SUNDAY LUNCH (Week 5)

Emotion clenched and unclenched her shaking hands before she pulled back the door latch. She could barely comport herself “We have always been a God fearing and moral family” she muttered just before she swung the door open to reveal her lifelong friend and her daughters. 

“See her!” exclaimed Caution “Ada obodo oyibo!”She pushed the half open door widely open to take Emotion in a bear hug planting a peck on her cheeks.

“Aunty!” chorused Careful and Fearful hot on their mother’s tail into the sitting room.

“Hi Hi” waved Emotion as she dragged her friend hurriedly towards the bedroom,

“You can find your sisters in the kitchen” she called out to the puzzled girls as she dragged Caution up the stairs.  

“What is the matter?” asked Caution as she noticed her friends trembling features. “Did something happen?”

“Sister!” began Emotion, as she normally referred to the older and more experienced friend, “I don’t know what to do, that which I feared has come upon me”

“What is it?” exclaimed Caution grabbing Emotion’s arms, widening her eyes in panic like a Tom and Jerry cartoon.

“Sensitive wants a boyfriend” Emotion whispered, wringing her hands and staring at her friend like a child who lost her lunch money.

“She’s pregnant?” concern written all over Caution now.

“NO!” screamed Emotion “Tufiakwa!” she spat circling her hand over her head in the traditional way to dispel a curse

“I don’t understand then” Caution was getting inpatient.  “What is the matter?”

“Sister, she said she wants to have a boyfriend, I don’t know what to do, it’s all Willy’s fault, he went and encouraged Determination to get this friend and since then everything has gone from bad to worse, now my little Sensitive is getting interested in boys and…

Caution’s piercing laughter startled her, drawing her out of her monologue.  She was laughing so hard she lost her footing, and unsuccessfully trying to break her fall with the dressing table ended on a heap on the floor, still laughing hysterically.  

“Sister I am serious” pouted Emotion.

In between coughs and chokes, Caution tried to apologise, wiping her tears with the edge of the Arabian cotton duvet that covered the foot of Emotions bed.

Getting a hold of herself, Caution sat on the bed and tapped the mattress beside her, “Come sit” she motioned to the not yet appeased Emotion.

“With the fear of offending you, I think you are a bit backward for someone with your exposure and qualifications. Some of the things you fly off the hook about amazes me. You are freaking out because Sensitive asked your permission to date? What would you do if you were that other lady, the fair one that has a charming smile, I forget her name…”

“you mean Relationship?” Emotion asked reluctantly, wondering where Caution was going with this

“Thank you, that’s the one, Relationship. Have you heard of her daughter Promiscuous? “

“God forbid!”  Emotion screamed jumping off the bed.

“Thank you, God forbid, but she is also a person, and remember what Pastor said about judging others” Caution now wore a serious look, that look that Emotion had come to depend on for advice and guidance.

“I’m not praying that your child be like Promiscuous, but I was drawing your attention to it, so you would appreciate how little the trouble you claim to have is.”

“But sister right is right and wrong is wrong! It does not matter who is doing it or not” Emotion replied.

She didn’t like the way this discussion was going at all. She thought by now, they would have martialled out their five point agenda to exorcize her daughter, rather she is hearing what sounded like support for the child’s foolishness.

“We were taught that a lady should not want these things, we were told that when a lady wants things like boyfriend and sex, she is immoral and would go to hell, we were ….

Caution cut her tirade by raising her hand like a traffic police

“sweetheart some lessons I have learned raising two girls alone without any human help is that one; I have lost the battle before it even began, I’m only playing survival but I just don’t let them know it. If you think you know your children, you have made the first cardinal mistake. Two is that the people that taught us, really didn’t know squat, so I don’t pay unquestionable allegiance to their principles. Three, as time is changing, what is considered normal is also changing and I realised that these children know this new world better than I do, so I subtly put myself in the place of student while they become the teachers when it comes to what’s in vogue.  Four I had to painfully change my focus from talking while they listen to letting them talk while I listen, it will amaze you what you’ll hear when you actually listen to them. They know what they want and they will get it too, you just have the chance to be a part of it or not and my darling, you really want to make yourself a part of it if you don’t want to have a Promiscuous in your hands.”

Emotion waved her hands over her head. Caution smiled at her worried friend, she could see from the furrowing of her brows that although what she was saying made sense to her, it was not an easy pill to swallow. When she herself had this talk with Pastor Wisdom, he had called it ‘21st century parenting 101’. She had struggled too, but when she saw she was losing her kids, she had to let go, she prayed her friend would make the right choice.

“Listen Emotion” she continued “times are changing, principles remain the same. If you would succeed at this, you must allow them bring in the times, while you supply the principles, it must be a partnership where they know they are part of the decision making too. “  

“Wow sister!” Emotion let the breath out slowly, “I don’t know what to say, it’s like I have not even been raising my kids till now, how did we even get this far? I’m now so lost. How did we become the parents we hated, how did we become the obsolete parents that didn’t understand?”

They both had a good laugh

“Seriously sister” Emotion continued “you know you have to teach me what to do, the entire how, when, were and who….”

“I sure will, but I suspect you will be learning more from Sensitive and Stoic, and talking of them, if we have any plans of lunch, let’s go see what they are up to”

They got up and Emotion hugged Caution with all her strength and whispered a “thank you”.
“Speaking of, I think your problem is Stoic not Sensitive. I rather have a normal teen full of hormones than one full of opinions!”

“I have been wondering at that, do you think I should be worried.” Emotion asked 

“Not at the moment my dear, not at the moment, she might outgrow it”

The aroma of goat meat pepper soup, chicken stew and the heated argument the girls were having diffused towards Emotion and Caution as they approached the kitchen, it was amazing the kind of bond the four girls had, even with voices raised, you could not hear any malice in it. Caution pushed open the door, and hand in hand she and Emotion walked into the kitchen, the argument stopped like someone just switched off the power supply.

Caution sensed Emotion fuming by her side and spoke up before Emotion did and ruined lunch “No, I don’t agree you should kiss a guy when you are not interested in him, Yes I agree that you can be close without anything sexual, Yes I agree it can be frustrating not knowing what he is thinking and Hell no, I don’t care how hot he is, if the only way to keep him is by sleeping with him, I rather let him go, I already lost him and who is Charisma, he sounds interesting.”

Caution finished and bit her lips to stop herself from laughing at the five mortified faces staring at her. The most intense was that of Emotion’s by her side. Caution squeezed her hand again hoping she understood what she was doing.

 “How long have you guys been standing out there?” Careful asked after ten seconds of silence.

“Long enough to hear all the dirty little secrets” Caution replied, relishing the gasps that her confession drew out of the girls.

“So who wants to go first?”

Taking a long deep breath, Emotion cut in “can we go to the table; this discussion would sound better over lunch”.

Caution smiled, and chanted “hear hear!” her friend had caught on after all.


Wisdom is being able to apply eternal principles to changing times
Kanayo Aniegboka (kani)

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Kanayo Aniegboka

Kani is a Nigerian born and based minister, public speaker, entrepreneur and life coach. His keen and unique perspective to life issues makes him a refreshing voice to listen to. He currently serves as the Executive Coordinator of House on the Rock - Word House and sits on the board of a number of companies.

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