Waiting By Joy- Final Episode 28


Abraham’s arrival was grand, waking Ngozi up by 3 a.m., and making Stanley frantic when he realized his wife was in labour, with his confusion getting worse each time she cried out during a contraction. He didn’t know when he ran out with the bag, leaving her behind only for him to be backing the car out of the house when he heard her shout again during another contraction. He stopped the car and ran back to get her. He brought out the gown she told him she wanted to go to the hospital with for the delivery, a part of his mind wondering, as he watched her wear it, why she chose a special wear for child delivery. He drove to the hospital in record time, thanking God there were no active police checkpoints on the road. As he got to the hospital, he calmly took Ngozi into the hospital, and then ran out to bring in the bag. He handed over the bag, thinking he only had to wait and pray when Ngozi asked ‘Why are you giving me the bag? You are following me to the delivery room’ then she squeezed her face as she felt another contraction. Stanley watched as a nurse, who tried and failed to hide her amusement at the drama, led Ngozi into the room, obviously expecting him to follow. He quickly called their mothers on the phone for prayers, and followed the nurse. At first he wondered what he was supposed to do in the room, until they asked Ngozi to push and she grabbed him as she cried. He could only encourage her, speaking close to her ears, and trying not to panic as he saw the pain written on her face. He knew he had to be calm, yet he found himself sweating more than his wife who was doing the main work. ‘You can do it. You are a strong woman. You are already a wonderful mother’ he kept saying to her, with his eyes on her face. He held her hand as she pushed, his subconscious thinking he ought to thank his mother for passing through this for him. He was never going to see women, especially mothers, in the same light again. When the cry of his child filled the ward, after four hours, and he heard the words “congratulations, you have a baby boy”, he was dumbfounded, with tears filling his eyes. He waited as the baby was cleaned up and brought to Ngozi, they both looked at their miracle of faith. As they watched him squirm, trying to get used to being outside his mother’s body, Ngozi whispered ‘Abraham. Let’s name him Abraham, the Father of faith.’ Stanley nodded, he never wanted to forget the power of faith. Ngozi was cleaned up, and then she needed to rest. As she drifted into sleep, Stanley couldn’t help whispering in her ear ‘I love you the mother of my child, but remember this is 1-0.’ Ngozi was too tired to reply him, but she knew she will have a girl next time. She slept with a smile on her face. Stanley went out and announced to whoever cared to listen that he was now a father of a bouncing baby boy called Abraham. He called the new grandmothers and made the announcement, songs of praise started in their individual homes immediately. Later in the day, his mother in law arrived, and took over. The next few days, brought visitors, Stanley sometimes felt like an onlooker it was still like a dream before his eyes. All he could think was ‘I am now a father. I can say I have a son’ The dedication of Abraham Chiemela brought a large number of people, Stanley sometimes felt overwhelmed, but he knew he had to be close to Ngozi. Once in a while his eyes will meet hers and they will smile at each other. They had stayed together through the waiting years, and they had survived it. They stood firm as survivors, and now they were parents. They have tasted the Lord’s goodness, and they knew they will tell whoever wanted to know that they had a proof that …If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth. It was barely three months after Uchenna bought the business and forgave Ochuko, that he opened a new branch. He planned to have a chain of dry- cleaning outfit. He wanted WASHERMAN to be a household name, known for its excellent dry-cleaning services. He felt like God was restoring the years he had suffered innocently, and he knew it was no coincidence that his blessings began flowing after he completely forgave Ochuko. Ochuko. Uchenna smiled, just remembering him. Ochuko was a blessing to Uchenna, and Uchenna was not ignorant of the fact. He had a good business sense, and had made many suggestions which Uchenna had prayerfully followed, and they had improved the business, and increased the clientele. Uchenna made him his personal assistant, and had never seen a reason to regret it. It was as if he was trying to serve as he should have when Uchenna employed him as a driver. He was a frequent person at the house. He and Rita had taken him under their wings, acting like the family he didn’t have. He had told them bits and pieces of how he had joined a bad gang which had helped in making him steal, only for them to abscond with the stolen money, which opened his eyes to how foolish he had been. He obviously needed a structure for his life, and Uchenna and Rita gave him that. Stephen begged to work for his father again, obviously he loved making his own money. Uchenna employed his son, but increased his salary, as he was a hard worker. He also excelled in his studies, and Uchenna knew his future was going to be great. Things were working so good, Uchenna found himself asking God why He loved him so much. He looked at himself when he was an employee and was earning well and compared those days to the present where he is an employer and making