THE GAIN OF RAGE IS PAIN

 

Amaka was an only child, she was the definition of true, natural beauty, she was light skinned and flawless, some even nicknamed her 'beauty' in her neighbourhood. Amaka was the envy of every woman and the fantasy of every man. To cap it all up, she was very humble and smart. She was naturally loved by all.... that was because she was an epitome of  beauty, brains and good virtue. She was born in 1915, a year after the amalgamation of Nigeria, and she grew up in a village in Onitsha which was at that time a simple Igbo village that valued land possession and farm work. She was the most popular girl in her village. 

When she was twelve years old, her father left them to go to a state in the West and they never saw or heard from him again after that. Though he left her and her mother a big hollow but rage had come to fill hers. Her anger issue started at 12. People loved to stay around her but once she gets angry, the angel in her turned to incredible hulk, she would become more like an abandoned god bent on revenge that could never be appeased. At that moment, the best thing to do would be to leave her all by herself because the rage usually blinds her and makes her destructive. Eventually, her mother made many sacrifices of goats, chicken, palm oil and a lot more to the gods to take away anger from her especially after two unforgettable incidences. 

On a fateful day, she was playing with one of her neighbour's sons and he teased her about her father, quietly moving away from him, she picked a big stone and hurled it at him. The stone hit him on his temple (forehead) and he bled seriously, it was only after the deed was done that she calmed down. The boy was rushed to the village herbalist who aptly attended to him with herbs and ancient traditional medicine. 

On another occasion, when she was eighteen, one of the boys who came home with his parents for the annual August festival had seen her and was very attracted to her. The boy innocently started wooing her and confidently added that: 'even if her father and mother leaves her, he would never leave....' She didn't let him finish before she pounced on him and beat him black and blue. 

What Amaka and her mother didn't realise was that the sacrifices were not working because it was never a spiritual problem, it was something that needed physical and emotional attention. It was because Amaka wasn't letting go of the pain and hurt of being abandoned, she lived in serious self-denial, struggling daily to prove that she neither miss nor crave her father's love. Depression ate deep into her but she used anger as a disguise to hide the problem. She never opened up and was never ready to face her real problem. She was merely contented hearing people say that she had a spiritual anger problems and must have been as a result of a childhood rite that wasn't performed on her. 

The last straw that broke the camel's back was in 1935, which happened to be her 20th birthday. She decided to introduce the man she loved to her mother. His name was Adebayo, he was very handsome, well built and well mannered, little wonder Amaka fell for him. Everything was going well until her mother Adaeze asked where he was from and he said Lagos State. Her countenance changed immediately and she looked at him with disgust and annoyance. "Over my dead body, Amaka will never marry a Yoruba man, especially one from Lagos". He became very dejected and explained that he would love and cherish her daughter with his life but Adaeze would hear no more of it. At last, he gave up his defense and left with a sorrowful heart and a bowed head. Amaka tried begging him to stay but he replied that it would be best to let things be for now and try again at a later date. She rushed back to the house angrily. "Mama, why are you so interested in seeing me unhappy? You have never seen me with any man, yet you're rejecting the one I chose. Your past shouldn't hinder my future and happiness.

You know Papa made his choice, no Yoruba woman charmed him, he was not faithful while he was around to start with, and it doesn't in any way mean that Adebayo will do the same. No wonder Papa even left you..." At this Adaeze burst into tears and started calling Amaka with great difficulty, it was almost as if she was whispering her name in between deep, throaty sobs but in a fit of rage, Amaka left the house to go to their farm. She knew it would be quiet there and she seriously wanted that serenity but when she was halfway there, she realised that she had forgotten her food at home. She started taking slow, reluctant steps back home with great anger since her plan was to remain in the farm till sunset. "Maybe that was what Mama was calling me back for, since she knows I like to stay away for hours when I'm angry", she soliloquised. "She thought she can just make me forget everything with that low voice and that horrified look" she thought and hissed aloud. She hit her foot against a stone for the third time and cursed out loudly. 

While she was two houses away, she heard a loud voice rent the air and heard people crying, forgetting her troubles she ran towards the direction it came from, and was shocked to find out that it was coming from her house, ignoring and pushing past people, she ran inside her mother's hut only to find her lying down motionless and stiff on the floor. Amaka couldn't hold back her tears, it suddenly dawned on her that Mama needed her help when she was calling her earlier, she must have been feeling that chest pain again. If only she had controlled her anger, he mother would have been better by now. If only she had faced her problems earlier, she would have become a better person. If only she had answered her mother. If only, she hadn't made rage her solace. Kneeling before her mother she recited this in great agony to all:

"Rage makes the wisest man foolish, it destroys one's happiness, throws away one's gain, rage inhabits those that refuse to control it, and it is man's biggest enemy."

4 Comments

  1. Thank you for this post. I love it

    ReplyDelete
  2. Amaka needs to be calming down..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, anger management is very crucial.
      Thank you so much for engaging the post.

      Delete

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