Tuesday 21 November 2017

To Iya at 75

Dear Iya,
I write to wish you a happy 75th birthday. I have said before, you are a survivor and you are tenacious.
I thank God that through a life experience that is incomparable, you stand and shine, a beacon of example to innumerable, including us your children.
I appreciate in all honesty that we have not shared common views on many things, we are individuals, you are my mother, I am your son, we have done some things with mistakes along the way.
I am not a devil and you are not a saint, we are both human beings and our differences go a long way because I am burdened with vivid memories that never wane.
That is how we can understand each other, not through digging up those memories, but in knowing no one gets excused just because of status, the equity we seek and the moral high ground we race to climb at slightest available opportunity neither comes with clean hands nor priestly robes.
It is like the touching of the nose, in knowing and saying nowt. You know I write and I know this would eventually get you because that is the way the world is today. The voice that goes out will be heard.
I have not been the best son, it comes with the territory, there are things I probably would never want revealing about my childhood, but I am the product of motherhood, mothering and parenthood that has given me an amazingly blessed life, that honour, no one can take from either you or my father.
We must get beyond estrangement to reconciliation, from the silence to a celebration, of the smiles and laughter I remember, of the songs happily sung and taught, of the pride a son has in his mother and that which a mother has in a son. Like rivers once driven apart by forces they could not control to a confluence of waters brought together by a greater calling beyond ourselves. 23 months! Anyone else would ask why?
You will not get tradition out of me, but knowing, feeling, humbling, respect and reverence are why you will always be Iya to me, we are blessed the greater with you fully engaged in our lives despite everything, I love you, mum. 
Happy birthday and many happy returns of the day.
Akin (Oludamilola)

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