Let me begin with a disclaimer-
I HAVE NO KIDS. REAL OR IMAGINED
Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, we may now proceed.
My dad is the beginning of this little problem. He has been complaining that I never call to check up on him. He feels I only call my mother. Local man has no idea that I don’t call my mum either. She calls me.
But then, what you don’t know can hurt you and considering the fact that my mum calls all the time, Pops is of the opinion that we are always talking.
I’ve said it here before that my dad is a typical Igbo father. He does not say I love you. The closest he comes to that is You have made us proud. Note the use of us and not me. Anything that is going to make it personal, my dad doesn’t use.
Growing up, we constantly joked about how my dad literally sucked at keeping in touch. We all knew how he had few friends and those were his friends because they insisted on keeping in touch and being his friends. With time, he would warm up to you but he wasn’t calling nobody to do regular check ups and stuff.
It was the same with us. I left home at age 13. It’s been about 11 years and local man and I do not call to check up on each other. He wasn’t doing it when I was way younger and he doesn’t do it now. I, on the other hand, only called when I needed something, it was his birthday or Fathers’ Day.
We’ve done this for more than 10 years and suddenly, Pops is complaining about the fact that I don’t keep in touch. Like seriously man?
I’m about to be done with NYSC in Bauchi and my mum called to say hi. She gave the phone to my dad and I told him what was up, like I’ll be home in a few weeks ooh. He asked me, which home? I was not shocked my people, I was shook.
He was like, I thought you are now a Bauchi girl. Do you even remember my name? And he went on to introduce himself,full name and all.
A part of me felt bad but in my head I was thinking, we’ve been rolling like this all my life. How did you expect me to up and just change like that. If I call you, what am I even going to say?
A lot of my friends complain about how I can be so great when I’m close but I can literally forget you the moment I leave. I don’t do calls. I’d rather text you and that, once in a really long while. I rarely miss people because I’ve taught myself to adapt to their absence real fast. When I see you, we roll. When I don’t, life moves on my G.
So dear parents out there, especially those of you that have young children, they copy you. They copy you. They copy you!!! It might not look like it but they do.
I have a friend who is so expressive. Whenever we speak on the phone, she always hangs up with I love you. First time she said it, I almost threw my phone away. I had to reply through clenched teeth. I still reply through clenched teeth because she hasn’t stopped doing it. I have been to their house for holidays twice. It’s what they do at home.
I have another friend that comes from a very expressive family. Sometimes she does videos with her dad. Looking from the outside at first, you will think her dad is a really grumpy man but then you go on and you have to rethink. What grumpy man will let his kids rub his head, feature in their silly videos and when they say, daddy smile joor, you know I love you, he replies, I love you too? Think about it.
You want your kids to be expressive, be expressive. You want them to regularly call and check up on you, do the same to them. I can’t even say I love you. Not to my parents or my siblings. I struggled with sweat and blood before I could say it to my first boyfriend and after him, I haven’t done it again. Oh, I could throw it around with my casual friends but when it’s really serious, I’m not saying that shit. And you will agree with me that that is pathetic.
We pick up things from our parents subconsciously and what you do not want to see in your child, you really shouldn’t do.
I’ve learnt though. My kids are going to complain that their mummy is the world’s most embarrassing and mushy mom ever. I’ll be throwing out the I love you like it’s what they need to survive. Because, they do need it. It will be hard because it’s not me but I will learn. So that one day, I won’t call my son and introduce myself.
Thanks for coming to my BlogTalk on Parenting. I hope my tips help!