Memories are powerful parts of who we are, where we are coming from and most times they inform how we venture further afield into life. Some memories fade with time, while some hold dark moments in our lives even when we try to suppress them.
Some memories burn vivid and bright in our minds and evoke a sublime state of happiness in our lives that we unwittingly wish to cling to such memories even when that time has long passed. These are the memories that I wish I could hold in the palm of my hands, but I store them in a better place – my heart.
A lot of times, I remember moments in time of my childhood when all I knew was the cocooning love of my parents and as an adult, I crawl back into my head into those moments that suffuse my entire being with softness and warmth.
Each day that passes by brings memories of my loved ones’ who have passed on to the other side to my mind. They are the one’s who shaped my life and molded my values as the human that I am today. My late dad and my beautiful, enigmatic grandmothers.
My dad is/was a man amongst men. A gentleman to the letter. A firm, fair-minded and peaceful fellow. He loved music. He was creative and diligent. He loved people. He worked hard. He was a good man, good father, and provider. He loved me.
Sometimes, memories of him bring bittersweet tears to my eyes’ that even after 3 years of his passing, I get a lump in my throat whenever my thoughts dwell on him. He was my anchor.
Memories of my grandmothers’ are filled with softness, with laughter, with tales of folklore, proverbs and life lessons. With pampering with one hand and a hard smack on the butt for misbehaving, with eating freshly prepared meals made on firewood and earthenware pots. They are filled with remembrance of massaging aching muscles with locally prepared shea butter and the heartfelt thank you that my gran would say. As I write this I can hear the echo of her voice in my head as she says ‘Nnedim, Ezigbo nwa.’
Now I have the great urge to eat from an earthenware pot, to sit on a three-legged stool in the small kitchen back in my village and to watch the pregnant nanny goat as she chewed a portion of yam peels with certainty.
Linda, thank you for taking me down memory lane with today’s prompt. As we remember the heroes in our lives, the heroes past, it comes to my mind to point out that heroes are not only those who fought armed battles but all those who make sacrifices every day to ensure that our future is better. Go and be someone’s hero today.
© Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha
Nnedim – In Igbo language means ‘my husbands’ mother.’ My gran believed in reincarnation and that I’m her mother-in-law who she spoke of with such fondness and love.
Ezigbo Nwa – means ‘good child.’