I heard their voices loudly,
they weren’t just speaking officially,
Mom and the Asst. Headmaster,
they were arguing about something I couldn’t decipher
and I heard mommy saying “Mark my words, she’s a smart child you’d wish you admitted, just remember!”
Apparently, I had just returned from summer vacation at my cousins’,
having missed the first admission exam into primary school (primary 1).
I wrote a second one but the school had limited slots for admission into primary 1.
I passed my exam excellently as I recall but the Asst. Headteacher felt the need to admit another boy rather than a petite, skinny looking “girl”.
His excuse was that I was too small, very timid and not so perfect in maths,
he feared I wouldn’t scale through
but I merited it unarguably.
“First doesn’t always mean best baby but do your BEST”,
Mom’s words rang in my head as I heard my name being called out at the prize-giving and valedictory ceremony.
I came on tops in my class and was the best pupil overall.
Hence, I was double promoted.
I moved my tiny self over to the front of the large auditorium to collect my prize,
his perceptions after all were just lies,
The small,timid “girl” just proved someone wrong,
and yet, she’s still just an ordinary girl.
By Tonia Tochi
Tonia is a 19 year old writer (poet ,storyteller) and final year student who sees writing as a getaway from reality but still infuses her reality into her works. She paints visual images of her emotions, thoughts and observations through words. She is a lover of God and believes the world would be better if we could all express ourselves freely.