In Those Jeans

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“I will take my chances.” Were the words she said to me.

Shocked, I asked her “Are you saying you are willing to take that chance on life? Take that chance with your life?”

“Yes,” she said with such calmness and confidence, “God will not give me a burden too heavy for me to bear.”

#Toyin

I had just returned to the Community Grammar School (CGS) after a stint at the Comprehensive High School (CHS). I was doing alright at the CHS, but it was post June 12, 1993 Nigeria and Lagos was a volatile place. Mama was not comfortable with her children attending school that far away from the community, so it was after three years, I returned to the CGS where I had started my secondary education.  Straight away I got back into the local scene. I had met her and talked with her before, but I paid her special attention when we were both selected to represent the school at an essay writing competition.

After secondary school we kept in touch, crushing on each other but refraining from doing anything about it. We both went to school, keeping in touch as often as Nipost would allow. Home at the end of each semester, I spent three evenings a week with her – any three evenings of the week.

Just before Christmas of my second year, I had returned home on holidays and had rushed off to see her, not even bothering to unpack. I was kept waiting at the gate longer than usual but I thought nothing of it. Then I walked into a sombre living room and her cousin rushed into my arms and burst into tears. “Franque,” she managed through tears, “Please don’t do anything rash. Take it easy, and she said to tell you not to miss her too much, just don’t forget her.”

My world caved in! Stunned, I watched everything unfold in slow motion. The details from that point on were sketchy, but the gist of it was that she had a crisis and did not survive. She had been buried four days before and I was taken to the freshly covered mound that was her grave site.

She was not my first encounter with the condition, but my first fatality.

#Papa

My cousin Papa is the family Slim Shady. It has nothing to do with his build, or hair colour. It is more to do with his penchant for nit picking. My cousin is walking and stubs his toe against a stool, and straight away he has a bone to pick with the stool, or whoever placed the stool there – even if that is where the stool has always been positioned. Ok, he is not as bad as that, but he almost always has a bone to pick and was quite verbose about it. That is our Papa.

Being three years apart put us roughly in the same age grade – thanks to my being born in November as opposed to his February – and with his immediate senior being a girl, he was my buddy in his family.

During my four month Industrial Training (SIWES), a prerequisite for the award of my National Diploma (ND) certificate, I spent a lot of time at Papa’s. He lived close to the Hotel I was attached to, so I moved to his family’s on Mondays and returned home to my Mama on Fridays. This arrangement worked perfectly for us because I was his alibi each time he went out. His family would not hear of him going out to visit friends, and our Papa has Gypsy feet – always on the go; and he was my ‘go to’ guy when it came to meeting girls in the area. We were the Blues Brothers.

When we were not hanging out with his numerous friends, we stayed home and played host to some of the boys. These visits usually started with ‘area gist’, some yabis and then quickly graduated to football, after which the boys would disperse to reconvene another day. The thing was, while the others were home sleeping snugly, we would stay up most nights – me and Papa’s family – taking turns to massage his limbs and joints while he moaned and sometimes screamed as if his entire nerve endings were on fire.

After my National Youth Service in Kano, I returned to Lagos and two days later I packed a bag with a change of clothes and went to visit Papa. What I saw when I got there chilled me to my core. Sitting there in Papa’s favourite chair was someone I did not recognise. From the sunken eyes and cheeks, the rasping breath and the rattling sound in his chest each time he breathed, the figure slumped in the seat too weak to hold itself up, my cousin sat there looking like a child’s portrait of death. “Nwatakiri, he said is his gravelly tone, calling me the pet name he had given me since he could talk. I was older and bigger, yet he christened me ‘small boy’. He was smiling the same big familiar smile. My legs felt like rubber as I walked, as if in a huge vat of honey, toward Papa. I knelt down in front of him and gathered him into my arms. “Nwoke’m jilu nwayo. Awon omo nko?” He asked me switching from ‘wawa’, our dialect, to yoruba fluidly.

“Omo bawo? I am done with girls nau, madu a kahun ka, old age has come.” I said. We shared a few ribald jokes, and a lot of laughs.

