I woke up thinking of something that has made several people including myself suffer unnecessary segmentation and mockery.
It's been a horrible experience growing up and not knowing ho to speak my presumed native language (Ogoni)
Several times I've tried to associate with my own people (because I am proud of my roots) only to be turned down and mocked in very ill manners because I couldn't speak the language fluently. I have also lost several opportunities for this same reason. I remember going to join the Khana Students Association back then in UNIPORT and that turned out to be the worse decision I made as a student, as all I got was mockery and hate from the people I called my own, any way I stopped attending meetings and continue to build my life without them.
Now, I need to make something clear, Ever wondered why I speak English, Ogba, Igbo, and French with a bit of Deutsche, Yoruba, Tiv and Hausa and can't Speak Ogoni? Well it's because I was born and bred in Omoku, a place I can proudly call home as they have showered the highest level of acceptance and interaction, I studied Igbo and french school and perfected my language communication with friends who always corrected me when I made mistakes, I learnt how to speak Yoruba, Hausa and Tiv when I went for NYSC in Benue state and my friends never mocked me when I spoke the language wrongly, instead they corrected me. My Deutsche came from a friend who studied foreign languages and I have been practicing slowly with a German friend.
Now tell me, don't you think it's weird for a lady to be able to speak all these languages and not know hers?
One reason why I can't speak my language is the fact that the only person that spoke Ogoni language in my house while I was growing up was my Dad who basically spoke very good English to me and was the key to my English Speaking and writing skills. As a kid he was barely around and I ended up leaving for the University without learning the language.
While in school I felt mixing up with Ogoni people will help me learn the language, well only 2% of the people I met tried to teach me and that's how I learnt a little bit more than "deeyira"
Recently, I've been asking myself if it was wise to force myself on people who always throw me out because I can't communicate perfectly with them in my native tongue?
Well, that question is yet to be answered but It will be very soon.
My Name is Barisuka Nkemakola Brightella Lewis-Wikina, and I know my ROOTS .

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