My mother of blessed memory taught me a lot of things when she was alive, beyond just ten, but I’d be sharing with you today ten out of the many beautiful things I learned from her.
1. Shopping List: My mother would send me to the market to buy just three items and ensure that I write a list for it. It’s part of me now, when I want to go shopping, I write a list first, most times in a scale of preference, and I tick off each item I purchase with the price I purchased it, that means you’d mostly find me in the market with a pen and paper😁. It helps to keep me guided and keep track of my expenditure.
2. Kitchen Etiquettes: As expected in most African homes, I learnt a lot of kitchen norms from my mother, in fact she actively taught me how to cook, with a lot of scolding though because I kept messing things up. I learnt to always remain food in the pot while dishing especially when there is a child in the house, how to share food and it would go round no matter how small and how to conserve food. Back in school, I always did the sharing, my friends said I could share a drop of water to ten people and it would go round.😎
3. Never Visit Empty Handed: My mum would not go to visit someone empty handed, she always took something along, groceries, bread, fruit and the likes, and when she didn’t go with something, she would drop a cash offering. She taught me this, whatever you give no matter how small would be appreciated, it’s not in the size, it’s in the motive and heart.
4. Giving Out : This has become a habit for me, giving out clothing items is like one of the easiest things for me to do regardless of how much I love the cloth, I can buy a dress today and gift it to someone tomorrow. Growing up I watched my mother package and give out things a lot, and they were always nice stuff including unused stuff. She would select and package the clothes and shoes we had outgrown and keep them for giving out, she always selected the best because she was against giving out something that you cannot use yourself, the items that were too bad were always burnt or thrown away.
5. Respect: My mother was a lover of respect. She never tolerated disrespect around her, try it and she’d ensure that you apologize and get things right. I can say I took after her in this regard, I consciously tend to show respect and I’m grateful to her for that.
6. Godfidence: My mother’s confidence in God always inspired me. She rarely panicked about anything, I’ve watched her react calmly and faith-filled when storms of life hit us, she seemed to have an inborn energy that kept her going. In the midst of chaos, I would wake up to see her singing and praising God, then she’d tell me ‘all things are working for our good, the lines are falling unto us in pleasant places’, and she was good in quoting scriptures. She used to be my go to person when I face certain things (a mother’s place is vital), but now that she’s physically absent, I often catch myself thinking “what would mummy do in this situation”, lol, thank God I knew her.
7. Food Conservation: In my house, food wastage is a taboo. One time when I was a teenager, my parents travelled for the weekend on a Friday, I was home with my sisters and two cousins, there was stew, soup, jollof rice and porridge yam the morning she left, on Saturday we cooked spaghetti, a full tuber of yam, made egg sauce and still made garri for dinner, we didn’t finish any. My parents returned on Sunday morning and mummy entered the kitchen, there was left over food everywhere, rice, yam, spaghetti, sauce, garri and the soup went sour because our electricity supply was unstable and no one checked the fridge. My mother didn’t shout, she was never a shouting person anyway, but she made sure we kept warming and eating those leftovers till it finished, she only cooked fresh food for herself, my dad and my baby sister who was eight years old at the time. I chop yam taya, the sauce finished and we continued with red oil. Now, I cook food with measurement and calculation, instead of the food to waste, let us eat half chop and drink water.
8. How to Listen: My mother was a listener, I could talk to her about anything, she knew about my dreams, friends, both male and female, she knew the guys that asked me out. She didn’t understand much about the online space and blogging, wasn’t even interested in facebook , but she showed support for my blog anyways because I loved it and she trusted me, she understood me when I said I didn’t want to study law in the university. I would report myself when I’ve done something terrible because she’d correct me with love, she understood me so well and read me like a book. When I was in a bad mood, she could detect if it was because I was broke, or if I had relationship issues or if I’d done something wrong. I know I would have such relationship with my children, a relationship where they would not hide things from me, I would be a listening and understanding mother.
9. Hospitality: My mother was a good host. If you were a visitor in our house, she would go the extra mile to make you feel at home, the way she treated any friend I brought home like a special guest of honor baffled me sometimes. It’s now part of me, I put my visitor’s comfort as priority.
10. Life is short: My mother lost her mother, my grandmother in February 2019. During one of our mother-daughter discussions as we prepared for grandma’s funeral in August, she made a statement or rather asked a question. She said, ‘if I sleep one day and do not wake up, will the world stop moving? No, the world will move on. what matters is the life you lived and where you’re going to after here’. I told her that she was not going to sleep and not wake up, at least not anytime soon and she laughed. Two months later, in October, she checked out from earth. It was a big shock to me as I did not see it coming, but it has taught and strengthened me in ways I never imagined.
How is your social isolation going? As for me, I’m sleeping, eating and getting things done. Have you seen Ten things to do with the COVID19 Lock-down?