Papa, suffered from a medical condition that had affected his hips. I watched as he pulled on his pants each time he had to readjust his legs – he could not move them otherwise. When it was time to bathe, I ran his bath water then carried him on my back to the bathroom and into the tub. When he finished, it was the same process in reverse.

Fortunately his family could afford to fly him to India on three separate occasions. Now Papa walks into a room and you know by the tap tap tapping of his cane, that extension of his left hand that takes the weight off his lower body.

He still finds a bone to chomp on – from my long absences to M.E’s long silence – and he is quite verbose about it. But then, that is our Papa and we love him still.

#Theta Kappa Delta

The first time I saw her was at a shopping mall in Centurion, South Africa. I had just bought a few game and audio CDs, the only items that got my blood pumping when it came to shopping, and was walking back through the shopping complex to the hotel when I saw her.

She stood there slim and dark, her profile to me and wearing a black leather jacket. She shifted her head and our eyes met. I bobbed my head at her and carried on.

The next time I saw her, a friend called me and asked me a favour. He was leaving town but due to a previously cancelled flight, his sister was not going to make it on his flight out. Not knowing anybody in SA, he was wondering if I could put her up… I said yes before he finished asking. I did not want to give him the chance to reconsider leaving his sister with me for two days and two nights. With any luck she might turn out to be pretty and single. I went to his room to meet my roommate-for-the-next-forty-eight-hours and it turned out to be her! The jacket was gone and I could make out her figure better. This kind of favour I liked.

Long story short, she left on my flight two days later, and we had become friends. She called me her guardian Angel. I did not dwell on how I got my halo. Maybe it was from giving up my room for the two nights while I ‘squatted’ with colleagues; or the time we spent together during the day walking, lunching, window shopping; maybe it was none of those. What was important to me was that in her eyes I wore a white tunic with gold embroidery, and a well polished brass halo.

Over the next two years we kept in touch the way I know how: in bursts and spurts. I would go silent for days. Maybe weeks. Then I would call and we would talk long and carry on from where we left off. It was during one of those ‘silence’ periods that I got the sms from her brother, my friend and colleague.

She had been away in Dakar when she suffered a case of pneumonia. I had come into Dakar the day she left and I heard about it. I intended to call her the next day, but somehow never got around to it. Three days later came the sms to pray for her as she was in Intensive Care. I was still composing the prayers in my head when another message delivered on my phone saying she had gone to a better place.

My heart went out to my friend who had just lost his sister because I knew how close they were. I still said a prayer – for strength and comfort (not the cushy variety) for my friend. He later told me how he had broken down and cried. He cried ugly; sobbing as mucus and tears mingled in a stream running down his face. He left home, took a walk some place, sat down there and cried unashamedly.

Recently he got his first ‘real’ tattoo and it reads, in Greek, Theta Kappa Delta – her initials.

These three people shared three things in common: my love, their dreams and the SS genotype.

********

So when she calmly declared “God will not give me a burden too heavy for me to bear,” I looked at her as if she had sprung two extra heads.  I like her a lot and she me, but when thoughts of a likely future crossed our minds I quickly asked what her genotype was. She told me AS and that was what brought about the talks of settling with a carrier for the sake of love.

June 19th was World Sickle Cell day, but I was so caught up in the joy of my first Father’s Day, I did not spare a thought for people living with these genes.

As the UN celebrates the progress made on the disease and preach its prevention, I daresay I believe love or faith is no excuse to take the chance of giving birth to children with two copies of these sickle-shaped genes. I know a number of people with those genes who are living life to the fullest.  I saw the movie “Mortal Inheritance” too, but really do we want to take that chance on life? With our lives? With our children’s lives?

PS: There is no such thing as hand-me-down faith, or a superimposition of one’s faith on another. There is common sense, and then there is the free will to make choices.

 

Franque

Franque

"Franque is in aviation, which by the way is not his job, just a lifestyle. If he ever kept a diary it would read like his articles will. Unfortunately he doesn't. Scratch that. He didn't.AIRtiquette is a walk in his shoes. Since regular isn't in his vocabulary, brace yourself for a bit of airwalking!" Follow @franque_521 on twitter.

