Today’s world gives little credence to mothers or people. Many times, they are just there. Other times, we remember them and send some word: ‘Hey Mum, thanks’…Or maybe we remember we have a caring mum…and forget. Many mothers aren’t really the traditional mothers we used to know.
Forgive me, I am African and know that no matter who a lady is or decides to be, there should be something they stand for to their children. I have experienced different ladies – both career and non-career alike trying to show this.
With some ladies, you know what motherhood is…I have come down a line of several strong mothers who have made me honour them each day.
I feel blessed. And it marvels me. You see several women ‘carry’ children despite evils or whatever challenges for several months. The child comes and they suffer to raise the child up. Some, like my mum, sacrificing a lot of what might have been a very promising career. Not that this makes them lazy. No! Usually, most find some job to do. I have a million stories to tell but one comes to mind. It is of a struggling mother who came back in the a.ms from a night shift at work. She saw her son shivering from a convulsion. The woman who had dragged herself in, totally exhausted with sleep on her eyes picked the boy and backed him. She walked several kilometres to the nearest hospital which wasn’t ‘near’. At some point, they saw Muslims taking their dead to go bury. He uttered: ‘Mummy, sometimes, I wish I would die and leave you in peace so that you would stop suffering for me like that.’ That mum wept. The boy lived and writes this piece today. It took me long years to grow and discover what I see as the sweetness of the burden of motherhood.
Talking of the sacrifice of motherhood, I begin to think of how the times are changing and people are looking for one excuse or the other to forget to love…their own children!! C’mon! Love is in the sacrifice!
I should mention here that I have lost most of my loved ones lately and found most of my friends losing theirs too. At this time, I and most of these people try to immortalise said people by putting up their pictures as Display pictures, Profile Pictures, Avatars and the like. We try to write poems and things like that, raise memorials, testimonies and all. The question is would they (our dead ones) know? Would they be honoured? Maybe, maybe not. We can only guess. It gets worse when these people didn’t really know what they meant and how great they were thought of. Reminds me of a cousin of mine, Mimi Bossua, who dedicated her whole Facebook page to me on my birthday without my knowledge. It made me realise that no matter where we are at any one time, there is somebody somewhere loving us and wishing us well, praying things go well with us – whether we know it or not. Many times, we don’t. Imagine perhaps that I had passed on without knowledge of the post? I wouldn’t have felt that honour. So, I decided to change and honour those I cherish and speak up on those values I hold. After all, an Aunt, Shiga once said: ‘Gone are the days when people used to only praise the dead. These days, we praise the living once they are in the right so that when they are in the wrong, we can also lash them.’
Thus, this tribute is for the several mothers I know from my mother, to Mrs. Mbatomun Shango, the Shango sisters from big DY through to Msugh and Mimi who does it for so many kids, Ukamaka Osakwe, Theodora Oyana and to the person who inspired this piece, Mrs. Hembadoon Angela Itakpe.
I smile when I see one of the perfectest examples in the strong and courageous Hembadoon Angela Itakpe, who put her life on hold that her children’s might go on. A competent Architect, this lady took the option of home maker, putting a whole career on hold. All to ensure that her two children get the best of childhood. Yes, she has the support of a great and loving man, Mr. Joe Itakpe but Nope, she aint lazy! She got to doing a few other businesses that an Architect would laugh at. But that is the pride, she does it all with laughter because she knows that her foundation would be the perfect gift for her children who are growing greatly.
As I salute Aondo for another year of this great lady, I celebrate someone who’s worth can hardly ever be quantified in a few words. For every single thing you do for those children, for being the great lady you are, for being my dearest sister and good friend + much more, I can only say Hembadoon Angela Itakpe live long and may your years be far far far greater…Best wishes today and forever more.
And to all other women out there, in a world getting worse by the day, we need more Mums, not just biologically but in all ways. Guys you aint left out, honour these ladies and be Dads much as you can….Single guys? Haba! Okay, single guys and ladies be the best and make each second count.
Best wishes, S’
(NOTE: The Shangs refers to the Shangos, the sisters of whom this piece is built around)