Atwoki the Father

Atwoki sobers and has time to buy flowers for Rachel at a convenience store before seeing the baby Donna Kay. Rachel is wide awake in her room on the maternity ward when her husband arrives.
“Where were you?” Rachel asks and grabs the flowers without saying ‘thank you.’
“I’m sorry.” Atwoki bends down and kisses Rachel’s forehead. “You knew it was going to be a girl.”
“Yes,” she smiles. “She’s not even here.”
Atwoki looks shocked. “Is something wrong?”
“No,” Rachel says. “The nurses here have not ever seen an African baby before.” Rachel starts to laugh. “At first I was scared, but they have taken Donna Kay all over the hospital to show her around.”
Atwoki is angry. “I have not even seen my own daughter yet!”
Rachel furrows her brows. “If you weren’t out drinking with that friend of yours George, then you would have been here.”
Atwoki looks at his fingernails to make sure they are clean and to take a moment to think. “Well, I guess I won’t do that again.”
“Good,” Rachel says.
“Can I go look for the nurses?” Atwoki asks Rachel.
“Just wait, dear,” Rachel says. “They’ll come back.”
Rachel lays in the hospital bed and Atwoki stands by her side – they say nothing for quite a while.
“I’m a father,” Atwoki says to himself softly, to himself almost.
Rachel stares at him to catch his gaze. “Your father would be proud, Atwoki. Make him proud. Don’t drink again.”
A nurse came in with baby Donna after Rachel speaks. Atwoki looks at her.
“I’ll try.”
Atwoki looks at his watch.
“Rachel, what day is it?”
“August twelfth. She was born at 10:15 this morning.”


Author: kakonged

I am an author, journalist, teacher, and lawyer who lives in Toronto, Canada. This picture is a selfie that was done on Saturday, February 24, 2018, nearing six years of my being dreadlocked.