Sunday Dec 04, 2022

Super-Mummy

I like septembers. My mother was born in this month. First love born in this month (4th). younger brother’s on 27th. Parent’s anniversary this month. On average I think I have about 5 birthdays every day in September. I also like Septembers because it ends long holidays when I have to do chores, lol.

So today I’m celebrating a great woman I met at the University of Abuja. She came in with the Direct Entry Students in my 2nd year. Knowing that she’s a mother (with kids craving attention) I’ll keep this mercifully short.

Mrs Olayemi Olukoju  Akanmode is this person. She IS beautiful. We sometimes teased her that her husband would have to come pay a second bride-price. And she was meticulous about her appearance. Believe me we had married women who wore things that cast them as women looking for a last-chance with toyboys. Neither did she look like a old mama retired from the “market”. I remember taking this photo in our 2nd year.


She came for lectures from home every day! I imagined how she had to wake up and possibly prepare breakfast, and the children for school. And dress up for school. And come all the way to Gwagwalada in time for an 8 O’clock lecture. Interestingly, I realised she ALWAYS got to class before me (hence the Super-Mummy title). I refused to let this happen- so in final year I buckled up and made sure I got to class enough to get a seat on the “elder’s council” (front row seats!)

And She had these notebooks. Wide, ruled sheets with plastic covers. Those notes were always correct- if She and Inyene didn’t have it in their notes, then it didn’t exist! Of course I adopted that method of note-taking. I got some best-buy notebooks in final year that held my poems and my land law/company law notes. I lost the poems in a taxi, but I have the company law with me. And I used those kinds of notebooks in Law School (so I have my drafts safely carried).

I remember when we had this conversation about marriage in 3rd year(she probably doesn’t remember). When she told me how old her kids were (the oldest was below 12 at the time), I WAS surprised. But then she told me how her mates rushed into marriage- and she? She waited for the right one. If i remember correctly, she got married at 29 (i know i had an argument with someone about that) Now I wonder what people who may have sniggered behind her back would say now!

And I remember when we waited endlessly for law school. She was one of the people that gave encouraging words. Of course we hated the fact that we had to skip a year (I for one though I should be married next year, hahah). But she made us understand that things happen at the right time. I’m glad I didn’t get worked up – I went to law school at the best time possible! In that wait for law school, She took an internship with Awomolo & Co. I was with Godwin Obla SAN & Co, Ope Owotumi with Afe Babalola SAN & Co and Inyene Robert with Festus Keyamo. Sometimes I ran into them in court and the experience was exhilarating…I felt like a real lawyer! I’m sure she could have sat down at home and expected one husband to provide all the money. But she went out and did her bit- I’m sure the experience proved invaluable in law school!
And well there’s that adorable son of hers that used to say “God of-bid” instead of “God-forbid”.
I will stop here now. I hope you picked a thing or two about sacrifice. Any man or woman that goes back to university in Nigeria after marriage deserves commendation! And anyone who stays in school and actually finishes should be given a real award.

Thanks, ma for representing your family honourably- I have learned a thing or two about living married. And thanks for taking away the fear of married people from my life (my Hi5 profile still says I’m scared of married people). For those little words of advice, those silent cues, those good words you put in for some of us, well, thank you!

And Happy Birthday. May your children do you proud. And may God shower you with the blessings you don’t even think to ask for

Peter

10 thoughts on “Super-Mummy

  1. I wasn't able 2 say hapi birthday 2 Mrs.Akanmode on her birthday and dis I feel terrible for. She is what you say and more…. I want 2 say a big hapi birthday 2 “Mum C mi” as I hav always called her. Her advice & words r full of hidden teasures. She z hweva nt just a super mum but a Super-hero. Hapi birthday Ma.

  2. She was indeed a blessing to me and I'll always remember her. God bless u ma.Mrs Oribim Agbebaku.(4merly Abel-tariah Oribim)

  3. Wow this piece is so lovely. She relates with everyone life friends. Never feels pompous (hope that's d spelling). She is my husbands elder sister and also my brothers elder sister (can u figure that out)and then she is my …… (You can fill that up). Happy birthday once again maam and have a God filled year ahead.

  4. Well said Peter. Anty Yem-Yem (SAN) as I normally call her, is really a virteous woman. Uncle ReCharge (Richard) must have paid her pride price more than twice to earn a woman of her calibre.
    Significantly, you can see Anty Yem-Yem in other people because of the impact she makes everywhere she goes. Kids, family, friends, colleagues & even classmates like you have testified.
    What impresses me more is the way she keeps in touch & encourages me to keep going in every area of life just like you've rightly said.
    She's a tireless worker and a true believer of the Word. Thank God I met her!
    I wish her long life in complete good health & prosperity.
    Happy Birthday ma.
    Jaims

  5. Aaww I'm so touched by this tribute…jealouzin you sha but you deserve it all da way+i personally admirE ur kinda energy ALwAys esp yday when u did dt azonto cho®eography wit Damisi+Tayo…meehn u too get energy faa. But seriously speaking ehen, Uncle Richy said a particular line in d prayers after we made a toast yday…I just hol am for ma left hand…it truly showed how much he appreciates you which is something enviable…anywayz once. Again,HAPPY BIRTHDAY Sis

  6. Great! indeed,aunt Yemi,you are a woman in a million.'beautiful woman with beautiful character,God fearing,and full of care and love'.I thank God I had opportunity to stay with you in Ilorin then.Though,very short,but those were memorable times than cannot be 4gotten.I and Wuyi still refer to your marriage as model,you are a virtous woman,a loving mother,and a wonderful sis.I never see you as Toyin Olukoju's sis but as my own sis.My prayer for you today!.As mountain surround Jerusalem,so shall God continue to surround youand all yours with special grace.Happy birthday dear sis.!

  7. This is very touching & brings tears to my eyes. I am indeed blessed to have you all as friends. I deeply appreciate you all & pray that God will make our days together more meaningful. Thank you all & God bless you greatly.

  8. ah! azonto? wonderful, I never saw THAT coming 😉

  9. Cathy Cyril, Court 26,FCT High Court Apo.

    September 16, 2013 at 5:58 am Reply

    “Aye! I couldn't agree more. She was ma fave extern(if there be such a word)out of the seven externs that passed thru ma court & so I am a testament to her vivacious personality. There's aint anythin I'll say that hasn't been said already & so to cap it all I'd say; tho sometimes it may not be possible 2 remind u everyday abt how special u r,I'd like u 2 knw u're SPECIAL & being thought abt. I'm glad to have known you Mrs.Akanmode.

  10. A word or 2 about Aunt Yemz Koko (she knows who). All these and a whole lot more makes her endearing. I admire her for her fearless nature. That attitude that makes her forge ahead thru difficult things that will make most turn back. Personally, I think life is easier when u deal with people who are straight fwd; someone who let's you know just how it is, no sugar coating. That's u and I love that about u.

    So, u know I love u, and u know who this is. A JNR and a SNR. Haha!

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