PART I Story Of Adebimpe
In the village of Omupo in Igbomina land, there lived a woman. Adebimpe and her five children. Of the five children, one was a cripple. His name was Omoladun Omoladun had been attacked by measles at the age of three before the use of vaccine got to that land. He, therefore, became disabled for a lack of proper medication. Omoladun became a burden on his mother and father and a subject of a decision for the family. But for his wit and wisdom. Omoladun was almost useless because he could not help with farm work.
One day, a war broke out between the people of Omupo and Ife, a prominent and influential town in Southwest Nigeria. The war was so severe that the people of IIc-Ife overtook the whole land. The strong men of Omupo were enslaved.
Their foodstuff was carted away, and the land’s inhabitants were driven into exile. There were epidemics and severe starvation. Odebimpe, a hunter’s husband, had lost him to a wild animal in the forest when she had her last born, Karimo. Karimo was ten years old in the year preceding the war. Joke and Kemi were junior to Omoladun. The disabled person. The joke was 15 years old, while Kemi, her sister, was twelve.
Odebimpe, as a result of the war, ran out of Omupo town. It was escaping the hardship unleashed on its people by the people of the file-lie town.
However, afraid of what burden Omoladun may be to her and the other children, she cleverly left home without taking him along. Mother and children had to beg to survive along the road to Ilorin. To worsen matters, Karirno was stung by a giant scorpion Medication was not immediately available along their journey. Omoladun was his father’s favorite. Before the hunter’s demise, he had learned the art of healing through herbalism. Despite this, no help was readily available to Karimo as the poor, disabled child was left behind.
Odewale, the father of the disabled, was known to be a famous herbalist, apart from his prowess in hunting wild animals. At that moment, Odebimpe first recognized that no matter the state of any child, they have a part to play in the lives of others. “How I wish I brought ‘Ladun along,” she regretted. Karimo later died from the scorpion’s sting, and the poor woman cried bitterly for days.
“Well! The journey must continue”, she had decided. Sadly, she continues with the other two after burying the poor girl’s body with some sand and dead leaves. They later settled at Ajaseipo, a town near Offa and far from Ilorin, where mother and children became hirelings for sustenance. Omoladun’s story, though saddening, was different.
Nothing happens by accident, and it is a fact that no headwear the crown with no stories of some mysteries, tests, and trial to tell. Fate took its course.
Journey, In the end, it became evident that God never abandoned suffering. It is said that the pig, no matter how slow and wayward, will eventually see the end of an Omoladun though sorrowful but full of courage, starting a lonesome journey for triumph and consequences. He went a different way, crawling along the road, past trees and undergrowth. After covering some distance, He felt tired and worn out. He became hungry too. On the first day of his journey, when it was night, he needed to rest.
At last, not minding the darkness, he found a place that, to him, was safe. He sat under an Iroko tree in the dark forest and committed his life to his ancestors’ hands. He, however, later became terrified by darkness and the memories of the many myths of the old Igbo and irunmole said to be residents in the forest.
Omoladun invoked the names of the gods and sang songs of praise to the spirit of his late father. He remembered his late father’s love for him. Omoladun was his father’s pet. He, therefore, was convinced that were his father still alive, suffering through abandonment and negligence would not have been his lot.
“If my father was still living, I am sure he would not have treated me the way my wicked mother did,” he wept. He felt disappointed that he bore feelings of hatred for his mother for the first time in his life. Omoladun craved to die,
sing: but he lacked the courage to take his own life. He began to Oh Lord, unto thy hands, I commit myself, he paused and continued. They say you could make miracles happen. Mother abandoned me for being a disabled child: took the best among her children. I was considered a drug and outcast, and she left me to suffer alone for survival.
As if the God that created the tables is not the one that made the physically challenged. What a life filled with injustice and discrimination for your creature.
If you made me, send a helper and guardian to me if I did not create myself. For you made a living, and for the dead, you made the tables and disabled—everyone, with a portion to play and a mission to fulfill In this life of all. Send a helper or take the life you have given to me.
For a purpose… He soon slept off. No sooner than he started dozing that he started dreaming. He saw his father on a royal throne. He was Bathed in white light that beat his imagination. Never in Omoladun’s life has he seen the light glow with such intensity. To his surprise, he sprang to his feet. He soon
Found himself in a beautiful golden cloth, like that of a king. He returned his father’s smile and, in response to the old hunter’s beck, approached the throne. “What a beautifully serene atmosphere! he wondered. He has never beheld such beauty and splendor. The floor seemed made of expensive clothing material, swallowing up his feet as he took his steps toward the throne.
He almost ran, but while taking his steps carefully and attempting to embrace his father, who was waiting with open arms, there came drums from somewhere he never could figure out. Omoladun was tempted to dance. Before he could begin to dance, a group of men and women emerged from the back of the throne. The drummers, the men, women, and beautiful young ladies danced before him. After that, a man dragged hi:n. two beautiful ladies on either side; Omoladun was made to sit on the throne. Perplexed but excited, he was crowned amidst sonorous songs and scintillating beats. They all prostrated before him and chorused “Kabiyesi.” We hail you, our king.” Omoladun expresses a woven feeling of excitement, confusion, and anxiety.
“Where is my father, he asked, bellowing. The people, now unfamiliar, exchanged glances with frown faces and looked at him with astonishment. Each, except “he two beautiful ladies on his left and right, with their kneels on the floor, left.
One after the other with anger on their faces. To him, they were all disobedient and pretended they knew nothing of what he was talking about.
Caught by the truth of the moment but awed by the reality and having a flash of the past in mind, Omoladun felt even worse with the experience of the sudden departure and abandonment of the once-kind-looking people. “But it was on this same throne that I found my father some moment ago, that I am now sitting,” he considered. He looked to the left and right. He suddenly became aware of the pretty ladies who returned his frown and exasperation with smiles. Omoladun felt a little more assured by their presence and forced a smile. He was almost moved to tears all the same.
Omoladun looked ahead to the door. He saw his mother and two sisters, led by two hefty men, into the palace. He attempted to stand on his feet. “Where is Karimo?” Omoladun exclaimed, and at the same time, he rose from the royal throne in an attempt to walk up to his mother and junior ones. All of a sudden, his feeble legs wobbled. He fell with a thud on the floor. His mother quickened her pace towards him and attempted to lift him from the floor and help him. The sisters looked worried. It dawned on the young man that he was disabled. Omoladun lost consciousness of the dreamland and woke up to the actual reality of life. He was sweating profusely.
“So I have been dreaming,” he asked nobody in particular. He contemplated the event of the dream but was so confused. It was already dark, and there were no signs of someone in the environment. Though it was cold, the disabled person forced himself to sleep. He later woke up. It was morning, and reflection from the early sun had penetrated through the leaves of trees of the forest. He found five pieces of plantain before him and looked around again but saw nobody.
He was astonished. “Somebody must have dropped them by my side while I was sleeping,” Omoladun contemplated. “How I wish the person had waked me and taken me along,” he said sadly. There were two big oranges too. He quickly ate three plantains and an orange. He thanked the person who dropped them for him, thanked God, and kept the rest of the fruits away until hunger came again.