The Rain

‘Jealous of the rain that falls upon your skin It’s closer than my hands have been I am jealous of…


October 3, 2017

‘Jealous of the rain that falls upon your skin

It’s closer than my hands have been

I am jealous of the rain’

There are days Remi isn’t sure if he wants her back or not. Those are the semi days. Days in between good and bad. Days when he can stand upright but head still bowed.

On good days, he whistles, sometimes breaking into a dance to music in his head. Those are the days he doesn’t miss her as much. Days he has proof of life. Days he can hope. Days with Gbemi

The bad days are mostly Saturdays. Saturdays when he wakes up and it is raining. He stays in bed on such days, weeping along with the skies, missing Saturday mornings spent in bed with her, laughing at the ridiculous things she said and being so happy his heart could burst.

Bad days rarely happen on Sundays and for that he is thankful. Sundays through Wednesdays are the days he has Gbemi from her grandparents. He is not sure how to explain Daddy’s tears to a 3 year old. Not that she has asked the few times she has caught him crying. She is a sensitive child, like her mother. The times she has found him crying, she has sat beside him, quietly singing songs him he has taught her. He never has bad days when Gbemi is with him. Some ‘semi’ days. But no bad days. He can’t afford to.

One Saturday he wakes up, the sun is shining and he immediately knows she is in the room with him.

“You are here.” It is not a question but she answers anyway.

“I am here.”


She doesn’t answer. She gets up from the bedside chair from where she has been watching him sleep and starts to undress.

They make love till it is too hard to.

She falls asleep and he gets up to make breakfast. The fridge is empty. He should have gone grocery shopping yesterday he knows but he usually goes on Saturday in preparation for Gbemi. He barely eats anymore.

There are eggs in the fridge and flour in the pantry. A couple of over ripe bananas sit in the fruit bowl by the window so he makes banana crepes. They are all out of syrup but there is some honey left over from last spring that Gbemi had picked out from the farmers’ market near the house.

When breakfast is ready, he eats watching the birds eat the seeds Gbemi usually puts out  on the ledge every Wednesday just before she leaves. When he is done, he washes up before going back upstairs with a plate of pancakes.

In the bedroom, she is dressed again and sitting in the same bedside chair, the one where she  sat a few hours ago watching him sleep, the same one she used to sit on to nurse Gbemi on good days, when the pain wasn’t a constant friend.

“You are leaving.”


“Stay this time.”

She gets up to kiss him then, long and hard, like a drowning woman gasping for breath.

“I love you,” She tells him when she pulls away.

“Gbemi misses you.”

“I miss her.”

“Let her see you.”

“Like this?” She asks with a mocking smile.

The sun has reached its full strength now and Remi can see the damage the addiction has had on the beautiful face he loves more than life itself in the two months since he last saw her. The Oxy is taking its toll, eating her up from the inside out while he stands by helpless. At least, when she still lived in this house, he could get her to eat, to see doctors, to go for rehab sessions. Now all he does is stand by helplessly.

If only they hadn’t wanted children. If only he hadn’t aided her with all those pain relievers after Gbemi was born. If only he had stood his ground and helped find another way through the pain. If only he had paid attention to the warning signs instead of making excuses of post-natal depression. If only his love hadn’t been so blind, maybe he would have seen the thief that was stealing his wife and daughter’s mother early enough, before it was all too late.

“Let me help you Lola. Let us help you. Your parents, your sisters, Gbemi, Dr Mark, we all want to help you…”

But they have had this discussion a million times and 999,998 times it had ended in arguments.

“Okay have some food at least. Or at least let me give you some money for food”

“I am fine Oluwaremilekun. Tell Gbemi I love her. “ She is gesticulating wildly with every word, for no reason he knows, other than she needs her fix.

Her wedding ring is missing, he sees. It had been there the last time she visited. He wonders how much she got for it.

“Where are you staying?” he asks now.

“I have a friend…”

He is afraid to ask so he doesn’t.

“It isn’t what you think Remi. I wouldn’t come here and put you in harm’s way if I was sleeping around or diseased. I am sick only in my head. When I stop coming by here, you can know for sure then that I am sick in my body.”

He smiles at the irony of it all. The drug that should have cured her of pain was now the very source of her sickness and a looming death. He has taken residence in the chair she gave up so she bends to kiss him one more time before leaving.

The rain starts to fall not long after she leaves but even before then, Remi had known it was going to be a bad day. He sits in the chair to watch the rain and wait for the sun, for Gbemi, for Sunday. Bad days don’t happen on Sunday.

‘Jealous of the rain that falls upon your skin

It’s closer than my hands have been

I am jealous of the rain’


Song of the day: Emeli Sande – Suitcase

  • Forgiveness
  • Hope
  • Love
  • Marriage
  • Mother

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