We all have experienced different things in our lives. These experiences, good or bad shape our reactions, behaviours and interactions with those around us. My reaction to this yellow ribbon story is just one of those experiences.
Sweets (my mummy) is always on time for every single event that I invite her to, especially if I am participating. And when I was in High school, she was always on time for every parents day, midterm and closing day pick up. See, I was in a boarding school. Moi Girls’ School, Nairobi- This school made me, I cannot, for the life of me, write it without the caps- to be precise. And one may argue that the school is in Nairobi, but even when I studied in Uganda, she was always on time, every time.
Her dedication is something to admire. And yes, she is late to some things but never when it came to me, EVER!
I never quite noticed that I took this for granted until today. It never occurred to me that she actually, intentionally ensured that she was on time every time.
When Sweets was in class one, she had a school recital. The class was performing “ Doh, A deer”, one of those songs that stay with you after watching Sound of Music. And their teacher had made these little yellow ribbons from crepe paper that everyone (Sweets included) was excited to wear. These ribbons were to be distributed on the morning of the performance,
Unfortunately, on D-day Grandpapa was running late. As such, Sweets was late to school and by the time they got there, the class one class was already on stage, with these little ribbons looking bright and happy, singing at the top of their lungs. Sweets ran backstage and joined her classmates, but one thing was missing, the yellow ribbon. It may seem really childish, but that’s just it. Sweets was a child, and to her, at that very moment, that ribbon was everything. It embodied things that to an adult may seem trivial, but to a child, meant their street cred, friendship, bonding and so much more.
This yellow little ribbon, made out of crepe paper, was like currency. It meant that you had talking points at home amongst your friends, siblings and relatives- I mean, immediately she got home that evening, she was asked where her ribbon was by her older cousin. That ribbon meant that she felt like an outsider amongst her classmates, it meant she was different and not good different.
Up until she told me this story, I did not have a real appreciation for how she took her time to be there for me ALWAYS. She attended the Drama Festivals when she did not need to. I mean, only a handful of parents attended those events and she made it to every performance, even the ones I mentioned in passing.
The little things count, they always have, they always will.
Never ever take the your parents for granted. Be very conscious of how those around you behave, more often than not, it’s a direct consequence of their life experiences.
I need to get Sweets a beautiful, yellow hair accessory. Preferably with African print accents on it.
I shall strive to appreciate Sweets more and more every day. And bond with her. I think dinner every Wednesday just to listen to her is the least I can offer to this Queen.