Monday, December 11, 2006

Mummy Sunday 6

Inspired by one of my favorite bloggers LondonBuki, this is my sixth Mummy Sunday post!!! This one is dedicated to those questions that we want to ask but never will.

Mommy… Who’s Uncle Israel?

Dear mommy,

In my first memories of my dad, I was 4 or 5. I tried to draw really pretty pictures of myself cos I figured if he saw how pretty I was he’d come back.
Remember I used to suck my thumb then and pull out my hair so you had them shave it all off? Well… in the pictures I drew myself with long hair cos I knew no father wanted a daughter with short hair and the left side of her head with little ‘hair patches’. I drew myself white… everybody in school loved Emily… everybody in our class, our teachers and she had a dad that came to pick her up from school everyday… so I drew myself white… I smiled and looked like Emily in those drawings.

I remember the crazy Jamaican woman near my school… opposite the butcher’s place. She was always cursing out at us and whenever we crossed the street… she did too. I think she made you cry once too. I guess it’s cos she knew I didn’t have a dad… or at least that mine didn’t want to see me.

I also remember the dreadlocked Jamaican man that was there the night we moved into some new apartment. It was really cold. You were crying, we slept on the carpet and I just remember a dog barking and me being really sad seeing your tears. I was scared of Jamaicans for a long time… its funny cos now that I think about it I realize that he was probably the past occupant of the house and was handing you the keys or something

I was 6 and I remember when I really started feeling bad about not having a father. I mean I loved you but I just wished that at least once my dad would come and get me from school… so Emily and the other girls could see that I had one. They started teasing me a lot at school you know. I could take it I thought to myself… I really tried to act like I didn’t care Mommy but I really did.

I remember the final straw. I decided I could not stand it anymore. My dad kept sending letters but he just wouldn’t come and see us. I wanted to go see him instead. You tried to talk me out of it… but I knew I just had to be with him. I couldn’t want to go to the amusement parks with him, climb on his back and bring him back to Lewisham… cos then everybody’d get to see my own personal Daddy. I knew he’d be tall and handsome and nice and give me lots of chocolate and tuck me in and read me bedtime stories and buy me fish and chips everyday and buy me pink socks and carry me everywhere and give me 7 barbie dolls and tickle me and… and… spin me round and round and give me piggy back rides and… and… take me everywhere and… and…and… BE MY DADDY

Plus you’d stop crying too mommy

I stopped eating cos you didn’t want to take me to go see my daddy. After a while you promised me we would and I believed cos you never lied to me. I remember when we were packing to leave. I was so excited. I took all my pretty clothes from my white closet and I wrote ‘sex’ all over my drawing books in red lipstick cos Aaron told me it was a cool word.

One distinct memory I have is after having packed up, right before we stepped out of our house on Lewisham into the ‘netherworlds’, you told me not to tell daddy anything about ‘Uncle Israel’

I don’t remember much else but I remember walking down from the airplane… we’d arrived in Nigeria.

We walked around and around… next thing I knew you were hugging this tall, huge man.

I remember this like it was yesterday.

I remember thinking that I didn’t approve of you hugging this man because when my Daddy came he was going to be mad about it.

Then you told me he was my dad.

I just remember a huge sense of letdown… this was HIM?!?!

You were excited… so I became excited… I mean he was tall and handsome… but… but…

I hugged him and he lifted me up… but… but…

He drove us home and on the way stopped at the domino’s convenience store.

He got us candy and chocolate and juice… but… but…

We got home and he showed us around the house… it was ugly… I didn’t like it… but you were excited… so I was excited

Then he told us to go and have a siesta

We just got back to Africa… we didn’t want to sleep but you’d trained me too well to disobey.

My younger sister didn’t care… she told him she didn’t want to but he enforced it

Remember when she told him to give her the number for the cops so she can report him for trying to make her do something she didn’t want to?

He forced us… I looked into his eyes and he seemed cruel. We went to bed immediately

I still remember the conversation I had with my sister that day on your bed trying to have our ‘siesta’

“I don’t like him Overwhelmed… I hate him”

“Me too sis… me too”

I tried to change my opinion about him… sometimes I was successful and some other times I wasn’t

I remember the day he made you cry in Nigeria

Your parents were over, it was Easter… I remember cos they were playing Jesus Crucifixion movies on the telly.

You guys were all in the living room and next thing I knew… you were crying

I asked him why and he said it was because you lost your 20 Naira.

I knew he was a liar then and I liked him even less…


I think I know all there is to know… or at least all that I need to know

Mommy, the only question I have left is… Who’s Uncle Israel?

Your First Daughter

Overwhelmed Naija Babe


chainreader said...

yay, first!

bhookey84 said...


