Vanity Upon Vanity

When you see me, you see pain written all over my face. If you hold me, you feel pain running through my vain, If you hear me speak, you hear pains behind every word coming out of my mouth.

Like a desert, I have been drained and dried by depression. Sadness embraces my heart like a mother hen embracing it, Chick. I toil daily in the hot sun, Just to earn a meager amount of money, With a family of six to cater to, it hasn't been easy to carry all the load of the family. As the first son and first child, I have been the one working tirelessly, day and night, just to feed the family. Papa died several years ago in a ghastly motor accident, and since then, mama hasn't been herself; she's always thinking about it; her life has been so built around him that she falls sick after his death and that sickness led to some parts of her body to be paralyzed. The little business she is managing is no more in place because we've sold out all the goods and used the money to settle all her hospital bills back then.

Now, I have to pass through pains and hard labor just to cater to myself and the family. Sometimes, I wonder if I am destined to suffer this way. Today, I might work on a poultry farm; tomorrow, you will see me carrying cement on a construction site. Despite all the struggles, I try as much as possible to pay for my siblings' school fees just because I don't want them to drop out as I did on the 30th of April,2010. I was coming back from one of the sites I worked when I met this man of God. He was preaching the gospel as I walked past him, but he called me back; he called my name "Osita" I was shocked because I didn't know him before from anywhere.

He said to me that the Lord wants to turn things around for my family and me if only I can accept to come to his church the next day. I accepted because from what he had said and how he revealed the predicaments of my family without me telling him anything, I believe him to be a true man of God. So, the next day, I set out to his church without informing any of my siblings or friends as he has instructed me to do. Following the address he gave to me, I was able to locate his church. The church is very big and beautiful. That day, they were having a program tagged "Victory at last" I joined the program and marveled at the miracle that was performed by the man of God.

After the service, I went to meet him in his office, and he prayed for me and told me to read some Bible Passage before giving me a white chalk substance tied with white linen cloths. He told me to say anything I wanted God to do for me and then use the white substance to hit my head thrice and mention my mother's full name thrice also, and I did as instructed. Two weeks later, mama died in her sleep, and that marked the beginning of my wealth; exactly that day mama died, I woke up and met bags of money in my room; I was shocked and surprised at first, but when I remembered what the pastor told me I became relaxed.

Money never became a problem to me from that day henceforth until two years later when I was told to renew the ritual. I was like, "Ritual, but I never engaged in any ritual of a thing na" The man(Pastor) laughed at me and explained the real reason behind my wealth to me. I was very angry at him, I almost beat him up, but I was dragged out of his office by his guards. I wept bitterly after discovering I was the cause of my mother's death. The deadline given to me passed, and I refused to renew the ritual; thus, I had an accident on my way back from the cemetery in which mama was buried. I went there to ask for her forgiveness. It was out of naivety; it wasn't intentional that I offered her soul in exchange for wealth.

That accident caused me to lose my legs, and now I am confined to a wheelchair. I lost all my properties after that accident. Well, the properties didn't belong to me. First, it was all in the devil's name. Years later, I heard this so-called pastor died of an unknown illness, and all his properties were seized by the government agency because he was caught with drugs At the airport, and he was also involved in fraud. Thank goodness for my siblings who are helping me out. If not, I would have been in the street beginning for alms. Mama, Please forgive me. Indeed Everything is vanity. Wealth gained through bloodshed Never lasts. 

I am Osita Pragya, learn from my story. 

#Fiction

© Solomon Onah Egbodo

STYLO MAGIQUE. With Ink, I am an Icon.

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