42 comments

  1. PPS: This post was inspired by Chidinma’s “A is for Alicia”.
    iHope it gets us thinkin seriously about the important things – important to us! Happy Friday n 2nd half year 😀

  2. YOUR GENES, Y(OUR) GENESIS-

    I’m sure they don’t know I still think about you.
    Your parents and family must be sure I can’t even remember your name.

    Omolola Olatunbosun. How could I possibly forget?

    It’s still as fresh as rain on my mind, the first day we shared a seat at school…
    The names we invented for the teachers we didn’t like and the ones we adored…
    The days we knelt out in the sun together for pranks for which we were guilty or innocent…

    How could I possibly forget?
    Your high-pitch voice as you painted a picture on our minds of events that took place over the holidays, making us wish we could have swapped families for the holidays…
    Master story teller you were, your bright eyes twinkling at some hidden joke…

    So full of life, so in love with living…
    Your fragile frame darting around at the speed of light…

    Always right in the middle of the latest prank…
    Almost as if you knew the length of the thread you had been given…
    Almost as though you wanted to cheat time,
    Wanted to put as much as you could into the basket you came with…
    I remember you Omolola…

    The days you came to school in swathes of wool shivering in the sweltering heat.
    The cold rattling your bones so hard we could hear the rattle of the chains that held you bound to your genes…

    The days you didn’t come to school…
    The day we learnt that you had made the last trip you’d ever make to class…

    The vacant, faraway look in our eyes as we stared away into the void to which you had disappeared…

    We heard your tinkling laugh again, and recalled as many memories as we could, desperate to store them away safe in the vault of our minds…
    For we knew it was all we would be allowed, and it would have to be enough…

    Your genes lost, Omolola, we haven’t seen you in nineteen years,
    Your genes removed you from our presence
    But we have planted you in the genesis of our hearts…
    And you live still…you are alive and healthy in our hearts…

  3. Amazing, I have never felt such depth from a piece in quite a while, I think people should cntinue 2 draw attentn to heart-wrenching ailments like this. Itz a problem, bt these ppl need our love and we shldn’t be sfraid o’ gvng it all..nice, franque

  4. I have never lost a friend to the disease, i have however known people with it… In these modern day and time, i think it’s plain selfish for parents to gamble with it… The other day, on wazobia fm (i dunno how true), a story was told about a northern woman who wanted to divorce her husband as they had lost 3 of their 5 kids to d disease…
    In my opinion, once you know you are AS, genotype should be a prelim question. Like hey, whats your name, where are you from, whats your genotype… Its that simple… You’ll save yourselves and kids the headache of multi hospital trips… There are already enough things that kill people without their causing it… Why cause the suffering and/or death of an innocent being?
    Sorry about the length of the comment… Im passionate about the issue… Nice one Franque, as always…

  5. i usually try not to pass a comment after readin ur page, but i cldnt help it dis time. Nt bcus dis is d best story u hve ever written, but because u touched all d parts of my body with this 1. u brought back memories of a friend i couldnt go a day without seeing. Now,…i hve gone YEARS without him cus dis stupid Sickle Cell bullshit snatched him away. But…O well…it happened cus mayb, in those days, our parents were nt aware of d implications, but now we know. PLEASeee all, lets do d needfull n save our selves d trauma, n our children…d ‘Pain’. Have a lovely n fulfillin new month ya all. good job Franque

  6. @ pHisayo: iBless the day iWalked into 100.5 n got introduced to u;
    @ Kay: iAppreciate ur presence. Thing is, maybe gettin u started is the reason why this post went up;
    @ miZrissoto: thank u for gracin my house with ur presence and comment. As for the depth, it has to come from actually being a part of it. Thank you;
    @ Mike: iHope it more than touches. iHope it gets us thinkin n actin;
    @ Nengie: iSee u dear. And iAgree with u;
    @ N1_babe: iAm sorry for ur loss. As long as people feel as strongly as u on dis issue, then there’s hope.
    @ Everyone else: iRecently was discussin this with Chidinma n 3 other friends, my stand clear. And someone asked me who died and made me Pope! The Pontif is still alive n iAm not lookin to take his place, but her arguments were predicated on 2 things: Adoption; or finding out the Genotype of the foetus n ‘takin care’ of it.
    Adoption is not beans. As for the 2nd, Adolf Hitler comes to mind. #Just my 2 cents. What’s urs?

