Thursday, February 27, 2020

Don't mind them

"Don't mind them" these words translated from Yoruba are the words my mother will say to me each time I came to her with complaints from detractors. She would say "ma da won loun" which literally means "don't answer them" but figuratively means "don't mind them".

The first time she said those words to me was after service on one bright and beautiful Sunday morning, I had worn my favourite dress and one and a half-inch heel covered shoe, I was so radiant and my confidence could be felt miles away. I think I had just gotten my Common Entrance result and I was too happy to be bothered by anything in the world.

I bounced gallantly to pre-teen church for Sunday school and I am sure my teacher must have felt the confidence radiating within me, she asked me to pray for people who were not feeling too fine and she did allocate the other prayer points to the other folks in the class, I was to go first, so after saying the thanksgiving prayers I  began saying these words "Father Lord, please heal all those that are ill".  Immediately she said "stop Rotimi", in my pre-teen mind I thought I had prayed amiss alas brothers and sisters in Christ that was the day I knew I had the Yoruba H-Factor, my Sunday school teacher asked me to repeat myself after saying the same thing 5 times but it was still not right in her ears, she asked someone else to pray, the smart girl said, "God please make all the sick people well". The prayers went round and service finished as it should.


My confidence began to dwindle and I was not having it, however, I wasn't going to let that slip so when I got home that day, I told my mum what had happened and she said: "ma da won loun". You see initially I will think much of these things but then having h-factor doesn't mean I will fail an English test, or my prayers won't be answered. My teacher well understood what my prayer was but she was not pleased with my pronunciation of the words heal and ill.

The truth is, I cannot change my Yoruba H-factor, you wouldn't even know I had it if no words beginning with 'H' had to be said in our conversations. Most of my folks strongly believe I have a foreign accent, a story for another day.

In reality, we all have imperfections that are really negligible as they don't dent the fabric of our personality and so if someone tries to call you out on your perfect imperfections please don't mind them. 

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