Where did communal child rearing go? Bring it back! – Ella Temisan

Where did communal child rearing go? Bring it back! – Ella Temisan



I remember how nervous I was in church last Sunday. I was sitting in my new dress, waiting for my cue to take the second reading like an excited child.

Interestingly, I had practiced for weeks because I planned to kill it. I and my mint newscaster voice were going to teach the church how to read. It was a special occasion.

That is why I can’t forget the woman that sat in front of me.

She was the reason why my composure slipped. I wasn’t happy about it but what to do? She looked to be in her mid-30s and had walked in with four little boys and a girl. I assumed the girl to be her maid.

The woman was light-skinned, pretty and wore a neat knee-length mixed print dress with a designer purse and shoes. Once again, I am assuming she was wearing designers because my church has plenty of designer people.

Anyway, this woman and her battalion came to distract and destroy. I couldn’t concentrate on anything. Her sons were all over the place.

And her maid, God help her, couldn’t do much. She was a tiny child, looking not less than 15 years. She seemed to be doing her best. But those boys must have had energy drinks for breakfast. They were chaotic!

Also Read: Two important skills you need to have when living in Lagos – Ella Temisan

The woman had her eyes glued ahead. She tried her best to be composed and classy, but her sons said nope. They untied her scarf, emptied her purse and turned her to a goalkeeper. I’d normally amuse myself with their antics as I like to do when I’m seated around children. But these boys were begging for orderliness.

Again, I’d have ignored them if her second son didn’t start carving the pews with the woman’s key. When he wouldn’t stop after the maid had tried to snatch the key from his hand; Angel Ella had to intervene.

I entered Great Aunt mode and swooped in. I grabbed the boy’s hand as tightly as I could and tried to pry the key from his hand. I’ll tell you this, this pandemic Gen Z or whatever children are stubborn!

The boy started to riot and I let him go before he screamed the church down. His poor mum sounded tired when she started to investigate. I was waiting for her to take the child outside for some time-out. But she didn’t say anything. She didn’t even take back her key from the boy. She just glanced at me as if I had poked my nose into her business and faced forward. E pain me!

The most painful part was when the boy turned back to stick his tongue out at me. Chai! This would never happen in 1995!



About The Author

Kingsley Alaribe is a Digital Marketer with 1stNews, and writes the weekly column, Strangers and Lovers. He is also a Data Scientist. Email: [email protected]

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