    1. I have been holding back, but cant any longer,we all talk about this,but i know no one will want to walk in their shoe when the crisis come calling,i have being their i know what it is,i don’t even wish my worst enemy even though am not SS but SC, i could remember those days when i do have crisis the vigil my parent keep, the argument, and all ,i know if the awareness was this much back then maybe they wont have gotten married, and now that will all know about it why going ahead with it when we could save our unborn child the stress.
      Franque,you make mention of knowing the baby genotype before the baby was born and taking care of it, but do u realized that the baby is already formed at that stage cause u cant know until baby is 5 or 6 months,to me that is murder, cause why going to that length when u can avoid it .And i hope those who are talking about not being able to walk away because of Love,that the love will sustain the marriage when the crisis start coming.

  7. On behalf of Thetoolswoman: “This should be classified under serious Crimes Against Humanity. There should be a law against this- “All adults shall refrain in their sexual and marital relations from the threat or the actual act of massive violation of the basic human rights of a child which affects the overall medical wellbeing of the child or in any other inhumane manner incompatible with the purposes of recreation”
    So here’s to Ehimen my ex-course mate and BBM contact that iNever chat with and to Aniebiet who gave me my 1st insight to the pains they suffer. iMay not be keeping in touch, but you both are fondly remembered in my prayers- that I’ll never know what it feels like to lose an acquaintance to the genes!”

  8. This should be classified under Crimes Against Humanity. There should be a law against this- “All adults shall refrain in their sexual and marital relations from the threat or the actual act of massive violation of the basic human rights of a child which affects the overall medical wellbeing of the child or in any other inhumane manner incompatible with the purposes of recreation”
    So here’s to Ehimen my ex-course mate and BBM contact that iNever chat with and to Aniebiet who gave me my 1st insight to the pains they suffer. iMay not be keeping in touch, but you both are fondly remembered in my prayers- that I’ll never know what it feels like to lose an acquaintance to the genes!

  9. Truth be told, its hard to give someone you truly love up, watch them walk away from you and into someone else’ arms when you know you’ll never hold them again, never love them like you’ll ache to for, at worst, the rest of your life. It will hurt more if you think you know that no one else would love them as much as you do…
    THAT IS HARD.
    In my opinion, the only thing harder than that, is watching a baby in crisis. Watching the child grow up surrounded by limitations He/She has to live with because of the genes you passed on. And then, not knowing if all the tears, pain and money spent will lead to redemption or death. Living in dread each day, as the next crisis gets worse than the last. Need I say more? Need I point at the lesser of two evils?

  10. To play the Devil’s advocate: but do we need to make children? We can adopt nau. Then there’s that option iMentioned earlier. So it’ll cost a lot to travel n determine the genotype, but at least we won’t birth a child with those limitations. Then there’s the knowin that it was all done to be with the one iLove. What’s the evil in this? After all there are soooo many abandoned babies out there needin the love we can provide. *crossing myself*

  11. hmmm….i dnt evn knw whre 2 strt from or wt 2 say..ds is a serious issue dt pple just take 4 granted..i tnk pple neva knw hw serious it is till it hits clse 2 hmee..my sista child,she was mini me died lke 3years ago becos of ds issue..she died a few days 2 her 5th bdy.. i rember all d sleepless nght we all had cos of d pains. her whle body wld b hurtn for no reason..ill neva 4gt d day my folks came to see me in schl 2 tell me she passed away..i tnk it affected me d most in our family,i cldnt go 2 my sista hse for months cldnt talk 2 her.. immediatly afta she passed away my dad made me do a genotype test n i found out i was AS too..ny guy i strt talkn to i alwys ask dem for deir genotype cs its nw very imprtnt..its nt d parent dt suffer its d innocent child dt dey brng 2 d world dt suffers.. so i tnk pple shld stp being selfish my stayn 2geda n dey call it LOVE..Love isnt SELFISH … MY 2CENTS

  12. Nope! No kid shld ever be put thru this. Under any circumstance.
    I have never lost a friend or family member to this. But i know suffering & death. And any death that is preventable, shld be prevented. By all means!

