I want to say as Africans we are averse to expressing emotion but then I won’t because I’m African and i’m not averse to expressing deep set emotion(To my family)
But I am fairly certain that at least 95% of our African dads respond with one of these to a vocal expression expression of “I LOVE YOU”
1) Non-committal Nod
2) Unidentifiable noise like (mmhmm)
3) Very awkward thank you
And for my personal favorite
4) The blank look which is followed by the raising of a newspaper to cover the face.
Being the overly emotional/expressive child that I am, I’ve received my share of unemotional responses to my blatant display of affection.
However I seem to remember 1 particular day, Easter day to be exact. I had just come home from CEM ( Children Evangelism Ministry) camp and I was serving food to my daddykins, then I asked if he missed me while I was away for the weekend, he didn’t answer but I wasn’t deterred. I asked again slightly rewording my sentence, still no response just the flick of the news paper changing pages.
That meant switching to another tactic for me, sitting beside him till he got too disturbed by my looming presence. Just about 20 seconds into staring at him for my answer he turned to me (probably wondering where I got all my energy), dropped the news paper and said “24/7-365”
My thirteen (I think) year old brain didn’t understand what that meant, so I walked away thinking he was trying to trick me into solving a word problem ( which I absolutely hated!!)
The matter was of course reported to my awesome mother in defiance but she just smiled at me, knowing I had just literally hit a jackpot!
And today, thinking about how I won’t be chilling with my immediate family this Easter, I cant help but smile at how that memory warms me up.