Their Mother and Father
By Ami Olagunju
Dedicated to my older sister
I’ve never been much of a sentimental person, it wasn’t in me to be sensitive when I had 4 younger siblings to tend to, not by my choice of course but I took the role of mother regardless.
I had 4 younger siblings, Amelia who is younger than me by 3 years, Angelina who is younger than Amelia by 3 years, Victoria who is younger than Angelina by 3 years, and Sammi the baby who is only 2 years old. I’m always with them by absolute default and though I love them they annoy me like hell.
I wonder sometimes what would happen when I leave, Amelia might be 13 years old but isn’t really as grown as I want her to be, which is scary because I’m leaving in 2 years and she’s going to learn how to take care of three kids. I feel horrible that this is the reality we leave in, the reality that means my poor siblings and I have to be stuck inside our house almost all the time because of a excessive over protective mother and a father who’s not dependable, which is why I wanted a car so desperately so my siblings can have the freedom I never got to have.
I’ve learnt so much as a older sister that it’s almost humbling and I would do anything to protect my siblings so they don’t feel the pain I felt growing up in an African home with my parents and though my parents and siblings might hate me for this, I don’t regret the fact I want to leave even though I might miss them a great deal and I hope they understand that I’m not doing this to be cruel but I’m doing this to be happy and to have the sense of innocence and adulthood I so desperately wish I had.
I just want siblings to know I enjoyed being their temporary mother and father and I sincerely hope that when I leave they don’t remember just our bad times and our hateful words but the love I bear for them as a child who was forced to be their mother and happily took the role despite the hard times that came through and it was an eye opening experience that will forever be in my mind as the person who raised hardworking children that are annoying as they might be, the light of my life.