written by Oladimeji Olushola
It was a very cold morning, Mum had just finished preparing our usual Sunday delicacy, which we never get to taste until after the 6hours marathon church service. So once again, we silently feasted on the aroma and enjoyed the warmth it gave to the room.
There was an unusual feel about today, Daddy was still wrapped in bed with one of mum’s oldest wrapper. The thin layer curtain revealed him turning sides while we all went to and fro our morning deliverables. Mum couldn’t help it, she kept hissing at every thought of him still in bed. It was too obvious on her face
“You never ask a man to wake up, a real man understands his responsibilities”, these were always his words even it wasn’t necessary. Mum followed this rule for the first time, saving the trouble for later. So we all left him and went to church.
In no time we were in the church already, my mum would pass for an award as Best Walker, I remember some of our beautiful family moments when mum will recount her childhood experiences of the distance she had to cover from home while going the farm, her way of advising us against laziness. By the time we got to the church, I was covered in my own sweat, I was running to meet up with her pace throughout the entire journey.
Mum was very popular in church for her humility, she would kneel to greet everyone, young and old alike. Countless times she was the perfect example of a good wife. She even sits as the secretary of Intending Couples Counseling committee, everyone knew her to be good with advice.
This particular day she went through her usual routine of almost greeting everyone around, kneeling and kneeling, receiving prayers from some, engaging in a chit chat with others. Did I mention, we never go home early too, we’ll spend an average of 2 hours after service because she always has other things to settle.
She managed to have received a cash gift today from our Pastor whom we all believed was generous, so we didn’t have to walk back home. We saw Dad outside standing beside our car, performing his ritual of fixing the battery before it starts.
Mum saw him and was infuriated. “Daddy Good afternoon Sir”, we said and ran inside, I noticed my Mum walked past without saying a word.
Suddenly I started to hear Mum mumbling while she served our meal. She was angry at Dad for not making it to church, she has expected him throughout the service but once again he disappointed her. She always used her husband to complete her equation of a Godly couple.
I knew there would be a quarrel to look out for today, so I had that time as the perfect time to do the dishes. Immediately Dad stepped in, she hissed, stood up to confront him with too many questions he can’t answer at a time. He replied with “is this what you were taught in church again today? Until you start acting like the wife people think you are, I will never attend that church with you” he said calmly.
She hissed, made for her phone to report the case to her pastor like she always does, while she scampers through her bag, a letter dropped, Dad was fast enough to pick it and was struck by the first line “My own lovely Theresa”. While he was done reading, it turns out our series of vigils and church programs also ends with bodily offering to the Pastor. No wonder we always had extra time in church.