Thursday, March 24, 2016

My Mom and My Womb

My mom and I are inseparable.

I remember chasing her around our house in Nigeria as a child wanting cuddles right after she got home from work. She's always worked; she worked until the day she gave birth to me, and went back to work six weeks after I was born. I watched her love my father, my siblings and me without fear or reservation.  I knew she would give up everything for me.  I never needed to worry; my mom is always on my side (benefits of being the last born lol).


[Line trills] My mom is calling me again. I wonder what I've done now as I pick up my phone. "When are you going to give me grand children?" -- I can't understand why she does this to me every few months. We have the same conversation about children every few months.  My mom has never had course to nag me about anything really; she usually lets me do whatever I want. In the end, she trusts that she's done her best to raise me and lets go.  This is the only non-Nigerian attribute she has!

"Heh? O ko paapaa gbọ ẹkọ!" She exclaims.  She seems frustrated that her baby girl doesn't listen to her instruction. I'm pretending this conversation doesn't bother me because I love my mom... I don't want to fight.  I tell her not to worry.  "I want to have children someday, but not today.  Not this year.  Not next year. Mommy? E ma binu." 

She says she's praying for me -- the kind of prayer that includes daggers for nagging lol.  She's praying for me to see reason and have children soon.  She says I'm getting too old to be playing games and that I need to remember that I'm old now (lol). I love it when my mom says I'm old. It's almost like I've finally arrived.  All my life I've been told that I'm too young to understand, and now she says I'm too old not to.  I remind her that she had me when she was 35... "And I'm the best one you had! So I should wait until I'm 35 too." I imagine she wonders how she ever gave birth to such a crazy argumentative baby haha. (Yes, I'm still her baby.)

I tell her a story to get her mind off of our (play) fight. "Mommy, e je kin da yin nrerin!"  I remind her about an adventure we went on together: shopping in Yaba.  Man, Lagos was rough. We would frequent crowded markets sprawling all over streets and railways and my mom could haggle from sun up till sun down.  I would force my mom to take me to the market with her, and I'd be so scared of getting lost that I would hold on to her iro (skirt equivalent) so tightly.  I'd have to maintain a running pace to keep up! I would constantly bother her for sweets and other things she would never buy.  I never understood that she was stretching every Naira she had in hand; I never felt like we were in-need.  I just knew there are certain things that we would never have and that was OK.  I told myself that I would get them when I got older, but I also learned that even if I didn't always get what I wanted, I would survive.

Image: Yaba Market in Lagos Nigeria || Source: PMNewsNigeria

She remembers and she laughs.  She says she also remembers telling me that I better become rich because I have such expensive taste!

She's not fooled by my deflection.  In spite of the trip down memory lane, she goes back to children. "I just want to see a little you," she says with resignation.

Me too, mommy.  Someday, but I'm not ready yet.  

I've rushed into relationships before.  I've pushed a partner to create a perfect family before. I've bought my own engagement rings before.  I've bought my own wedding rings before. I don't want to go these things again... I don't want to rush anymore.

She seems satisfied with my response.  I tell her to stop worrying and get some rest - and she agrees.  

Let's see how long this truce holds.