It was dark and cold outside. The cold was very harsh that night. My hands trembled uncontrollably. My body shivered violently. My teeth knocked against one another, threatening to break the other. The wonder of it all, I had nothing on but a pair of T-shirt and a pair of shorts and a pair of slippers. I struggled to breathe. My eyes dropped tears of pain that I couldn’t stop. It was very late into the night. The only sound I heard was the whistling of the wind about me. There was no light as usual and the moon was taking a nap that night. The stars themselves were locked up by the thick Harmattan clouds that covered the entire atmosphere.
What I was doing sitting all alone that late out in the cold I couldn’t say. But I knew I was disturbed. My mind raced through a lot of things. I gulped at intervals trying hard to endure the cold, knowing I was doing myself harm.
Let me then be hurt.
I muttered to myself.
I sighed, wishing I would freeze to death.
Why was I wishing for death?
That seemed like the best solution to my worries. I was fed up with life and with everything about me.
Why couldn’t my life be like those around me – satisfying, peaceful, prosperous and fun-filled? Why couldn’t I have the education, the job, the privileges, the wealth and the ladies my friends and all those around me had? Why didn’t anything I laid my hands to do work for me? I was peeved. Nothing could appease me but death.
Nevertheless, as I sat in the cold wishing for death, a beam of hope shone upon my heart. A song I had known a long time rang in my mind asking me to hold on.
Hold on to what?
I seemed to be asking the thought. There appeared to me nothing to hold on to. I took a quick glance at my life; there was nothing I could hold on to. I was advancing in age, close to two scores, yet had no education, no job, no family, no girlfriend, and no friends in the true sense of the word to hold on to or boast about. My life was empty. All I had was the breath that I breathed. For that I was always thankful to God and in appreciation was sure never to miss a Church service. At least, I thought, though nothing I had here on Earth to hold on to I had God in the heavens. That seemed at first the only hope for me, now I was losing it. I was not sure anymore if I could really trust God. Somehow, I felt my life tired to Him, but I was not ready to accept that. I was bent on making it my own way, even if it meant I would have to start all over again and perhaps give another fifteen years of my life to putting my feet back on the track of life again. I would be over fifty by then, but it meant nothing to me. I was not going to give up. I must make it to the finish line.
I stood up abruptly as though a sudden answer had been dropped in my heart; it was not an answer it was a new ray of hope. I lifted my hands to the heavens and muttered a silent prayer,
Dear Lord, please grant me the grace, the strength, and the favor to make it to my destiny this time and finish the race set before me. I am ready to start all over again, only this time never let me move away from the path.
A warm stream of tears flowed down my cheek as I prayed. It seemed to have given me some warmth, for almost immediately, I felt a soothing peace in my heart. A warm flood of catarrh rushed out of my nose clearing my air ways. My teeth suddenly stopped shaking, my hands ceased trembling. I became altogether hot in the cold. I was glad. A broad smile covered my face. I knew my prayers had been answered, and the Almighty was giving me another chance to live again. I would not relent in taking that chance; for I saw me achieving all I had ever dreamt of achieving and much more.
In such bliss I went back inside to my room.
‘I felt the morrow was sure to come and I was going to be the first to see the Sun.’
A line from the song that gave me hope rang in my mind again. I couldn’t wait to listen to the entire song. I smiled as I could hear the voice of a million angels telling me to hold on and never throw in the towel. As long as I had the will there would definitely be a way.
I slept so peacefully, so gently. What awaited me on the morrow I cared not the least to know. I was only certain of one thing:
I was going to make it this time and get to the finish line.