    Selfishness, in the name of love should never be an excuse. Shikena!

  13. Nice piece frankie as always!
    It really is an important issue that can never be overemphasized,you talk about experiences with a friend,family member or acquaintance,what of at the hospitals where u see them en-masse,young kids in soo much pain,jus wanting the pain to go away so they can go out and play and be like “other” kids..I was in attendance when a 5yr old boy asked his mum “when is it going to stop mummy,no more injections pleasee”
    I. Don’t expect any adult in This time and age not to b aware of their genotypes but if not please get tested,and create awareness where possible let’s put an end to this pain….life is so much more beautiful without it!
    My kudos to frankie n chidinma too! Cheers

  14. Hmmmm dis one hits very close to home… I’ve refrained frm commenting all day buh I cudnt stay away anymore. My best frnd is a victim of dis.. Everyday she’s alive is a miracle. D pains re extremely terrible. I cry everytime I see her go thru it. Her mum cries too bt I hardly feel sorry 4 her.
    Life is already hard, why make it harder 4 ur child? There re enuf troubles in d world, why intentionally create more?
    *Sigh* everyday for us is a blessing frm God, buh 4 my bestie it’s much more.

  15. Thank you Franque for this reminder about SS genotype and the people that have it.
    I have a birthday mate and also my very first girlfriend from way back in Primary Six. She had the genotype and I can remember when she used to fall really sick and stay away from school for some period of time. It was always painful seeing her when she was in the hospital and going through pains. I was always scared something might happen to back then. Right now she’s in her 30’s, has gone through so much but she’s still alive and kicking. We don’t talk like before but I always try my best to call and check up on her once in a while.

  16. This hits very close to home. I lost my dear cousin to it. Don’t make me start talking about him because no amount of words can describe him. Is it the burst of joy that sprout out of him on a daily basis or the way he used to wrap me in his arms? YOUR GENES, Y(OUR) GENESIS. RIP CHIGOZIE,RIP MY LOVE. I miss u with each passing day 🙁

  17. I had to go back and read all your other writings.
    This is very nice Franque. I really didn’t know what to expect when I saw the link in my inbox.
    I agree with you, the abortion bit is a little bleh, but where I come from, the adoption process is long too but if your heart is in it, things will follow through.
    I will not advise two people with the sickled genes to marry, but if you insist on not having kids or becoming a mercy killer, then fine. As for me, I am alive, kicking and truly grateful fot this life.
    The simple joy of going to sleep and waking up the next day is too beautiful for words. Thank you for this writeup.
    God be with you

  18. Nice read as usual… Great writer…..

    @ Nengie it’s not okay for you to call them selfish… whatever decision a couple decides to take is all up to them and noone has a right to judge them…

    That said, I know when an SS child is born, it’s hard for the child…. The pains and every other they might be going thru, but there are options for the couple (both carriers)

    _ the option of not having children… Pple have lived without children and lived happily.

    _the option of adoption…. Yes it’s usually a long process, but eventual it just might happen…

    _the option of know the genotype of the foetus and terminating (please dont go righteous on me) if i was to ask if it was okay for a girl raped to abort a pregnancy, some would say yes, forgetting that tha child could grow up to be great. If you would have no qualms taking out a foetus from a rape, then u shld have no qualms taking out a sick foetus.

    Then also (just may be i’m talking out of ignorance) i know that with all the research being done today on the sickle cell disease, that there are ways of keeping the patients healthier. here is a bit an piece i read
    “Sickle cell anemia has no widely available cure. However, treatments can help with the symptoms and complications of the disease. Blood and marrow stem cell transplants may offer a cure for a small number of people.

    Over the past 100 years, doctors have learned a great deal about sickle cell anemia. They know its causes, how it affects the body, and how to treat many of its complications.

