I don’t even know where to start!
Your letter left me with mixed feelings. You have always been able to do that to me.
You disarm me with so much love and validation and then, you throw a bomb when I am comfortable.
I am who I am because of you.
As far back as I can remember, you have never stood in my way.
You listen to me and encourage me when I embark on things you don’t particularly agree with.
I remember seeing the flash of disappointment in your eyes when I told you I did not want to be an accountant like you but an engineer.
It was so brief that I thought I had imagined it.
You never pushed me in a direction I was not prepared for.
You supported me and made sure I had all I needed to excel in every way.
When you call yourself a bystander to all I have done, I call you my indefatigable rock of support and validation.
For every time my heart was beating in fear and I came to you, you showed an unshakeable confidence in me and reminded me of how I was made to conquer the world.
You have been my impetus. My cheerleader, and my biggest fan.
You could have easily been a different father, one with crushing rules and regulations who demanded total obeisance without questioning.
You could have refused to have given me the open channel to speak with you sincerely, so that you order me to be the little helpless daughter you pictured I was going to be.
Some fathers crush the spirits of their daughters because they are females who are seen as second class human beings in their eyes.
But not you, my beloved daddy.
You placed my brother and I on an equal plane and watched us fly.
What you see and call the spirit of a man daddy, is simply the default spirit of a human being before society and toxic culture tames it.
You know the culture that tells a man he is a ‘man’ and a woman that she is nothing without a man.
And so the men soar while the women walk even when they have the wings to fly.
But you are not a regular father. You are not even a regular man.
Maybe, who you are is the reason why I have refused to consider marriage.
Let me explain here, daddy.
There was a man I met when I was finishing my degree who liked me.
I also liked him.
When I shared my desire to be a site engineer, he nodded and seemed to agree.
But the next day, he asked me who would raise the children if we both focused on career progressions.
He spoke about teaching or lecturing jobs and even talked about opening a supermarket for me so that I would be able to raise kids.
Daddy, there are so many men out there that see marriage as a reason to take over the reins of a woman’s life simply because she is married to them.
Men that will break a woman’s spirit because a man must control his wife.
I cannot stand such men. You are my standard and the bar you have set is so high.
I will not be an extra in my own movie; I will be a co-star.
Marriage is not as important as it used to be.
Don’t frown daddy, it will give you wrinkles.
For economic reasons, people partnered up into family units.
Things have changed. I don’t need the economic protection of a man.
And having children can be done without marriage.
There are so many single women/mothers doing great things out there.
The stigma against single women still exists but it is getting smaller and smaller because there are so many single women here; it is no longer news.
This is not to say it is my ultimate plan to be a single mother.
This should please you daddy, I am sure.
Another thing I will not do is to be desperate for a partner.
That is never a good start to getting anything.
There are many women who would have lived longer lives if they hadn’t gotten married.
Remember Titi the banker?
The one that was murdered by her husband?
Or even Ronke Shonde whose husband killed her and left her on the floor till their maid discovered the body?
But society has said a woman is little or nothing without marriage, so women make bad choices and refuse to leave even when it is evident that the marriage is dead.
These real life stories tell me I need to be careful and not make marriage a goal.
This is potentially unhealthy.
My priority is to live life as fully as I can as an individual. If I meet someone along the line that fits into my life, then I will consider a lifelong partnership.
If I never do, I will get a pet dog to worry about.
Don’t hold your chest daddy!!! I am joking o. About the pet.
By the way daddy, love can come in any package irrespective of gender.
Some people wait for the love of a queer, non binary gendered individual who identifies as ‘they’.
Please, don’t shout, Baba mi.
I am not a lesbian in Jesus name.
Be patient, daddy. What you desire may happen sooner than you expect.
I love you eternally.
Always your baby girl,