Wednesday, August 19, 2009

By: Bismarck Nii Ogbamey Tetteh

I AM Albert Atta Dodd, two years ago I was diagnosed of having a very serious heart condition and that heart transplant was the only way out.
Around that same period, Albus Atta Dodd, my identical twin brother, was also diagnosed with leukemia. Even though we are identical on the outside, we are totally different people in many ways.
“I would rather die than endure all that pain in chemotherapy” he said, when he was diagnosed.
While Albus liked jazz, classical music and R&B, I loved hip-life, reggae and dance hall. Albus was a very calm, slow to anger but I was erratic and got angry easily. He loved slim and God fearing ladies and I admired ‘bad girls’ with huge booty who loved it rough in bed.

In my case my doctor told me I badly needed a new heart and that if I did not get one within a month, something bad could happen. Consequently, he put my name on an emergency list. The situation was getting bad and when the heart was not coming, I became so very disturbed.
One night, I had a call that Albus had been rushed to the hospital. When I got there, he was in a hospital bed and he looked very pale, with his hair almost gone.
I broke down into tears, something I had never done since I became an adult. He looked like he was already dead.
“I was going to loss my life and my only brother was also dying”, I said to myself.
Suddenly, I felt a sharp pain in my chest, and within a couple of seconds I blacked out . When I was resuscitated I felt so weak and tired, and could not breathe well, so I called for my doctor. He told me that my heart had become so weak that he was not gong to allow me to go home or walk around.
I quickly asked him about my twin brother and he told me that he was ok, and allowed me to speak to him on phone.
After 2 months, my doctor came running to me one early morning that he had found me a heart, and that I was to get prepared for surgery. The operation went well. After two weeks, I became worried because I had not heard from Albus so I asked the nurse to take me to his ward but she refused. When the doctor arrived and I asked him of my brother, he told me that I had not recovered enough and that I needed to recover fully before I could see him. I started to feel uneasy about his response.
That evening I bribed a male nurse, who was on night duty, and he took me to my brother’s ward. When I got there, his bed was occupied by another patient so the nurse took me back to my room.
After I was discharged, the doctor told me that my brother left me a letter.
“Where is he” I asked with anxiety, but he told me to read the letter, adding that "all the answers you needed are in there." It read:
“Dear Albert, let me explain why I had to do this. You were at a point of death at a time where my heart was healthy. And because you needed it to survive,I asked the doctor to give mine to you as soon as he realized it was time for me to die, so you will at least have your life back and my heart will be beating inside you. We will then be one. I hope you understand that it was the right thing I did. While the doctors think only one of us had to live, I think both of us can live but in one body. I will always be there with you. From your loving brother, Albus”.
Those were my brother’s last words. It’s been two years since, and anytime I think of him, I have a feeling he is inside me. My life has completely changed, and I now like most of the things Albus used to like. I am as calm as he was and any time I talked to people who knew him, they keep telling me that I sounded and behaved like Albus.
The only logical explanation for that is his heart beats inside me.


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I am a Creative Arts Writer who is also into Strategic Communications, Public Relations, Photography and IT consultancy. I am also Social media enthusiast and an alumni of the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ).


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