    Sickle cell anemia varies from person to person. Some people who have the disease have chronic (long-term) pain or fatigue (tiredness). However, with proper care and treatment, many people who have the disease can have improved quality of life and reasonable health much of the time.

    Due to improved treatments and care, people who have sickle cell anemia are now living into their forties or fifties, or longer. ‘

    One last point before i wrap it up… Science is not a perfect system….. I know several families where both parents are carriers(AS) and have no Sicklers. I know they also say it’s a disease peculiar to africans, but i do know a white person who is a sickler. It’s a 25% chance, not 90, not even 40… it’s a one in four chance…

    If a couple decides to take that chance, then they should as long as they are willing to bear the consequences.

    For every choice/action/decision..there is a consequence.

    *i didnt proof -read so there might be grammatical errors.. i apologize in advance…

    1. @shesgotskills_the option of know the genotype of the foetus and terminating (please don’t go righteous on me) if i was to ask if it was okay for a girl raped to abort a pregnancy, some would say yes, forgetting that tha child could grow up to be great. If you would have no qualms taking out a foetus from a rape, then u shld have no qualms taking out a sick foetus.
      Madam am not going righteous with you here but we cant compare both situation they are far wide apart,person that was rape and commit abortion was not intentionally but if you know your genotype and still decide to go ahead, and decide to be terminating 5-6months pregnancy is murder cause the foetus is fully baby by then.

  19. Tears on my pillow, as i read thru this, i sadly take a reluctant memory trip. Her name was Kemisor. She was neither my seatmate but juz my primary sch classmate. Yrs later i run into her younger sis who referd to her one time elder sis as “Was”. And ryt now wich is high schl, uni and nysc yrs later, i remember her n i wish why there can’t b a “genotype letter transplant” thns cud b so much easier. Unfortunately the letters “AA”. & “SS” ar not like kidneys n livers where yu cud juz trade an “A for S”.

    Let’s do right by our unborn kids and make d right decisions. God bless us everyone. Amen.

  20. When iWrote this piece, iHoped it would spark up discussions and give people the opportunity to air their views without anybody dissing the other and whatnot. Thanx to everyone who has shared their story, opinion on the issue. We all agree the it is HARD to live with n that it is PREVENTABLE, just how we go avout it differ.
    On the issue of adoption, let me say that there’s a chance that the adopted child would someday seek out their birth parents. iThink it’ll be harder to bear knowin there was the chance of birthin one’s own child(ren). That said, since it’s the child and others who love this child that’ll suffer the pains, should the folks go ahead and risk it?
    My take is: whatever u choose to do, try not to bring a child into this world with an SS Genotype.

  21. @shesgotsk the reason i say they are selfish is because they think of themselves alone in that moment, not of the unborn child that may have to suffer unbearably as a consequence of their choice. Death of a child can put a great strain on any marriage. Take for instance, the story of the woman who has lost 3 of her 5 kids to the disease and now wants out of the marriage. You have to realise that wen you make such a decision, you are not the only one affected by it. Yes, your child may be lucky and end up AS but do u really wanna take that gamble? Would you be able to live with yourself and never question your choice if your little girl/boy cant sleep and is screaming from pain… I get that any one can die at anytime, from anything. But do you want to cause the pain and suffering of your own for that reason?
    Well, lemme get off my high horse… I just think its wrong and plain selfish, to knowingly cause another innocent human being such pain and suffering… Other lives are affected. If u cant consider their lives or if you do not think they are worth it, you are plain SELFISH in my books…
    Sorry for the length again:)

  22. I know when “love” comes in2 the equations it becomes a tough decision but in this day and time (thanks to technology) a lot of things can be done to prevent this situation. @shegotskills gave a lot of examples. If you are not willing to do all that, you really shouldn’t go ahead n marry a fellow AS cuz trust me I’ve watched ppl in crisis and as a mother you won’t forgive yourself having in mind it could have been avoided.

