January 23

Dad took me to buy pick out some cartoon CDs for Chioma. She’s been talking about seeing Frozen. Maybe I’ll take her.

I’m happy we’re getting her cartoons because I didn’t stay with her at the hospital tonight. She looked sad I was leaving so I told her I loved her six times. One for each year.

There is new cinema open in Wuse, I heard Amina talking about it in class. I already told you about Amina, she’s the one who stole my former best friend, Saida. Saida and I barely talk now, she’s always behind the class with Amina, whispering away in Hausa.

I’ll talk to you later, I have to be up early tomorrow XOXO.

January 25

I’m home alone with aunty Oge.

I’m not sure where to start. Chioma closed her eyes and…

There has to be another way to explain what happened. Death is just one word for something so final.

I miss Chioma.

I saw it happen. It happened yesterday, Chioma was sleepy when I got the hospital. She wasn’t really asleep but she wasn’t awake either, it may have been the drugs.

She looked at me but I’m not so sure she saw me, she wanted to say something then closed her eyes.

I can still hear mummy screaming when I close my eyes.

February 19

I’m sorry I haven’t been writing to you lately.

There’s this game we play in class where you have to tell the happiest and saddest days of your life.

I’ve come to realize that you can’t explain sadness.

I wasn’t in school for a week and when I got back every one was quiet. Even Amina gave me a hug during break and then she kept speaking in English through that week, even with Saida, trying to include me in their conversations.

It’s nice that they try but I don’t have much to say to them. I can’t tell explain to them what I don’t understand. 

Dad came with a large bus and packed away all of Chioma’s things, her shoes, her bright pink dresses and even her blanket. I threw the cartoon CDs into the pile. It felt like one of those murder scenes on TV, cleaning up evidence, the floor shiny and free of blood, like she was never there.

I sometimes forget.

I wake up in the morning and I swear she’s walking into my room excited like she always is, and in that brief moment, that millisecond, I’m happy.

That is really on of my happiest moments.

Would that count?

Is that even real?


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