The Snake Child’s wish

Mommy and Daddy are fighting again. They would never say it but I know it is about me. I am seven years old but I can’t sit, can’t talk and can’t walk. All I do is eat, poo and cry. Not a pretty sight,  I know. Most of mothers friends have all left her, the few she still has don’t come home. One day Aunt Joy came but once she saw me she left, leaving her key-ring behind in a her haste. That was about four months ago. Another thing I do is watch a lot of television, sometimes I see children like me in foreign countries. They have doctors, nurses, teachers and parents that love them. I wish i could be like them. At least l have  Bisi and my toys .
Bisi is my nanny, my twelfth if I remember correctly. She is palm kernel brown, with a wide smile, and she smells  fresh and fruity, like shampoo . I like her ,but i am scared I will lose her, like I lost the others. She doesn’t call me ugly names like Mary and Tolu used to. She doesn’t twist my ears or spank me just to hear how hard I can cry when Mom or Dad upset her. She even has a pet name for me– D-girl. Sometimes she straps  me in my customised  wheel chair and races me round the palour. She sings to me too, happy songs about talking me round the world and me being her baby. The other day she was trying to teach me how to talk.
” Dami say A”
I gurgled.
“Beautiful!”
I got angry then and felt like hitting something. How can she say that was beautiful? But I smiled instead.

The voices are getting louder. If I hold my breath and strain my ears I can make out some of the words my parents are saying
“Sweetie, you can’t give up on life because our first child has challenges. Let’s try again, it will be different this time, I know it”
” Dayo,  there will be no trying again, if you want more kids we have to adopt them, I won’t take such a risk again. Ever!”
“Adopt? How can you even say such a thing, what is they have a curse from their homes or a disease”
“Disease? Is there anything worse than … worse than…”
A low wailing sound came followed by loud sobs. Mummy was crying.
“Oh baby, please don’t please please…”
The sounds faded out but I knew what they would be doing.
Mum would be on Dads laps and he would be holding her and kissing her like he does after such fights.
Like he never holds or kisses me.
I don’t mind much though, so why am I crying?

Bisi has left. Her parents are scared she will pick up an infection from me that ll make her have a snake child. Mom tried to tell them that cerebral palsy is not contagious but they wouldn’t listen. She didn’t even hug me before she left. She just walked out of the door with her head down. I think that is when I died. Mom spends more time with me now, but it is mechanical and hurried. She took casual leave from her job at the Federal mortgage bank. Dad and  her are looking for another nanny. I wish I could tell them not to bother, I won’t be here that long.
I have tried to end my life many times. Mostly when my nannies taunt me calling me names like Devil Child, Worm and Snake child. I have been unsuccessful-obviously. Bisi made me stop for a while but now I have to do something that works. Holding my breath was a waste of time, as was licking rat poison. The latter just got me blue, the former gave me a running stomach and headaches, nothing the doctors couldn’t fix.
Now I know what to do.
The crime channel gave me a hint but I added my own ideas.
I will slit my wrists. I already have the old razor Dad tossed in a corner after nicking himself one day. All I have to do is take it to bed at night and when everyone is asleep, use it. I would have done so last week but I dreamt that Bisi found out and scolded me. Now I dream about snakes, worms and other creatures chasing me. And I scream but there are no sounds.
Inside I feel excited, this time it is going to work. Mom and Dad will stop fighting. Maybe Mom will even agree to have another child. A gorgoeus baby boy called Dare that will grow up to be a movie star, a pilot or a governor. Anything but a useless, smelly,stupid snake child like me.
When I die I won’t have anymore nightmares. I will give them to people instead. I will find Tolu and Mary and Aunt Joy first. Then I will wait till Dare is eighteen then I will come home and take Mom and Dad with me. At last we will be one happy family, and my parents will love me forever.

ALL Coments are welcome. Please tell me any reservations you have. I need honest critoque here, thank you.



38 thoughts on “The Snake Child’s wish” by Sunshine (@nicolebassey)

  1. Agonies physical chalenged people go 2ru

    1. Sunshine (@nicolebassey)

      yes, @koollove , thank you.

