I woke up that Sunday morning craving for my parents like chocolate. I stayed with my aunt and her boyfriend while my parents resided in California.
After washing my aunt’s many dirty clothes for about an hour, I picked up her black Infinix phone from the living room’s center table and dialed my mum’s number. I pulled a chair in the dining room closer and sat down. She picked my call at the first ring and said, “Hello Feyikemi, bawo ni (how’re you)?”
I told her I was the one phoning her and not my aunt. I answered her question on how Nigeria was faring. I was so thrilled to hear her voice, it was like listening to a new song by my favorite music artiste, Travis Greene, until she said, “You know, I can’t even recognize your voice over the phone. I doubt your dad and I would be able to recognize you when we come to Nigeria. That’s if we would ever come back.”
She broke my heart the more when she added, “How old are you now? I don’t know your age.”
Then it struck me. My mother didn’t know my age.
“Can I call you back please?” She said hurriedly and ended the call without waiting for my consent.
Not long after, she put a call through to me and spoke immediately. “I heard you won the Bible quiz in church last week. Your aunty told me you won a Mathematics competition two months ago. We are so proud of you.”
I sighed and mumbled a ‘thank you.’ I won that Bible quiz two years ago not last week and I had won the Mathematics competition last year not two months ago.
She continued. “I was told you were made a prefect. But how come? I haven’t seen your last examination results.”
I told her that I had sent photocopies of my results to her and dad. I sent it three months ago.
She was quiet for a moment and then apologized as the photocopies had been lying on the dining table without being read. She and dad thought it was one of the many letters of me missing them.
I was shocked and hurt by this but asked to speak with dad all the same. Dad replied my greetings curtly. He was always as cold as the weather. I told him I had started menstruating, a stupid thing for me to have said. He told me he would send some money to my aunt’s boyfriend so he could buy me sanitary towels. A silly thing for him to have also said.
I regretted calling them at that moment. I was about to mention a major issue disturbing me which was the most important thing I wanted to discuss with them when mum told me she and dad were to have brunch with some friends and so they had to go.
I was so down in my spirit. If only my parents knew that Aunty Kemi was an irredeemable drunkard. If only they knew that I hadn’t been made a prefect because I had many holes in my school uniform and shoes. If only they knew that I hadn’t gone to church for the past six weeks.
Aunty Kemi’s boyfriend might rape me again today. He did that every Sunday. It was irrefutable.
I felt so thrilled to call them today but now, all I feel is cold hatred for the parents who conceived me.
I closed my eyes and prepared for the worst tonight… RAPE.
More from the Writer: A MOTHER’S LOVE
Written by Agbonde Mojoyinoluwa