I would like to think of my self as a girl with great intuition, after my mother has amazing intuition about everything. I just assumed all these years that it was part of my genetic makeup. Well sometimes I think it goes AWOL and leaves me to decipher things on my own. Case and example, my recent break up. I would need several chapters to tell you about our courtship. But first let me tell you about the memorable moments.
He (ex who shall remain nameless) was a great idea. He was overwhelmingly emotional, he said the right things in the quietest moments between us. He would not hesitate to splurge on me because as he put it ‘I’m well off and you needn’t worry’ but I did. I’ve worked hard to have my independence and in my Somali culture men are supposed to take care of their women. My father did it, my brothers also did and the ex was just following protocol. But something inside me was not completely ok with the “I’m well off” statement. I always assumed that if you had it you didn’t have to speak of it, people just knew you had it. He was just letting me know in a small way that if I didn’t notice already how well off he was, I should take note now.
Well he got me a several hundred-dollar necklace on my birthday and by this time we had only been dating 1 month. How I knew it was several hundred-dollar purchase was only due to the fact he left the tag on. I’d like to think this wasn’t intentional but by now I was catching on how much he wanted me to know he was doing well. I was taken back and he thought I didn’t like it. How could I not. It was a beautiful necklace, but what I didn’t like was how he told me had also purchased one for his mother. I couldn’t quite comprehend if I should be surprised or ok with the fact that this grown man had just gifted his mother and girlfriend the same jewelry.
I never really wore the necklace and he always asked why not. Well I couldn’t tell him that I can’t get the image of his mother wearing the same necklace as me out of my head. His close relationship with his mother was one that I loved about him. I was told he was a mama’s boy and if you know what Somali mothers are like then you know what challenges some women in our culture face winning the heart of these mothers and sons.
The necklace was not our biggest issue, but now looking back I realized I was getting a glimpse of what our future down the road would look like. Matching earrings and necklaces with my future ‘Mother in-law’. I didn’t know if I should feel wrong for thinking this or feel justified to worry about it. He didn’t even mention how weird it was or how it may look. He just simply stated he got the same one for his mother and smiled proudly.
The lesson here is, don’t tell your new girlfriend that the gift you get on her birthday was also the ‘just because’ gift you got for you mother on a random day.
I’m still learning the ropes of love, G.