his own money at his own terms, he preferred now to then. Rita was ready to open her second branch for her store, all she needed was a vacant space. Uchenna planned to buy her a car for her next birthday, she was a good woman, and he wanted to let her know he appreciated her presence in his life. She had been there when he had felt less than a man, devoid of ideas, having no faith in his ability. She had taken the initiative to hold them together until he found himself again. She was a strong woman, but she didn’t rub it in his face, she had still treated him like a king. They have come a long way from their years of joblessness to a year of job creation. He had moved from faithlessness to his trust in a faithful God. It was a long journey, but they were making progress. Each night they knelt to pray, they found a reason to thank God, many times the reasons were innumerable. They looked at themselves and confirmed that … All things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose. God’s ways are not our ways, and His thoughts are not ours. His will always be better than ours can ever be. Olanma never had a reason for ending the call when Chidi had asked her to marry him, she just felt like that was the only option when Chidi shocked her with his proposal. They had never talked about their irregular relationship, and she felt like a deer caught in headlight when Chidi had said ‘will you marry me?’ The next day after his shocker, she had refused picking Chidi’s call, she didn’t know what to say. She was not surprised when she returned from school to find him chatting with her mother as if he belonged there. She greeted him and went into the room without looking at his face, only for him to say after her ‘when you are done running, I am here. You are yet to give me my answer’ She couldn’t believe he was saying this before her mother. She came out and saw her mother smiling as she informed her ‘He has been waiting for you. He said he wanted to take you to cinema. I don’t know why he didn’t bring the film let us watch here, but you young people of this days do things differently’ She knew she will have to explain to her mother why she didn’t want to go if she objected. So she humbly went in, got refreshed, and followed him to the movies. It was her first real date, and Olanma knew she will never forget it. Chidi was the perfect gentleman, making her see what she had been missing. On their way home, he parked the car and gave her the result to see for herself. The words he told her, told her everything she needed to know ‘I don’t know what happened, but I am grateful to God and to you. You had an unshakeable faith that kept me going. You became my closest friend. You didn’t even want to tell me about your school, because you wanted it to always be about me. I know I joked last night, but now I am serious. The only reason I got into Laura’s trap is because I wanted a wife, I believe I have seen my wife in you. I never acted more than a friend because I didn’t see how it will work if I had the virus, but Olanma now you have prayed for me to be healed and your prayer has been answered, will you be my wife? I know we have to know each other’s families better and all that, but I have no doubt that you were meant for me. What do you say?’ Olanma knew she couldn’t deny anything he said, she nodded and said ‘Yes. I will marry you. But you owe me a proper proposal.’ ‘That’s no problem’ Chidi said as he gave her a hug. “Finally” he thought, “I’m home.” They knew what they wanted and in two months’ time, they did the traditional marriage. Chidi’s mother kept congratulating him on his beautiful wife. She had fallen in love with Olanma on her first visit. His father kept saying Chidi inherited his love and eye for beautiful things. Chidi couldn’t help wondering if they would have said the same thing if he had brought Laura home. As Olanma danced and looked for her groom with the wine in her hands, she couldn’t help wishing her father was here to see her now. She was a University undergraduate and she was getting married, as he had hoped, even though he never pressured her. She felt proud of herself that she achieved what she set out to: being an undergraduate before she got married. It had not been easy, but it was worth it. She looked and shared a smile with her groom as she knelt down and handed the wine to him. Chidi watched as Olanma feigned the “search” for her groom. She looked so beautiful, he thanked God the beauty matched her character. He knew his children will be strong and godly. They will have a praying mother whose faith in God was unwavering. He had wanted a wife, and God had a better plan for him, but he had been impatient, he almost lost it all. He still didn’t know what happened, but he was grateful that God gave him a second chance. As his eyes met Olanma’s he winked at her, and watched her hold in her laughter. He liked that he could make her laugh, that was important to him. God has given him a wife with wonderful qualities. He has learnt never to leave God’s guidance. He watched as she knelt down and gave him the wine, they shared a secret smile. They were not just going to face the future as husband and wife, but as best friends too. Uchenna drank the wine, making his best friend his wife. As he walked with her towards her mother and an uncle, he couldn’t help thinking …He hath made everything beautiful in His time: also He hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from beginning to the end. His waiting days were over… in God’s time. [/b]THE END