As a little girl attending Block Rosary, there is this story that one brother in our center always tell us during Christmas season. Annually he reminds us of this story. According to him, there was a day he was walking on the road during Christmas season, a man passed him and was murmuring to himself.
He even thought the man was mad, of course it’s only Mad Men that talk to themselves on the road. The man was calculating stuffs and murmuring to himself that he did not know when the nylon he was with dropped from his hand. My block Rosary brother had to call him back and tell him. When he asked the man what the problem was, the man narrated his ordeal; his wife was mounting pressures on him to give her money to buy Christmas stuffs for their children and herself…
It’s that season again! It’s that time when the children worry their parents for Christmas clothes and shoes. It’s the time when parents run about to ensure that their children look good for the season. It’s that time when women (especially those who would travel to the village) will like to ‘meet up’ with the trending hair styles, accessories and beautiful apparels.
It’s the time of the year when the young men and women staying in the cities will return to the village, some with their new rides others via public transport.
It’s the season where we spend time with our loved ones. It’s the season when the church remember the birth of Our Lord Jesus Christ. This period is associated with high level of expectations. Aged parents are waiting for their children to visit with a lot of goodies, siblings expect their elderly ones to come back with everything they requested including new clothes. Everyone is expecting something be it money, foodstuffs amongst others from relatives and friends.
The truth is that we have lost the true meaning and essence of Christmas. The quest for material things has clouded our minds that most of us do not really understand what Christmas is all about. Many now see Christmas as a time to showcase new clothes, shoes and other acquisitions. To worsen the already bad situation people now go the extra mile to look good and prove to everyone else that they are more successful than them.
Let us use Ebonyi State as a case study. Honestly, it’s seen as a ‘local’ town filled with ‘village’s people. During Christmas, all those who left the state to other bigger cities including Lagos, Abuja, Onitsha amongst others return in ‘flying colours’ literally. What happens to the local people? How do they feel about this? They feel really out of place. They compare themselves to their mates what are all looking successful.
Dear young man, there is absolutely no need for you to over do yourself in trying to look more successful than others. In case you do not know this, most of the people who come back from the cities wear the everything-is-fine cloak. Some of them are barrow pushers over there, some sell at the traffic, others probably hawk wares along the streets.
Dear young girl, do you know that some girls are interested prostitution in the big cities? You feel less valid because you do not have the trendy clothes and jewelleries. They probably sold their bodies to look that good. You are doing a legit business and you are complaining of not wearing the latest apparel?
Brethren, do you know that some of those young people even borrowed money to come home for Christmas to flex? Of course, there are some people who are into genuine businesses in the cities, they make profits, they are paid quiet well and have a lot to spare for flexing. So do not compare yourself to them. Just do your thing.
To our girls, this may sound like I’m deviating a bit but… The Marly guys will be back for the season. They will come with basket full of marriage promises. Do not be deceived, some of them just want to get you behind closed doors and the rest is history. They will promise to come back for you but we all know that that is a story for the gods. So be wise as a serpent and meek like a dove. Do not allow your throat to control you.
This season, buy whatever you can afford for your parents and loved ones. No go dey do pass yourself. And hey honey, do not feel left out when others dress all funky. Remember to cut your coat according to the cloth.
All in all… Parents please do not mount pressure on your children during this season. The reason why some of them do not come home is because of your high expectations. You expect them to come bag with bags of rice, beans, wrappers and the rest of them. Have you taken out time to ask them how they are faring where they are? Do you even know how they are coping, how life is treating them?
Children do not mount pressure on your parents to buy Christmas clothes for you, we are not celebrating your birthday, you are not Jesus Christ. Wives please allow your spouse to have their peace of mind. Do not drive the man out of his home with your naggings about Christmas
Eat what you can afford, buy the things you can afford. Do not run into unnecessary debts because of the season. Do not give yourself High Blood Pressure. Remember, Christmas is an annual event. If you borrow this year, will you still borrow next year? Will you continue to borrow to ‘meet up’ with the high expectations of Christmas for the rest of your life? Give it a thought and I hope you realize that the pressure that comes with the yuletide season is just… not worth it.
Never forget that none of us is leaving here alive!