Tola to wake up. But another round of tears from Ayomide made the Hassans start a consolatory talk.
“Tade and Ayomide, you both need to be strong for this young lady at this point. Tade you may not have heard because you were in shock for the better part of last night. Tola is suffering from substance-induced psychosis. And that meant that she had been taking cannabis and other smokeable drugs for a while. Although it could happen to a first-timer, but what she took was most likely a mixture of many drugs and not only hemp,” Idowu lectured.
“We have to take her to the psychiatric hospital where they will run tests on her to determine the extent of the damage already done to her brain. We can’t just let her lie up there and wish the problem away. Tade, your wife has been strong. It is now your turn to man up and stand with her. I know she would feel very bad because she was the one who saw the other wraps of the drug in her bag – which gave us the idea of what went wrong.
“Ayomide, please stop the tears and let’s think of ways forward while we also ray that the damage done would not be that much or irreparable. We all know how precious Tola is to us and we all would not want any harm to befall her. But here we are. We have to be strong enough for her and stand by ourselves – not with tears – with kind words and meaningful actions.
“You both will go upstairs now and freshen up while we wait for her to wake up. You will have breakfast and attend to the calls you could have missed from last night till now.”
Tade – who still has shock written on his face on learning that his daughter smoked weed – and Ayomide thanked the Hassans for the talk and headed to their rooms for a bath. They were really indebted to the Hassans for their support over the years. They had not been able to repay their kind words and deeds in the years before Tola was born and after her arrival – and now this.
Idowu and Owo knew that being alone was not good for the couple and as such they split up. Idowu went with Tade while Owo was in Ayomide’s room before the lady lawyer could think of stiing on the bed for another round of tears. Their presence and talks helped them lighten up a little as they had their baths and changed into new articles of clothing.
The four met again in the living room with the lawyers’ phones. Tola’s phone was also brought along but it was beyond repair as the screen had been badly damaged. Tade’s phones had a total of fifty-two missed calls while his wife’s had over thirty missed calls. They were all from the office. The staff members had become worried when they didn’t hear from Tola and her line wasn’t reachable. They wanted to know if everything was alright. Tade explained to them that Tola was indisposed and would take a few days off work. He admonished them to tackle the jobs at hand with utmost dexterity as neither he nor Ayomide would also be around to oversee the office. They assured him of their loyalty to work and that was settled. Ayomide also spoke with some of the staff members to assure them that all was well.
The Oyemekuns struggled with breakfast but had to eat because their friends had insisted. They needed the energy from the food to run around during the hours that would follow their daughter’s waking up. The bread tasted like a log of wood while the eggs threatened to choke them to death. But they managed to wash it down with the beverage which was looking to them like seawater.
A few minutes after their breakfast, a scream from Tola’s room announced to them that she was awake and rearing to go for another day of screams. There and then they knew that surely, psychosis is a big deal!