Pray do tell, what comes to mind when you hear the word mother? A six letter word with the gravity of a nuclear bomb. The word invokes different emotions and feelings in different people. My friend, Sonko Flani, pointed out that the next blog post should be centred on our mothers. I realized it was about time!
To that end, I requested a few sweet souls to talk about their mama in one or two paragraphs. Yes, that short because I happen to know the most prevalent allergy that humans the world over ail from.The allergy to long prose. Ha ha. Take for instance myself. If I were to write about my mom, I’d never encounter the famous writer’s block. I’d never run out of content. Heck, I’d write scripts for blockbuster movies that would take Hollywood by storm. And faze out those hideous Naija Afro Cinema movies that a faction of the Kenyan populace follow with a maniacal obsession.
My mother is everything. Absolutely. Everything. One of the lessons she’s passed down to me is the habit of not chewing pens. Wait, this is actually true. Way back in nursery school, mom used to give me a thorough beating whenever I came home from school with chewed erasers and pencils. Up to date, I never chew the lids of my pens. And I see guys older than me chew on their pens. Ati when they are deep in though. Aiih. This other incident I have always reminded her. I was a serial puker in my tender years. So this one time mama was administering anti malarial tabs to me and I threw up. Mama was at her wits ends. She calmly scored through the disgusting stuff. Emerged with the tablets. Washed them with water. Handed them to me with a clear warning that she would do that until I swallowed them and kept them down. Your guess is as good as mine. Those tablets stayed down. In my digestive tract. Without a doubt, I love you mom. You are my rock. My symbol of resilience and strength. Diligence. Unconditional love.
Enters the not so flamboyant Sonko Flani: precious memories, how they linger…
Those days. Sigh. We used to visit either of our grandparents. Mum would line us up butt naked. She would scrub us with this rough piece of gunia that would attempt to cleanse the rumours of sins from us. He he. it would hurt a lot but who cared? In some instances it would be as early as 5.am. This cleansing ritual would be performed in a dimly lit living room that smelt of kerosene from the kerosene lamp. You are wondering how she would clean up the mess after that? Wonder no more! It was an earthen floor. The water would soak right in. There were numerous times when we had to be chastised by our stern dad. Mum would reverently stand by as we were given some loving according to the gospel of the radio chord. She would painfully watch as we hollered out for her intervention but she would not interrupt until we had received enough. Then she would calmly walk up towards dad. Gently tap his shoulder and miraculously calm the raging seas. With just a tap on the shoulder. God bless her heart.
Sir J had this to say…and it was deep. Really deep.
They say fathers treasure their daughters as precious gems.As a penny to a poor old man.Or as a selfie to a city girl. Well, mothers on the other hand love their sons like lichens on a rock, it will still grow where even charity can find no soil to nurture itself. I don’t know why it is so, but a mother’s love for her son mellows even the hardest of hearts. I being one, have experienced this love. Like nothing of this world, the winds may blow, and seasons turn but that love never withers, only grows bigger. Ask me, I know.
Being the last born and having been left by a huge gap age wise by my siblings, my precious mother played ‘fire in the mountain’ with me, around our coffee table when I had no one to play with. She took me to her workplace with her where I’d use the type writer to write the few words I had learnt by then. She kept an eye on me, while at the same time fulfilling her duties to her employer. She’d patiently listen to my unending stories after a long and very tiresome day at work. I’d go on and on but bottom line is, there is no possible way to describe that love, the love between a mother and her son.
And then Chicken Poop (interesting choice of name) came in…
Sometimes, I sit around and sulk about how difficult life can be. Then I look at my mother, a long time handicap, you know, arthritis and all the demons it carries with it, and I begin to think, wow, I complain too much. What my mother has accomplished is tremendous. I dare say it has beat some regular mothers’ accomplishments. I look at the positivity with which she takes life despite some days that the sickness renders her immobile and the zeal with which she runs almost everything at home and I am always humbled. Oh and she still has enough time to warn me about boys. Hehe. I have never known which face I will wear when I finally present my boyfriend. I know it will be harder than finishing CPAs.
