Dear Anyone, please pray for me, I could be your sister. Life and adulting are hard. I’m having the daily minutely moment where my pride leaves me briefly so I’ll make this quick before it comes and repossess my heart and make me feel idiotic for wanting to open up to just anyone. Once upon a time, I had a big ego.
What’s left is just infant-sized when compared, still enough to hold me back on things no kidding, but not enough to cater for my esteem sufficiently as I’m still not where I’d have liked to be in my twenties. I pictured it a lot differently during my teen years, least expected is this sort of mid-twenty-life crisis I keep momentarily having.
Yesterday got me bitter. I’ve never felt like I wasted time, money, and energy in a space of 10hrs before. See, yesterday just got me weighing all the decisions I’ve ever made in my older teen and little post-teen years on a mental weighing scale. Then I got home and wrote down on 2 columns, the decisions that counted for something and the ones that didn’t, those I could remember.
The point I was trying to make for myself was at least, in spite of my being quite young (which counts for little in the grand scheme of things) I’ve made good life decisions at some point and if I were to die sometime soon, cumulatively, it would not be recorded that I wasted time per se. That’s my greatest fear, being accountable for hours spent being (un)productive.
Yesterday, miles away from my home, I was under this tree waiting. Sounds like something that’d be written in a fiction novel. In-fact half the rest of this story sounds totally fiction. I was seated on a cutoff branch. How I was horrifically focused, if it were an apple tree, you’d have thought if an apple dropped on my head, I’d get a groundbreaking idea about non-gravity and become a famous Albertina Einstein.
But I don’t think that was a fruit tree. And I was waiting for nothing apparently because the someone (not a man, a vehicle. Long story) who was supposed to show up didn’t. Instead, a priest did.
He parked his SUV right in front of me, crossed over to the branch I was on, brought out a handkerchief, spread it, and sat. It was like a scene cut from that 90s series Touched By An Angel. He looked at me, smiled, and said how the weather was hot. I didn’t really look too closely at him, because focused, and I just learnt not long ago that time, about my wasted day.
I just side-eyed him politely, fake smiled, and nodded. Then he went strange on me next. He started taking off his shoes, then his socks. I guessed he was a priest because he had on his dark buttoned shirt with the clerical collar. He looked at me, barefooted while wiggling his toes happily and I just couldn’t help laughing. He laughed with me too and started conversing.
I asked him if he was a minister, he said, yes, a ‘Reverend’ (He looked 31). Then a lot of other small talks and then he left. He did not come to pray, like how he could have been stereotyped. He was only waiting for his friend who showed up and released him from my boring encounter.
After he left, my soul got back to feeling drained. I knew when I started crying and I knew I had to stop. Stopping wasn’t easy but starting was. I wanted to pray a little bit, but all I did was think how much I wasted to get there and how much I’d waste to get back home. I started thinking about how I wouldn’t have had the time to waste if I had a job. Interviews and the middle of the year and friends getting jobs and more interviews.
I started thinking about how the country was taking a wrong turn that could affect me, my impending post-graduate imaginary study. I started thinking how my dad retiring would affect the family. I started thinking how the talks on marriage get me cringing. Other sad thoughts began to follow suit. Then I started thinking about how the tree though inconspicuous, someone like the priest could come by again and see me crying. Then I willed myself to stop and leave the tree.
The driver of the bus I took home, at some point he was no longer behind the wheels. He parked the bus and stayed crouched by the side of the road wailing. He cried so much, I think some of the passengers that weren’t on the verge of tears, had to console him. A Lagos driver being that dramatic meant something really happened. The reason I decided to write this.
So he gradually got to explain. No one died. There was no accident or traffic. It was just adulting that caused it. He was having a similar crisis I was having too and we happened to pass paths on same day. So I’ll pray for him while I pray for me just as you’ll pray for me (Oh Thank you) while you pray for yourself.