Last year he had 10 names, given to him officially at birth but I call him 3 at once (King-Earl Ethan Emmanuel) if I need to get his attention. King-Earl is 4 years today. Yippee!!!
How did the year go? It was event-full. For one, he started school for the very first in his life mid-term, yet he got two prizes – the Most Improved and 3rd position in his class. So imagine if he had started before then, he would have won the Pulitzer Prize for brilliance! I celebrate you today, because regardless of when you started, you proved to be a King that knows how to reign in his domain. And a King he truly is!
I’m sure you are wondering who is IGWE? And how did the name come about. I’m not sure myself, but all I know is that King-Earl returned from school one day and when I referred to him as ‘Chairman’, he quickly corrected me, “call me Igwe” he said. IGWE means King in Igbo, but we are Ibibios and he should have been called OBONG, but that is his father’s name and my thoughts are these:
• King-Earl already knows his place in dominion, not contesting kingship with his dad. So when we get to call ‘King’, he doesn’t answer, and neither does he answer if you say ‘Earl’ alone, except you add King. He will promptly inform you, “my name is not Earl, my name is King-Earl”
• He is expanding his territory to other regions
• He enjoys the vibes the fanfare and drama of being called IGWE brings. As whenever his colleagues see him, they hail Igwe!!! Early in the morning, as the bus picks him up and he puts his first leg on the bus, shouts of Igwe! Igwe!! rends the air and he walks majestically to his seat.
A few episodes worthy of note:
• He wanted to use his dad’s phone to play games and his sister Imani was with it, he cried-pretended seriously until she gave it to him. When our friend (Uncle Dele) asked him why he was crying “I just had to get it.” he replied. He knows he is the last born (for now) and so it’s easy to ask Imani to leave whatever it is for him.
• He was with my phone, when a call came through and I was busy somewhere. His dad meets up with him and he goes, “Daddy, someone called your wife” (with every amount of seriousness to the gist). And King enquired inquisitively, “who?” The profound reply he got was “You”.
• King Earl: Are you a girl?
Imani: (wondering where this is line of questioning is headed) Yes
King Earl: Am I a boy?
King Earl: No I’m not a boy, I’m a son!
Imani: Okay, you are a son.
King Earl: No! I’m not a son, I’m a Moon
Imani: (Looking at him incredulously) But you can’t be a Moon, nah.
King Earl: I don’t want to be a Son again, I’m a Moon.
• I called him this morning to sing the “Happy Birthday” song for him and in his usual way, after the initial “how are you,” from me and the “I’m fine” response from him, he goes, “give the phone to Imani.” I tried persuading him to answer my call, and he obliged.
Me: Who’s birthday is it today?
King Earl: Mine
Me: So you don’t want me to sing Happy birthday to you?
King Earl: ♫Happy Birthday to you (2x)♫
(I stop him and proceed to sing it for him and as I ended, I heard “Hip, hip, hip hurray!” Apparently, someone had put it on speaker.)
Me: How old are you?
King Earl: 3 years
Me: No! You are 4!
King Earl: I’m 3!
Me: But you were 3 the last time.
King Earl: Okay, Okay! (And you go) give the phone to Aunty Esther!
Pheww…some mothers do have them, I have one!
• During graduation, King Earl got two prizes, which were wrapped in brown paper and addressed to him. Imani got 2 also but hers was enclosed in a gift wrapper. I decided to take a picture of his gifts and I asked him to hold them up and he grudgingly informs me “They are not gifts, it is just number 3!” Please look at the picture below and confirm if either of us were wrong. LOL.
• Aunty Zhu came visiting and when she wanted to leave, as with all our guests, you locked the door declaring “you are not going anywhere!” she attempted to push past you, but you wouldn’t bulge. So she decided to use the back door and announced same; seeing that by the time you got there, she would have escaped. You shouted after her “Go! And don’t come back!” You always managed to have the last words.
Beyond his famous one-liners, and ready-made answers to every question, you really don’t want to be on the other end of answering his question, when he is on a fact-finding mission. As you answer the first one (feeling cool), he asks you ‘why?’ by your next answer, another ‘why?’ and the cycle goes on till he tires or you leave that arena.
Gradually, your skill as an artist and comedian like your dad is showing. I will not lie, the house is boring without you and your theatrics; like Imani says “he’s full of drama.” My friends come to visit and the next minute (after leaving) they are sending BB messages of how they miss you! You derive pleasure in painting, your figures includes Horses and Dragons, Rhinos, Dogs and sometimes members of your family. I almost forgot, you were scared of dogs until you met with Esosa’s dog and now that’s all we get to hear, you want a dog too!
For a cake, you asked for a Horse and Ninja Turtle cake. But you had a Horse cake last year :). So Ninja Turtle cake is it.
What do you want as gift? A yellow car, a red car, a blue car…what do we do with your Ford?!
Happy birthday my dearest Igwe, may great Kings acknowledge you. As your father prayed this morning, may this be the beginning of Good news in your life. Even as you become established in God’s presence, may He perfect all that concerns you and tune your gifts in the area of His divine call on you. You will be known for good and the outstanding in your generation, the Light of God in you will not be darkened, but it will glow, attracting people to seek and know Him. Grow in grace, stature and wisdom. Let the love we have for you be a reminder of where you’re from.
I yob ❤ you always even when you ignore me every other time, I chose to wait for mine. As I’ve come to know that when it’s my time, every other person pales in your attention arena.