  2. I doubt if a kid with cerebral palsy can grip a razor effectively to slit her wrists; too, there’s the issue of her being able to acutely comprehend what is happening to & around her, giving her disability. I feel the tale comes off as a tad too unrealistic to be engrossing

    1. Sunshine (@nicolebassey)

      @wendeekay Interesting points.
      I have worked with such children and I have a cousin that had Cerebral palsy. Their challenges vary and can improve over time. A brief visit to Google would show you this.
      The story is not a scientific paoer but an attempt to look at the world through someone else’s eyes. To feel their fear and teir pain.
      Personally this was largely experimental. Thank you for reading.

      1. Okay, if you’re sure of the research then fine.

  3. Sunshine (@nicolebassey)

    As is the fashion these days let me attempt to mention all the NS Members. If I leave you out pkease remind me, calling 5000 names is not child’s play.
    @TolaO @Sibbylwhyte @kaycee @chemokopi @seun-odukoya @afronuts @sueddie @lelouch @jaywriter @Topazo @Olan @mimiadebayo @khadijahmuhammad @wordsfromuyi @joey @colortrends @elovepoetry @shaifamily @Olaedo @queenobo @itsabum @jollyone @sambrightomo @lulu @leroyA @haroldwrites @saymalcolm @feathetsproject @magic @drzhivago @ everybody Phew! I give up.

    1. @NicoleBassey honey…

      Do remind me again why exactly you think this is necessary…

      1. I suppose that it’s because it works, @seun-odukoya. It certainly brought me here.

        1. @TolaO

          Undoubtedly.

          1. Not that I don’t get your point, @seun-odukoya – if I’m left out of the invitation list, I could decide that the writer specifically did NOT want me to comment.

            Having said that, I do respect people who are so interested enough in improving their art that they want others to comment. Maybe the solution for @nicolebassey is to PM those she wants to comment so that nobody needs to know who has and hasn’t been invited. :)

            1. @TolaO

              Undoubtedly.

      2. Sunshine (@nicolebassey)

        Sweetheart @Seun-Odukoya how else was I to get your attention? (In Nikki’s voice)

        1. *clears throat*

          @nicolebassey

          I’m so old school. Where I come from, we don’t just call people ‘sweetheart’. E get significance.

          So…I read a poem written by a certain @sambrightomo for a certain *clears throat*…

          And I happen to like my head’s position on my shoulders.

          Em.

  4. It’s a good read. Enjoyable actually. It has that childlike thing bout it that usually makes a story read better. But then it gets to a point, and I tell myself – this girl is way too smart and intuitive for a patient with CP. Being smart enough to contemplate suicide by mutilation is not so plausible. Using death by falling down the stairs would seem better since she already has impairments. My opinion though.
    Well done, Sunshine. $ß.

  5. A very sad story, @nicolebassey. Well written, but sad, still.

    I kind of felt that the depth of sadness of the MC’s situation was kind of muted, though. Maybe it’s because she spoke in general rather than specific terms, i.e. if she had narrated an specific example of when a maid mistreated her, or when someone recoiled in disgust, that might have brought the story more to life.

    I did wonder whether someone with cerebral palsy could think as deeply as portrayed, or whether they could be dexterous enough to cut themselves, but thanks to your story, I have gone and educated myself on this debilitating illness. The sense I get is that most children suffer developmental delay, so it’s unlikely but not impossible for a child with the illness to have thoughts as you’ve described in the story.

    Well done.

    1. Sunshine (@nicolebassey)

      Thank you @TolaO i was actually exploring what it would be like to have a keen mind locked in a dysfunctional body. Thank you for bothering to read.

  6. Welldone @nicolebassey for tackling a subject that is so hard to write about. You do it sensitively. It is so sad that adults and children are abused because they happen to have a disability. I am a social worker, so I hear of cases of abuse due to ignorance and prejudice against people who have learning and/or physical disabilities everyday But perhaps by educating people we stand a chance of making the world a better place. So, thanks for this and welldone.

