ETEMA

Hi guys! How have you all been? Wondering where I’ve been? Well, I did announce that I was going on a sabbatical of some sort, though I might have extended it a little. Pardon me. Before we dive in, we all know that Nigeria (my beloved country) has been under the negative spotlight lately, ( thanks to the terrorist sect that is Boko Haram) with the two Nyanya bombings, the senseless abduction of the over 200 chibok girls and the lackadaisical attitude of our government to these pressing matters. Thank Goodness for the intervention of the International community, I’m sincerely hopeful that the girls would be brought back home soon and that the scourge that is Boko Haram (plus their cohorts) be forever purged from Nigeria. I am not here to blog about the chibok girls today.  I just want to remind you to do whatever you can, whatever is in your power, to help in bringing them back. Thank you and God bless. Well, today, I’d be resuming with a guest post, written by a dear friend of mine, tush curry bobo of life, Edward Adugba. He has a very interesting mind, ever the thinker. Enjoy.
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He threw himself at me and wept with a loud voice, “Aboje, you won’t understand.” I had to comfort a brother I had always looked up to. For the first time, I was speechless for I had never seen him cry before. He was the epitome of great strength and courage.  I knew Eche had to be hurting seriously, more than words could describe. Sam was leaning against the back of a pickup truck, his eyes deeply erythematous and filled with tears.  “Aboje, I’ll miss mama. Kai! Mama tried for all of us.” Peter was sitting on the ground, completely oblivious of the full weight of the African sun, too broken to speak. I was speechless, unable to fully comprehend what Mama meant to them.

I had always been far from home, away among strange men, pursuing a dream. Home was becoming a faint memory to me.I’d missed the sounds of the crickets’ chorus reaching a crescendo at dusk, just before the start of the rains; the experience of farm work; the company of aunts and uncles, full of kindness; the taste of the fish studded soups;  and yes,  the compassionate voice of Mama. I didn’t stand aloof.  I was just distant.  I cried at mama’s burial. Not just because of her loss, but because I felt disjointed.  I couldn’t connect emotionally with them.  I felt like fish pulled out of water.  Like a bird with clipped wings, denied of the right to the skies. Disjointed.

I couldn’t possibly understand the grief of Eche, Peter and Sam. Just like I can’t understand the grief of a cast away who loses an only friend, the only voice of reason lost forever. It seemed a bright light of hope suddenly went dim to a people unprepared. Eche had the right to be angrier than most of us. He seemed the most saddened and broken and I couldn’t possibly understand why.

How does a frail old illiterate woman do so much when she has so little? How do “insignificant” people do great things in the lives of “significant” people?  What brings giants to their knees?

Money, it seems is the answer to many things.  It gathers kings to a table. It leads us to a stage upon which a bright spot light is shined on us. It gathers strange people to us. However, I have found that love, long suffering, patience, wisdom and kindness often heals the injury that results from the constant contention that characterises our world. These were the things mama had. These might have been why Eche cried.

Rejection is a curse. To be insignificant, cast away, left behind, every man dreads these. Mama loved what was insignificant.  She valued what was cast away. She valued those things that were unknown. These she did even though she attended no school.

It’s time to slow down and learn from the “insignificant rats”, from that dirty old woman who lives past the street or the lunatic who stares blankly at a world that doesn’t accept him. Through them, God can whisper something to us about what it really means to live.
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We live in a very fast paced world. Indeed, sometimes we have to consciously slow it down and really pay attention, appreciate the small things, reach out to the people around us. Enjoy your week!

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