(The Adolescent Girl’s Diary)
I have questions, many questions. I have questions, but they sure are weird—that’s what mommy calls em anyway. But it doesn’t change the fact I have questions, does it?
Life is full of questions, she said. Some answered; some not—and some answered with more questions. Everyone has questions, she said.
But why is it all of mine that are answered with more questions with the old lady a’ home? Oh, I forgot—“because they’re weird”!
I can ask some things, can’t I? I’m grown enough—last school term my breasts aren’t this size; by next term I can bet they’ll be the size of big sis Dorothy’s.
I have lots of questions! Really, why must I be “the nice girl” when the big girls are enjoying life big time? Why must I keep my virginity when the girls at school lose it anytime? And don’t stare at me, mommy, just for asking so!
She just looked on, surprised at first—or maybe shocked. She breathed a moment. My dear — she began — our society’s culture expects you as a girl to be of a good moral standing and, more importantly (she added), God wants you to be of a righteous standing with him. Trust me, dear, they’re all for your good (she concluded).
God! (I scoffed.) Where was God when daddy died? Remember you cried so badly, too, mommy? Was daddy’s painful death also for our good?!
When you grow up into someone of my age, she replied, you will know that in this life we don’t have the knowledge capacity for everything, but in the end everything will make better sense.
OK, OK, OK, Mom! (I retorted.) A hen lays and hatches eggs only after a rooster climbs it. Mom, how does a woman gets pregnant?
She shot a questioning look at me. Chrissie, she started, I know I’ve told you before. I’ll say it again. OK, if you let a boy touch…
Touch…! There you go, mom! I like your idiom—it’s as old fashioned as ever! Mom, I’m not asking ’bout when we kiss or caress—I know that. What I’m asking is: what happens when we sex?!
Good Lord! Chrissie! Have you been… been having… I mean, having sex?!
Chill, mom! You didn’t really educate me very well, so I tried to find out first hand.
Oh my! Christiana, you actually had… had sex!?
It’s just thrice since last Sunday, mom. Now, don’t stare at me that way; we used condom!
Kayode Taiwo Olla is the author of two works – a novel, Sprouting Again (Syncterface, London; 2011), as well as a collection of performance-oriented love poems, Softlie (Synterface, London; 2013). Holding a BA from Obafemi Awolowo University and an MA from the University of Ibadan, he is a lecturer at the Federal Polytechnic, Ede, Nigeria. He devotes his time outside the lecture halls to his family and to Bravearts Africa which he co-founded with his wife.