I have this neighbour who has been telling me very unpleasant things. Each time she sees me, it’s like an opportunity for her to unleash. All I do is smile or laugh and give one lame answer just to avoid long talk, and go away.
My son, Gamal, once contacted a very bad eye infection from school. The school even told us the child who brought the infection to school, so all of us knew for sure that it was from school (a number of kids too were infected).
But my son’s own was so bad that he couldn’t (literally) open his eyes for 5 whole days. This eye infection caused us so much in many ways. I, the mother, had sleepless nights, together with my cousin, Bilki, who stays with me. Gamal’s dad wasn’t around at the time but my brother in law was around and he helped out a lot.
The ointment the doctor prescribed was not available in almost every pharmacy in Lagos. The only pharmacy that had it said we could only get it after two days because it was not yet priced. So, imagine how much my boy suffered and how uncomfortable and restless we all were. We went to the hospital every single day and the boy went through a lot. Imagine how a mother feels in such situations.
So, one day, when I took my son out to have some fresh air, with his eyes still closed, there I was guiding his every step, this neighbor appeared and told me that I was the one who caused my son to have eye infection because she used to look round the whole area and everyone opens their windows except me. So, my lack of opening windows caused it.
Meanwhile, that was a false observation because anytime the air conditioning was off, my windows were always open, not to talk about how stupid and senseless her reasons were. 🙄Neways, I just told her that I didn’t think that’s the cause and left.
After a few days, all of us in the house had the same eye infection but mine was worse. I couldn’t see ( literally) nor lift my eyelids for more than 3 seconds at a time, for 2 whole weeks. Yup! And when the woman saw me, this was what she said: “good for you! At least now you know how your son was feeling”. I still laughed and went away.
How was that for turning the other cheek? Good right?
One day, on a breezy evening, my son and his dad were in the car, about to go buy some stuff. I then remembered there were some skittles in the car, being the sweet tooth that I was, I asked Bilki to pause the movie we were watching so I could quickly go get some skittles from the car before they left.
As I threw some in my mouth, I was trying to pour some in my son’s palm when I heard my husband greeting someone. I turned to see who, and found out it was the same old, same old.
I greeted her too and immediately after answering, this was how it went:
Her: “See how those two (hubby and son) are like twins, you are just there.”
Me: “You said?”
Her: “I said see how your husband and that boy are close, you don’t want to be close to your son. Better make him your best friend oh, you know what am saying. I am only advising you as a teacher.”
Me: “I’m sorry but I don’t know what you’re saying.”
Her: “Every time, he is always with his dad, he is always running to him when he sees him so better make him your best friend, am sure you understand what I mean.”
Me: (I perfectly understood but trying hard not to answer) “No, I don’t understand what you mean.”
Her: “Your son is close to his daddy and is always runner to him when he sees him, but you, he is always running away from you….” (I didn’t wait for her to finish)
(No insults or harsh words, just a piece of my mind).
Sorry but I had to, I didn’t have a choice because I ran out of cheeks. I had already earlier turned the only last cheek I had left, remember? 😏😏
This woman is a mother with two sons and it beats my imagination how she thought it was right to say such to a fellow mother.
It is natural for Gamal to gum to his daddy because he hardly sees his daddy. Besides, she had never entered my house so she had no idea how my relationship with my son was.
The only time Gamal runs away from me is when the door is mistakenly left open and he slides away to go play with sand. I stop him from playing with sand because dust makes him always have a runny nose. So he tries to quickly run away to play with one or two sand before I reach him and grab him back into the house.
So, after that incident, we didn’t see each other again until after a week or so. Some drilling work was going on outside our house and at the time, I was experiencing morning sickness. I went outside a bit to inspect the work and I sighted the woman coming out of her house. I quickly ran back inside, hoping she didn’t see me.
My brother, Nuhu, was around because I begged him to come help with dropping Gamal off and picking him up from school. I had serious morning sickness so I couldn’t do most things (anything!). Of course, he came to my rescue and he practically became my butler, driver, everything in fact.
I went straight to my room to take a nap. I barely closed my eyes when Bilki and Nuhu came into my room to tell me the woman was here to see me. I just couldn’t. So, I said to go tell her I am not feeling well and I am trying to have a nap.
I heard her voice from the parlor saying: “It’s a lie, she’s not sleeping. I just saw her outside now now, and when she saw me, she ran away.” OOPS! Guess who got caught.
They didn’t know what to say. They were dumbfounded. And she continued: “I am not going anywhere, I will wait for her here, she will wake up and come and see me here. Me I don’t like holding malice with anyone.”
At this point, I was boiling. Should I go and give it to her once more, or should I just sleep and let her do as she said? Of course, I didn’t think she was seriously going to wait in my house till I woke up, so, I slept.
I woke up about 45 minutes later and went straight to the kitchen. Dished my food and strolled to the parlor. I heard my husband talking to someone just outside the house and yes, it was her. He came back from work and apparently, she hijacked him at the door. He was not even allowed to enter his own house. I thought: “Well, if he doesn’t find a way to escape, that’s his business, as for me I have already escaped for today.”
I held my plate in one hand while using the other to eat, started tiptoeing to get back to the room and all of a sudden, WAP! Someone opened the parlor door (can’t even remember who), and I heard: “EHEN!!!! I have seen you. I knew you weren’t sleeping. I’ve been waiting for you here, I knew I would catch you”.
Feeling like a thief in my own house got me even more upset. I asked her: “Catch me doing what?”
She immediately changed the topic and asked where her own food was then she apologized for the other day. I already forgave her and then she spoilt everything again. She said she made the other comment about me and my son the other day because she never saw me outside, throwing Gamal up and catching him the way his dad plays with him. Also, that she saw his dad playing ball with him outside but not me, so she naturally thought his dad loved him more than I did. SERIOUSLY????
That was the point where I concluded that this woman probably had issues that I couldn’t solve. She may be disturbed by something serious. I realized there was no point arguing or holding grudges against her. Maybe she just needed attention or some sort of help in one or two faculties in her life. May God help her because I don’t even know where to start helping her from.
I asked her to just mind her business while I minded mine. I also advised her to stop judging from afar and never assume she knew someone when she didn’t.
Do you know that she still tried to give me advise on how to train my son? Ah! I can’t deal.
She finally decided to leave. I happily walked her to the door and was so glad watching her walk away. My smile quickly faded when I saw her branching off to where the workers where drilling. She spoke to them in Yoruba, telling them that they were not doing it correctly and used her hands to demonstrate how they should do it. They all looked at her in awe.
“What is wrong with this woman?” I thought to myself, “Where did she learn how to drill?” “I will go and throw her inside that whole oh!”.
I entered my house and banged my door, not caring anymore whether she ever decided to go back to her house or not.
The screen went blank. Then one calm morning, I, Gamal and Bilki where going out. We put Gamal in his car seat, I sat on the driver’s seat while Bilki headed towards the passenger’s side.
“Ah ah, why are you people leaving only him at the back? Bilki, go to the back and sit with this boy”.
Me: “Bilki, sit in front”. (with my face just as in the picture above).
Bilki sits in front. Bye bye ma! Zooms off!
When an exhausted mother already has enough on her plate, please, DON’T offer her any more side dishes cos she just may throw up on you.
I know you have comments about this post and I would love to hear them. There’s a comment box below, please share your thoughts with me. Have you had such experiences or do you know someone like that?