  23. @Nengie where u think it’s gambling, I fink it’s having faith.. Pls no1 shld pull the testin God line.. Cos it’s not testing God.. It’s havin faith in him. It’s testin God when there is 100% chance of havin a sickler.
    As a friend said, we dwell a lot on d negative aspect.. I fink it’s time we think positive.. Insteadin of lookin out for couples wit d issues look out for those who do not have dem.
    Before u make a decision, fink of the consequences if u cnt leave wit it, den u nid to rethink d decision.

  24. Talkin positives and negatives, the positives r smooth sailin; the negatives test people to the limit. As another friend, Omidan, succinctly put it, “Marriage is hard enough. LIFE is hard enough. All that ‘love’ evaporates when life gets real.”

  25. Hi! Sorry, am not good with words. 🙁 Franque Thanks a lot. Lost 2cousins and one 8yr-old niece because of their genotype. I still have 3 relatives bearing the SS genotype. Am AS and I suffer from a permanent aneamia and pains in the joints. Am not gon take a bet on my kids. Aint getting close to any AS, SC or SS guy. Pls people, be aware.

  26. Thats like saying you can cross the road without looking… U may be lucky, no car will hit u. Or maybe just a bike… Better still, u may be hit by a car and have lil injuries… Worse off, you may be seriously injured that u will want to die, you will wish u died… Since there’s a chance u may not be seriously hit or even injured at all, keep crossing without looking… Its adventurous, ul find its fun… Till they find a cure, or can effectively manage it, i will always see it as no no…
    Maybe its easy for me to say cuz im AA… Hmmm…
    @shesgotsk i agree with ur last post, esp the last part… We’re on the same page, u say 12, i say dozen… Think i misunderstood earlier…

  27. Great piece…this has made it into my private archives.
    That done, I’d love to emphasis that kowing ur genes is not enough. Be brave enough to let d one u love walk away. All that tale about adoption will not fly for most guys. They mite say it’s ok now…yrs down d line it ceases to b ok. D abortion bit? Oh please!!!

  28. Sorry I’m reading this late, I only just got a chance to. Powerful and very thought-provoking. I used to say “with love and trust, you can survive almost anything.” Well, “almost” is the operative word. The Sickle Sell issue is a big problem and as strange as it sounds, love truly is a selfish reason for bringing a child who will most likely be in pain all of their lives into this world.

    Thanks for reminding us of this fact coz and I am sorry to hear you have lost loved ones due to the ailment.

    Love ya!

  29. got here late again.frigging mtn network. That said,this is very thought provoking,i mean i have always known about checking out stuff like this before i get married, but now am taking an extra step of spreading the word to everyone i know who wants to get married. I lost a friend to this, her name was ID,we were not very close but i shudder just thinking about all she went through,thanks for ds reminder Franque

  30. Even though I’v read all ur posts I’v neva left a comment bt den I tot I shuld leave a one dis time…I just lost a cousin like 2months ago bcos she was SS n it was rili painful bcos we just reunited about a year ago…even though I neva talk about it this post just reminded me of her…thanks

  31. This post really hit home and I totally agree with you that love can’t conquer the kind of pain and suffering that comes with having children carrying the SS gene. In fact love shouldn’t be asked to carry that burden, it shouldn’t happen. I lost one of my best cousins to sickle cell anemia. Thanks for sharing their stories, they were beautiful.

  32. @ Nengie n Shegot_skillz: iSee u’v both kissed n made up;
    @ Crystal: Thanx for sharin with us, and ur decision not to chance it with ur kids;
    @ VM: iAm flattered that this made ur Private collectionm as for the other matter, it takes a lotta strength to let love go for love’s sake. Glad u see things my way;
    @ M.E: but u kno iHave nuffink but love for u coz *big hug*;
    @ Nenny: thanx for ur words;
    @ Uk: thanx dearie for sharin with us;
    @ Bimby: 1st off, iWas playin Devil’s Advocate when iCommented so; iWould never take that chance because iTry to think beyond now n beyond myself, there’ 2moro n there will be the kids, what would be a parent’s explanation for takin that chance?
    @ Tweenytweeny: thanx dear for sharin with us. iSee u on tweerah too;
    @ Ms_N: U were missed, welcome back. iAm glad my stories meant a lot to a lot of people; iJust hope it’s not for these next 3months only.

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