Father is the mirror

We have a handful of soulful songs that celebrate mothers, I have always wondered why we don’t have the same for our fathers, it would have come handy on a day like this.

Or Perhaps it was me who didn’t know many, would love to learn.

…Baba ni dingi (Father is the mirror), Mirror? I suppose it’s a metaphor for something deep.

By the time I was a teenager, my father didn’t talk much about anything, he was still very active in the village affairs, he’d wake up every morning at 5am to ring the church bell for morning prayers,  alerting people they only have half hour left before service commenced.

Oh this hymn – “Opin ti mo n lepa ni Olorun, kii se bikun nikan, a f’Olorun…” (The end that I am after is God, not only blessings but God). How are people not bored listening to the same song every morning?

I felt like I didn’t know my father at all. He was more interested in writing his diary than sharing his thoughts with anyone.

Years passed.

One day at work minding my business, I looked up to see Moomi. I was lost for words “What are you doing here?” “Is everything okay?” I asked my mother.

She arrived in town that morning and was there to say my father was at the local clinic, since I was the only one around so she thought she’d better stop by to let me know.

I officially ran out of luck – the joy of being the one around.

“Moomi, I can’t leave work now, I’ll find my boss and be home in the evening” I told my mother.

My mother looked at me, not very convinced. She thought I’d chickened out of my responsibility to step up and give back to the father who chose to send me to school rather than build a house or had endless family parties.

He was severely dehydrated so was put was on an intravenous drip. He had malaria, that was not treated properly, also his bulging hernia is growing by the day – that was due for removal 6 years prior.

“Okay, Ode, tell me something, is daddy going to survive this time?” I asked the nurse.

The nurse was positive my father would live but we had A, B and C to be dealt with in the first instance.

Getting clearer, so it is hopelessness that’s killing my old man this instance?

Looking at my father where he laid, the little story I knew of him flashed before my eye. His own father and older brother both died around the same age in their early 60s after a brief illness  of something that could have been easily treated.

Rural farmers sending children to school often rely on their help in old age. Some people are lucky, their ‘investment’ would pay off, others not so much.

My father was given a second chance in life. Almost 80 years old now. He is full of life, anytime is a good time to ask him any questions and now my father is not as boring anymore. I am glad to have daddy of my childhood back.

To him and fathers around the world – I wish you all a very good one.