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MUM STORIES: My mother, my heroine

Thursday May 9 2019

 Phelgona Nyaboke Ogega, a fourth year student at Maasai Mara University, wishes her mum a Happy Mother's Day. PHOTO| COURTESY

Phelgona Nyaboke Ogega, a fourth year student at Maasai Mara University, wishes her mum a Happy Mother's Day. PHOTO| COURTESY  

KAREN  MURIUKI
By KAREN MURIUKI
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Phelgona Nyaboke Ogega tells KAREN MURIUKI why her mother is her hero.

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“My name is Phelgona Nyaboke Ogega, a fourth year student at Maasai Mara University pursuing Bachelor of Science in Economics and Statistics.

I am the second born in a family of four children and the only daughter of my parents. My brothers are Kevin 24, Felix 15 and Daniel 12. I could say I am the tough-headed one and also sometimes the sweet daughter, at times.

My family has gone through a lot. My father, David Ogega, passed on two years ago and it was not as easy for us.

He was involved in an accident on August 15,2017. He was rushed to Mater Hospital in bad condition.

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He could not even speak. Scans done at the hospital showed that he suffered severe head injuries. We transferred him to Kenyatta National Hospital but unfortunately, he passed on five days later.

We did not expect any of it. He was the sole bread winner, which means he meant everything to us. He always told us,

“When you see someone who's successful know that he/she worked hard for it. Nothing comes on a silver platter.”

I will always walk by these words.

It has been tough for us, especially adjusting from having both parents to having only one.

I must admit that it has not always been financially okay for us. I used to compare our lives to others’ a lot.

Other children would go out with their families on weekends, yet we would always be at home doing chores.

But my mother, Alice Ariri, instilled so many great values in us with the passing of our dad. It was especially tough for her, being widowed so young. I saw the pain and grief in her eyes, yet she always held up her head telling us that God is always in control.

It was also difficult for her to fully meet our needs since she wasn't in a good paying job. She struggled to make ends meet because she always wants the best for us.

She took up the role of being our father and sole breadwinner as well so effortlessly.

Mum taught us to be grateful for the little things that we had. She always said, “Yes, we are not rich, but we should always be thankful for the little that we have.”

And despite all the challenges we have gone through as a family, my mum has always been standing strong and fighting for us so that we can fulfil our dreams.

She is my advisor and my mentor. I don’t know what life I would have without her.

After my father’s death, I was angry at everything and everyone. I would be rude and moody towards my mother. It even got to a point that I yelled at her. But she understood my emotions and grief and still made sure that I was happy.

The bond between mother and daughter can never be replaced with anything. A mother is the daughter's blood which makes her strong. Quite possibly, the most difficult, yet the most beautiful things to be.

Being a mother means to create, to love, to nurture to build ,to sacrifice and to do it with a smile on your face because that is just what they do and it always comes naturally for them.

A LOT OF CHALLENGES

As a girl, I am faced with a lot of challenges but I came out stronger and bolder because of her. And being in a family of men, she made sure that the societal beliefs of patriarchy didn’t stand a chance in our family. All of us had it equally.

This Mother's Day, my message to her is, "Momma, you are one of a kind and I am truly blessed to be one of your children. Heroes are not born, they are made such by vast challenges and experiences that they undergo without backing down. You are my heroine, momma."”

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