Forums Coolval (series) We Are Able * ATouching Story* (Completed)

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    ShaxeeShaxee
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    CHAPTER ONE
    I feel a cold touch at my back. It is harmattan period. I
    just want to be left on my bed. I turn around like a fat
    cake, but mother turns me around again. I can see her
    mouth moving. I wonder what she is saying. But
    certainly she can’t be saying anything more than the
    fact—I am lazy.
    My school is in Ejigbo, Lagos. They say we are special
    people, yet I haven’t perceived anything special about
    us. Some of us can’t talk. Some of us can’t walk; some
    of us can’t see, yet they say we are special. Well, I am
    not moved a bit by those flatteries.
    I look at mother’s hand movements. It is funny to me. I
    smile. I wonder when she will be able to master the
    sign language.
    “Rose, get out of bed,” she has managed to
    communicate with her hands. She has to repeat each
    word just to put them at their best. I could remember
    challenging my teacher some times back that…
    I rise up lazily and go straight for my bath. When I get
    to the bathroom, I see a basin filled with water there.
    Wow! It is warm. I splash the water on my body. I
    observe that the door is shaking but I didn’t really think
    about it. I continue pouring water on my body. Today in
    particular, I spend around thirty minutes in the
    bathroom. The water is just exactly as I want it to be—
    warm.
    When I step out of the bathroom, daddy gives me a
    scornful look. The grotesque on mother’s face also
    suggests to me that I have done something wrong
    again. Why me all the time?
    My father gets into the bathroom and begins to open his
    mouth. Since I am deaf, I didn’t hear what he is saying,
    but my mother is opening her mouth too in return. They
    understand each other—it’s only we, the special one so
    called, that can’t understand them.
    Mother helps father to carry a bucket of water into the
    bathroom. That man—always angry. I don’t know his
    problem. He is far away from me more than a stranger.
    I wonder why he is my father. Mother quickly taps me
    and I face her when that man has entered the
    bathroom.
    “Rose, you used your father’s water,” mother says to
    me in her amateur sign language, yet she claims that
    she has learnt the language while I was five years of
    age. I wonder what is still keeping her in the amateur
    level till now, after six years.
    “I used his water? How?” I ask. Sometimes my hands
    just get tired of speaking. I wonder how I will be able
    to speak if I become paralyzed in my hands or a bad
    accident claims them.
    “I put his water in the bathroom first because he must
    be in Ikeja as early as possible.”
    “Why don’t you tell me that before I entered the
    bathroom?” I ask.
    “Em…Rose…erm…” my mother’s face is clugged up with
    tears. I know she is a very tender person—not wanting
    to raise anything that will remind me of my status—
    deaf and dumb.
    “Em what? What has letter ‘M’ got to do with this?” I am
    confused.
    “When you were leaving, I was calling you, but you
    were too fast. You have already entered the bathroom.
    I only woke you up so that you could go and brush your
    teeth and not to take your bath. Your daddy will be
    angry with us. He has been kicking at the bathroom
    door for a long time to break it if he could.”
    I know what mother is talking about: she wakes me up;
    I rush to the bathroom without looking at her to hear
    from her (you have to look at someone to see his/her
    communication). But if that is the only thing that has
    happened, does it warrant my dad frowning at me in
    that manner as if I am nothing but a fart?
    “Is he my daddy? I doubt it,” I say. Mother doesn’t want
    my eyes to get those tears in them again. She comes
    on time to wipe them off for me. I don’t believe I have
    a daddy yet. The only pictures I took with that man
    mother calls my dad are the ones during my one year
    and two years birthdays. No recent pictures, yet I am
    already eleven. Maybe if he knew that I would never
    speak in life, he would not have snapped those pictures
    with me then.
    Who creates me? I am sure it is not the same God who
    creates the other people on earth. I have approached
    my mother once and said, “Don’t you think it is satan
    who creates me?”
    “Don’t say that again Rose!” mother replies me. The
    vigour with which she moves her hands shows to me
    that she is shouting.
    “But why can’t I hear and speak?” I challenge her. “I
    thought that they say that all the things he creates
    were good.”
    “You are good either,” she says to me.
    “Good?” I laugh mockingly. Those lips of mine, what
    can they do other than eating, laughing and crying? I
    have been advised by my teachers to laugh always,
    since it will prevent my mouth from smelling. But I
    don’t seem to see the reason for laughing at all. I only
