So this was one of those Twi songs we had learnt to sing since we were in the compulsory Sunday school classes. They made no sense then but although they did now, our attitudes toward them had not changed. As the entire congregation sang with such understanding of what grace was, it was noisy with chatter upstairs. Young adults, as my church called us, we simply refused to understand the essence of the worship period and couldn’t wait to let the world know our most recent crush just liked our picture and that the cute guy raped our picture on snap chat minutes ago. The lady pastor pointed to me and said she knew a perfect way to teach us how to acknowledge goodness when we saw it.
My mind was fuzzy as to what exactly I was to do to make that happen, but then when without explanation I was in front of the whole congregation with this girl, it all made sense. The only thing that showed she was alive was the blinking of her tearful eyes. She could not breathe through her nostrils because they were sealed. Her lips would not even open because she had no control over them and she was in a wheel chair she was thankful for. As I kept wondering why her hands had to be amputated too, I realized I wasn’t breathing-or rather couldn’t breathe. Although it was an undeniable fact that I had a catarrh every day, this was a little too extreme. I tried clearing my throat the way I did so frequently that annoyed my roommates but my body refused to respond. My eyes opened in horror. I seriously couldn’t breathe! I felt my chest folding up and I just knew I was going to die. I opened my mouth to tell the nearest person to me but my goodness what was happening? Nothing when I opened my mouth! I felt my eyes teary in the next millisecond. I was going to get down from this place and get help. No, no, no…where were my legs? They were not paralyzed, no. They just weren’t there. Oh Jesus, what was happening? And the scariest thing… no one was realizing what was happening to me. All eyes were turned to this girl I was practically in the same situation as. As the tears poured down my face, everyone around began to annoy my frustrated soul. There they were thinking they knew what compassion was- nothing would ever make them understand what it felt like to be in this position. I stared at this girl with so much pain that I forgot that I was probably going to be dead in a few seconds because I still couldn’t breathe. Oh Jesus…was all that was going through my head.
I woke up with a jolt and breathed so hard I thought the entire hall would be awakened by the sound. I cleared my nose before I took my next breath. Oh it worked! Phlegm I could undoubtedly feel but that was just perfect. I felt for my hand and my legs. I can feel them, I muttered. I held in my clammy palms, my forehead beaded with sweat and closed my eyes shut. As my heart beat was gradually assuming its normal speed, I could not help but think of those blessings I dismissed off as being too normal. I was grateful for once that I had a catarrh every day-at least I could breathe. It didn’t matter if my voice made it so obvious I had a cold-in the least I could be heard. And for all those thousand and one things I’ve never liked about myself, I loved them so much in the next minute.
I would have loved to be as motivating and creative enough to write this as I felt talent abounding but no. This happened in the dark of the night when all eyes were assumed to be resting. I think God knew He just had to let me know that I was forgetting what the word gratitude meant.