Baby & Me

Happy Valentine

It’s hard to believe that it’s been a year since Villa Rosa Kempinski put a price on love that many thought could not be surpassed. This year – with a 5.4 million shilling price tag –they’ve surmounted the insurmountable.
Which is well and good. If a man wants to burn close to six million bob on one night, for the pleasure of one woman, why not? If you’ve got that kind of money, it’s more or less burning a hole in your pocket anyway. You might as well spend it.
I’m sure there are women out there who can part with that kind of cash too. And that’s fine as well. If we break it down purely to shillings and cents, if you can spare the money, go ahead. You only live once etc.
But truth be told, you cannot discuss love in monetary terms. Love is priceless.
Inestimable. Incalculable. Incomparable.
And that’s just romantic love. Now the love between a parent and a child? That’s on a whole other level. I cannot begin to describe how many ways I love my little girl. I’m so full of love for her; I get choked up thinking about it.
When I imagine that she could ever be in harm’s way, I literally get hives. My breath catches. My heart starts to beat faster. My temperature rises. My eyes water. It’s horrible.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; my heart is walking around outside my body and there’s not a darn thing I can do about it. I’m helpless in the face of my love for Adoti. And as every parent will attest, it’s the most vulnerable position a person can find themselves in.
It’s a vulnerability that never goes away. You always feel exposed to the elements because at the end of the day, there are some things that you cannot protect your child from. Sometimes I wish I could flip a switch and turn off all that emotion. I wish I could control my feelings. Protect myself from a lifetime of worry. Save myself some heartache.
When you think about the enduring love a mother has for her child, Valentine’s Day – where it is purely a celebration of love between lovers – loses a whole lot of significance.
Maternal (and paternal) love is that Corinthians 13 type of love. That unfailing type of commitment that always protects, always trusts, always hopes and always perseveres. The love that a parent has for their child never fails. It endures.
So when you think about it, dishing out Sh5.4m to ‘celebrate’ love in a moment of fancy is absurd. Because if you really wanted to honour its true expression, you would spend less time calculating the cost, and more time cherishing the moment.
But hey, that’s just me. I’m a sucker for warm, fuzzy feelings. Before I had Adoti, romance was my be all and end all, but now, every time I look into her eyes, I’m reminded that there are depths of emotion that will only ever be ploughed when a parent beholds their child. And there is a reservoir of affection that can only be tapped by sons and daughters.
Adoti loves me for free and she expects that I love her back by the same standard. We lock horns frequently in a continuous ‘battle of the boundaries’ but our hearts remain open. She knows that her place in my heart is forever reserved. And I know that I’m the first person she ever loved, and always will love. But in that joy of reciprocity, there is also pain. There is always the possibility that I will do something that hurts her and vice versa.
Sigh. There’s that vulnerability again.
In a few months, it will have been two years since my little human touched my life in a huge way. There are some days when I wish for the time when my life was uncomplicated by unconditional love and the weight of constant caring that it has placed on my heart.
But if you handed me the world on a platter in exchange for my Adoti, I would have to say, sorry – no deal.
On the other hand, like a friend posted on WhatsApp, if a limo pulls up at my door tonight and the driver drops me off at the Kempinski, I think I’ll have to say, hell yeah – deal! I can afford a moment of fancy on someone else’s dime.