    laugh to make jest of people sometimes. Nothing again
    can make me laugh, even if you tickle me I won’t.
    I didn’t feel like going to school that day again. That
    man in the bathroom has killed my joy. How I wish I am
    not born into this family. If I am born into another
    family, it’s only my mother I will miss. Who cares about
    John, that wicked man? I think.
    Reluctantly, I sit at the table. If only mummy can allow
    me have my own meal inside my room and not at the
    dinning table. Or what is the essence of eating at the
    dinning table when my daddy is having his own food in a
    separate dish? It’s only my mother and I who eat
    together in the same plate.
    I see the way John is leering at me as if he should just
    lock me up somewhere. He is guzzling the food as if he
    hasn’t eaten since the day before yesterday. He can’t
    even communicate with me since he has refused to
    learn the sign language like my mother. He will only tell
    my mother to tell me anything he wanted to tell me,
    yet if he has written them down I would have
    understood him. I have perceived that mother doesn’t
    use to tell me what my father was asking her to tell
    me. Perhaps my father’s words will be too harsh on me.
    She has to come out clear one day when the preacher
    in our church condemns the act of lying in all its
    ramifications. That day, mother said to me that she has
    been telling me the opposites of what father has been
    asking her to tell me. I didn’t need to ask her what
    exactly he has been saying since commonsense is
    there in me to know that they were unpleasant things.
    I am looking away while eating. Mother taps me. A
    mould of amala is still in her grip, but she has
    something to tell me. With the food in her hand, mother
    gestures to me, “Rose, your daddy says you should stop
    looking away from your food.”
    I frown.
    I know that what he said is more than that. His face can
    tell it all—many wrinkles on his forehead. If only he can
    speak in a mild manner to me, it had been better.
    I quickly readjust and eat my food, silently as usual,
    since there isn’t any noise I want to make. I see daddy
    speaking to her again. This time, mummy speaks back
    with an angry face. It seems as if they are on my
    matter again. At last, mummy speaks to me:
    “Rose, don’t get angry, but your dad says that I should
    tell you that if his boss gets angry at him for coming
    late to office today, then you are in trouble. But don’t
    mind him, Rose, he can’t do anything for you.” That is
    how my mummy will always say, yet that man will beat
    both of us together whenever it is time for him to do
    so.
    My father looks at us as if he is suspecting that my
    mother is saying more than he said to her. I look at his
    mouth and I am able to figure out the first word he
    says:
    “Hannah…” That is the name of my mother.
    I fold my hands and didn’t eat again. Father didn’t even
    care. He has finished eating the amala. He has begun to
    rush out of the house. That Volkswagen he has, he
    hasn’t used it to take me to school once. Sometimes
    my mummy will use it to take me there if he is on
    afternoon duty, since he will be sleeping in the morning
    by then.
    Father points to me as if he is threatening me when he
    gets to the door. Mother is just looking at him. When he
    leaves, she rushes to me and hugs me tight. She was
    shedding tears as she presses her lips firmly against
    my cheek.
    I am off to school. Mother takes me there herself
    before going to her own work too. Throughout the
    school period, I didn’t speak a word. Mrs Oyin, our class
    teacher is surprised. How come Rose’s name didn’t
    enter the name of noise maker today? she must have
    thought (we write names of noise makers in our school
    too; making unnecessary sign language is a noise).
    Mrs. Oyin is a second mother to us. She likes everyone
    of us in Primary Six B. When she comes into the class to
    punish the noise makers, she calls me out and takes me
    out of the class. If only I can hear, then she would not
    have taken me out of the class. She would just have
    whispered into my ears.
    In the office, she says, “Why are you not speaking
    today?” I tell her there is nothing.
    When I get back home, daddy was already inside. I am
    surprised. He is supposed to be in the office by then.
    I go on my knees to greet him, but then, he slaps me
    on the face. I scream with all the power inside me. He
    will be the only one to suffer the sound from my throat.
    He didn’t leave me alone. He has come on me, punching
    me like a punching bag. Mother rushes in at once and
    begin to prevent him. But it is too late. My eyes are
    swollen already, yet I didn’t know my offence.
    It is the next day I know what has happened. My father
    has been suspended from office for two weeks for
    getting late to work that day. But does that call for
    dealing with me brutally that way?
    God should kill me once and for all, I think.


