“Ko iwe, ever noticed that in most (if not all) of your short stories or articles even, the main character is a female? Is it because you were raised by a single mom oro?”
This right here is what prompted this article. It came up in one of my feedback chats with a very close friend. My first response was “LOL gerarahiye,” but then moments later I looked into it and it does kinda seem true. Over half of my unreleased short stories too are centered on women. So other than this I also realized a lot more patterns that when closely analyzed may be attributed to my upbringing, I decided to compile a few here, observe.
I will not bore you on why I think my father left but I can only share the possible effects of his absence. For starters, now I only think of him when either my mom or relatives ask about him, otherwise it’s a normal fatherless life nje. In earlier years though I’d put an effort to communicate with him until I realized that the effort is one way, he’s not putting in as much effort as I am so I just let it fade. Funny enough this has spilled over to any relationship I have with anyone, especially my friends. If I try reaching out to you and I see no complimentary action from you then I will let it be. In all honesty my last 2 relationships were killed by that also. So yeah, take it how you like but I play the “who spoke to who last” game a bit serious, communication is key.
On to smaller but significant things. I remember sometime last year, my mom asked “what do you think would be different had your father been around?” My only response was “we would have bigger speakers in the sitting room.” This was an honest joke and funny enough early this year she bought the last number of speakers (which she never lets us use on half the volume but hey). What a surprise right? No matter how much we try to show her that she’s the only father we ever knew, mom will always feel she falls short of the title. She’s even a staunch supporter of Liverpool, when it plays she texts with score line updates and all. I remember when we visited one of my uncles. We had lunch and since the ‘girls’ had gone to fetch firewood, I tagged my younger brother to help with the dishes in the kitchen (reflex action). Did my uncle not complain when he heard us washing ‘em dishes? Its funny now but he was fuming and even addressed the whole family that day. I felt embarrassed for my mom honestly but hey, like I said, we laughing about it now lol.
But I must admit, it’s not all rosy, sometimes you feel the impact. I have a younger brother. I remember when he reached puberty and had to have “the talk.” I didn’t think of it coz I never had none, I just transcended into teenage hood and learnt of these things later through friends or TV and all. Well my mom asked me to talk to lil bro, wow! Both conversations (one with mom the other with lil bro) were the weirdest of all. I repeat, both these conversations were weird. What must I tell him and what must I leave for the future or self-discovery? Another example would be of how you cannot ask some stuff from mom cause it’s not ‘proper’ to ask a woman. At times I roll my eyes when I see these relationships boys have with their fathers in movies, discussing girls, relationships, sex, love, etc. I just feel it’s unnecessary and should be reserved for self-discovery but alas, it’s actually proper ka. Probably I will be the embarrassing father to my children who’s always trying too hard to please and make up for not growing with one.
To me every day is a mother’s day, I celebrate my mother with every rising sun. I might not know how growing up with a father is but I know all the love that comes with a mother. Reflex or not, my dissertation assessed the impact of family structures on academic performance. Interesting results. Well this my musing moment on single mothers, I wish someone would do the same on single fathers or maybe single mothers bringing up a young lady, I want to know the differences and similarities. Thanks for visiting my blog and reading through, much love! P.S please do not mind the pic i inserted, its the closest i could get 🙂