Sadness of being dumb: On the ASUU strike by Ayobami Animasahun

Sept. 11, 2013

Sadness of being dumb

by Ayobami Animasahun

It seems to me that things rarely go the way I would like them to. Or even the way I thought they would. If I recall correctly, I had planned at various times to be the greatest advocate for education, to be a crackerjack lawyer, to be a very successful medical doctor, to be an ever-reliable engineer, and to be the voice of every streets and households in my darling country, Nigeria.

Instead, I stay idle and thoughtful, alone in my world. How did that happen? Something like this, I suppose…

…As a young child from a rich and resourceful background dreams were as bright as the sunshine and hopes as high as mountain. I am the only fruit of the union of my father and mother despite coming from a polygamous family.

My father is a very rich, elegant, intelligent, but cunning man. As against the law of nature, my father gets more agile as he gets older. At 53, I guess that explains why he has as many wives as the number of women ever seen with him.

Mother, they say, is the first true friend of a child. That is not an exemption in my case. My mother is a lovely, resourceful, and virtuous woman. That would be perfect, but, alas, she is stubborn and a bit selfish too. She would go a long way to tell the extent of my stay on this sick bed.

Having known each other for many years, my parents still seem to lack concrete understanding of each other. This speaks volume of why a little misapprehension between them is often given a great shadow. Peaceful agreement is always called upon in times like this but my cunning and stubborn couple would not entertain it. I could delight you with several examples, but believe me, none of them says anything different, or anything more revealing than my present situation.

Ever since I was born, I have always been on this little sick bed fighting for my life from the grasp of the deadly drepanocytic anaemia disease. It has been a one way battle right from the start and it seems my chances of survival gets slimmer with every breathe I take.
The disease is not only sickening, but also dream threatening. It is forcing me to accept defeat in the pursuit of my goals. I mean, how can I be a successful medical doctor when i cannot even treat myself first? Being a crackerjack lawyer requires agile mind and numbed body, but it is painful I possess none

As much as I could feel your pity, it is sad that my parents would never make me feel the same. They would rather irritatingly argue all day on what to do regarding my urgent situation. Hypothetically, a proactive reaction from appropriate quarters, my parent in this case, would have definitely given me an outright chance of surviving my health issues.

However, my distress deepens whenever I attempt to show my discomfort and my voice fails me. I do have the image in my mind, and the expression right in my body, but my voice will always deprive me the perfection.

The sadness of being dumb definitely kills me more than any other thing. A chance to make my voice heard is what I desire most.
“If only I could talk” I do think. If only I could whisper into the ears of my parent of how deeply hurt I am, by their non-challant and selfish attitude towards me. If only I could dialogue with them, in quest for a resolution to their old feud. How I wish I could tell them

I am already dying.

However, I will not let my limitation dictate my designation for long. Before my father (Nigeria Government) and my mother (ASUU) make my life more miserable, I have decided to make my voice heard. This, I believe, is a brave way of showing my discontent with their careless attitude towards me. I hope for a positive change, but I understand that will be possible if this letter could make its way to their hands.

Despite being dumb, I have discovered the power in pen and paper. I will forever be an advocate of it; because flowing from it is a river of opportunities. Ranging from an unrestricted exploitation of my dexterity to the chance to speak well of my race anywhere in the world.

Education is my legacy, and it has enfranchised me to rightfully fight for what belongs to me even at this crucial moment. I am Nigerian students and my dream lives. I may be dumb for now, but i wont be forever.