Kwaku is rushed to the hospital wheeled in by a stretcher at 7:25pm GMT, repeatedly vomiting and profoundly confused. Everything he says makes no sense as blood oozes from the temporal side of his head.Chasing his stretcher, is his best friend who trips and falls as he attempts to phone Kwaku’s parents. He places the first call and redials when the call does not go through. His heart keeps pounding as the doctor on duty charges towards Kwaku and sends him in. He paces across the reception room and waits for the arrival of his best friend’s parents.
It all happened 10mins ago as a bus driven by a drunk driver lost control when a burst tire threw the bus into an aberrant motion, knocked Kwaku to the ground and passed over him, speeding off into night life.
The emergency doctor tries to stabilize the airway- preventing the tongue from falling back by doing a chin lift..head tilt however suspects Kwaku could have injured his cervical spine. He then shoots off and returns with a cervical collar to stabilize the spine, bearing the complications of a cervical spine injury in mind – The most feared; complete paralysis of the whole body. He is just 24 years. It would take a great miracle to restore him back to his full potential.
He cogitates about this as he puts on the cervical collar and realizes the boy is convulsing. Deep rhythmic jerky movements involving his whole body. The injury to the cervical spine is worsening. His breathing is failing!
Judging from the convulsions, he had a stupendous blow to his head, but there’s not enough time. “What should I do?” Where are enough doctors when you need them? He looks to the left and notices another doctor suturing a dehiscent wound on a driver’s arm.. He looks to the right and returns his gaze as the sweating doctor reduces (pushes back) a prolapsed rectum. He stands on a thread between life and death of this young man.
The convulsions cease and the flux of air suddenly changes. He gets the cue and palpates the neck of this boy – no pulse! He checks the pupils and as expected, they are both unresponsive to light. He’s run out of options so he says a silent prayer for this boy’s soul as he pulls a white cloth over the boy’s head. Another soul gone today. Today of all days, when his son was graduating class 1. Such luck! He bows his head as he writes the time of death. 8:00pm.
Walking down the hallway, he thinks of how to release the bombshell to Kwaku’s friend. Beloved friends have heard the news and trooped in to support him. Distant friends are praying for him. Everyone is on knees! We can’t loose this wonderful soul! You aren’t going today! Not of all days!
As the doctor returns, the boy’s mother notices the look on the doctor’s face and breaks into uncontrollable tears. The father has to stay strong but He’s crashing inwardly. Everything feels like a dream. “Someone should pour water on me to wake me up!”, “What is happening?” “Why me?” He then bows his head. They both have to stay strong!
The doctor has to support the family but He’s out of words so He walks slowly back to the ward. ‘The harbinger of death!’
Friends cannot believe their ears. He’s gone? For real? Why him? But then death is no respecter of age, sex and race. Is there any way to bring him back? The portal would begin to close as his soul leaves for heaven. Invisible, he smiles as he watches his bereaved family and friends, from above, transiting into the heavenlies.
Death is a destination we all share, we are born alone and we will die alone. Even the man who lived longest on the surface on the earth died. The question is when we are going to die? In the next 5 years or next 50 years? What would we have achieved in the sight of God and the sight of men? Would we have impacted positively in the lives of others?
No one can confidently say He will still be living tomorrow or the day after tomorrow. What assurance then do we have?
Psalms 118:17 says you would not die; instead, you will live and proclaim what the Lord has done! This is the assurance you have! God is a loving Father who never goes back on his Word! Live love, speak love and think love because you have no idea as to the seconds more you have to live. A lifetime isn’t forever, so take the first chance, don’t wait for the second one! Because sometimes, there aren’t second chances! And if it turns out to be a mistake? So what! This is life! The time to accept Christ is now!
“It is not the end of the physical body that should worry us. Rather, our concern must be to live while we are alive – to release our inner selves from the spiritual death that comes with living behind a facade designed to conform to external definitions of who and what we are” – Elisabeth Kubler- Ross.
Enjoy your week!
Eliezer Bernard Owusu Ntim