I grew up as a not-too-bright little girl in the eyes of my parents. When asked what the time said. “Owo kukuru wa lori seven, owo gigun was lori four,” I would reply dumbly. Translated as: “The short hand is on seven while the long hand is on four.” I was ignorant of time except when it’s holiday time, especially Christmas, when the sweet music would fill the ears and relatives would come together and dine in jolly mood. Banga would pop out fears in the elders, while the younger ones enjoy the sight. Different ‘Father Christmas’ would come to Nigeria and bless us with sweets. Nothing confused me more than how many ‘father Christmas’ were in Nigeria.
I hated Christmas then, because my hands and legs would work till my mouth would testify my tiredness. Errands would be my calling from morning till night, as family members tossed me up and down like a servant that lost her way. Should I explain how my knees would go sour kneeling and greeting old but lost family that didn’t care about me but were just keeping up pretences? They would repeat the same sentences as if they were a bonus to their fake mask. “Ah ah! Bidemi, you’ve grown big o,” they would say and I would smile, hoping the day would end soon. I’m not a sadist! I just find it hard to understand why people would choose few days to be nice and the rest of the months would be a nightmare.
Christmas was known to be derived from ‘Christ mass’, where masses would come together and worship Christ for his birth to save us. It is widely celebrated on December 25 for different reasons, which maybe to rest, catch fun, meet relatives, visit friends, steal, explore new places, catch up update on aproko matter, perform religious rites, to oppress, reflect on the past months; and lastly it’s a reminder of agony and sad revelation to some.
It baffles me to see the different ways people choose to make their Christmas memorable. Some people indulge in overnight drinking as a way to celebrate ‘Christ birth for their sins.’ Christmas is around the corner and people are catching its flakes which is evident in the glitters in shops, decorated roads and Santa Clauses on the lookout. It’s time for potbellied men to eat from their pot.
Let me take you through some interesting ways that can make your Christmas memorable:
Explore the beach vibe: Playing with the wave has a way of calming a storming soul. Call up a few friends, organize food and drinks, horseback riding, etc. Make your holiday count with memories down the beach.
Use the tourist spectacles: You can as well look beyond seeing by sighting those little things you put aside. Funny enough, that tree at your backyard, the roundabout near you is beyond beautiful. Take time to see beyond, because beautiful things are found in little things.
Cinema: You can as well go and watch that movie you’ve been longing to see. You can take few family and friends along because it’s interesting when many eyes can testify.
You don’t have to borrow money before you make the Christmas count. Don’t sow the seed of debt because you would reap the fruit of a debtor in the following year. You don’t need a red pocket to make your Christmas red.
Those are ways to enjoy your Christmas but you can bring best out of your Christmas through the following:
Gift out gifts: In the African culture giving gift is not a common thing. After chicken and rice or pounded yam swayed their hips through the oesophagus to the stomach. What next?
Take time to appreciate your loved ones by giving out presents which can be you meeting a family or friend’s need.
Lend a hand: I know we are so occupied with how to slay that dress and how to catch some fun. Funny enough, not everyone is feeling that vibe as they have no one to celebrate with. They don’t even have what to eat and they are tired scanning their torn old dresses for which one would be fit the Christmas. You can take time and select those unused cloths of yours, giving it out to the orphanage home or beggers on the street. No smile is perfect like those gathered from other people’s best smiles.
Volunteer: I know the country is tight and your old clothes are still useful for you. Your presence and gift of love can nourish some people’s souls. Volunteer at an event on Christmas day to help bring some holiday cheer to those less fortunate like the prisoners. Bringing joy to them is a truly embodying the spirit of the holiday season.
Take time reflect: Let your waking call be thanksgiving. Ruminate over the the purpose of Christmas. Order your steps to be among the mass in Christ and reflect over your life while adjusting things needed.
Christmas is near and it’s worth celebrating because you are alive. I wish everyone Merry Christmas and Happy New Year in advance.