It was a typical tiresome, hustle-filled day. I had gone to the office in the morning because the machine they gave me at my new job was slowing me down to no end. This trip to the office wasn’t enticing because you know what I love about this new job? If you answered the fact that I get to work from home then you’re absolutely right! I love the idea of working from home. I plan my work. I don’t have someone looking over my shoulder every two minutes to make sure that I am doing what I am supposed to do. I am enjoying it; planning my day, scheduling daily tasks – the people I need to call, emails to send and respond to…all in the comfort of our living room. I think I work better this way.
But that machine took almost one hour to come alive when switched on. Ok, I exaggerate. Maybe it took 5 minutes. It had me pulling my hair. I needed IT expertise. That trip to the office was necessary.
The IT guy – a very humble soft-spoken guy – told me that he needed to format it to get rid of unnecessary programs that could be slowing it down. Good, BUT he did not have some driver sijui nini and so I had to come back the following day which simply meant more wasted time tomorrow. At this point I started getting the feeling that my day wasn’t going to go as well as I had planned. Anyway, if a guy doesn’t have drivers, he doesn’t have drivers. He promises to get them by the end of business the same day and that my machine problems will be taken care of by the following day. Morning, latest.
Nothing much I could do about that. Later in the day, I had issues with my paypal account. I was broke yet the month’s worth of writing just sat pretty when I could think of so much that I needed to spend it on. Confirmation was in; it was officially a bad day for me.
I came home to find you and your sister already back from school. I like how you two get excited when I come through the door. You are like my own cheer leading squad “Mum! Mum! Mum! Mum!!”
You had taken your evening baths and were playing instead of doing your homework. Being the one who always asks me questions, you started off with “Habari ya job?” I said job was fine. After answering the many questions you had for me, I went straight to the bedroom, undressed, tied a towel around my body and went in for a bath. I took my time. I needed to clean the fatigue, the disappointment and any other negative chi that lingered.
When I came out of the bathroom, the two of you were finally behaving and were finally struggling with homework. I passed you on my way to the bedroom and you gave me a smile. When I reached the bedroom, it was to find a small folded piece of paper on the bed. It was written “From Hailey” with your handwriting. I picked it up and opened it. I read it slowly;
I love you to the moon and back. God bless you. And I bless you”
In all my years as a girl, no love letter has warmed my heart the way yours did. I sat down on the bed. Still in a towel. I held the note to my chest. A smile spread across my face.
“And I bless you”, you wrote. You, my daughter, blessed me, your mother. This took me back to when you were four years old. One day, you randomly came and stood before me and asked me to bless you. I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to do and so I stretched out my hand, placed it on your head and amateurishly, I said “God bless you Hailey” I wasn’t sure if that was what you had in mind but since you appeared content, we left it at that.
Now you were blessing me. You have no idea how huge that was for me.
I just sat there.
I thought how much I had shared with you lately. You understand so many things already. I recently told you that I was going back to work and you could not hide your disappointment.
“Who will take care of us?”
“I promise to get someone to take good care of you.”
“If you work from home then why do we need someone else to take care of us?”
“Because I need to work on the job I am given at work. We need someone to do the housework and stuff. Besides, I will have to work from the office sometimes, even travel sometimes.”
”Why can’t you just do laptop work?” (Laptop work in this sense is ‘Writing’)
“Because writing cannot sustain all our needs. We need money for your school fees, rent, food and pretty dresses and shoes for you and Heidi”
Your face lit up when I mentioned the pretty dresses and shoes. Typical girl, you are.
Then the excitement died down after a short while when the implication set it.
“But I prefer when you cook for us, when you take care of us, when you take us to school and when you pick us up from school. You won’t be doing all these things with us anymore?”
“I also prefer cooking for you, taking care of you, taking you to school and picking you up. I will be doing it but not all the time like before. I need help with it now because I need to work. Taking care of you and your sister is still my job. It will always be my job. I will do it whenever I get the chance ok?”
“Ok”, you said. And the amazing thing is that you really understood.
You really do get me. You understand why I do what I do. Many are the times I have been busy working and when Heidi starts making noise, you have silenced her saying that “Mum anafanya kazi”
Thank you for the letter and the drawing of me. I loved it even though you forgot to give me legs. I love the flowered dress and the earrings. Thank you for the sweet words that lifted me up when I was feeling so low.
You and your sister make me aspire to do great things for us. I will not fail you, so help me God.
Sweetheart, you are loved.
God bless you. I bless you my daughter.