Home to me is a haven I will not trade for anything in this world. I grew up being by my mother’s side often (perhaps this was the reason I took the path of her profession), and I was and am still popularly called "Mommy’s boy". This has always been a weakness for me: leaving my parents, especially my mom, at any moment.
The first experience I had leaving home was at the age of twelve when I started high school in Suleja, which was about seven-eight hours’ journey by road from Ilorin, where I am based. My dad took me in his Mercedes-Benz 190 car to resume high school, junior secondary school one (JSS 1), at the Gifted Academy. I saw some other students in my age range whose parents had equally brought their children and wards to resume school. I was fascinated by a few of the students who cried when their parents began to drive off. This was amusing, as I was partially glad I was leaving home. My dad was such as to send me a hundred errands in a day, and that frustrated me to my guts. This opportunity to attend school in a boarding house seemed like the perfect escape plan.
I watched my dad drive off after he handed me over to a school guardian. Not a single tear dropped from my eyes. Perhaps my soul sang in joy for the freedom I received. Although I missed my mother, who was fond of taking me along almost everywhere, farmland and workplace inclusive.
Prior to my dad leaving, I did not disclose that my bowels were full and needed emptying. This was my first call when I got into the hostel—Blue House.
My guardian handed me to the house captain so he could put me in a room. I was awoken the following day by the hostel captain with a heavy bang on the polls in the hostel. It was my first time seeing students clean the gutters rigorously and wash the stench filled conveniences.
I was soon initiated into the rigors of boarding house life, where I met ruthless senior students who readily beat or dished out grass for me to cut. Many times afterwards, I swore never to return to the school the following term. All the while, I made sure not a tear was shed. I continued the tortures of the boarding house until my third year, after several failed attempts to not return.
When I completed the junior secondary session, I convinced myself that nothing was going to hinder me from completing my stay at the school. I knew the worst was over and I could survive the senior secondary sessions. The senior classes were not rosy yet, but they were less damaging than the junior classes. It was in the senior class that my life in school began to have direction and exposure to possibilities. It was one of the times I chose my career and made the decision to pursue it.
I am glad I left home for a boarding house, especially in a far-away location where I had to survive almost by myself and make decisions that would affect my future.
Thank you for reading. I would love to have your comments and contributions. 🤗