So it was a lazy Sunday morning, exhausted from the previous day’s long hours of work, the weather was cooler, just a perfect day to relax in bed, and plan your week ahead. But to do this I needed a cup of coffee so bad, so i zombied into the kitchen to fix myself a cup. While at it, I heard my mum call me out, ‘Chichi, come say hi to your Aunty’. Damn it! I thought, isn’t it just way to early for a morning pep talk, just not today God! So I quietly tiptoed to peep through the door to get a glimpse of who of the aunts it was, as I have so many Aunty more than my own clan, all my mums friends, sister, relative and any other older woman is an aunt, tied by blood or not.Oh yeah from that tiny keyhole, I immediately recognized the aunt, you know that one special Aunty that you never want to ran into, the aunt that was created to fix your life and problems voluntarily, the one that always corners you for THEE Advice.
At this point, I was thinking too fast, either to run back to my bedroom and pretend I was still asleep or pretend I have a very bad headache that I can even bare stand for a minute, or just take that bullet straight to the soul one more time, I mean you can’t die twice.
OMG Aunty! Is that you…..not really sure if that was Aunty Narot or Philomena, the two confuse me a lot.(me faking the sweetest smile of the year, if this was a competition, I could have taken the trophy home.) Oh my beautiful daughter, she smiles back, kisses my chicks, holds me and looks me in the eyes and says, the man that will marry you will be a very lucky man my daughter, you are beautiful and you have a big heart as your mother. At this point, I was waiting for it, this was just the introduction.
Eh so my daughter, you know I’ve been gone for a long time, so what is new, she smiles and continues, any lucky man? Holding and shaking my chicks. Oh no Aunty not yet, you remember I told you the last time? I continued, You will be the first person to know once I find one Aunty, trying to end the topic. Ehhhhhhh she continues, you see my daughter time is going, and your mother needs grandchildren( clearly she is now the family spokes person).
Eh what about the young man I saw you with last time at uncle Dario’s funeral? He was a very handsome man, I quickly jumped in, Aunty no no, we are no longer together. Squinting her eyes, this time calling me by my name, she continues, you know you have to get serious, you finished your studies, you are working and running a business, what else are you waiting for. Eh yes before I forget, have you heard Lovok’s son came back from the States, very handsome man, no Aunty, no I haven’t heard, yes he came last week, you should go say hallo.At this point, I have to say yes as an escape plan, I will Aunty I will find some time and pay them a visit.
welcome home, can I get you something to drink? Eh you see now she jumps in you see why I always say you will make a very good wife, Aunty you know everything is Gods plan eh, yes I know, and clearly you have to pray hard, and don’t forget to attend the Sunday services ok? ….blush blush bluh it goes on and on.
So this isn’t the first time, God know how many times I have gone through such talks, with basically almost all the Aunts, most uncles, some married friends, and some people who start questioning you immediately they hear you are single. Well am sure am not alone, and someone out there went through the same problem or still going through this.
Now don’t get me wrong, marriage is a beautiful thing, and I pretty much respect the institution of marriage, it’s Gods given blessing to us, in Prov 18:22 the Bible says ” He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the Lord”. On the other side I also believe marriage is a central institution shaping the society, binding families and a form of lineage continuity.
I just feel as an African woman, or rather a South Sudanese woman the pressure inflicted on unmarried women is overwhelming, considering the error we are in now, a lot have changed in terms of how the world operates now, politically, economically, socially etc, Interactions have crossed boarders, a lot of traditions and cultures have been adopted and intergrated, the world has become a small village, we have eroded some of our cultures and adopted others, there are so many reasons each person in this world works on their own time zone, some get there before others, but we all get there eventually at our own pace.
Now that being said, I know our ‘aunts’ out there really want to see us happy, and to them marriage is the holy grail. They all have the good intentions. Now I don’t want to get into reasons that drive you into marriage life, whether it’s for love, money, fame, showbiz, age etc My real question is, Do we get into marriage as a result of our own personal choices or we get pressured into an institution we are not ready to fully and wholeheartedly be part of?
I have a lot of friends and people I know who are happily married and others that end up breaking apart even before their first anniversary, and the chief advisors that were initially there aren’t no more. A lot of unfaithfulness in marriages, some young men getting married and taking their wives to leave outside the country to raise their children in a better environment and yet cheat on them while away, or some men getting better jobs and start earning more money, and now think they can marrying as many wives as they wish, or prey on young innocent women because they can afford to buy them stuff or spoil them. I know what your thinking right now, probably saying everyone has a freedom to do whatever he or she feels like, yes that’s right, but whatever you do, keep in mind, marriage should be a respected institution entered into with love, passion and commitment, and if you ain’t ready for this, don’t sign up for it.
Now all these could be as a result of an absence of real informed personal choice. I believe going into marriage should be a personal decision, when you are ready and believed to have found the one, your soul mate, that person you can’t leave without, now you can decide to get married, but not give into pressures from other people, or because of peer pressure or age, or the community expects you to get a wife.
Act on your time at your own pace and this is my opinion, I hope I cheered up someone’s soul out there. Say no to pressure.
Have a stress free day y’all .