Jide: ‘is that all?’ he asked and resumed his writing.
Daisy: ‘uhm…no…I also…need…no…not me…just that there isnt any food…’
Jide: ‘food and pictures brought you here, which automatically means money…’ he was saying.
Daisy: ‘not exactly like that…’ Daisy wanted to protest but jide’s raised hand signalled her to stop.
Jide: ‘I have heard you’ he said with finality.
More like ‘I have heard all your stammering’ he thought amusingly but his face held no smile. He wasn’t even looking at the pitiful sight of Daisy at the door. Daisy curtised mentally and left his presence closing the door softly behind her. Once out, she relaxed her back on the wall, she realised she was shaking inwardly, she raised her hand to her forehead and felt she was sweating too, She became angry with herself. What was it about his presence that turned her into Jelly butter, she thought.
Daisy: ‘I bet Grace would be bolder in his presence’ she said angrily as she walked to her room now.
Daisy: ‘such a chicken livered Daisy!’ she continued and banged the door of her room like it had been the one who upset her. Grace had been the caller of the afternoon, Daisy recognized her immediately as the ‘lady on red’ from the picture and wedding. She became a trifle jealous, because Grace was a stunner and she was as nasty as she was pretty too. She had gone on about how Daisy appeared from nowhere to steal her man and how she was not gonna give up without a fight, how she would wait for the day Jide would definitely push Daisy away with the messiest divorce she (Daisy) had ever known and how the pain would be greater than the scandalous wedding she had…bla bla bla…
Daisy was all calm throughout the exchange, she was only grateful that her emotions didn’t give up on her, the worst she could have done was to whimper and give up a tear in front of that woman! She wished she was all bitchty like Brenda her friend. She would have given her a piece of her mind too. But she wasn’t and all she had done was to tell the irate Grace to kindly leave her home when she was done, then she had left her standing in the parlour.
She didn’t know when Grace left cursing fire and brimstone. She just went to her room to sulk, but bounced back to her cheerful self hours later and started preparing for the confrontation with Jide.
Jide however, had not been aware of Grace’s visit to his home, he had last seen her at the wedding. The next morning he dropped a considerable amount of money for Daisy on the Dining and that became his routine, dropping money weekly for Daisy on the dining to buy whatever things she needed for the home or her personal effects. she should well know that his love and attention wasn’t hers, but she could eat and fatten up for all he cared.
He however, never ate the food Daisy unrelentingly prepared and left on the dining daily for him, until weeks later, he reconsidered and started eating the breakfast and dinner that was readily and steadily available for him. He reasoned that since it was his money she used in preparing the food and couldn’t possibly poison him, there was no reason skipping it and waste money eating out. But that was where the contact ended, he didn’t go any further. They lived like familiar strangers up on till…
Any outsider who examined how the marriage of Jide and Daisy came about might come to the conclusion that Daisy is a gold digger or was paying back a debt to Mama or at worst a confused girl who allowed her emotions direct her blindly. But Daisy might probably not be that because, for as much as anyone cares to listen, she truly loves Jide, hers is a love that budded and flourished for over 6 years that even sometimes she wonders if such a love could ever exist.
It all started with her sojourn to America and her later acquaintance with Mrs. Bimpe Olukoya, preferably called Mama by all, a meeting whose history was both eventful and tragic.
Daisy Chinwe Adelade (for that was her maiden name) was born to Laide Adelade and John Okoye, she was however a product of a love affair gone sour, born out of wedlock and raised without the love of any of her parents, She grew up with her grandmother. John’s parent had bluntly refused his marriage to Laide when he had intimated them with her pregnancy, they told him to concentrate on his studies and leave the Yoruba girl who might just be deceiving him afterall. John, regardless of how his parents wanted and eventually made him deny the pregnancy knew he was responsible, but wasn’t courageous enough to stand up against them or rather it was more about his cowardice and fright that controlled his choice to finally deny his responsibility to the distraught and heartbroken Laide.
Iife continued. Someway, somehow through America Green card winnings, Laide left for America, happy for the chance to pick up her life again she left behind barely one year old Daisy in the care of her grandmother in Ibefun, Ijebu-ode. She however, didn’t relent in making sure that Daisy had all she needed Financially, but she could not give her the love of a mother that every child so craved.
And so Daisy lived her early life wishing for the acceptance of her father and the love of a mother after she learnt of the circumstances surrounding her birth, but when that didn’t happen, she gradually relapsed into hatred for her father and anything that had to do with the Ibos, she felt that it was some unnamed customs of her father’s tribe that had somehow influenced his decision to not marry her mother, she grew up with a grudge against him. Although he much later pushed to be associated with her and even invited her over during those years she was living in Boston.
But Daisy couldn’t totally erase her ill feeling towards the ibos and had subconsciously craved for a means where she could detach herself from every trace of her paternity, that was one of the reason she had taken the chance with Jide, for he represented amongst others, the life that would align her with the yoruba people she was more at home with and whose blood ran through her veins nevertheless her half relation with them.
Her father however, wanted otherwise, that being the reason he had opposed her marriage with Jide wanting her to marry an Igbo suitor of his instead.
Daisy was invited over to Boston by her mother when she was about 17 years and just through with her Secondary school. Excitedly she bade her friends and family goodbye, it was a dream come true for her because it afforded her the opportunity to be closer to the mother who had loved her from afar in years past, and in addition, she would live in America where everyone craved to be, she was going to live a beautiful life and get the best of education.
It was a rare opportunity and she welcomed it with open arms, whatever grudge or fault she ever had against her mother forgiven and forgotten and she also found herself letting go of some of the hurt caused by her father. She was all ready to experience that bond that she had always envied in other girls and their mother and she reasoned that it was better to concentrate all her energy there. her Life wasn’t so unfortunate afterall.
Laide didn’t disappoint one bit, it was all too obvious that she ached and had been waiting for the reunion all her life, she wasted no time and grabbed every opportunity she could to make up for the loss and the years she had missed in the life of her only child and daughter for she was married to a white there in America, but had no child to that effect.
Just a year after her sojourn and reunion, catastrophe struck, Daisy’s mum was diagnosed with cancer with the doctors predicting that she had just few months to live. Daisy got busy, Most of her educational trust fund went into the treatment in the hope that something could still be done to save her mum from dying. Laide however did not buy the idea of tampering with the money she had stashed away for her daughter’s education but Daisy was obstinate and cared more about saving her mum whom she was still getting to know. Since she was a co-signatory to the trust fund, she spared nothing atall.
Based on the story, what can you say about raising children from broken home?
Names have been changed to protect the identity of the narrator and other individuals in the story.
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