I think it is natural for any parent to feel that they would exchange places with their child in times of sickness and pain. Kwezi has been unwell. The changes in weather, fluctuating from hot to cold, humid to rainy, have left her and her cousin Jasmine with a bad cough and I am not exaggerating when I say that there could have been chest pain at some point. Kwezi is still moving around in her pyjamas and she has shockingly lost her appetite. Thankfully, the medicine seems to be working and soon, the cough will hopefully be history.
What have we been up to in the last one week? Not much really. Different people have on several occasions asked me whether it is not hard to get content for this column. My answer has been consistent. There is never a dull day in a toddler’s world. I keep telling you that it’s surprising how many things a child can teach you. This past week, I realised that my baby is growing up a little too fast. She is observant and like a good student, she is copying everything she sees and also hears.
I find it cute when she tries on my clothes and my shoes. I always roar with laughter when she puts my bag on her shoulder and imitates what I say when I am about to run out of the house.
But just the other day, the imitation took another turn. I was watching a movie when a kissing scene appeared. Honestly, it wasn’t that kind of kiss that you pray never appears on the screen when you are sitting next to your parents, grandparents or any other ‘old school’ person. I usually cover her eyes when things seem to get heated but I ignored this one because it looked ‘harmless’. Terrible mistake. I always kiss Kwezi on the lips, especially when I am going to work. Nothing lingering but what our Francophone friends call a ‘bisous’. So you can imagine my shock when my baby cupped my face with her two small hands and proceeded to twist her head left and right in kissing motions. My memory flew back to the kissing scene. She is not yet three, what was she doing memorising this? I wondered. You should have known better, I responded. I was a little ashamed. But did I sit in a corner and beat myself up over this. Absolutely not. First, because this incident is completely isolated but also because I am human.
I now know better of course and for those small incidents, I can’t help but be reminded that I am only a student at this.