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The movies have taught us that in their dying moments, most people, if able, have one or more favors to ask. Usually, they were inclined to having their children and loved ones around them. Although, there were those who would rather their loved ones not see them go out that way. then, there were those who would ask the medical team for one last thing; a cigarette, a cup of coffee with a dash of scotch, sponge bob show or something so… normal, to cover up for the abnormality of death’s normalcy.
Pastor Adejobi was out of surgery. The Intensive Care Unit team was watching him, taking careful note of his vital signs and looking out for any danger signs. I was not too optimistic about him pulling through but that was not going to get us all anywhere. I still had the difficult job of calling Lolo and Abbey.
“You mean… Our parents… Dad and mom… are around? At the hospital?”
“Yes, Abbey. They came in today.”
“Do they know yet? Have you told them anything yet?”
Sighing, against the phone held to my cheek, I wondered how much I could tell him right then.
“What of Lolo? Where is she?”
“Uhm, she is asleep. She has been having these bouts of nausea and throwing up. She has not been eating that much either.
Oh boy… now is not the time for this, Lolo. If this goes on for another day, she would have to be hospitalized.
” Can you bring her to the hospital?”
“What of dad and mum? What will I tell them?”
“We can worry about that later. Right now…”
My beeper went off and at the same time, I saw nurses running in the general direction of the ICU.
OH God. That could not mean anything good.
“Look, Abbey, start coming. I have to go now. Call me as soon as you get here. And… you better bring Lolo along.”
At the ICU, they were performing cardiac compression on Pastor Adejobi. I had witnessed many episodes like this and the prognosis was just not it. I moved closer, grabbing the AMBU bag from one of the nurses. Thirty compression, counting out loud, all of us sweating in the well ventilated, air-conditioned room. Maybe it was the way he had pulled through the surgery, maybe it was the Chief Medical Director’s joke about us planning not to have any ICU deaths this ear or just all of us tired of deaths… We were vicious about not losing this man.
The multi-parameter monitor Pastor Adejobi was connected to beeping back to the life was probably the best sound I had heard in the whole year. While the intensive care nurses were checking his vitals and reassuring him, I stepped out to catch my breath and thank God for life. Not today, death.
I walked over to where his wife was. Her eyes were misty.
“Is he… is he …”
“He is alive… still a bit unstable, but we have our eyes on him. You should not worry, focus on getting better too.”
“May I stay with him? I know it is definitely not the usual practice… I just need to see him.”
I understood where she was coming from but, having space for actual patients in the ICU was already a pain in the neck. There was no way we could pull that stunt with the limited space. Also, he needed to rest. As it were, he had no spleen anymore, making him prone to the littlest of infections posing great risk to him. The risk was too much. But, how to gently let this woman down…
My phone rang just then. Abbey.
“I may not be able to grant that request just yet, but, I may have something just as heart-warming. Just a sec, please.”
As I turned towards the door, accepting Abbey’s call, my beeper went off. Again.
“Save him, doctor… save your sister’s husband. Save FellyBiggy’s husband…”
I had barely a second to make eye contact with Mrs. Adejobi before dashing towards the ICU. I quickly sent Abbey a text.
“Go to my office. My secretary will let you in. Wait there.”
Surprisingly, Pastor Adejobi survived the second time, at least long enough to ask me to forgive him for my sister’s murder.