Let me start by saying this. I’m the first child of my Nigerian parents to be born in America. Growing up was full of ups and downs and overall I can say I had a great and fun childhood. What I never had though, was a pet. All of that changed sophomore year of college when my bestie/roommate got me a little turtle off the side of the road on Lehigh Ave in Philadelphia.
I knew right away to call him Mr. McGiggins. Now whether the turtle was male or female I don’t know but the name was staying. I loved that turtle, but Mr. McGiggins passed away. All the google searches, trips to the pet store couldn’t prevent death. I was high key sad. Mr. McGiggins was my buddy.
Years later this same bestie would get me a turtle pendant necklace. We laughed, joked, and shared memories of Mr. McGiggins. The best part though was how she drew parallels between my personality and turtles. We both have a hard shell for protection that is a part of us. Typically move slowly, for the most part, no sense of urgency here. The most profound of all the similarities, wisdom. The turtle is an ancient symbol of feminine wisdom. In Nigerian culture, they are associated with the cunning characteristic.
I tried and tried to wear the necklace but honestly, I hate things around my neck. I rarely wear necklaces. I clip my ID badge to my clothes because of this. Now I’m 0-2 here. Mr. McGiggins is gone, the necklace is gone, and there is a void. I want a turtle.
One day I’m shopping in a retail store and there it is, a turtle, It’s brushed gold, medium-sized, and it opens up. What is this? I ask myself. Do I put jewelry in here? Do I use it for my keys? I can’t think of a single purpose for this little knick-knack. Personally, money spent on myself is NEVER money wasted so I bought it. I brought him home. Mr. McGiggins III
Mr. McGiggins sits on the right side of my bed on my nightstand next to my glasses, calendar, Shea butter, etc. He is one of the 1st things I see when I wake up and one of the last before I go to bed. The idea of sentiment is so fascinating. An object can take you down a lane of memories, a roller-coaster of emotions, or both at the same time. From death, to parallel symbolism, and finally consistency. I’m grateful.
Let Your Mr. McGiggins Light Shine!