The darkness is here again. It’s gathering, crowding at the base of my throat, and if I look down for even a moment, I will drown. I think it’s my fault that it’s here this time; maybe I invited it by calling its name, and maybe I roll around in it a little; it’s comfortable and has room for self-deprecation and pity parties. Every year, it comes and slowly winds itself around me, squeezing until I’m gasping for air and blinded by its thick fog.
Where I grew up, the last three months of the year are known for the harsh cold they bring. I remember occasions when my face wrinkled like the skin on an old woman’s neck; you dared not powder your face and you better have a jar of Vaseline in your purse. One of the things that surprised me when I first moved to Lagos was the year-round heat. Before you even get to the Mowe – Ibafo area, you start to feel the change in temperature.