I still remember when mother brought you home. We were coming from school and you were wrapped in some blue thingy. I can’t forget how fragile you were that we feared we might break you if we even touched you. Just like a new baby, only mother was allowed to wash you in fear we might mishandle you. Oh darling! We literally swore by our lives to protect you. How we wanted to play with you but couldn’t because well, mother… We wanted to take you outside and show you off to our friends as we played kalongo, but mother…
I sit here trying to collect the pieces of my mistake wondering what I will tell mother. Should I tell her you needed cleaning and I just thought, well, I can help mother do this today? What will I tell her if she reminds me how I vowed to keep away from you? What if she reminds me of how I vowed to protect you with my life? Will she buy it if I tell her that you just slipped out of my hands as I cleaned you?
Anyway, I will think of a reason before she gets home from work. Though it was short-lived, I enjoyed the little time you brought joy to us each morning. You were very warm but I cut short your life with my clumsy hands.
I will definitely live the rest of my life with the burden. Mother will always remind me every morning at breakfast despite having said sorry a million times. She will look at me with those round eyes seeking answers and ask,” Sasa mbona ulivunja thermos yangu mzuri aki?” And i will look at her and be lost for words for the millionth time.