Growing up way before I knew myself, I got used to been spotted and great remarks kept coming… One of such is “You are brilliant “! I’ve heard such from people I didn’t even know. I’ve been in situations where people pointed out to me as an example to show their children.
The almighty speech and prize giving day many dread alot was indeed a prize giving day for me, even though each year with such event turned out a very busy one for me. All of those presentations students get involved in, trust me you’ll get tired of seeing my face. I was literally everywhere.
At some point I wanted to start complaining but mumcy’s stare and scold was not something I enjoyed ( and yes! She was a staff in my school).
For reasons unknown to me then, she always encouraged me to partake in those activities. These reasons became obvious years later as I kept going through various facets of life. You can imagine having to memorize for news casting, debates, poetry (my favorite then) and you’re always spotted and given long threads to memorize, simply because everyone believes you can do it.
That’s not it all, there were some little extras like music entourage (popularly welcome singers), cultural dances, choreographies, …. these were all fun.
I deviated a bit……….. but please follow closely.
The end of another academic year came, with all of the usuals but it turned out a remarkable one for me. I went home with lots of gifts both academic, moral conduct and for physical appearance.
So when I said “I am brilliant “, it’s no hype! I’m not saying all of these for self appraisal but I’m heading somewhere.
Whilst all of these events were happening almost becoming a norm, such tags and appraisals from people never got to my head maybe because the tutorship, guardianship over me or the environment I grew up in never permitted or gave room that. Plus I was still a little girl then and all I wanted was making my parents proud.
But then something else happened of which till date I’m yet to decrypt/decipher completely. Mum had to travel and it came very much near my exams. Impliedly, I would start and finish writing the exams before she returns. It happened that way, she left with strict warnings to be sure I read and even did well with timely checks on how my exams went.
She returned during the week of compilation of results.
Fast forward to exam results collection day, I had no reason to panick but suprisingly she expressed how disappointed in me she was and blamed it on the fact that I slacked a bit and my performance dropped because she was absent. It was serious because I recieved beatings with a slippers ( lol, typical of Nigerian moms). I cried so much in response to the pain I felt from the beating and even more hearing that my performance dropped. I felt so bad because I had let my parents down. It was my first time dealing with failure. “Failure ” because that was what I termed it as, more so my mum’s reaction spelt it that way.
People of God, y’all would be so shocked to know the succeeding event. I had my report sheet in my hand, only to discover I still came first place but my cumulative average dropped. I can’t remember the figure exactly but then it didn’t seem so alarming to me but to my mum it was.
Who else is thinking what I was thinking then and still thinking now?
So why did she beat me?
Don’t ask me how my break or holiday went, you could tell I read my life (lol).
At that time it happened I felt she reacted to that way because she had high expections from me and to probably prevent future occurance.
Today, I think her reasons are to help me understand that with or without her I should always do my best and excel in every and all.
She was seeing the future, I guess she knew she wouldn’t be present in all facets of my life and so she had to drive that message home early enough.
Truly, what an elder sees sitting a child wouldn’t see even if he climbs a ladder.
As early as my senoir secondary school days I was out of my parent’s sight, I went to a boarding school and so I learned how to live on my own and even study without been asked to do so, I had the opportunity of dodging classes, much more night prep classes at least my parent would not know as long as I don’t get caught. But I saw myself making my own decisions to study hard. My guide was this…. “never to do things I wouldn’t be able to do in their presence “.
Years later I still had to study without them in sight.
They got to hear my results when I tell them, send to them online or show it to them on those timely visits during holidays. No one has to tell me when and why I need to study hard, I still try so much to do my best!
So we could all say mum’s message was well recieved, lesson learnt and her nuggets of wisdom will last a lifetime.
PS: My mum wasn’t overly schooled, she didn’t bag a BSc or any of such academic achievements, She is learned of morals, conduct and I can boldly say Godliness no doubts!
Credit :My alma mater @Global Kids Academy
(Primary school days)
My mum @ Mrs Tamar Kenneth