You see, my mother gave birth to me, changed my diapers in the 90’s (I’m old) and bore with me in spite of the blob of fat I was. My mother took me to school and withdrew me from the same schools when she felt they were no longer serious. She braided my hair (although these days she refuses to touch it) and picked out my Sunday outfits. She still thinks she can send me back to the bedroom to change clothes that don’t make her happy and I still go, sometimes. In our house, on Sundays, you never want to hear her say “na hii nguo unaenda nayo wapi?” Then she looks at you through those darned glasses and you will have to crawl back and wear different. I cannot wait to move into my own house. This same woman taught me how to pray and seek God’s will; how to keep my self-dignity and know my value. She taught me to be kind but also gave me a stern warning about eating at the neighbors. At times when I want to rant about how I will not have five children like she did (For real Mr. X, isn’t 3 enough?), she is my audience and she always smiles and says to seek God’s will. A phlegmatic like me doesn’t do crazy but for my mother, I could do anything, except comb her weave and sing alongside her shrill soprano. I don’t know who told her she can sing. Dad?
Fundamendo Heart of Gold…has such esteem for the mom…
Trying to describe my mother is something that is impossible to do justice to. She is Maya Angelou’s phenomenal woman in flesh. Beautiful, dark African flesh. A strong but gentle woman. And I have to add, very wise and intelligent. My mum is a widow you see, and a mother of 5 children. In a time where most would have probably given up she didn’t. She raised us on her own after my father’s death. No relative lifted a finger to help her. In fact they all waited for our downfall. But my mum somehow managed to get us all through, and here I am now, a 4th year Law Student. Talk about amazing.
My mum has a heart of gold, and though people say that I have one too (which is a debatable opinion), my heart is like clay when compared with hers. I have fond memories of pretending to fall asleep on the sitting room chair just so that she would carry me to bed. I remember waking up in the middle of the night, even when in 2nd year and seeing her there in my room killing every single mosquito that threatened to bite me. She, though a mother of 5 has raised so many other children ensuring they got an education. She taught me English. She is a wonderful teacher, and all her students would attest to that.
My mum, in another life could have been a race car driver :D. I remember being late most days for school when in Primary and her driving like a maniac but still carefully. Beautiful is an understatement. She is what was spoken of in Proverbs 31 and more. The fear of the Lord makes her even more amazing. Mum thank you for showing me what it means to be a real kingdom woman. I love you!
And to cap it all, the laid back Gee had these profound words to say...
Every quality associated with this name remains deeply ingrained in my heart. The first countenance my bitty eyes beheld. My frail feet struggling on her laps. Laps that had cradled others before me. Nurtured with patience I fully fledged into the person I am. She always held me closely. More than one would meticulously handle brittle glass. I aged and eventually parted from her arms. She held me even closer in her spirit that always engulfs me. The aura of love that still emanates from her when I visit her now. The gloriously delicious aroma of well made dishes she makes since cradle. The ever heavenly atmosphere of sweet fellowship when we gather around where she is. The epitomized success story implicated everyday in the person I am.
Sonko Flani, Sir J, Chicken Poop, Fundamendo Heart of Gold and laid back Gee, on behalf of all Resplendants, we are truly grateful that you honoured us with a sneak peak of your lives. Our mothers, as it has been said before, are the fifth gospel. Even when they have their own human shortcomings, they still remain to be the honourable gifts that God chose to be our entry into this world. I appreciate the fact that not every childhood was rosy. Some were abused. Battered. Broken. Neglected. We can only forgive. No matter how difficult. And pray to be better mothers to our children. Better husbands to the mothers of our children.(Haha am not mentioning fathers today.) Some mothers (bless their souls) have gone on before us. Yet the footprints in our hearts live with us everyday. Some have never known their mothers. And have to struggle to imagine how they looked like. It is well. You have not lived your best days yet. Mothers are the very pillars upon which the nation is built. Indeed, they are EVERYTHING. If I ever get to be half the woman my mother is, then I shall have made my mark in this soulless world.
Please, you could share something about your mom in the comment box. It would be jolly good getting a sneak peak into the persons you have become.