This past week, my mum was in Nairobi to visit us. OK, mostly to see her grand kids. She called me a day after she arrived to say she was at my house and was leaving with my son and the nanny. Yeah, I have absolutely no say. She packed them up and left.

I love it when she is around, the flip side is the kids are spoilt, they get whatever they ask for, they get away with murder.
So I ask myself, what changes in mothers when they get grandchildren? My mom beat us senseless over anything and everything; crying after a beating, not crying after a beating, not responding after being called once, eating too fast, eating too slow, falling down and hurting yourself, the list is endless.
The story was no different at school. One of our teachers I remember beat us for every wrong you got in a test.
A story is told of my big sister crying for soda one day as she headed back home with mom. She saw a fanta, the fanta saw her and it was love at first sight. Like most mothers of that time, she said no. Sissy starts crying and causing a scene.
Now back then, a beating was not spared for when you got home; discipline was meted out on the streets, in church, in the matatu, hospital, anywhere really.
Mum beat the soda appetite out of my sister, outside that shop. Then she went ahead and bought it for her. Now tell me, how do you enjoy a soda after the want for it is beaten out of you and you are sobbing, barely able to breath? Explain this to me like a 3 or  4 year old, my sisters age at that time.
My mom will not let me, or my sisters for that matter, rebuke our children in her presence. My son does something and when I start she warns me to stop! We ask her if she remembers how she beat us and she says its different. I honestly do not understand. Do you?
So now Djasiri is back, and oh boy, how. We are now getting him back to the straight and narrow. And in the evenings when I call my mom to check on her, he asks to speak to her and reports me! The guts!
Turns out the fore mentioned sister is also closely following her moms footsteps.
One day, Djasiri said to her “Aunty Samba, you are my princess, I love you very, very much.” And just like that, she was blackmailed and the extortion still continues. Djasiri owns her, hehehe.
Tuesday evening i want to clip his nails. I get the nail clippers and ask him to come sit. “No mommy, we have to call aunty Samba.” I say no problem, he can talk to her once we are done. Turns out I need to ask for my sisters permission to trim my sons nails. Insert that emoji with eyes wide open here.
My mom and sister have totally turned my son against me. I love them so much.
I see my window to do a Denzel Washington impersonation, carpe diem. “Boy sit your ass down.” “You cannot say that mummy!” I am Denzel, there is no way he says bum bum. “Boy sit your ass down. As long as you live in my house, eat my food, wear clothes I buy, watch cartoons on my TV while eating my popcorn, I will trim your nails when I want, send you to bed, heck even feed you when I want. Comprende? His confused look is priceless, hehehe. I am about to say he has to answer yes ma’am too, but this is too much fun, let me save some for next time. Insert smiling poop emoji here.
I promised myself, and my son too when I had him, I would never spare a moment to set him right when he erred. It is one of the few things that I can do for him even when it does not seem to him as so.
Folks, parents especially, if there is anything you will pick from this, beat your children, OK, I will rephrase, discipline them, and be firm.
And also enjoy, treasure, watching your parents go all soft on them. And most importantly, thank God for them, setting you right so that you can do the same for your own.
xo, mamadjasiri
ps: would be great to hear some of your experiences, thoughts. Lets share in the comments section.
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14 thoughts on “Undoing Grandma

      1. Yep like get me a collection of all belts used on my backside …we can Make a painful belt global memory collection and burn it like the ivory or drugs….painful bonfire…heheheh

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  1. Until today, I have actually not paid attention to the softness with which my parents handle my kids. One day, my daughter broke my favourite cup in her granny’s presence, I couldn’t scold my own daughter, in my own house, for breaking my cup! My mom calmly soothed her & then gave me shit for keeping them very close…

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  2. Enjoyed reading your piece once again, you are so gifted mamadjasiri. More often than not, parents show their kids tough love and since life needs a balance someone needs to spoil them.

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  3. Nice piece Vicky.
    The same story happened to mist of us at that tender age. I wish these kids of today would know what we went through. Probably they would behave. Luckily the Rwandan parliament had approved the bill that would see children if today not mandatory to enherit their parents property at least when the parents don’t wish so. The latter’s obligation to ensure they are fed and educated and are mature at the accepted age is fulfilled. Parents are now happy that the children are now obliged to work hard to ensure that they acquire their own property and not rely on the property of their parents. Hahaha….
    What do you think of this good people.

    Thank you Mamadjasiri for the good article.
    Keep it up in writing…..

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  4. I can’t help but think about your sister trying to enjoy that soda. Pole!

    It is really lovely how motherhood is inspiring your writing and how it all turns up in these stories. Keep ’em coming!

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