I’m learning to beat the gong better. I might start a new category for ramblings about my unusual experiences as the goddess’ mouthpiece, I might not.
Betty and I are looking to redecorate sometime soon.
Most Importantly, I’ve learnt to keep it short. One laconic clang, all brisk-like as AfroSays:
“Daddy where do babies come from?”
I wasn’t sure I’d heard what she asked the first time. Maybe I’d heard, maybe I’d subconsciously chosen to ignore her, hoping that I’d imagined the question.
“Daddy?” She tugged at my arm.
It took an effort of archillean proportions to tear my gaze from the TV so as to cater to the needs of my ten year old.
It’s not because Arsenal was throwing away yet another chance at a trophy, the thing was that I’d always thought parenting would be easy; It had been easy to spot many mistakes in the austere upbringing that my parents had dealt me. I’d envisioned myself as one of the modern, super cool parent types that I’d seen so many times in hollywood movies, the type that grounded kids when they were naughty, sent them to their room when they were rude, allowed them to have all their friends over and was open to talking about anything.
And somehow, I had succeeded. While most of my friends still employed the use of a form of archaic martial law in putting their young families in order, Wunmi felt the need to tell me every single insignificant detail about her life and I loved it.
The real problem was that I’d never prepared for the day when I would have to tell my daughter about how, someday, some idiot with a turgid penis would lend seed to her innocent vagina so that they could magically grow babies. I could not tell her bogus stories about Holy Ghost pregnancies or baby carrying birds or automatic, love-inspired conceptions because it was against my ‘Cool-Daddy’ code. Thinking about what I was about to say gave me a headache.
I finally turned from the hopeless football match, not quite to look at her, but to look around her. I was already embarrassed.
“Emm… One day, a young man is going to butter your muffin”
I loosened my neck tie.
“Actually, what I’m trying to say is that, ehn, one day, to have babies… Err, you have to screw… Yes, screw…”
I looked around as if to see imaginary impositions of my drinking buddies, pointing and laughing as I fumbled at my little girl’s question.
“Me, I don’t know what you are talking about oh! I am in Jss1 and the science teacher says we have to have sex!”
My mouth hung open.
She put her tiny arms on her waist and continued talking, all sissy like.
“So uncle Rufus said that he wants to put his penis in my vagina and I told him that the teacher said that I would get pregnant since I started seeing my period last month and I am now a woman”
“He said the teacher was wrong and that babies are from the Holy Spirit like with Mary and Jesus. I told him no sha. I just came to ask you.”
My expression of shock quickly metamorphosed into a mask of rage. ‘Uncle Rufus’ was the twenty-one-year-old cousin that I had brought into my home from the village because his parents could not support his education beyond the secondary level.
“So daddy, what is sex noooow?”
I had to calm down and attend to my little girl first. Without embarrassment, I told her that science teacher was right, I told her about the evils of teenage pregnancy, STDs, HIV, drugs, alcohol, over-speeding, politics, and any other evil the world would later throw at her.
I called my wife up next. As angry as I was, family issues were always tricky. If I sent him back to the village, he would hurt other little girls, maybe boys too. If I reported him to the police, I couldn’t face my family.
She told me that if I didn’t call the police, she would.
What would you do?