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Friday, 23 October 2015

Who sat and watched my infant head:My Mother




As I sat on my bed on the 23/10/2015 at 03: 05, here in Lincoln United Kingdom, I was thinking of writing something down on my notebook as usual. Then, the classic poem I used to recite in my primary school days came to my mind. The poem by Ann Taylor “My Mother”, I don’t really like to discuss or say too much about my mother because I don’t even know her. This year will mark 34 years after my Mom has passed away.

Three decade ago, I would sit at the front of our rented house in Africa, Nigeria all by myself late in the night staring at the moon looking for a sign, just to see my mother face not admiring the vibrant colour in the sky, but simply hand writing emotional notes – lengthy and tear-Jerking – to God.
As a child in primary school, it felt like therapy as I poetically poured my heart into my tiny piece of book. I lost my mother at 1 year and eight month old. Being without her has been difficult—I think I miss the idea of mother nurture and long to have known my own.

My late mother Fefe (Not her real name) Saliu was a business woman from Ebira land in Kogi state, Nigeria. My mother weave clothes, make clothes, sell clothe and sell anything, she even worked as a project manager on some of her friends construction sites in Kogi state at a time when women rarely walked the job sites. Ironically, I listened to my sister story about my mother and pursued Business Management at Hull University and later did some courses in Project Management. But I always wondered: If my Mother had lived longer, if we could have had the much-needed conversation about my career, and if Mom could have shared about her past business knowledge then perhaps I, too, could have become a great entrepreneur by now.

I don’t have a picture of my mother to keep as a token because after her death storm washed away all our property which includes various family pictures and I have tried to see if any member of my mother’s family have her picture but nobody has it. I don’t know why I am writing this particular story, maybe there is someone out there that need to read my story to gather strength for tomorrow. Or maybe I am just writing on behalf of everyone who has lost their mother.

My life has never been the same since I realise that my Auntie is not my biological Mother at age 4. No Mother to cheer me on during my graduations and no Mother to come home to. So, to all those women (and men) who can no longer celebrate their achievement with their Mom, I feel your pain, your tears and major loss... I know I am not the woman I would have been...resilient? Godly? Independent? More scared of loss? Less trusting? Loving? I know this is how it is and I feel jealous of my nieces, nephews and friends for all that they have that I missed. Glad I am not alone in thinking this...big hugs to all of you! One day we will see them again!

I know there are no words to express the deep, profound grief that one experiences with the loss of a mother. It’s unbearable. Even though I don’t know my mother I can tell you there are moments of despair and sleepless nights (Maybe one of them is today). There are times when I will ask God to just take me home because I miss my Mom …… You know sometimes I get jealous when I see my friends talking about their mother and feel pain when my friends mother mistreated me.

From my own experience, I have come to realize that when someone loses her mother at tender age, their childhood could be shattered if their father was not strong enough to be there for them. It doesn’t matter if that person is an adult or a child; they are still left with this empty place once filled by the love of their mother. A mother’s love is treasurable, for they love with everything they got. Mother unconditional love says I love you no matter what. Unfortunately, I don’t have any memory of my mother’s love toward me except the story my family told.

For those who feel low like me sometimes, please keep this scripture in mind. John 14:1-4 says, “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.”

I thought of my mother with love today because she did not give up on me while I was still in her womb. My mother went against all doctors’ report and she did die in the end. I thought about my mother every day, I think of her in silence, I often use her name to do so many things because that all I have, her name is my memento with which I 'll never part. I know God is looking after my mother; she is not dead, just sleeping. Even though I have never seen, feel or met my mother I have her in my heart.

Since I was a little girl, my views and images of death have been greatly influenced by the death of both parent, my brother and my uncle and his son. All these people were in my life and they have been a gateway to that side of life. I can remember all of these images and so much more, but perhaps my latest change occurred when I was thirty four and visiting Kent, UK for the first time. As I was sitting on the bed in my niece's room, I received a text message about my beloved friend passing on to glory. As I heard about this news I begin to remember and picture in my head all the good things we have done together, how she helped me not to backslide.The images that I have about my friend are something that I will never forget. My friend is a beautiful woman, she love God and serve people.

I pray and hope that next year Mother's Day can be exceptionally special for me and my family member. As I jotted in my notebook about my Mom, I happen to be listening to Free-flow Worship With God's Wisdom— Pastor Joseph Prince-EL007 [23] God Is Gentleness-Goodness-Faith. I am not sad at all, simply multitasking, I am happy because I believe God has a perfect plans and purposes for me.

I thank all the women who have believed in me... and for giving me the strength to be joyful in my world of business, innovative each day - just like Mom!

At my most faithful—when God finally calls me to glory—I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all of creation can separate us from the love of God (Romans 8:38-39).

Nor will tuberculosis and cancer‘s disease.
See you in the sweet by and by, Iya Ejire, my lovely mother.

My Mother Poem
Who fed me from her gentle breast,
And hushed me in her arms to rest,
And on my cheek sweet kisses prest?
My Mother.
When sleep forsook my open eye,
Who was it sung sweet hushaby,
And rocked me that I should not cry?
My Mother.
Who sat and watched my infant head,
When sleeping on my cradle bed,
And tears of sweet affection shed?
My Mother.
When pain and sickness made me cry,
Who gazed upon my heavy eye,
And wept for fear that I should die?
My Mother

I love you mummy, sleep well in Christ Jesus.

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