My Mama, My Inspiration

I stare at her and my pen slips from my fingers,

My mind walks me into my future ambitions,

I envision wrapping her in the best Ankara,

Treating her to vacations in the bahamas,

Watching the sunset as she sips cascade cabanas,

If i tell her my dreams, i know scolding me with a smile, she will,

For her life, she says, has been a lifelong honeymoon…

Her only gift she asks, is a new copy of the John Maxwell bible,

And a house full of laughter from her chubby grandchildren.

© Rioba

Think back to 13th May, what did you do for you mother for Mother’s day? Personally, I didn’t do much, I think its unique to do it after the buzz (hahaaha, the excuses we give, lol) … I know it is late, but its better late, than never, to tell a loved one you love them, Right? It took me a while to come up with this, because, I think am emotionally impaired… but on a serious note- I don’t really know how to tell all the mothers out their Happy Mothers’ Day, but I hope the few points I touch on may be relatable with everyone. Growing up with my mother was, what can I say, interesting? The transition from a humble respectful child to a rebellious teenager then to the responsible young adult has taught me too many lessons… so pop corns ready? Enjoy the top 5!!!

 

Spanking us made us better, it also made us cheeky, we learnt her moves, we knew when she was ready to strike

1- SPARE THE ROD, SPOIL THE CHILD
The number of times this lovely woman has spanked me! topping it with Proverbs 13:24! Once during prayers, my sister and I giggled our way through the session, we were still young, I think I was five, I have no idea. After prayers, we ran to our room and stripped preparing to jump into bed. We were lucky, or so we thought, mama hadn’t cautioned us about our giggles, but then, the door burst open, there she stood with a stalk of Sukuma Wiki she had uprooted from our vegetable garden… let us just say, it was only on rare occasions, after that eventful night that we took sacred moments for granted again. But it helped us, it was the only way we learnt wrong and right.
 
 

Keep you heart devoid of ill-feelings, let go of those who heart you, cleanse your heart and you will have peace

2- FORGIVE AND FORGET
One value she instilled in me is the art of forgiveness. One day, in my teenage years I was in the house with my dad and two younger brothers in the evening, i cant remember what happened, but I shouted and her, she was in the kitchen, and she came to the hallway, and her face showed me she was hurt. At then it didn’t mean much to me, but when I realized how wrong I was, I apologized sincerely. She said to me “Baby, I forgive you. When you become a mother, you learn to endure, you learn to understand, you learn to love despite the flaws… so I forgave you long before today. Do not let it eat you up” despite her kind words and her pats on my back, it hurts me till today, I still see her face, I hope one day I will forget…
 
 
 
 
 
 

Not so clear, but a very memorable day for us. My mum talking to the children from the neighborhood during the 2016 Christmas as they had supper with us.

3- BE CHARITABLE, BUT DO NOT DO IT FOR THE PR
We live in a very diverse neighborhood in terms of social classes. Our neighbors, despite having less fortunate situations, are family, and us being next to them is a blessing. Every festive season, my parents invite the less fortunate around us to have Christmas with us, or celebrate a birthday or New Years. Without help from the society, for them, Christmas would just be another day. It is normally an emotional moment for all of us, I remember my eldest brother crying during one of these sessions and thanking God for having our mama, Salome, as a mother. He was pained to watch the dreamy looks in the children’s eyes as they waited to be served. He wanted those smiles to be permanent. Through her small but significant deeds you realize she has a soft spot for children. In her school she would admit children without fees because them getting education was more important, she would give uniforms to those who couldn’t afford it.. the list is endless. She doesn’t do it for show, she does it because she cares.

4- APPRECIATE YOUR BLACK SKIN AND YOUR AFRICAN CULTURE
My mum has always asked of us to respect our color and our culture. She believes inner beauty is far more important than the outward beauty, for if you nourish the inside, the outside will also be pleasing to the eye. I grew up knowing make up was not really a necessity, it was a luxury that you can either do with or without. When I turned 16, one of my aunts bought me an eye-shadow kit. I could see it in my mum’s face, I could smell the disapproval from a mile away. she did not have a problem with me being given gift, she just did not like it that it was make up. Actions speak louder than words right?- so when i went back to school, the holidays would bring me to a shocking discovery of how my mum disposed of the eye-shadow kit.

Am black, am Beautiful. A dash of lipstick brightens my day.

Then again it reaches a point where you have to make decisions, mine was to find a balance between antiques and the modern society, so i limit my make-up to a bit of lipstick and eye pencil. Voila! These two items brighten my day. Those she understands, okay, no she doesn’t,
 
but she accepts.
 
 
 
 
5- FIND HOME IN GOD AND FAMILY
Honestly speaking, I think my mother has one best friend, His name is Jesus. She will always consult with Him before she makes any decisions. In case of any family feud, she talks to God. When there are financial strains, she talks to God. She always talks to God and through God she finds solutions.
Her love for family is limitless; the sacrifices she made for us can’t be listed to an end. I remember when my father was in South Sudan for Peace keeping, she had a school to run and five children living in different cities and countries to care for. She didn’t sleep, one minute she was trading in maize in Kitale, the next she in school checking if children are learning and being fed, the jumping to visiting her daughter in Lanet for a parents day… It never ended, but she never tired.

With her last-borns, these ones didn’t get a lot of spanking like me though, thank God for a new millennium.

People wonder why others fuse about mothers’ day, they fail to understand the impact mothers have, the connection we have with our mothers. I celebrate you today and everyday, even thought it is late, because you inspire me, you have shaped my becoming a Woman of Substance, you encouraged me, you prayed for me and you carried me in your womb for nine months, that, plus the labor, is no joke.
I respect you mum, I love you. Happy mothers’ day everyday.
 

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