On Sunday, I spoke with my grandma and we talked about Nigeria. She had said a few weeks ago that if she didn’t have us in the U.S., she would have fled Nigeria. I laughed, the way she said it was funny. So like always, she prayed that our own children will also take care of us, that we will reap the fruits of our labors on our children. I said Ameen. Then this got me thinking if I make the same prayer by myself.
See, we’re the independent generation. Independent here doesn’t refer to 1960, Nigeria. It refers to the fact that we love to be independent to the extent that we’re changing the whole of social structures to maintain independence and freedom. So a woman goes to school and gets a career to be independent, and a man learns all “women’s role” to also be independent. So separation is right on our tongues at every little storm in our relationships because I’ve the necessary skills to be independent and free. Marriage, a sacred bond of sentimentalities is now reduced to cold calculations based on economics. If not for the fact that hereafter is real, Karl Marx would be sipping tea on us in his grave.
We further take this independence mindset to another level, and look at our children as people we owe, but who owe us nothing in return because when we grow old we would have already setup good retirement plans for ourselves and we will thus be independent. So many of us are reluctant to think of our children the ways our parents or grandparents think and pray of us.
We just want to be independent. Guess what? Life is shaped in a way that humans need to be interdependent on each other. So suck up your ego and acknowledge that only Allah is free of needs from others. As for me, Ọlọ́hun mi jẹ́’n jèrè ọmọ…