>Memories of Childhood and Teenage Years Lost: Sins of the Parents


Vodka by my side, resentment in my mind…

In the last few years, my old man has been going on about decay in the standards which he and my mum used to have in the house. Whenever my sister or I do something that he disapproves of, his favorite statement is: “can you do that if your mom was around??” among other statements. Years back, he would complain that there was no relationship between the two of us, and he’d say to me: “if someone from the streets was to ask you, what sort of relationship you have with me, what would you say??”

See, those kinds of questions always made me think… My father was at one point, a big bank MD and when I was a kid. He used to leave the house at 6AM, and come home sometime around 10PM. At the weekends, he’d be off for some church meeting or the other. The only times I really ever saw him, was either when my mom would force him to spend time with me, or when he’d swoop down to instill corporal punishment for some crazy acts of folly which I’d carried out…. And by golly, did he know how to beat… At some point, I was always afraid to just be around him. I never wanted to be in the same room with him. I always went to my mom for whatever it was that I wanted…SMH…if I ever wanted something that I had to get from him, I’d write a note and place it in the bathroom where he’d see it in the morning before he had a bath or something. This fear & feeling transferred into my latter years…I still feel uncomfortable when I’m around him. The fact that I hate asking him for things has propelled me into trying my best to find my own way. To get things for myself….

Most sons want to make their fathers proud of them. I want to succeed for a few reasons. 1 of them being that I want to be able to take care of my mother in her old age, 2nd being that I want to be able to look my father in the face & know that despite his disbelief & lack of moral support for anything that I’ve put my hand to, & his constant putting me down, I’d have been able to make something outta my life…

Someone reading this blog may just think to themselves that I’m being unreasonable & that he can’t be this bad…really??? Lemme give you an example. In my 2nd semester of my 2nd year in Redeemers Uni, I hit 7 A’s & 1 B…. A GP of 4.91… everyone was so happy for me, my sisters were screaming, blab la blah… what did my father say?? “Why are you getting B’s???”

That’s what he said…I shall say no more.

The point of this blog isn’t to paint my old man out to be a wicked person. In his defense he has a lot of qualities which I actually admire. The point of this blog is this; he constantly complains about a lack in standard, and the fact that the both of us do not actually have a good father-son relationship going on. My question [which I’m yet to ask him] is always, “who was supposed to establish the relationship??? Me or you???”

At the time of my childhood when he should have established the relationship which would have become the foundation for a strong one now, he was either too busy with work, or too busy with church. And I’m making sure that I emphasize the point about him always being in church, because there’s a common statement that I’ve heard all my life; “Na pastor pikin dey spoil pass”. Now, I’ve come to understand the reason why this is so. This is so because, fathers & mothers who are so deeply involved in church activities and in “serving God”, sometimes sacrifice things that are quite important, such as raising their children properly. I don’t know whether they imagine that the “anointing” that supposedly flows over their heads will run down their beards and teach their children how to behave.

I failed my way through secondary school, because I never studied. & in as much as I could say that it was obviously my fault, I’ve come to realize that part of that blame lies solely at the feet of my parents. They both simply assumed that, because nobody needed to prod & push them to study, that I would be the same way. That I’d easily overcome the distractions around me, and put my head in my books… I had to punish and beat myself into cultivating the habit of working in uni.

My point for telling you all this, is that I hope that when we have our turns at being parents, we don’t screw it up. I hope we don’t neglect our children to pursue something else which we consider more interesting, & then wake up one day & realize that they’re all grown up and want nothing to do with us. I hope we never have to put ourselves through such nonsense…

I’m sick off this…I think I’ll go back to this Vodka…

Panda out…

About The Capoeira Panda

Panda makes his home in the world of words and metaphors. In the hopes to be more than just a confused blogger, he currently works as the editor for an ecommerce company that was good enough to hire him, and lives with his flat mates & two imaginary dogs who get along just fine. He enjoys reading good books, writing, relaxing with his friends, & poking fun at his mother over the phone. When he's not doing any of these, he sometimes sits back and wonders why anyone expects to learn anything useful about him by reading this bio. View all posts by The Capoeira Panda

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