I laid in bed, chatting on my phone about the minutia of the day. The children were audible in their room, as usual, chatting to each other about YouTube, and how they wished that they too owned the toys being played with by online paedophiles.
Everything seemed normal.
My sister walked up the passage, and from my room, I could see her looking into the children’s bedroom.
She was talking, directed at the room, but I couldn’t make out what she was saying.
The conversation seemed bland, so I zoned it out, designating it to the back of my mind.
I drifted off slightly, when I had a fleeting thought: ‘When did my sister get here?”.
It was ten o’clock, and the last thing I remember was bathing the children…
I don’t remember having visitors.
I don’t remember getting into bed.
I must have drifted off without knowing, and missed whatever was happening in the front of the house. I realised it was too late for the kids to be awake.
I took a deep breath and shouted, “Hey Sonya. What’s going on?” and sat upright in bed. The blanket cascaded halfway down my body, letting the icy air rest against my bear arms.
She looked down the passage, into my room, and smiled at me.
“It’s fine sis. Needed a favour, just having a chat with Riyaahd”, she echoed down the passage.
“Coming now baby”, Riyaahd shouted from the children’s room.
“The kids need to go to sleep”, I hollered. I laid back down, glad that the baby was at least asleep next to me. I could feel her warmth against my thigh.
As I slid down, my eyes scanned the cot in the corner of the room.
Scarlett’s hand peeped out, outstretched over the white picket.
Panic rose from the pit of my stomach. I turned to my left and looked down, straight into Riyaahd’s sleeping face.
I jumped up and ran past my sister, and into the children’s room. A man with Riyaahd’s body, but a face I didn’t’ recognise was on my son’s bed, with his hands around Sidney’s neck.
The man looked up at me, and smiled, before he slowly disappeared. His red sweater was the last to go.
I woke up bathed in my sweat.
Another night terror since burning that necklace. I haven’t really been able to sleep soundly for the last few weeks.
I forced myself to walk through the house and check on everyone. Everything was peaceful, and the children, and my husband (the real one) were all sound asleep.
I made myself a cup of coffee, and carried it back to my room. By the time I got to bed, I realised that something had caught my eye on my walk back past the children’s doorway.
Slippers back on, I closed my gown and again went to check on the kids. I stopped dead in their doorway.
Sidney- Jonah was suddenly sitting up-straight in his bed. With his eyes opened wide.
For five seconds, we stood in silence, staring at each other, until I couldn’t hold back a frightened whimper that slipped past my lips.
At that moment, I saw Sidney wake up. He was completely unaware of my presence, and when he saw me in the doorway, he screamed. I ran to hug him.
“Jonah, why were you sitting up straight?”
He didn’t understand the question.
“There was a man in my room, he had his hands around my neck”.
Again the icy cold caressed my exposed skin, but Rose had woken up in all the commotion, and I felt it wiser to let the incident slide as just another dream… for now.
I have been avoiding blogging.
But here I am, about to share what is happening in my life. I don’t blame you if you don’t believe me.
I went missing from social media, which is usually an indication that someone is craving attention. I however, didn’t announce my absence, and disdain for thirsty men in my DMs… so you know my absence was a serious one.
My mental health took a nosedive, and like a Stephen King Novel, I was subjected to a cursed necklace, a disembodied voice calling me, and my son being woken by a man screaming at him. A man, who doesn’t exist.
From the stress, my physical health followed suit.
But no, negative Nelly’s of the blogosphere, don’t rejoice yet. My demise is only scheduled for twenty or so years from now, when menopause takes the last of my hair, and the remainder or my vagina juices.
Did you know that your genital herpes can spread to your anus when you are under extreme stress?
You live you learn.
I am working through the stress, though.
Now, the point of this blog is not to continue or re-engage the popularity of my last supernatural trilogy. I contemplated not writing about any of the night terrors, and then realised that if I was going to keep my blog true to its open and no-holds-barred nature… I needed to divulge everything.
Let’s go back a few weeks:
My last post ended on a cliff-hanger that insinuated that either myself, or one of my children had died. Allow me to ease your well-intended suspense: I was being dramatic. However, my discussion, and lessons in the illusion of time have only just started, with an ironic turn of events following my last blog.
Scarlett was hospitalised for Sepsis, that she contracted after a visit to my husband’s mother. His mother collapsed a few days later from a combination of gastro and Ramadan, and the next week, my infant followed suit.
We recovered, but not without my fair share of liquid diarrhea…
Even as I write this, I am wheezing uncontrollably, because in the latest episode of “Keeping up with our inoculations”, my 8 year old decided to suck up every single germ at his primary school, and like Dumbass the elephant, spray it onto every member of my family, except my husband. Riyaahd has the immune system of a Greek god, even though if I don’t feed him from my pots, his diet consists of gummy bears, slabs of chocolate and mince samosas from “Mariam’s kitchen”.
As a rule, Mariam is the only other bitch allowed to feed my man.
But the truth about my absence is simple, pre-30 depression has hit me, and it has hit me hard. The last 30 or so days I have struggled to get out of bed. I have struggled to look at my husband and children. I have also struggled to have a successful bowel movement, but that’s the usual IBS. Irritable Bull Shit.
I have used these last few months on my way to the illusive milestone as a time to reflect on my life. This reflection has covered everything from my parenting, to my achievements (or lack thereof…) to how I got this fat.
And it made me sad.
So, on Sunday, I told my husband that I didn’t lus for him,( He was after all, a dream demon) and I packed the children in the car, and in my pyjamas, I made my way to my mom’s house.
Now, bear in mind that my mother is about as emotionally available as I assume Hitler was with the Jews, so I had to have been at my lowest low to take the trek to Muizenberg, sore butthole and all.
Ironically, a lot of the conversation we had was about how she feels I need to take just how ‘butt-hurt’ I was and deal with it like a big girl. But they don’t make antiseptic panties. The way my anus felt, I was convinced I would need to start wearing orthopaedic underwear.
I’m getting off crack.
I put Scarlett down for her nap at around 3pm, and noticed a faux pearl necklace laying on my mother’s dressing table. I felt drawn to its familiarity.
“Mommy, was this ma’s thing?” I asked as I clipped it around my fat neck.
..”Can I have it?”
I admired myself in the bathroom mirror. My first family friendly pearl necklace.
Yet, I still couldn’t Bukake.
I kept the piece of jewellery on, and laid down next to Scarlett for a nap. My breathing laboured a bit, but knew Jonah had brought schoolyard Ebola into my home, so I chalked it up to that and just scrolled through my phone, resting my body.
At 5pm, we left for home.
The children, bathed and ready for bed, played in their room, on their respective beds.
I packed the lunch bags in anticipation for the Monday morning rush (And as most moms will know, when I say rush, I mean everyone moves at a glacial pace, while I scream).
Riyaahd sat in the lounge with Scarlett, as we started Oceans 8, and I watched from our open plan kitchen.
I ran to the bathroom for a minute to pee. “Don’t pause, I can still hear”.
I flushed, and washed my hands, looking up into the mirror, just in time to see a red sweater walk up my passage.
“Riyaahd, why didn’t you press pause?”
“I’m still watching”, he replied, from the lounge.
I hurried to the children’s room, trying to hide my absolute panic.
Jonah broke the ice.
“Mom, what’s going on with dad? He keeps walking up and down the passage? I called him but he isn’t talking to me”.
I decided against mentioning that for the last two hours, Riyaahd hadn’t left his seat.
Something in my house was pretending to be my husband.
You aren’t even going to believe what happened next.