When I was a little girl, my parents and the adults around used to talk about the good old days when Nigeria was good. Today, even I can look back through the years and wonder if I can have back those years and periods my parents thought was a bad time for Nigeria. Well, it is easy for me to wish for that because I was a little girl and didn’t really understand what was working or not working in the economy of then.
Today I am a woman, a wife, a mother and a business owner and the pressure is beginning to get to me on every angle. As a woman, I am working hard to retain and show my relevance in the family and the society as well as defining my independence.
As a wife, I am working harder to remain the sexy girl my husband fell in love with, refusing to use pregnancy and childbirth as an excuse not to be hotter than I used to be pre-marriage. As a wife, I am working hard to be the help mate God created me to be to the man. I have to understand what being a support really means so that I do not cross the boundary and take his cap and place it on my head.
As a mother; the best role ever, I work even harder to ensure I raise role models. My mission is to build these little minds with brick blocks that will not crumble under any circumstances as they grow and work into their own destinies. Give them a strong and sound foundation upon which every aspect of their lives will be based. This way, should they happen across the Nigeria of today, they will not be moved or pressured to check out like Andrew, but rather motivated to work towards causing a change.
As a business owner; hmm, let me not even go there because my work tools, a laptop, a phone and my head are not being encouraged by constant power supply/availability of fuel. As a business owner I am constantly looking for ways to present my services to the public and attract clientele. I am always staring at new challenges after overcoming the last one and trying to look over the mountain to see what is on the other side. Behind my motivation is the hidden and silent fear I try not to entertain: ‘what if’?
I do not want to become a part of the statistics. I want to be successful as a woman, wife, mother and as a business owner. If my role in these four areas weren’t important, God wouldn’t have caused Adam to fall asleep in order to make Eve. And no, my place isn’t just to be a wife and mother and homemaker. That has never been the only place of Eve, else do you think we would have the story of the Virtuous Woman in the bible? We have been looking out for ourselves, the family, the society, in different ways right from B.C. But that is not what I am about right now.
What I am about is how Dear Nigeria is making it difficult for me to be successful in these four areas.
As a woman, the oppression still exists. In as much as ‘they’ claim women are part of everything, can you please count the numbers? How does this affect my role as a mother? I bring up my son to believe he and his sister have equal rights then he goes out there and sees a different reality in practice. Okay, that might be years away. My daughter, wouldn’t she wonder why those people who like to call a mother by the name of any of her children call me Mummy plus my son’s name, instead of plus my daughter’s name? After all, she is older.
Oh wait, rewind! You know how people who bear Ade surnames like to give Ade names to their children right? My husband and all his siblings are Ades. No one remembered to give my precious first fruit an Ade name. But comes her brother and Father in-law says ‘make sure you give him an Ade name. I am okay with that. But please, whatever training I give my children, I do not want Nigeria to contradict me.
As a wife, my beloved Nigeria makes it difficult for me to bring sexy back. What has that got to do with Nigeria, seriously? Have you checked out the prices of everything in the market? Before I buy new lingerie, I have to calculate and rethink if it wouldn’t be wiser to stock provisions or buy diapers instead with that money. A new hairstyle? Maybe I can use the money for goat meat stew for a change. Bringing sexy back isn’t all about money? Please help me with ideas.
Lord! I cannot even seduce the Mr. when I want because Nigeria interferes. When he comes home tired and worn out at ten or eleven PM and has to be up at three thirty in the morning to prepare for the Mainland-Island commute before traffic builds. And when I go to bed later than him because preparation for the next morning begins the night before and I have to be up at three thirty also to continue preparation and put in my office time. If the roads and transport system were fabulous; if I were sure that the power supply wouldn’t be interrupted, causing me to cease every ‘Up Nepa’ opportunity to do office time or iron piling clothes, then perhaps we would have more hours to spare for body communications.
As a wife, being a helpmate financially isn’t so easy either. As long as lack of electricity and fuel supply interferes with my time of delivery on the job, I am losing income. And when the clients are few or want to pay little or nothing, what does one do?
As a mother, it is tough. Security and economic situation means I have to be cautious. The rot outside means I have to take my time to protect my children from so much and make them accept my truths instead of that of peers and society. The lack of adequate scape goats in child abuse and molestation cases means I have to be mother hen. Where Nigeria is today means I have to surpass my parents and prepare these gems for real roles of leadership in future as I help them nurture their talents.
As a business owner, the lack of encouragement makes the nine to five look like a prize, but what for? To delayed and owed salaries that remains same while every other bill is rising? As a business owner who needs the attention of a particular market to remain relevant, it is difficult when this market is immersed in bitterness, poverty, distracted by irrelevant social media activities, blames everyone but itself for its own lack of progress, a prophet that sees no good ever to come out of Nigeria, calls corruption smartness; a market that has no time to read save a few. The list is endless.
As a business owner, I need this market to embrace reading and love it. But how does one concentrate on reading anything for pleasure or motivation when everything around brings depression?
I know we all have roles to play in our destinies. Likewise, we all have roles to play in what becomes of Nigeria tomorrow. Enough already with the curses and negative declarations about Nigeria; those seeds are germinating.
You see, I love Nigeria too much not to want the best for her. If I had the Nigeria of my dreams, would it make being a woman, wife, mother and business owner easier? To an extent yes, then I would be sure my children will not inherit the Nigeria I inherited.
I implore you, anyone, everybody to bless this country, sow good seeds of words, become the type of Nigeria you want to encounter. It may not happen in our lifetime, but the process would be in motion to ensure that tomorrow, one individual can be successful as a human being, spouse, parent and business owner.
You see, unless a seed falls to the ground and dies…
Nigeria has fallen. Nigeria is dead…