By Sunmola Olowookere
Funmmilayo (not real name) was a beautiful young girl with a promising future.
However, the promising future was truncated by an abortion which went terribly wrong and she died. It was a terrible scene to behold as the dead girl’s family lamented their grief. It was in the dead of the night that the commotion began. Before her death, the family were shouting for help as their eldest daughter was in the throes of excruciating pain and later fainted.
As they shouted, some residents living close by recognized the mother’s voice and came out to help.
They asked them what happened. The 19 year old girl had fainted following complaint of stomach ache. When the pain became too much, she had confessed to have procured an abortion before she fainted and later died.
At the onset, she did not tell her mother that she had gone for the abortion after the mother had demanded that she must get rid of the pregnancy. Maybe she would have been saved as they would have taken her to the hospital if she had not been so tight-lipped.
She had been complaining of the stomach pain for the whole day rather than explain to them that it was a complication arising from abortion. Her mother had reportedly given her some medication that she thought would cure her of the ailment.
Though she experienced some respite, the pain was still persistent. It was in the night that the situation got worse as the girl began to bleed profusely.
While her mother was running about looking for a neighbour that could take them to the hospital, she gave up the ghost.
At first, it was like a bad dream or a cruel joke as the family carried her out and started to fan her unconscious form. They began to call her name repeatedly “Funmi! Funmi” They called loudly but there was no response. It seemed that Funmi was far gone by then. The noise had attracted their neighbours who rallied round them for support.
Christians began to call upon Jesus and ask the Holy Ghost fire to burn to death whoever wanted to snatch away such a promising girl. Muslims there too were chanting what they knew how to.
In short, everybody pitched in to help.
Unfortunately, all their efforts proved futile and it was a shocked crowd that admitted that the girl was probably dead.
Her mother’s shrill wail pierced the night ” yee! I am exposed! Funmi, please don’t do this to me! You cannot do this now of all times. You are a grown, promising child. Your SSCE examination result is out and you have really done well in it. What am I going to do? Please wake up”, All this while, she was shaking the girl roughly as she lamented with the vague hope that she could make life come back into her.
Her elder brother too was unmanned as he howled like a wounded deer. ”My dear sister, you cannot die now. Remember my promises that I would send you overseas after your education. Who will advise me now? Who will tell me that I will still make it in life? Please, Funni wake up! You cannot die. You are too beautiful to die”
More terrible words were never spoken. Those who stayed indoors and could not come out were torn in their hearts. The family’s grief was too heavy to ignore. That was how the girl was left to her destiny and buried very early in the morning at her father’s backyard. Scores of sympathizers came to see them and sympathize with them. That was when most of her neighbours realized that the mother was pregnant too.
Most of them now understood why the young girl had to abort the baby. It would be scandalous for mother and daughter to give birth in the same year and in the same house.
In fact, the mother gave birth to a baby girl two months after her eldest daughter died. People’s tongues wagged. So the woman was still having children despite her age. The news made the rounds that it was her mother who forced her to have an abortion because she could not bear the shame of having a child the same time as her daughter.
This had made her to force the girl to go for an abortion which went terribly wrong. On hearing the news, people no longer pitied her as they cursed the wickedness which made her to force such a young girl to abort a six months old pregnancy.
That was the period when mothers that had allowed their daughters have their babies when they got knocked up thanked their stars. Had the woman in her wildest imagination thought that the girl would develop complications that would lead to her death, she would have given the situation another thought.