By Bolatito Adebayo
Simisola Bolatito Ogunleye, popularly known as Simi, is a phenomenal musician. The beautiful songstress who has been giving her fans hits after hits, spoke with Sunday Sun about her relationship with her mum and how she supports her career.
What does your mum do?
She’s retired but she runs her daycare.
What is your relationship like with her?
We are very close. She’s my biggest supporter, she prays for me, and there is almost nothing I cannot tell her. She’s always watching out for me, we are friends. I don’t tell her everything but I tell her most things. Even while growing up we never really had secrets, she never shut me down even when I had an opinion. I think that’s one of the reasons why I was never timid as a child because she always let me talk. You know, in a lot of Nigerian homes when you want to talk they would say, ‘you are a child, what do you know?’ but she was never like that, she always let me say my mind.
Are you saying your mum wasn’t a typical Nigerian woman?
Not exactly what I mean. She’s a typical Nigerian woman but not a typical Nigerian mum.
What did she tell you about boys as a teenager?
She told me to be careful. My mum knew all the people that I was dating and the people that I liked. I used to tell her all about this and she didn’t lie to me. She never said to me that I would get pregnant if I talked to a boy or anything like that.
She didn’t tell you that?
So, what kind of sex education did you learn from her?
She told me how pregnancy actually happens. You know some people they would say if you hold his hands, you would be pregnant and all that. But my mum told me what I was supposed to know, she used to tell me to be careful when I was much younger. She told me not to sit on any boys laps and that if anybody touches you here, tell me. She also told me if anybody touches me inappropriately that I should let her know. So if any small thing happens I always tell her first.
When you were growing up were you a very stubborn kid?
I was pretty stubborn and I’ve never been quiet. However, I wasn’t stubborn because I wanted to but I was stubborn about pushing my ideas. If I had an idea in my head I would like to follow through regardless of what everybody says or anything.
What was the greatest sacrifice she made for you?
There are plenty of them and not just for me but for me and my siblings. Every day she just sacrifices and sometimes we might not even know.
What is her favourite meal?
Maybe beans and plantain.
Which of the dishes she makes that you love to eat?
Her beans, vegetable soup, and her stew.
So would you like to grow into somebody like your mum?
Definitely, she’s one of the kindest people that I know. She taught me how to forgive. My mum is the kind of person that even if she has reasons to be bitter, or to hold a grudge, she would never hold a grudge.
What was it like for her being a single mum?
She was so strong, she never made excuses like I don’t have this or that. She would do whatever to make sure we were okay. We weren’t hungry; we went to really good schools, so she went to the end of the world for us. My mum doesn’t know how to do tough love. When she loves, she loves completely; she loves like she can see you are the bad egg and yet she would love you like you are the best egg.
What are her hobbies?
She goes to the gym a lot and she’s a reader, she likes to read. She watches a lot of TV, and church that’s probably one of the biggest hobbies I think.
What are the things that make her happy?
When her children get born again, she likes that a lot. (Laughs). Also, my mum is the kind of person that likes to act up, but she’s really soft. So, when you show her care she really appreciates it and she doesn’t like giving people trouble. She doesn’t like to stress her kids, and she’s such a hard worker. She’s the hardest worker that I know. She doesn’t rest she can just see grass and start cutting it, I don’t know why.
Is she very fashionable?
She likes jeans and top, I think I got that from her. I look like her a lot, although she says I’m adopted, (laughs). She has a cool temper, my temper doesn’t last and it’s not that hot but, I get to snap out of it. She forgives, so we have that in common and she prays. I believe that a lot of good things that have happened in my life happened because of her prayers.
How has she been supporting you?
Mostly with prayers. I remember when I just started, especially when I was doing gospel music, she was helpful financially. I have never felt under pressure doing anything other than what I am doing. I know how hard that is, I know people, even guys, that they still have a bit of you know, but she’s always supporting me, if I tell her mummy this is what makes me happy, this is what I’m to do, she would support me, she would ask me what is going on, what about that meeting, how did it go, just to make me know that there is someone that has my back.