Soul said...


chainreader said...


i don't even know what to say, so i'll just put a sock in it till i can digest it all.

that was too deep!

welcome back.

Freaky Deaky said...

This makes me want to go back and read the previous Mummy Sunday posts. Very interesting post.

Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

@chainreader:lol… Strawberry Cheesecake coming up for you… Thanks babe… really… I appreciate all your comments on my blog… you rock!!! I’m still waiting for you to start your own blog oh so I can write my comments in Arabic… lol.

@bhookey84: looking back now… it’s wow to me too!

@Soul: hmmm sounds right

@Freaky Deaky: Thanks luv… going on your blog right now… haven’t been on blogspot in a while forreal! Hope you love the other Mummy Sunday posts as well

Anonymous said...

Poor baby,poor mom as well.Kids @ school can be so cruel atimes.At least u got to meet u're dad and that hunger to see him was quenched.U live, learn ,and grow.Give u're mom a big HUG from me.

Anonymous said...

Took you long enough. So who is/was Uncle Israel?

Anonymous said...

As i was reading this post, it was as if i cld see little OWNB talking!!
So who is uncle Israel??
How was ur friend's surprise party??

azuka said...


Nyemoni said...

Too deep..

Anonymous said...

Can't think of what to write at the moment


where u been babes??? as in like wao!!!! to this post, its kinda reminds me of growing up. school kids can be so cruel. anyway so who is uncle israel na???

Anonymous said...

Chainreader, get a life. Who's competing with you for the first post?

TaureanMinx said...

now now anonymous, lets play nice. Its a blogging tradition. ONB, quite deep, we want to know who uncle isreal is too. I'm glad you guys persevered through this!

Anonymous said...

yikes! you've lived quite 'the'!

Anonymous said...

Overwhelmed...ur life story is just amazing and u r just 19/20 right?
I hope the next set of years will be much happier and better than when u were a child.
Take care babe

Anonymous said...

U have an amazing lifestory and u r just 19/20?
I hope the forthcoming years are more happy and joyous!
Ur mum is really a strong woman

Anonymous said...

U have an amazing lifestory and u r just 19/20?
I hope the forthcoming years are more happy and joyous!
Ur mum is really a strong

Anonymous said...

Dang Girl,
You have been thru so much, and yet, u r still being...does that make sense?

Biodun said...

This was deep, deep stuff

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Through these eyes said...

Very captivating. Is Uncle Israel not your dad? I doubt it from you and your sister's reaction to him. He probably would have been nicer to you if he was your dad. It sounds like your mom gave up on your dad and was dating a new guy and didn't want to tell you guys because you were so young, but I could be wrong.

May be you can enlighten us. :)

chainreader said...

you know what, ONB? I was thinking how people make a lot of mistakes in life, but sometimes, they catch a lucky break, and do one thing right.

your dad might have gone wrong a whole lot of ways, but he did a real good thing by helping to make you! and for that, we can forgive him a whole lot!

@anonymous: i'd tell you to go suck on a lemon, but am trying to be nice here. it's just a game, anony, deary. can i call you that? it's kinda like "touch you first!". get it? sorry if it bothers you.

Anonymous said...

Wow, that was a lot to read. The good thing about all what you've been through is that it will only continue to build you into being the marvelous person that you are now. These have just shown how strong you truly are. Your life can only continue to get better from here.

Anonymous said...

very touching indeed - I cold actually see the young girl as you told the story - did you ever find out who uncle isreal was!! hope yor exams have been going well. Stay blessed.

Anonymous said...

I had a similar experience with my popsie too

temmy tayo said...

Very deep. Your mum has been through a lot. Like wise u and ur sis. I think the ur past experience has made you a strong person.

Anonymous said...

Your mama tried ooo, many naija women suffer every day no be small

Funmi said... do u know who uncle isreal is now?

Anonymous said...

Its sad how they think you forget or that you dont remember- but its true- the things you see back then, make you.

lemme know when you figure out who uncle Isreal is... lol me too i'd like to know.

anyway, ,...

BabaAlaye said...

OMG I know too many Un cle Israels

Klara said...

At first I thought..I wouldn't finish dis post coz am feelin lazy 2day..Bt it was engangin..& what can I say?? Wow..G/Work

Anonymous said...

I just wanna hug you right now and tell you everything will be okay.

You've been through so much, it's so amazing.

Anonymous said...

girl where'd u go???
did u ever find out bout uncle isreal? i have my guesses sha..

Discombobulated Diva said...

glad ur back... but seriously, who is this uncle israel guy???

another great post...


