Dear Mother

{Letters To The Ones I Love}

3 min readMar 30, 2022

Dear Mother,

There’s a Yoruba proverb that says,

Twenty friends can’t play together for twenty years

I don’t think that is a lie, but I believe something else.

Two friends can play together for twenty years.

Our love story is one of the greatest love stories of all time. One that has been told to me countless times. A love so pure that anytime you had to leave, I’d burst into tears. A love so strong that whenever I looked up at the night sky and saw the brightest star, it always felt like I could hear you.

The first memory I have of you, or rather, the first I can remember, was when I was sick and you carried me on your back all night. I mean, that’s what mothers are supposed to do, right? But back then, I thought that was the biggest act of love.

How wrong I was.

I found a diary of yours in Grandma’s house. You started writing your thoughts when you were pregnant. You had no friends or anyone you could rant to, so you found solace in a book and a pen. You poured your heart out. There was a particular entry where you wrote about how excited you were to meet me. How you had conversations with me when I was still very much in your belly. How you believed I was going to be the most beautiful baby you had ever seen.

Those writings triggered something in me. Here I am pouring out my heart to you now.

On this day, twenty years ago, we met for the first time. I do not have a photographic memory but each time I heard that story, they told me you were asleep for a long time. They shook you into consciousness to carry your cross.

But you never made me feel like a cross. You don’t make me believe I am a consequence of your actions. Once these thoughts linger in my head for too long, I shove them out because I know I have a friend who loves my very being.

I’m sorry you had to go through all of the pain you went through. I’m sorry you lost a part of yourself. A part of you I want to see.

I remember when I misplaced some money that my teacher asked me to keep. It was for a class excursion. I had misplaced the money for a long time but I couldn’t replace it, and I was in the hostel, so I couldn’t steal from home. I remember I called you, the morning of the excursion, cooked up a lie and asked you to send me 10k. You sent it, but later you found out the truth. Honest to God, I thought you were going to disown me. You cried because I lied to you. I wanted to bury myself. But the next time you called, you said “you’re the only one I have”.

I will never make you cry again.

I have a lot to thank you for, but I’m sure you’re already bored reading this, if you do. I’m sure everyone else is bored too.

But I choose to thank you, for being the best friend a girl could wish for.

Thank you for calling me relentlessly. I get tired of those phone calls, especially when I’m around my friends, but they make my day.

Thank you for staying strong. Who is Wonder Woman or Captain Marvel compared to my Aunty Bukky?

Thank you for making me your confidant. Adulthood is difficult to navigate but you don’t hold back with me.

Thank you for our weird conversations, especially the ones about sex. Thank you for being the most understanding and non judgmental person there is.

Thank you for letting me lay on you when I’m exasperated, or when I just want you to carry me.

I remember I told you to stop kissing me, just in case I had a boyfriend. You said when I’m married with kids, you’d still kiss me.

Thank you for loving my friends. They absolutely adore you.

Thank you for twenty years of the sweetest mother and daughter relationship. And here’s to fifty more.

With love from your best friend,