Earlier today, I was watching a movie about four men in their sixties who were close friends as boys and reunited to celebrate the wedding of one of quartet. The title of the film is Last Vegas and it is hilarious!
As I watched the interaction between Morgan Freeman and his son (played by Michael Ealy- one of my actor crushes), who was very protective of him because of his health issues. He fussed over him, wouldn’t let him carry anything heavy even his grandchild who was still a baby; I felt the old man’s pain. It struck me then that there were already echoes of that dynamic in my relationship with my parents especially my father.
My father likes to exert himself on things he shouldn’t be doing, I never fail to lecture him on stress and taking things easy. I tell him how while in his head, he’s still a strong bobo most probably in his early thirties. In real life, he’s pushing sixty and slowing down is no longer an option but is slowly writing itself firmly on the stone tablets of his timeline.
As I watched the movie, I kept thinking about how I too might get old although old age isn’t guaranteed to anyone (my mother and Hero would frown at this point when they read this post, my mother would probably even call me) that the little baby/babies I cared for would begin to act like I was some elderly person instead of the forever sixteen year old that I really and truly am.
I wonder how it feels to have people look at you and not see you, the essence of you but the shell battered by time and toil and suffering is all that lights up their retinas. Even now my skin jumps when I am called Ma, I want to shout “I am not a Ma ooooo, my mother and aunties are Mas not Adaeze biko”
Imagine looking in the mirror to behold wrinkles and lines instead of the beautiful planes and angles that youth dispenses with a generous flair. Will the worries and struggles of today still matter? Will the fears and anxieties that glued our feet to safety even when we longed to browse through the store of uncertainty and fill our baskets with the bounty on her shelf, still the trembling of our hearts?
I wonder if the opinions of the naysayers and the haters (how I hate that word) will still echo with thunder in the days when all that is left is gray hairs and an uncertain wisdom. I wonder if the longings and strife of youth will still light fires when the muscles and nerves droop from the weight of age. I wonder if…
I am not Femi Kuti and I am not a wonderer.