Indeed, I can say I am blessed amongst women to be raised by four strong women. Some came before me, while other joined along the way. Today I salute my Mom, My Mom in law of blessed memory and my Grandmas (also of blessed memory). As I stared at a picture that my daughter drew of me with almost eight hands representing the different roles that I juggle daily, I am reminded that I am who I am today because you all charted this path so graciously. You were such great models. I can go forth to do greater works because, like an arrow, you sharpen me and now I am free to wander to places that you could only imagine. Mothers!
Who sat and watched my infant head
When sleeping on my cradle bed,
And tears of sweet affection shed?
Growing up, we will get so excited when a new dress was bought, we could not wait for the next outing to wear our new dresses. My Mom on the other hand, always had other plans for our new clothes. The plan followed this pattern all the time, new dress goes to the bottom of the suitcase with the perfect response, ‘Were you walking naked before the dress arrived?’ A good question but still a tough pill to swallow. We quickly recognized the pattern and normalize to our fate in life. We had only two options, live with it or return Mom to the Mom store and ask for another Mom or a refund. But the second option only exist in dreamland, so we lived with it. A grown version of me appreciates the lessons more as I have grown to determine what trends I follow and not allow trends rule me. I also learned to be more than comfortable in my skin.
Who taught my infant lips to pray
And love God’s holy book and day,
And walk in wisdom’s pleasant way?
My Mother. *
Mom taught me the Bible as she doubled up as Sunday School teacher at some point in my life. She lived out the lessons from the Bible in a few dramatic ways. As I flash back in time, I remember when it was party time, we will get so excited to go but Mom will always insist that we eat and not only eat but finish the food if not, there will be no party. I hated those moments because the food will feel so tasteless and the mountain before you looked like it was never going to come down, yet the clock kept ticking. Again, Mom had the perfect response, ‘you want to go to the party and start behaving like people who don’t have food at home’. You can say I have been saved from getting angry when the food service doesn’t get to me at occasions like weddings because Mom’s voice stuck and I always try to show up with a full belly or at least know to behave more gracefully when the food doesn’t get to me. It takes skill and practice to stay calm at these events when you get cut off from food service especially when you are so hungry or so close to the food.
Mom used everyday events to shape our character and she was not afraid or tired to go down the unpopular or uncool path. One of those days, my clique of friends agreed to show up for a birthday party dressed alike. We all agreed to wear boots. At that time, the only pair of boots that I owned were rain boots. I was young and foolish and guess what, my little mind was prepared to show up to the party in rain boot. My way of fitting in with the girls. Trust Mom, she had her own plans and boots were not a part of the plan. I cannot remember her reason but knowing her so well, it probably had to do with teaching me a silent lesson on Peer Pressure. Imagine for a second if I showed up in rain boots that day. O well, on that very day, Mom’s unpopular position saved me from a scar that may have earned me a bad nickname, lots of laughs and a bruised self-esteem. The other girls had fancy boots on, I did not and honestly after I realized what type of boots were expected, I did not care. I was simply happy that Mom in her strange way saved me from that embarrassing situation. The party was fun, no one noticed I did not wear boot and even if they did, the party lasted for about three hours and we all went our separate ways.
My Grandmas on the other hand taught me what to expect from my future in-laws, not in words but in action. They both loved their son and daughter in-law so much. To Dad’s Mom, my Mom could hurt no fly, she loved my Mom so much and I remember her taking short walks every single day to ask my Mom what she wanted to eat whenever we visited the village. In fact, it was a taboo for my Mom to cook when we visited, if she did, Grandma will ask if her food was no longer tasty, their relationship was made in heaven. Grandma always told my Mom that when she was tired of cooking for her, she will know. On that fateful day, when she took her last breath, we all knew she was tired but not without saying goodnight with one last meal. I watched my Mom and Grandma closely and when I became of age, I prayed that God would give me a Mom in-law just like my Grandma. Yes, he did, even though she went to be with the Lord early, I enjoyed ten years of food exchanges, lovely gifts, laughs and teasing, African Magic and Zee World forced down my throat. Even in her sick bed, she wished she could do more, wanted to do more and all she asked of me was to take care of the children, her children. Every single memory of her leaves a smile on my face because she was just right for me in so many ways. More importantly, she raised a son who loves God so dearly and for that I am thankful. In Idorenyin’s words, ‘Mom’s watchful eyes reached far into the future to protect her children from threats yet to come’. The Mother Eagle.
And can I ever cease to be
Affectionate and kind to thee,
Who wast so very kind to me,
Ah, no! the thought I cannot bear,
And if God please my life to spare
I hope I shall reward thy care,
My Mother. *
Moms have a tough job, sometimes it requires them being uncool for the moment. I would like to dare all mothers out there to set the pace for their children to follow. We, each and every one of us will give an account of what we used our influence as mothers to do; build or destroy, pull up or tear apart, instruct or ‘destruct‘.
