Growing up, I was taught to always use my right hand. Using my left was rude.
I was told that looking at someone older than you in the face was disrespectful.
Of course I had to be in the science class in Secondary school; that’s where the smart kids went, I couldn’t be allowed to waste that brain.
“Don’t argue with your teachers, do you want to get flogged? Are you talking back at me, you this devil child I carried in my womb for nine months?”
When I got a bit older, they said to steer clear of boys; they could give you babies and STDs. Now I’m out of school and apparently I'm of ‘marriageable age’.
“Don’t smoke pot, cigarettes or drink alcohol.”
I learned that giving your number to a guy without at least ‘forming’ first, made you look cheap.
“How can you not know how to speak Ibo? That’s a shame because it’s your identity.”
“Don’t you know you are a girl? You can’t move out of your parents’ house except you are moving to your husband’s house. What will ‘people’ think? They will look at you ‘somehow’
Don’t talk too loud. Don’t wear your hair that way. Everyone’s wearing this. You can’t follow that career path. That’s not acceptable. Blend in. Fit in.
Do this. Do that. But why? Because that’s the way it’s done.
Now I’m a little bit older (some might even call me an adult). And I think.
I think that looking at you in the face shows that I'm listening to you and that I actually hear you. I think looking at the floor shows timidity. Ask the young girl who didn’t get the call back after the interview for the marketing job (Although you should probably ask the interviewers; the poor girl would be clueless).
I think that I would have fit perfectly in the arts class; maybe I would have gone on to study psychology. Now I have a good degree in a course I am the least bit interested in.
I think children should be allowed to voice their opinions a little more. Ask the woman who’s stuck in that loveless marriage. How could she tell them no? She had always done what they wanted.
I think this business about a ‘marriageable age bracket’ is sadly ludicrous at best. At some point, when we're growing up (as girls), the misguided opinion that the good guys in this world will soon finish is ingrained in our subconscious and so we settle for the next available thing (which young Nigerian girl wasn’t told the story of the picky village princess who ended up marrying a snake in disguise?) I think that even if good guys are scarce, I’m a good girl. One of them will find me. And what's this business about some biological clock ticking??? As far as I’m concerned that's just a ploy by men to get women desperate. I think that you should hold out for what you want (As a guy or girl). Don't go settling with someone because you feel you’re getting old and you 'have to' and then spend the REST of your life in misery; wondering and wishing.
I watched an episode of House once, where this boy’s parents could’ve sworn that their son wasn’t smoking pot because when he reached a certain age (I forget how old exactly), they sat him down in their living room and smoked a little pot with him to ‘demystify’ it. And they were right; the kid wasn’t smoking pot. Most young people do a lot of things out of curiosity so I think there may be some merit to their method. *shrug*
I think that every pair of Jeggins in the whole wide world should be gathered up together in one place and burnt. Offered as a sacrifice to the god of fashion or something. I own a pair. Somehow.
I think that the different languages in Nigeria add to our problems. Take them away and the next guy on the street is just a Nigerian, speaking one language, with one voice. How can we ever be united when we don’t even speak the same language? When we still see ourselves as ‘That Warri man’ or that ‘Yoruba woman’? When the main criterion for running for political office is the region you’re from and not whether you can perform? Looking at the Biblical origin of languages, God introduced languages to bring confusion because he saw that as long as the people on earth were united, they could achieve anything.
I don’t want to live in my parents’ house till I get married. I’m looking at marriage in about 3/4 years and I would like to live by myself for at least a year, maybe two, before that happens. Not because I plan to have men sleep over or keep late nights. Truth is, a girl doesn’t need to leave her parents’ house to do any of that stuff. If she gon’ do it, she gon’ do it. I just want to live by myself. Frankly, I don’t give a rat’s ass about what ‘people’ think or if they look at me ‘somehow’. In other countries, it is shameful for a college (University) graduate to go back to living with his/her parents after graduation.
I don’t even like earrings.
But I cannot think these things. I am not allowed to. Because to think is to differ. And who the hell are you to be different???
There, I said it.