Last Sunday was Palm Sunday. Yesterday was Good Friday. Today is Holy Saturday and tomorrow is Easter Sunday. The season of lent with the Holy Week officially ends today. Beyond the significance of the Holy Week, it reminds us of various aspects of our lives: our triumphs, sacrifices, self-denials, delayed gratifications, stooping to conquer, achieving goals and the fulfilment that comes with achieving these goals, and wearing the crown of victory at the end of the race.
Many of us have had times in our lives when we were celebrated. Some held positions which enabled them to dispense favours. At festive times like this, gifts and goodwill messages come in torrents; hampers and greeting cards would be everywhere.
Our phones are permanently busy when holding high positions. Our waiting rooms in the office are filled from morning until close of work. During our birthdays, birthday adverts would flood the newspapers. This goes on and on until we leave our positions. Then the triumphal entry jubilations and the hosanna come to an end as it did for Jesus after the triumphant entry. That is the fate that awaits some governors and some others holding political positions after May 29. In some government houses, the number of visitors and favour-seekers has started reducing. On their next birthday, the only birthday adverts you will see are from family members and grateful beneficiaries of the man’s goodwill while in office. The majority of those who benefited simply move on just as some of the Jews moved on.
It happens to people in the private sector too. Some of the celebrated CEOs of big companies in the past now live lonely lives. A few have even cried out aloud in newspapers of being abandoned by friends. Not to worry, Jesus was denied and abandoned at a critical time. People taste this bitter pill in varying degrees at some point in life.
Before you get to a position where you would be celebrated, you would have made sacrifices and stooped conquer, just as Jesus did. At some points in life, you suffer rejection and get humiliated. You are forced to eat humble pies and do so many things you would ordinarily not do just to achieve your goals. Marketers and insurance agents are very familiar with what I am talking about. Basically, no pain, no gain. Jesus exemplified this by dying on the cross to save mankind. But if he had not risen on the third day, his sufferings and death would have amounted to nothing. Jesus arose from the dead and that is the monumental event we shall celebrate tomorrow. After our toils, sufferings, humiliation, let us also experience our own Easter. Own your Easter so that your joy would be complete.
NUDE PREGNANT WOMEN
The first time I saw it, I was thrown off balance. I had never seen anything like it and I did not even know how to react. A pregnant married Nigerian woman posing nude for the whole world to see? Where are her in-laws? What about her family? Where is her husband? Why am I asking? I have seen photos with the husbands, also naked or partly naked on social media. Who took photos alongside their pregnant spouses? They were probably taken by professional photographers because many of them were taken in the studio and look like a pro job. The women use their hands to cover their privates to confer modesty on full blown nudity. That is unnecessary. Your bulging tummy has already covered your privates.
Make no mistake about it, these women are not trying to bring back those days when our forebears wore just enough to cover their privates. This trend is an imported culture. Here you know we import foreign cultures wholesale; the good, the bad and the very ugly. I noticed nude pregnant photos first with foreign celebrities. The first recorded celebrity to pose nude while pregnant is Demi Moore. Others like Mariah Carey, Serena Williams and not surprising Kourtney Kardashian of the Kardashian Clan have posed nude while pregnant. They were paid huge fees or they wanted the world to know that they are carrying the pregnancy, not going into motherhood through surrogate mothers. You know anything celebrities touch spreads like harmattan fire. Before long, it became a fashion trend. That is what some pregnant women in Nigeria are currently copying.
But do they need to prove that they are pregnant by going nude? I don’t think so. An aunt of mine, my father’s cousin, got pregnant at 48years when the world had given up on her. She travelled all the way from Warri to Ozoro, where we were living then, lifted her blouse to show my mother the good news and that it was real, not clothes stuffed around her body to make her look pregnant. The wife of my mother’s cousin also did the same thing. She had also been written off as barren. She wanted my mother to be an “oseri” (witness) just in case a Doubting Thomas arose. That was how women proved in my time that they were pregnant, not nudity.
Beyond herd mentality, maybe they want people feel they are stunning while pregnant. They are always well groomed and their skins glow. They probably also want to change the mind-set of some people that the only beautiful thing about a pregnant woman is the baby growing in her womb. I had that mind-set too, but before you crucify me here me out. In those days of communal life, there were women who looked terrible during pregnancy. They were dishevelled and spat all over the area where they sat or laid down. Some of them had difficult pregnancies though.
Before then, I had bad experiences with pregnant women. When I was under five years old (I am very sure because I had not started primary school), what can be termed child abuse in today’s world happened a few times. When my mother was not around, one pregnant neighbour took me to her house and locked the door for what seemed like eternity then. She said that she wanted the unborn baby to look like me. How? My DNA dey there? Another pregnant woman would deliberately stretch out her legs for me to walk across them when I am passing. We were brought up to believe that it is a taboo and must be undone by walking across the outstretched legs again in the opposite direction. When I tried to do that, she would refuse. Breaking a taboo was very distressing for my young mind. So I grew up suspicious of pregnant women. I considered them ugly, unkempt and wicked. Never mind it did not apply to my mother because she was different. In truth, I was anxious when I was preparing to get married. I wondered if I would be able to love my wife when she is pregnant. After six pregnancies (we lost one) it’s much ado about nothing.
Back to the nude pregnant women. I am old fashioned. I will never get used to it. But in a world where relativism reigns, does it really matter what my opinion is? Enjoy the Easter celebration and holiday.