    1. Sunshine (@nicolebassey)

      @Olajumoke Love and kisses, that was what i was aiming for: a discussiin about people with special needs and being tolerant of those with diabilities. Many times they have smart brains and sweet spirits if only we could love them and care. THANK YOU!

  7. Well, to be honest I was not a little let down by the way the story is posed. It kinda lacks reality. While applauding yo efforts, I think a 15 year old woulda been more believeable. Some things just have to give

    1. Sunshine (@nicolebassey)

      Thank you for reading.

  8. This story is nice but I think the way you portrayed her desire to kill herself did not shine through.If you can show her trying to move her body by crawling on the floor.Her helplessness in trying to pick something far and she can’t get through to it. Her desire to be like other children.Maybe before Bisi left she used to keep her in the wheelchair close to the window.She spend time staring at the children and wishing to break out of her prison.
    What the plot also needs is a major dramatic question?
    Will Dami Kill herself in the end?
    Show us how she tried and failed.@nicolebassey.

    1. I think I am with @khadijahmuhammad on this one.

      Sad. So I go to read up on cerebral palsy.

      Well done sunshine.

  9. Sunshine (@nicolebassey)

    @khadijahmuhammad @chemokopi thank you for your input. I appreciate them. This story is not about a suicide and if that is what it came out as then I failed woefully. It is a stiry about a child that is in pain. Pain because no one cares not even her parents. She might succeed in killing herself or she might not. It doesnt matter. What matters is that we pause and consider the people with special needs. In our schools at work, in our building plans ,in our national policies and in our writing.

    forgive the typos. thank you.

    1. @nicolebassey: Very true. Many people are really suffering in this country and for those with ailments that come with stigma, it is even more difficult for these people to find love and care. Really sad.

  10. So sad. I enjoyed reading this.

    1. Sunshine (@nicolebassey)

      Thank you @Olan . I really appreciate that.

  11. Didn’t know much about Celebral Palsy- except in movies. That kinda like affected the way the story comes off to me. The tone to me was used aptly but your intended message wasn’t stricking. Maybe it would have been achived better by ‘showing’ some of the mistreatments meted out to her by her nannies instead of ‘telling’. But it sure whetted my inquisitive mind on the ailment. Keep doing your thing Sunshine…

    1. *achieve*

      the kind of mistakes I make this days eh, I wonder if s/th isn’t happening…

      1. Sunshine (@nicolebassey)

        @Francis thank you, i look forward to your comments because you say it the way you see it. I could have shown the mistreatment but the story is not about mistreatment.
        The story is about a disabled child craving love and not getting it and how that changes her into an angry revenge seeker, Dazall.

    2. Sunshine (@nicolebassey)

      @Seun-Odukoya , na honey no get significance abi?
      No be you first add honey to dis matter?
      Abi the sweetheart dey too watery, no worry I go comot am put anoda one wey sweet pass am.
      Why you dey call @sambrightomo now? Time wey you call me honey, nobody hear am.
      (^_^)

      1. @nicolebassey

        I’m so sorry. Guilty as charged.

        But yousef sweet na. Na im make me call you…

  12. They’ve said it all.Sad but nice tale.
    Keep writing…

  13. Wow! Sigmund Freud’s psycholo-analytic theory will suffice here. D child is first a special one and undoubtedly faces psychological trauma.Now if love is not shown to her it only increases the pace at which she hates those around her and even herself.So her anger isnt on the fact that she is ‘special’,it is on the reality that she wasnt nurtured with the prophylactic that is known to conquer all handicap both physically and mentally-LOVE! A case is indeed sad,but such children grow up to hate the society,displaying it to people around them.That is when pple will start saying she is a possessed child.Not knowing that the problem is from the parents/guardians. Good concept @nicolebassey keep firing!

  14. I loved the idea of the story. And the subject too. But the emotions weren’t really there. I could only relate to the last nanny. But it was a fine attempt.

  15. Nice.

    Feels eerily familiar…

    Good job. I no dey critique jare, the others have said enough.

  16. @nicolebassey Nice one, Sunshine. I admire your narrative voice. The story is so touching. Kudos!

Leave a Reply