It was a Mother’s Day weekend and I hope you all took time to appreciate the mothers in your lives. If you didn’t, hey, how about you do it today.
In the meantime, let me tell you a little story. A story about something we used to do when we were kids. You know how it gets dull when there is no power in the house at night? The light’s out and silence engulfs darkness. That could have been the case in most homes but not in the one I grew up in. When the lights went out, that was a cue to light things up. Light the house with stories, songs and laughter. It was like bringing the dead night to life.
We would light a candle and admire our shadows on the wall. I particularly liked how pointed my nose looked. I would raise my hands in the air and make movements of imaginary animals. Like that monkey, I never seemed to mimic with my hands. I should try that sometime, maybe.
My sisters and I would ask our mother to tell us stories about her upbringing. I loved mama’s stories. “In our days, there were no family planning methods for women. A woman would give birth till her womb said enough!” she would tell us. “Mama, is that why you had all ten of us?” we would ask then burst out in laughter.
“We didn’t have many options back in the day. Our mothers knew nothing about family planning methods because they would have told us ways to put on brakes if they did. But we kept going on and on. Can you imagine feeding all ten of you?” she would say then give us that long hard look.
My elder sisters- at least three of them- had a soft spot for music. They each had an exercise book that they filled songs with. On some of the nights that the lights went out at night, they would each take their songbooks and start singing. The neighbours would be treated to a sweet melody. They had no choice but to listen. After all, there was no TV or radio to kill the silence. So my sisters would sing through the night till bedtime.
One thing that stood out, was mama’s resilience in bringing us up amidst challenges after paps died when we were toddlers. It’s through her prayers, courage and big heart that I can smile today. Every time I’m engulfed in silence whenever lights go out, I remind myself that the brightest light is within me.
Don’t we all have moments when our light go out sometimes? But do you try to light things up as you wait for power?
Whatever turmoil that may have put your light out, remember the brightest light yet, is deep within you.
Try singing sometimes, or laughing. Make a melody in your dark days and see what happens. Life doesn’t need to stop because your light went out. In your darkest days, take a deep breath and find that light in you.