labimide's Blog

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August 2015




My Dad, My Mom, My Parents


“I am a womanist and will fight for my rights even to my death.”

That was the statement of a woman, who I dub a ‘timid feminist.’ Although she denied being a feminist, stating that the word ‘feminist’ bears a negative connotation.

A proud feminist will say, ‘Yes! I am a feminist, if that’s who I have to become to protect my rights.’ And don’t be surprised to hear that one even faulted the title of this article, saying, ‘why should you put your dad first?’ And I was like, ‘hmm, hmm, hmm, speechless.’

Yes, speechless, not because of my quiet personality. ‘What! Does it really matter? It’s just a title, after all.’

Okay, this is not about gender equality or feminism. But before I lay to rest the issue, I’m ever puzzled, can we ever achieve gender equality on all life issues? In fact, what does gender equality means? I bet the Janets and Johnsons on our streets will disagree on the issues, always. Is role-taking in any way a form of gender inequality? Should there be role-taking at all? My list of queries is unending…

Now, I err more, my digression is unforgivable. I love women and will always support them in their many fights for their rights. Hmm, I might just score one… What did I say that for? Puleez, don’t get me wrong. Okay, I love my mum so dearly, in fact, ‘Iya ni wura nitooto.’ Mother is gold, pure gold for that matter, and don’t ask me how many caract (doesn’t even know the spelling, and doesn’t care.) I will treasure my mom for as long as I Iive. I mean, even when she crosses the Styx, her memories will forever be treasured.

But ain’t we unfair to dads? ‘Baba ni digi.’ Father is mirror. Anyway that’s from my simple unpretentious interpretation, I could have missed out some nuances though. Whatever, of what use is language, if the depth of its meaning is in the nuances. As useful as light will be, were its appreciation only in rainbow formation. So, father is mirror, so unfair, might I say? The maxim itself is a study in ambiguity: It might be translated: Father is a reflection of me, or father points out who I am.

So, if father is a reflection of me, father is nasty because I’m nasty? Father can as well be a drunkard because I am, shey? But I particularly like the second meaning, father points out who I am. I love this! Someone once said, ‘I am beautiful because my father says I am.’ The importance of father in a child’s life is enormous. And I’ll say, Father must be ‘Daddy,’ when he is around. To me, an absent father is better than a present but irresponsible one. At least, one can make up a superhero image for the absent father.

I am a Man, because dad says I am. He called out the Man in me. So, father shows me how gorgeous I am. He is the reason I keep my swagger and still hold my head up high. He gingers my swagger and makes me believe I can fly. I love this!

Beyond father and mother, a child deserves a pair of parents. Two things are a pair because they are similar, or fit perfectly into each other? A child deserves a mother who does not spend all her time fighting for her rights but fits perfectly into her man and the duo stand as the rock behind their baby. Also, the father must be around to accept and love his woman and the two nurture their loved ones together.

So, whoever will lead in the family, should do so by example. Hehehehehehe, lolling o. Really laughing at some men who will need to lead by changing wet diapers. Take the challenge, Mhen!
So, not my father, nor my mother, but give me my parents. And let’s make the world a better place.

Anyway, my curiosity is getting the best of me right now. So, I’d love to know what your take is on feminism, gender equality and parenting. I know these are hotbeds of opinion diversity. However, we can learn from one another. Leave your thoughts via the comment form.

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