So today and always, we say thank you Mom for teaching us life in those simple daily interactions and being bold and intentional about it. Thank you to all mothers for wearing this badge of honour so gracefully. God Bless you!
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Have a great week ahead!
*Poem – ‘My Mother’ by Ann Taylor
Wow… Thank you so much for this piece. My parents were/are the typical good cop/bad cop. Dad enjoys the finer things in life while mum is more down to earth. Growing up, She will go to the market to purchase items to cook a pot of soup. Instead of buying the washed, picked leaves or the already blended crayfish. Etc. She will prefer to buy directly from the villagers. In her words “it’s cheaper”. So preparation for the food, in our Young minds, took almost a whole day of picking waterleaf, slicing veggies, pounding crayfish, using grinding stone for pepper, cutting perewinkles, etc. I and my sisters just hated being around mum cos she was always in the kitchen. Today, I realise that I can abound and abase. Mum taught us to farm & read, use electrical and manual appliances, slay with second-hand cloths(Okrika) and designers. I can relate with aristocrats and the less privileged, because despite having the comforts daddy’s job accorded us, mum was true to her nature and we’re better off because of her. God bless all mothers.
Well said, thank you for sharing.
Wow! So well explained.
(For me)….” We, each and every one of us will give an account of what we used our influence as mothers to do; build or destroy, pull up or tear apart, instruct or ‘destruct‘.
God bless all good mothers 🙏
Thank you very much. We are glad you enjoyed the read.
This brings a smile to my face.
Thank you for the write up.
God bless you.
My mom is the best!!! God bless you mummy love.My mother in-law who gave me a special name “IMA”, your prayer for me is unending. God bless you mma.
nice work, i really like your blog.
From Nicole Mbang.
Point to note, we are called to be Godly mothers. My mother gave me the hardest part of training and I used to feel very bad about it. But I thank God that the girl she trained years ago has become the lovely woman today.
Tho she went to be with the Lord, I am grateful to God for giving me a mother who shaped my life.
I also ask God to help me train my pretty damsels.
God’s blessings rest on every GODLY WOMAN AND INTENDING GODLY WOMEN.
This was such a sweet read.
It is interesting how influences in our life shape who we turn out to be.
Happy mothers day to you and all the women whose influences have shaped us and keep shaping us!!!
Totally love the write up. God bless all who play a motherly role.
May God continue to bless and keep all the mothers in good health to reap the fruits of their labours
A mother’s love is the heart of a family, God bless every mother, thanks for taking me back memory Lane.
MOTHERS ARE SPECIAL.
THANKS FOR SHARING
Lovely. God bless all Good Mothers out there 🙏
No one was allowed to eat anything other than what was being served except for health reasons. This and other disciplinary actions of Mum has helped me a great deal in life.
Whomever you don’t honor cannot be a blessing to you. Therefore, learn to give honor to who honor is due and credit to whom deserved.
First let me use this medium to commend our selflessly supportive, dutifully committed and spiritually uncompromising MOTHERS who have and continue to be sources of inspiration and models. We appreciate you for your invaluable contributions and timeless service to your families, communities and the world at large. We pray today and every other day the God Almighty continues to strengthen and sustain you for us. We also pray for Longlife and blessings in abundance.
GOD bless and keep our mothers for us.
We bless those who have intentionally embraced the calling to be a mother. Not all females are mothers.
This is a packaged responsibility that needs a continuous commitment and trust in the strength given by GOD. I cannot pin point what it is, that GOD has pinned down and made MOTHERS great but when you see one, she is worthy of recognition.
It is rare to see a mother maintain her strength in her calling till GOD calls them. May our mother fight the good fight of motherhood till the end. AMEN.
GOD BLESS MOTHERS…
God bless all the mothers and more love for them
My take home: “ Remember, we are not called to be ‘sexy mothers’, we are called to be ‘godly mothers’ raising godly seeds who are like arrows in the hands of a mighty warrior.”
God bless all mothers.
Hmm..Mothers, they’re really indeed super humans. Words can’t totally coin their true worth. God bless them all.
Note to Self: Remember, we are not called to be ‘sexy mothers’, we are called to be ‘godly mothers’ raising godly seeds who are like arrows in the hands of a mighty warrior.
This has single handedly made my day. Thank you for that note if caution
This is a lovely piece. It took me back Memory Lane. I remember all the sacrifices my mother made for me and still makes for me. She is a strong woman and I can’t repay her for all she has done cos it’s inestimable.
God bless all mothers who toil selflessly to raise godly children. May God crown our efforts with glorious life and homes for our children.