    LINKS TO AVAILABLE EPISODES JST ONE CLICK

    EPISODE 2&3 (SCROLL DAWN)

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    #183488 Reply
    AvatarKhola46
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    #183491 Reply
    AvatarKhola46
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    #183539 Reply
    MrayMray
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    Tnk yu so much 4 calling me here @khola46. Sowie dearie! I really feel 4 u. U r indeed a special child created by God.

    #183546 Reply
    PweetyPweety
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    Vry touchin tnxs @Khola46

    #183547 Reply
    AvatarJencute
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    Thanks khola… this is the first time I’m reading a novel from a deaf and dumb point of view

    #183582 Reply
    ShaxeeShaxee
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    Chapter Two
    I watch as mother and father argue over the matter. My
    father moves close to her and pointed a finger at her
    eyes. I feel blood rushing to my head.
    Mother tells me that two weeks pay will be deducted
    from father’s salary. I laugh.
    “Good for him,” I tell mother. Father sees the smile on
    my face and he was suspicious.
    Why should I not be glad that my dad is going to lose
    part of his money? If I am not glad about it, who then
    should be? That man isn’t the one paying for my school
    fee. He has stopped doing that since the year before.
    From the onset of my schooling, he objected to my
    schooling, believing it is an effort in futility.
    John won’t see anything good in having a handicapped
    educated.
    “What is the usefulness of a disabled child?” he would
    tell my mother.He began to militate against my
    remaining in school. He wants me out by all means,
    complaining that it is a sheer waste of money.
    I feel useless when John gives me the reasons why I
    shouldn’t remain in school. It was the first time he
    would communicate with me through letter:
    What do you intend doing after school? Doctor? Nurse?
    Lawyer? Engineer? Pilot? You can’t do any of those or
    anything in life without your ears and mouth, I hope you
    know. Rose, I hereby want to advise you to pull out of
    school and master house works because that is the
    only thing you can do without your ears and mouth.
    I have wanted these ever since; only that mother
    insisted I should remain in school. I am not an
    education enthusiast, but I am not bad in school at all.
    Now, father says he won’t pay my fee, so what is the
    essence of arguing with him now?
    I know John is only trying to hurt my feeling, but he was
    shocked when I laughed for the first time and wrote
    back to him, “Thank you so much. I have been looking
    forward to that.”
    I had only stayed two weeks away from school when
    my mother came with a big shock.
    “Rose, you are returning to school?”
    “What!” I responded in my sign language. My oval-
    shaped mouth also synched the word. I have learnt a
    lot from lip-reading my teachers in school, such that I
    could figure out some things people are saying with
    their mouths.
    “You have won a scholarship!” Mother said.
    “How?” I asked, puzzled. I haven’t applied for any
    scholarship.
    “Last year when your father began threatening to pull
    you out of school, I decided to apply for a scholarship
    for you and…”
    I held my mother’s hands. I didn’t want to see more of
    her speech. I didn’t buy the idea of returning to school.
    “Please tell the scholarship sponsors to stop wasting
    their monies on disabled like me,” I say. “No matter
    what they spend, I will remain disabled in life.”
    I rushed to my room and held tight to my pillow. Tears
    was soaking the soft pillow in my grip. I took a little
    time gazing at the wall. My thought began to speak out:
    They teach us that God is kind, but here am I…I can’t
    speak. If he is kind, why can’t he make me like the
    other people? I came to the world, useless. How am I
    different from the animals in the jungle? I learnt that
    animals can’t speak too. Little wonder Bayo keeps
    putting leaf inside his mouth every time, just to show
    me that I am a herbivorous animal…
    My nape felt a touch. The sensation slid down and
    rested on my left shoulder. I have shut my eyes long
    ago, only feeling the seepage of my tears on my
    cheeks.
    It was mother’s touch. If I knew she would be coming
    in, I would have bolted the door. I don’t want to go to
    school.
    “You are able, Rose,” mother says.
    “A proof or I don’t believe it,” I respond.
    “A proof?” Mother said. She was confused.
    “Tell me what a deaf person can do that a normal
    person cannot do. Tell me the job I can be offered
    without my ears and mouth functioning. After then, I
    might reconsider schooling.”
    Mother racked her brain. She scratched her braided hair
    for answer such that the bobby pins on them began to
    fall off. Still, no answer to give.
    “Tell the sponsor of that scholarship to transfer it to a
    normal person. I am done with schooling,” I say.
    Mother sat on the bedside. I could see her throat
    moving up and down like a jangrover. Her red lips come
    out to lick her tears intermittently.
    “For how long, Rose, for how long will I keep begging
    you to stop being inferior? Rose, just…just…”
    I have buried my face in the pillow. I don’t want to go
    to school. Period!
    In the end I decided to comply. Ever since, I’ve been
    on scholarship, so John’s salary could keep on
    decreasing, how should I care?
    But I still want to know what brings the disabled at par
    with the normal people. If my mum and my class-
    teacher can’t give me the proof that I am able in three
    weeks time, I shall go on personal strike.

