Thursday, September 17, 2015 3:44 pm
Is parenting not so full of surprises some times? Maybe you are wondering what I’am talking about. To make you understand, I will share a few stories.
Not long ago, members of a certain community in the southern part of the country woke up one morning and were jolted by the discovery of a strange object wrapped in a black polythene bag inside a gutter heavily swarmed by flies. But before then, according to reports, there had been an offensive odour within the vicinity which wouldn’t go away, also there had been incessant cries of a baby, but no one could tell where exactly it was coming from until they finally discovered the strange bag in the gutter. When the bag was opened they found a newborn baby, with its mouth tied with a piece of cloth to prevent it from crying and possibly attracting attention, before being flung into the gutter by the mother who must have believed her troubles were over.
The baby girl was rescued alive by the residents who were moved to tears, and cursed the woman who had the heart to carry out such wickedness. This happens all the time so what is surprising about it, you may ask.
Among those residents who rescued the baby was a man who had come home to visit his family from his station, his siesta was interrupted by people shouting near his compound, on getting to the scene he was shocked like everyone else by the discovery, he too had heard cries of a baby but thought it was coming from the neighbouring compound. He and his wife immediately joined others to curse whoever did that, only to discover the next day that the culprit was his own daughter. He almost collapsed.
How could their daughter hide a pregnancy for nine months, give birth to the baby in their bathroom and hurl it across the fence into the gutter? How come they never noticed? More questions than answers. His immediate reaction was to hand his daughter over to the police. Did he do well?
Maybe the girl succeeded in hiding her pregnancy because one of the parents was not present to notice it. But how about this case. It happened in a university environment; the family in question lived in the quarters, which is like a close-knit community. Both parents were available almost all the time. The mother worked as a non-academic staff of the university usually 8am – 5pm, she was always home except when she went to the market, church activities once or twice in a week which the children attended too, and association meetings once or twice a month. The family lived in one bedroom apartment, effectively; the bedroom was shared by the entire family. But right under their noses, one of the daughters got pregnant and they only found out when she was taken to the hospital after she complained of stomach pains, where the doctor announced that she was to be taken to the labour room immediately. The mother almost fainted.
I can only imagine the surprise, or should I say the shock of the mom who while away from home heard that her husband had been murdered by their son in the most horrid manner, and even buried him. Remember the story?
Well, not all surprises are bad. I was so pleased to see in one of the national dailies recently, a report on the graduation ceremony of one of the private universities in the country. What made the graduation special was that the celebrants each had a surprise for their parents. They had set aside some money and bought their parents a beautiful gift just to say, ‘thank you’ for seeing them through school. Now, wasn’t that so sweet?
When we give birth to our babies we have no idea how they will turn out. So much depends on us if they will turn out right, of course there would be circumstances beyond our control, but we must do our part and then hope and pray for the best.
I once listened to a very popular American pastor, John Hagee remark, “That tender baby you have in your arms could turn out to be a monster.” I shuddered. No mother ever prays for that. His advice was that parents should bring their children up in the way of the Lord if they want them to turn out right. I couldn’t agree more.
In the story I shared earlier, the man handed his daughter over to the police so she would pay for her sins, and for others to learn. But we know that there will always be a place in the heart of a parent for his child.
He has asked that the baby who is his granddaughter, be released to him. Efforts to secure the release of his daughter might follow, considering that people are asking that the baby should not be thrown away with the bath water.
Grace Essen is the author of Successful Working Mom. She speaks and writes about making business, career and motherhood work @ www.mum2mumafrica.com.You may reach her at [email protected]