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Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

@Nigerican: my dear you have no clue… but I guess it was better to see him and go through the pain cos it’s somehow shaped the person I am today. Thanks babe… I already gave her one

@Noni Moss: lol… my dear I tried to go on your page but somehow it wasn’t working… I’ll send you an email later so you can admit me my dear. I never asked my mom who Uncle Israel is… it’s a question I sometimes wondered but will probably never ask

@angie: lol@little OWNB talking.. what a site… my dear I still don’t know who he is… I have vague memories of an uncle that bought us candy sometimes but I’m not 100% on it

@Azuka: lol… that’s me!!!

@Nyemoni: Thanks luv… when you gonna update your blog? You feeling alright babe?

@Anonymous: no problem… come back anytime!!!

@36 Inches: I been alright love… just doing a few things at the same time and doing a lot of thinking. I might end up talking about it later on my blog cos my brain is working overtime. You’re right school kids can be cruel but I guess that shapes us as a person… Uncle Israel’s identity is a mystery to me

Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

@Anonymous: lol… na our blog tradition… In fact I’m betting you a whole cheesecake if you can be the first reader on my next post!!! ITS ONNNNNNNNNNNNNNN!!!

@TaureanMinx: Lol… so am i… imagine how much more messed up I could’ve been if a few things didn’t eventually change in my life? I still never sabi this Uncle Israel oh my dear.. how you doing luv?

@Belle: lol.. yikes and wow sound about right

@Bella Naija: lol… Babe I’ve worked really hard to be 20 oh… so don’t try me oh … hehe… just playing… yeah… I’m really looking to the next set of years… they are looking to be much better based on current events!!! Thanks for dropping by babe

@zaiprincesa: Yes mami… it does… thanks luv

@Biodun: Thanks sunshine

@Through these eyes: nope.. Uncle Israel I don’t even remember… I left him as well as most of my memories in England. That thought has crossed my mind… but it’s not really vital to my existence so I’ve never really asked her.

Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

@chainreader: You’re right about that… Thanks for the compliment… I really appreciate it… people like you make everything look so much brighter. Lol…. Anonymous hasn’t gone deep into blogging na him make… I bet he/she is gonna be first on my next post. I don ask you 7.88 times… WHEN ARE YOU STARTING YOUR OWN BLOG BABE?!?!?!

@Naija Sapphire: Amen! I appreciate that

@The Life of a stranger called me: Never found out who he is but my life is still alright without the knowledge.. I just wonder sometimes you know… everything’s great… I’m a bit confused and stressed in certain areas and I think I’ll talk about it in future posts. Thanks luv

@omo naija: really? I don’t think I’ve ever been on your blog… I’m gonna do that immediately. I hope you’ve been able to overcome whatever bad experiences you might’ve had though

@temmytayo: she has indeed and so much stronger, wiser for it. Thanks luv

@Naijalove: You’re sooo right… but sometimes I’m glad for it… she’s gone through it so I don’t have to.

Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

@Funmi: Nope… still don’t

@Diary of a Mad Soulful Sista: lol… gbeborun oshi!!! I know you of everybody would be the first to delve into the mystery of Uncle Israel. You’re so right about the memories though… sometimes they hit you when you least expect it… they can be the key to a secret in your past… or they could just open a can of worms that might be better left buried… but I guess that’s what life is about… figuring out or burying forever life’s little mysteries. If I get time tonight self make I go your blog see wetin breeze don blow under your ‘blog yansh’!!! lol

@BabaAlaye: As much as I’d like to think not… so do I!!!

@Klara: Thanks luv

@Mari: Thanks sunshine… I appreciate that

@Jadedkiss: my dear I been caught up in sum shit… I’ll talk about it later still. How’s school treating you right now? Lol... you know Uncle Israel? Yarn me abeg cos me self I no know cybersis mine

@Discombobulated Diva: lol.. thanks luv… me I don’t know who he is oh… but sha life goes on abi? How’s everything on your end?

Anonymous said...

Great post ... very poignant! Please, if your dad could not see how amazing you are, it's his loss ... I don't like him much either!

Think you'll ever ask your mum who Uncle Israel is?

Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

@Vickii: Thanks babe… its sad for him that he can’t see it… really sad. One of these days… I might ask her who he is… or maybe I won’t… lol… if I do… I’ll be sure to tell y’all who he is

laspapi said...

Who is Uncle Israel?

Came into your archives and had tears in my eyes and laughter on my lips at the same time.

That part about sleeping on the carpet in the new, cold apartment...It dug up old, old memories of my mother and I...memories I didn't think were there anymore, and I thought of how it used to be and how she and I were, to each other. Good memories of a mother that cared for me above all else... at the time.

I'm a man now, able to fend for myself, but for a moment in time, you found beauty for me again.

Copido said...

Jeez....that your dad sounds like a sadist. Your mum must have really loved him

Afrobabe said...

wow...lost for words.and you think my blog is interesting.
Nice write up,was there feeling the feelings with you girl!

Anonymous said...

This is really powerful stuff. you have a gift!