    #183583 Reply
    ShaxeeShaxee
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    CHAPTER THREE
    It is such a great hell for my dad while he was at home
    those two weeks. The man loves to go to work. If
    possible, he will make his workplace a permanent
    abode, just to avoid what he calls a sick home.
    John tells my mother to allow me remain at home with
    him, but the woman rejects blatantly.
    What is my father’s motive for demanding such thing? I
    am just eleven, so what do I know?
    At school, I begin the question again:
    “Is there any reason for God creating us like this?” I
    ask my clasateacher. She was rash at saying yes, yet
    she couldn’t state a reason.
    “Rose, you ask too much. Stop thinking of what you
    can’t do; think of what you can do.”
    “What can I do?”
    “You can see, walk and…”
    “That’s normal,” I say. “Everybody else can do those
    things too.”
    “But Joshua and Gbade can’t do any of those things,” she
    says.
    My hands drop. To raise them, no vigour. Each time I
    remember the case of Joshua and Gbade, I always feel
    like climbing a ladder to heaven to pull God down and
    fight him.
    Joshua is paralysed and at the same time blind. Gbade’s
    case is the worse; he is deaf and dumb as well as blind
    and lame. If John is Gbade’s father he would have
    thrown him inside the Oke Afa canal.
    Some sweat pour down my neck and soaked my school
    uniform. Now I begin to imagine how Gbade has been
    able to survive the hardship he is into.
    It is just two days left for my father’s suspension to be
    over when something strange happens. That day,
    mother carries me home in father’s blue volkswagen
    car. We open the door of the house and to our surprise,
    daddy and another lady were kissing each other in the
    parlour.
    They see us but did as if they didn’t.
    I began to see many mouths moving. I began to
    imagine the conversation they were making:
    “What is happening?” my mother cries out.
    “Is she your wife?” the woman says. It seems she has
    just come out of her senses.
    “Em…you are my real wife, not her,” daddy says without
    any humane feeling.
    “John!” my mother cries. The man just looks away
    lackadaisically and hissed.
    “Em…Toyosi, leave that scallywag alone and let’s
    continue our love.”
    Right before my eyes my mother is being denied of her
    marital right. This is not right. I made a shrilled sound.
    At least I can shout even though I am dumb.
    Daddy gets irritated and comes for me at once. Mother
    stands in his way. The wicked man pushes his wife out
    of the way. She loses balance and falls. I guess mother
    must have broken some bones in the process.
    Now I remain still, harden myself so I can be prepared
    for daddy’s beating. He looks on at me and I don’t know
    why he didn’t pounce on me as his manner is. He stands
    gazing at me for a while, then he carries my mother up.
    She can’t stand on her own anymore.
    I have to check on my mother in the hospital the next
    day. I have missed school that day. She is on
    wheelchair, her hands and legs on bandage. We look on
    at each other. She can’t communicate with me right
    now because she can’t move her hands.
    “Get well soon mummy,” I say, kneels before her and
    went down on her laps, weeping.
    “Mummy, what is the matter with daddy?” I ask in tears.
    My mother can’t move her hands so there is no way she
    will signal her response to me.

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