If you were raised by an African mother, then you know that before beating you, she might ask you a question or two. She already knows all the answers, so you had better not lie. If you lie, you will be given a beating so heavy that you will question the circumstances surrounding your birth. And if you say the truth, well, you will still be given the very same heavy beating. Tough.
You also know that after she has asked you the first question, and you start to answer, she will cut you short, saying, “Shut your mouth! Are you trying to argue with me? Oh, oh, ohoohh…so, now you want to fight me? You’ve become so big that you want to fight, eeh?” She asks you a question, she demands an answer, but you can’t answer, because when you utter the first two words she thinks you are arguing and want to fight. And you’ll get a heavy beating. Tough.
You definitely know that she used to whip your arse while lecturing you at the same time. And when she is talking, her tone matches the action she is doing to you.
If she is punishing you, and she says, “I will finish you today” and the word ‘finish’ finds her pinching you, the sentence will come off as: “I will fiiiiiniiisshh you today”. The word ‘finish’ is stretched because the amount of force and energy she is using to pinch you is great. If you are unlucky, she will pinch your thighs. That shit hurts. And she knows it. While beating you, she might call you a goat or a cow. Tough.
You know that during such a time, when you are facing the wrath of your mother, your siblings wouldn’t dare come close because mother would ask them, “Oh, so you also want to be beaten? You want to join your sister/brother?” Tough.
And after she is done giving you the beating of your life, she will ask you what you are crying for.
“Ah, you’re crying? Why are you crying? Have I beaten you? Eeh? Have I touched you? Shut up and eat your supper.”
Then she will encourage you to mess up again.
“Eeh, now you can go and break my Thermos again! Go! Take the glasses and break them too! Goat.”
And in case your sibling is the one who broke the Thermos, and she finds out, the apology you’ll get will be her giving your sibling a good beating while saying, loud enough for you to hear, “You made me beeeeat your brother/sister for your mistaaaake, eeh…”
And the things she says?
“Come by the shop, Wanja, I want to send you,” she says.
“Okay, mum, I will pass by.”
“Eeh,” she says with a sneer. “You will PASS BY but you cannot PASS EXAMS.”
Precious people, our mothers
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