The Mark on my Face by Josie. Episode1

I grew up with the conscience that I’m not just an ordinary child, my birth was built on certain circumstances, my mother had told me that when I was a baby I have always been ill, no one not even the doctor could fathom the cause of the illness: it had no diagnosis. She told me of how worms came out of my stomach, she was scared that I would die soon. My birth seems to bring curses on my parents as they went penniless unable to afford three square meal as usual, soon they had to return to our village in the east as the riot between the hausas and the igbos in the north deteriorated ; unfortunately they had to start all over again.things got worse as my dad became frustrated and gradually built a chronic bad habit for drinking and smoking, worse still he didn’t care if we live or die. I was just 3 years old but my sickness got worse every single day, my mother had prayed that i die soon so that this burden will be brought down her neck. After few days of staying in my father’s village at umubiala, my mother decided to go and stay with her parents for awhile perhaps they might know what was really wrong with me. The night in my maternal parent’s house at nneogidi, was one night my mum couldn’t forget easily. I was feverish to the point of death, although they had dubbed my body with cold water, the water soon turned to hot water, I burned every hand that touched me yet refused to die.
That same night, the elders had a meeting; It was confirmed that I’m not my parent’s child but of the gods thus they have to give me back to the gods, they all agreed that at midnight, I should be left in an isolated place, then by the next morning the gods would have taken what belongs to them. My mother had to agree she seem sick and tired of having a cursed child. At midnight, they left me all alone in a dark place hoping to find me dead the next morning, however, their hope was short-lived as i was still alive the next day. They gathered and discussed what to do next finally they concluded that I’m an ogbanje and that the reason I fall sick all the time is because my fellow people in the spirit world are around me and thus it makes my physical body uncomfortable. The next remedy was to make a mark on my face; the reason is so that when my people from the spirit world see my blood and pain they will leave me alone. So right there in my father’s compound I was cut on both sides on my cheeks and I was given the blood to drink. From that moment I began to know everything that’s happening around me, I can remember that day without being told, I felt a scale fall out from my eyes and I stopped being sick. I lived and played like everyother child in the village but it was only for a little while before I entered into another phase of spiritism. This time i was just 4, I would wake up every morning with different marks on my body despite the fact that my cloth covered all part of my body. During the day whenever I’m alone in the room, i hear sounds from afar that makes me feel like i have lived on earth before.

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