Mornings are like that.
30 mins with Poju Oyemade.
Bags packed. Shower. And Breakfast.
Mornings are like that.
“Baby, I’m set.”
“Just a minute, please.” She stood in front of the dressing mirror and continued her make-up. ‘Just a minute’ in reality meant twenty minutes or more.
I darted to the living room, ensured the children were all set. Josephine carried Champion and they set off for school. That done, it was just the two of us now.
She was still by the mirror when I walked back in. “Baby, we are running late.”
“Sorry, I’m almost done.”
‘Almost’ and ‘Just a minute’ are Siamese twins. They mean the same thing and they have the same evaluation. They are used interchangeably most of the times but are never and have never been used correctly.
“But you can do this in the car.” My patience was running out.
No response. I left and switched off all electrical appliances, ACs, bulbs, TVs, etc. That only took a few seconds. I was back the third time.
“I’m through!” She spurted before I could say a word. She hurried through brushing her hair. “Seriously, I’m done.” Her lips were touched for the 100th time. “Mo ti setan, looto.” She was adjusting her skirt and checking it at the same time.
I stood by the door and my face was a picture.
“Please meet me in the car.”
“WAIT!” She cried. “Wait for me now!”
She brought her necklace and offered me, “Please…”
Come on! What gives with you?!
I took a deep breath. I needed all the calm and composure if I wanted to get that done quickly. “What time should I come for you?”
“Are you sure? Let it not be that I will show up by 2 and you will still not be ready.” I fixed the necklace around her neck.
“Okay, make it 2:30pm.”
“Just to be on the safer side ni.”
She dabbed her face with powder for the umpteenth time and smacked her lips. She was by the mirror again for ‘final touch.’
“Baby, you can do this in the car, for crying out loud!”
“I’m done now! Truly, I’m done.” She turned her head in several angles to have numerous satisfactory views
“But, seriously, you used make your face in the car. Is this a new development?”
“You would normally do all these in the car or in the office.”
“Not anymore. Old things are passed away.”
“I don’t get. Why? What happened?” We walked out of the room and started downstairs.
“It’s a New Year resolution.”
“Really? I don’t understand.” Her normal and acceptable routine before now was to do her make-up in the car or in the office. But two weeks running, I noticed the pattern had changed – she was doing it before leaving home.
“I want the image you have of me during the course of the day to be a very beautiful one.” She sat and shut the car door.
That sounded like a well-read line from a movie script. “Seriously?”
“Yeah, seriously, it’s important to me.” She went further. “Think about it, I leave the house in the morning with my face not made up and by the time I’m coming back I’m also looking tired and spent. So you don’t get to see how beautiful I look most of the time.”
Too deep. I had to swallow. Two times. Just to process.
She waited for my response. She didn’t get any and continued. “See…that means I only look good for my colleagues, bosses and clients and not my husband. That means all my effort in dressing up and looking good was just for them. Not good at all. So, top on my resolutions this New Year is to always look my best for my husband. No more fixing my face in the car or in the office.”
It feels good to know I matter in the scheme of things. I am pleasingly flattered. Somebody is doing something for me. Life is good.
“Why should it be outsiders I give my best looks to? Why should it be only colleagues and clients that see me when my face is made-up? And when I get home, I look weary and bare. That’s not fair at all.”
Still speechless. I’d never seen it like that.
“You see, I’m right. You can’t even talk.” She smacked her lips. “And then you go to work and one random, well made-up secretary will be dancing attendance on you in the office and be distracting you. No more making-up in the office!”
Wow. “Where is all this coming from?”
“Let’s just say I got informed.”
I turned the car into her office street in Central Area.
“I realized I wasn’t doing well enough giving others my best look and giving you left-overs.”
“Say something, it’s true, isn’t it?” She turned and faced me.
“Never seen it the way you painted it till now. Well…you have a point, though.”
“Hmmn…the secretary part or the left-over part?”
“Both, actually.” I laughed.
“You’re not serious!” She giggled. “You deserve to have the best, you know, you deserve to have the most beautiful image of your wife throughout the day. Truly.”
If my hands were not on the steering, I know what they would be doing as she caressed my hair.
“When you think of me during the day, the image you should have should be gorgeous, not drab. It should make you smile, and not scowl.”
I parked the car in front of her office. She faced me one final time, ‘how do I look?’
“Gorgeous!” My grin was touching my left and right ears.
“Thank you.” See you later. She shut the door.
And ten minutes after I left her, I was still grinning.
What’s your New Year resolution for your spouse?