My ‘end of the year’ speech as a stammerer

My ‘end of the year’ speech as a stammerer.

So it’s true, that when we see a loved one gets disgraced and mocked, those ‘good for nothing’ laughter won’t come. We can only have our faces covered in shame.
Yes, we often feel the same pain they feel. Yes we do.

   It was around 10pm that night, I have just finished reading about Jabez. Jabez, the misfortune child in the Bible who found the root of his predicament after he asked his mother the story behind his birth.

So I asked my mother too; Why do I stammer?
She replied; I can’t precisely say but when you were young, I used to make you stay at your grandmother’s place while I go to work and it was later I discovered you used to suck her old sagged breast. She was a stammerer too, maybe that’s the cause.
But the ‘wicked people’ Yorubas call ‘elders’ say; “Livings must not speak ill of the dead”.

Even when the dead deserves to be killed again.
Sigh!. If not for father, I wouldn’t have been Yoruba. But fate always win.

   Being a young boy with an ambition of becoming an Engineer {Electrical or Computer}, I was given the best of education by my parent. I attended a private school {One of those that have seats for principal}. 

‘Rock Eternal Model College, Dada Estate, Osogbo’ really tried in helping me build my dreams of no plan. I was a student in science class who would brilliantly come last in the science subjects and pass others with crawling colours.
It was the end of the year valedictory service and I was to present a speech as the class captain of the Senior Secondary School 3.

Everywhere was set, my classmates were elated having their representative address the school and parents as well as the uninvited guests. But no one was able to see the fears I harboured, I was scared of disgracing myself, my parent and my class with my dirty ‘play head’ which always skip.
So, I went online to research on how I could successfully talk lengthily without any break in transmission, and to God be the glory. I found three tips;
– Erase fear completely
– Master and rehearse your words before pronouncing them
– Don’t look at the audience
I did as the ‘online herbalist’ advised and I mounted the stage.

It was like the whole world was before me, the first thing that threatened my boldness was the sparkling bald head of my principal which always mirror the wickedness that governed his head. Another calamity was my proprietor’s face which was ugly enough to chase Satan off his kingdom. But I ignored them. “God has not given me the spirit of fear”, I said and rode on.

     The hall was silent and the breezes were felicitating as I was speaking fluently, It was no miracle because I had prepared for it. I felt my intestines 'dabing' and my livers tweaking, I kept my eyes off those scary faces and went on shinning. 

But then, light went off; PHCN did what they know how to do best. In no time, the generator was put on and everything back to normal but something had changed, I had lost the trend, I had been swayed off the sheet I was holding. I had seen faces I shouldn’t have seen and I knew there was supposed to be problem.

     I grabbed the microphone and began, but behold the first word to continue with was 'Done' and it appeared like it was written in 'Chinese'. I tried to pronounce but I ended up playing with letter D;


I stopped, I relaxed a bit and tried again. But this time, even to pronounce ‘D’ was impossible.
So I accepted my fate and dropped the microphone, I looked up and saw my friends covered their face in shame. I began shedding tears but before I made a scene, the ‘Master of ceremony’ took over.

       It was the last day in school, that really helped me, so I left unnoticed. Though, those who loved me called.

It was such a sorrowful moment, it’s really a long time ago but “Once beaten, twice shy”. Those who knew me then will never forget to remember. Even though, I have gotten a lot better.

Micheal Ace


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