Memo to My Family Doctor By Pius Adesanmi.3 min read
It helps that you are from my country and you run a very successful medical practice here in Ottawa. It helps that you and I speak k’aro o jire.
I am obeying your gym instructions.
I am obeying your medication instructions.
I am obeying your diet instructions – except on trips to Nigeria when the unavoidable indiscipline with nkwobi, ponmo, shaki, abodi, cowleg, snail, and other Fayoseisms make me shove you and your warnings to the background.
In essence, I am doing everything to improve my health. But I fear that you may not be able to help me. This is that time of the year when I come to you again. I fear that you may fret over my blood pressure and cholesterol. How can your medical wizardry help me when the sort of things I wake up to about Nigeria kill the body and the soul.
I was going to pick up the phone this morning to book my overdue end of year check up appointment with you. I made the mistake of catching up on Nigeriana first.
Somebody had posted news (I am yet to verify the said news) that Asiwaju Bola Tinubu used the crime-fighting helicopter newly purchased by Lagos state as kabukabu to the coronation ceremony of the Ooni of Ife.
If it is true, that would be illegal. That would be corruption. That would be impunity. That would be personalization of the state and her resources.
A downtrodden Nigerian’s first reaction on that thread?
“And so what? What is wrong if a former Governor uses his state’s helicopter for travel?”
After reading such a horrendous comment from a psychologically-damaged Nigerian citizen (sadly in the majority) I decided not to book my appointment with you today. There’s no way I’ll come in this week and pass any blood pressure test.
I can take all the medication in this world.
I can gym everyday at your command.
I can do the healthy diet thing at your command.
What afflicts my soul and damages my health is the daily contemplation of the agape love affair between the Nigerian and his chains of bondage.
The fellow who thinks it is ok for a private individual to commandeer a police helicopter for an owambe in Ife and vehemently defends his oppressor’s right to that impunity set my health back by a week today.
Doctor, do you have a cure for that?
My problem is ogbe okan. It is a wound of the soul occasioned by my daily witnessing of Stockholm Syndrome that is so pervasive it overwhelms every attempt to fight it with Enlightenment.
Even if I survive this fellow’s case, what about our inability to organize elections in just two tiny states in the 21st century? Do i overlook that too? Is that not a stab in the soul?
I will book an appointment and come next week. You will examine me. I will fail some tests.
Now you know why.
E ku gbogbo igba mi o, Doctor.