I’m not a pet kind of guy. Especially cats. But I had one when I was a kid. It walked into our house one day and I adopted it. The stray cat was my cat.I loved that cat, but one day it ran away, and it broke my heart. I was damaged by that cat, so they got me a dog to forget.

I got this small white pup that stole a lot of shoes. Of course things were never the same as they were with the cat, but I tried. And when I proved incapable of taking care of a dog, cleaning out its shit and all, they shipped it off to a relative’s place without my consent. I was small I know but I’m the first born, I should be notified on such decisions right?

Someone in that house didn’t want me to have a happy childhood, they wanted to finish me. I cried that day, and that night. I cried again the next day when I looked outside and didn’t see a dog. I cried. When the pain had finally blown over I needed some answers and I was going to form a tribunal. Someone was going to pay.

My investigation led me to their bedroom, where one of them, the guilty one naturally, explained rather harshly why they did what they did. I was small but I wasn’t stupid, I didn’t dare make any more fuss about it, crossing paths with my mother had consequences.

That’s her name, Grace.

She knocks twice on my door to wake me up in the morning. The first knock is when I hear her and groan a little so she can go away and let me sleep a few more minutes. The second knock is always the winner. She comes back, mad like a bull branded with hot iron, and shouts my name, she hits that door so loud, sometimes I think she stands a little distance away and hurls a small stone at the door. I’m to drive her to the office.The dog days, that’s what this is. Hehe

She will ride shotgun with her head half covered from the morning cold with a kikoi. I ask her to get some sleep before we get there but she won’t. She’ll keep an eye out. She worries. She’s a mother. Grace isn’t too crazy about her job though, so when she asks me to slow down it’s because she doesn’t want to get there too early. The drive will be silent mostly, but once in a while she will point out how crazy other drivers are, and remind me I’m the only sane person there. Which is true really, the devil lives in drivers at 6a.m.

In the evening she brings me one or two packets of groundnuts, which I eat while writing or have with tea the next morning, alongside a banana. I like my tea with a banana. And mom makes sure there’s always a banana. She provides. She’s a mother.

Here’s a story.

This one time mom hadn’t yet come home in the evening; I’m seated on the couch watching TV when it hits me. It hits me that I miss her. Terribly. I wanted to see her, I wanted to hear her complain about something that happened to her that day, I wanted her to call me and ask if supper was prepared, I wanted her to get home, stop by the TV and block my view as she connects her phone to the charger. I wanted her to bring me a packet of groundnuts. I wanted my mom.

I didn’t tell her I missed her when she came home. Then that night I had a nightmare. I was standing in a room full of people I knew; my sister was standing in front of me with her head lowered. It was raining outside, I moved to a window and looked outside, and I remember this crushing feeling coming over me.

Then I started crying, I was crying for mom. I woke up with tears in my eyes that night. I don’t even want to know what was going on in that dream, but I appreciate that woman now more than I did before. The following morning when I was dropping her at work, after she stepped off the car and walked away I switched off the engine and sat there in silence, and thought about her. I don’t know why but I ached for her.

Mom has this infectious laugh that hangs in the air like Limuru mist, I love that laugh. I love how, when she’s really getting a bang off something, she’d laugh so hard till she tears up, then wipe those tears with the back of her hand. The only person that makes her laugh like that is BM-my old man.

Legend says BM had a smooth tongue, the reason Grace agreed to elope with him. It hasn’t been easy, what with raising a son that has great disregard for bedroom hygiene and a daughter who lives with earphones plugged in her ears. But she finds meaning in her family, she’s happy. She’s a mother.

And then when she was on the precipice of 40 a hernia crept into her system, and she couldn’t eat properly. She lost some weight, been in and out of hospital a couple of times but she still stands, more beautiful than ever. She’s strong, she’s a mother.

If you do a little counting, you’ll find this to be my 40th post. And it’s for mom.

I’m up to a little over 900 words on this, but there’s still something missing; I can’t quite put my finger on it. I can’t exactly describe this woman enough; I can’t begin to explain to you what I feel for her, not in a way that would be worth it anyway. But I love her, and right after I finish this I’m going to tell her. She’s my mother.

Friends, Mother’s day is coming up this week. Treat her out, make her feel special. And if you can’t you can always send that text, or call her, tell her you missed her when she gets home from work. Tell her you love her. She’ll warm your life with a smile. I promise.


14 thoughts on “Grace

  1. Michael, my pet, hah haaaah! How nice, umeniwezaaa kweli. cant stop laughing but keep on writing, am so proud of you. Thank you for dedication. I really appreciate you and your sister so so much. Will
    always love you all till end of time. God bless your writings forever!

    Liked by 2 people

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