“Daddy look, look, I got a star at school today!”
“Oh great! Just you?”
“Everybody got a star. Teacher said we’re all stars!”
“Oh well, that’s fine I guess.”
Hmm.. Why isn’t Daddy smiling anymore? Isn’t a star a good thing? Shouldn’t we all be stars?
“Hey Dad, a got a B on my maths quiz.”
“Why? What’s wrong with an A?”
“Some questions were hard…”
“Do better next time, okay.”
He didn’t even smile this time. I should work harder. I want to make him proud.
“I was first in my class.”
“Yes, as it should be. You’re supposed to get into a good university soon after all.”
And back to his newspaper… Maybe I should get into one of these universities he’s always going on about. Maybe then… Just maybe…
“Dad, Dad wake up! I made it into university! I did it!”
“Mmmm yes, yes. What program?”
“I don’t know yet, I just saw my name on the list, I was too excited. I did it Dad, I’ll be a University student.”
“But what job will you get after? Is it even a lucrative field? You should have checked before waking us up at this hour, honestly Tala. All this excitement and you might end up some kind of plant breeder. We’ll talk about it tomorrow, its time to sleep now.”
My back against my bedroom door, tears streaming down. Is this some kind of bad joke? How is he not happy? I made it in didn’t I? This is pointless.
“Talandira! Look at your grades. What kind of GPA is this? How are you supposed to get a credit like this? Let alone a distinction, you barely passed this academic year!”
“Oh, I was supposed to get a distinction-”
“Yes! Oh my God, look at this, where is your mother? And then the neighbour said she sees you with some boys in town. Is that what you spend your time doing instead of studying? Is that it?”
“They’re my friends, we were just looking for food-”
“They serve food in the cafeteria!”
Hmmm, okay… That was a long conversation.. So bad grades and bad behaviour? Okay but I do need to graduate, so that leaves…
Fast forward a couple of years and she’s in and out of relationships, messing around with married men on the side, putting up thirsty posts, needy posts, looking for verification. A proper manipulative, attention seeking “somebody”. All she’s really looking for is someone to tell her she’s a star.