Days after talking to her father, Miso knew that it was just her against the world. She was discharged and now was home but her father had been scarce and not once did her mother ask anything. For some reason it’s like she knew what was happening but what gave her most joy was knowing that she was alive and now the only thing that she had to concentrate on was her chemotherapy.
Miso sat outside one evening just after they had had their supper, it was a bit hot inside and now she just wanted to catch some air as she stood by the road side watching people rushing to their homes whilst others went to the local tarvans. She stood there still when she recognized a familiar vehicle, she thought it was going to bypass her but it stopped just next to where she was standing.
She took deep breaths as he got out of the vehicle, he was casually dressed and looked calm as he put his hands in his pockets.
‘Hey.’ He greeted with a straight face
‘Hai.’ She responded casually
‘How is your mother doing?’
‘She is getting better.’ She responded this time smiling ‘That is nice, when does she start her chemo again?’ ‘Next week.’ Miso responded
There was an awkward silence between them.
‘Is she sleeping yet? Can I see her?’
‘Ah, I left her awake. I am not sure if she is still up.’ ‘Well how about we find out?’
She looked at him not sure if he meant what he was saying but he walked past her and it was enough to show her that he was dead serious. They got to the door and he stopped allowing her to go in first.
‘Miso, I thought you had gone to see your friends.’ She said when she walked in ‘Mama as if I have any friends.’ Miso said standing aside to allow there guest to come in.
‘Child you can’t stop your life from moving just because I am sick, I lived mine you need to live yours.’
‘Exactly what I keep telling her.’ Khan said with a smile
‘Why didn’t you tell me that we have a guest? I would have worn better clothes.’ Her mother teased
‘You look beautiful just the way you are mother.’ He told her with a smile ‘Oh you are such a gentleman.’ She said almost laughing
He was offered a seat just next to where she sat and they got chatting right there and then, Miso noticed that Khan was different from his elder brother. He was more calm and funnier and her mother seemed to be enjoying his company.
‘I better live you kids alone, I need to get my beauty sleep.’ She said struggling to get up
Both Miso and Khan stood up quickly to help her.
‘Hey I can get up on my own.’ She said
They left her fully aware that if they argued it would make her feel bad, she was sick and not disabled, something she always rubbed in her daughter’s face. When she had disappeared into the bedroom Miso suggested they sit outside, that way she wasn’t going to be worried about her mother eavesdropping on them. Khan helped with carrying the stools outside whilst she carried the brazier.
‘Do you eat roasted groundnuts?’ She asked him when they had just settled into their seats
‘Who doesn’t?’ he asked
She stood up and disappeared into the house then later returned with a pan and some groundnuts which she placed on the brazier.
‘You weren’t working today?’ she asked
‘I am on leave, I really need to breathe. The hospital drains me.’ He said wearily. ‘Sorry to hear that but I always feel once you get a job that you love then you can’t worry about breathing and all.’
‘Well it looks that way, whilst I still love my job with a passion I still want to rest.’ ‘But why medicine, why not accounts? Or politics like your brother?’ she asked running her hand through the nuts
‘Well I wouldn’t quite say dad pushed me into it but for him they are three professions for a man, politics, medicine or engineering. If you don’t do any of those three then you are less of a man.’ He said smiling sadly
‘I wanted to be a farmer, like him and my mother. I like getting my hands dirty but he said he only did farming because it was the only thing available and as long as he got his hands dirty he wouldn’t allow me to follow in his footsteps.’
‘But why didn’t you just go against his words? It’s not like you were a child when you were about to do what you wanted right?’
‘Miso no matter how much you fight your parents at a certain point you realize that fighting them isn’t worth it, you just have to do what they want just to keep the peace.’
She shook her head vigorously
‘What?’ he asked
‘I wouldn’t do that, I wouldn’t be what I don’t want just to please them.’ He laughed.
‘It isn’t even about pleasing them, Miso you only have one life and one set of parents. Trust me you wouldn’t want to stay in their bad books for life, I decided to do medicine fully aware that someday I would leave their house and would do what I want.’
‘And that was how many years ago when you decided you would change your profession?’ she asked a hint of sarcasm in her voice ‘Well I fell in love with medicine apparently.’
‘I still think it isn’t right to do what our parents want us to do even when we don’t agree with them, no wonder we have what is called free will; to be able to make our own right and sound decisions.’ She said removing the pan from the brazier ‘We will have to eat from here, I can’t start washing a lot of dishes tomorrow.’ She said getting some nuts from the pan
They ate and continued talking and without realizing it, it was quite late. By the time he was deciding to leave it was already after 9pm.
‘What plans do you have for tomorrow?’ he asked when she walked him to his car ‘Home, with mum.’ She said
‘How about we go out tomorrow, let me get you away from this place.’ He said She eyed him.
‘No I don’t mean it in those lines, I know this is your home but.’ He paused ‘I can’t, I need to be with mum.’ She said with bent lips
‘Let me take her to mum’s tomorrow, I know she would love some company.’ ‘Are you sure?’
‘Yes I am.’
‘Okay tomorrow it is then.’ Miso said
He unlocked his car door but turned to face her
‘I quite liked spending time with you today.’ He said
She smiled then said her goodnights before walking back inside.
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