_My experience in becoming the student of my half and the delectable of my Parents_
In a moment of uncontrolled anger, one tends to behave recklessly (I did), but give yourself some time to cool off, the next minute you’re full of regrets. I was.
When I angrily left the house, I purposelessly strolled down our street. Greeting and replying greetings, returning waves from age mates. I became compos mentis when I’d walked a far distance.
I was tired and in dire need of water. There was a shop nearby and I thanked God I found some loose change in the pocket of my jeans. As I greedily gulped my water down, I resolved it was high time I turned back as it was approaching dusk rather than keep trekking to God knows where.
Immediately I turned homewards, Lo, and behold! The cream-colored Camry that I’d recognize even among several others. MUM!
I turned and took to my heels. I now find it funny as I write this. What was I thinking then? Could I have outrun a car? Who did I think I was…Usain bolt?
Mum stepped on it and soon her car was beside me. She yanked the door open and pursued me. By then, I did not have the energy to run but I managed to use all residual strength to keep running.
“Chinaza! Chinaza!” Mum called as she followed in pursuit. I did not stop but it was not long before she caught my left hand. I tried to wriggle free but she held on tight. I was panting heavily.
“Chinaza” she called again. I refused to look at her. I knew she was angry.No need, I could guess her countenance.
“Naza nwam” It had been a long she called me that way. I found myself looking at her this time.
Her countenance wasn’t what I’d expected. Instead of the ‘Wait-till-we-get-home’ look, she was looking as though she was on the verge of tears.
I scanned the street. People were patiently waiting for the drama to unfold but some already made their best guess.
“Madam wetin she thief?” A bike man stopped to ask.
Mum smiled and waved him off “Nothing o.No b thief she be”
Then she turned to me “Let’s go home”
Just so you know, she wasn’t seeking my permission. (she still held my hand after all). She dragged me along.
All eyes were on us but my greatest relief was that this wasn’t happening in our street.
Back in the car, mum sat motionless just gazing at me. I couldn’t look her in the face.
“I’m very sorry,” I said fiddling with my blouse. Mum was speechless
“I shouldn’t have said all that” I continued “I don’t know why I….I….”
“it’s okay”mum cut in. I looked at her in astonishment.
“I understand” she assured and from the look in her eyes, I knew she meant it.
“Nevertheless…”I began “I shouldn’t have. I’m sorry”
“I know you are”
Surprised again “You do?”
She nodded. I felt the tears welling up again.
“You also know that I..” the tears found their way down my cheeks “…I didn’t mean to disrespect you and dad? I..”
Mum cut in again “Naza, I told you I understand.Come” she embraced me. I could hear her sniffing!
“You’ve never given us headaches. you’ve been good” she said with a broken voice “It must have been hard for you that you had to voice it out like that”
“I’m sorry” I pleaded
Mum patted my back severally
“It’s okay, It’s okay,” she said
When I was calm, she broke the embrace and dried my tears.
“We have to go home now. Your dad and sister will be worried” she said turning the key and kicking the engine back to life. I grabbed her arm
“Mum,” I said in fear “what’s dad preparing for me?”
She laughed at that.
“The question should be..’ what are you preparing for your dad?’ Remember you never got to finish?” She laughed again.
“Oh, mum!” I poked her “you said you knew I didn’t intend to”
“I know,” she said poking me back “I’m just kidding”
She reversed and tried to enliven the mood with her flat jokes to which she alone laughs at. I could have joined in the laughter (because she was the only one finding her jokes funny) but even at that, I couldn’t.
Flat jokes or not, I wasn’t finding any part of the evening fun.