One thing you can’t take away from Mercy Johnson Okojie is the fact that she is richly blessed in the art of interpreting roles. An A-list actress that has become about the most celebrated and the most- sought-after actress in Nollywood. This also makes her one of the highest paid actresses in the country. Recently, the adorable, down to earth mother of two spoke exclusively to City Rovers’ Kunle Rasheed about unusual things around her marriage, husband and also the joy of being a mother. Read and enjoy…..
(1) When You had your first baby, you granted an interview saying you’ll have another as soon as she is one.It came to pass; now should we be expecting another baby in few months time, now that you new baby is 6 months? My mother–in-law says when someone prays for you, just say amen, so I am going to take this as a prayer. In fact, when I said I will have another baby when Purity turns one year old, obviously I said that because I just wanted to have all my kids at once and get to having fun with my husband. Yes, I said so but it just happened coincidentally.
What has kept the flame of your marriage glowing?
I am a very passionate person, I would say we as married people, we don’t sit down and plan it, and it’s just that I am passionately crazy about my husband. In fact, I am in love with my husband’s spirit and not even his body or his person. My husband has a beautiful spirit and that’s what I love about him, and when you love that about your husband, all other things just shine out. Basically, appreciating who he is has made us go this far, so it’s not been an issue at all. From the day we met, the way I lay down on his chest when he holds me is still the way he holds me and kiss me today so nothing has changed at all. It’s still the way he loved me then and it’s still the same now.
Is there any flaw(s) you see in him as human? My husband could be annoying to some point because he can tell you the truth that can hurt you. But even when I say flaws, the flaws are like elements of perfection, and not in a negative way. In fact, my husband is the closest thing to God in existence for me and I will say it anytime over and over again.
During the course of your relationship or marriage, have you ever checked his messages or his phones or memos maybe out of curiosity? No, I have never done that; in fact, as my own policy, I will never do that because I was never taught that way.
What comes to your mind when he stares at a beautiful lady maybe while driving or while at any event? He hasn’t ever done that before but it’s not actually a problem, people actually get scared, then they don’t know who they are, but if you know who you are, I don’t think you will be bothered about things like these. Because I know where he comes from and how far we have gone, it will be really silly for me to worry about anything in retrospective.
If you had not met your husband; would you be waiting till now or you would have been taken by another? Let me explain something and it sounds too absurd but it’s true. If I hadn’t met my husband, I would have still met my husband and when I was growing up; I already imagined the kind of husband I wanted to spend the rest of my life with, so that’s why I said if I had not met my husband, I would have still met my husband.
Is there anything you would love to change about your husband? Hmmm… what will I change, I think there is just one thing I might change about my husband, it will be to chain him to a chair and make him see one of my movies to make him see how much I am passionate about what I do. My husband has never watched any of my movies from day one. That’s just one thing I might like to change about him, tie him down so that he can watch one of my movies from the start to the end, which would be nice.
What does love mean to you? As a single lady, love takes a different meaning and when you’re married, it’s also entirely different. I would summarize love as a sacrifice because I have got to a point where I never thought I would ever see love or sacrifice this much for love and I think the only reason I will sacrifice so much is because I love him too much. Every morning, I wake up I see his face and every time I go to sleep, I see his face and I also see my kids, definitely I know I have made the right choice.
Do you guys quarrel like normal couple despite the rosy pictures you paint out there? Yes, we do but we have ways of resolving issues and then even when it’s that bad, we just laugh and joke about it, so when we are quarrelling, and I just finished my prayer, my husband will just hold my waist and call me a prayer warrior, and I will say leave me alone because I am angry, but at the end of the day, I just laugh and my anger is gone and we are back to normal.
Can you remember what you’ve done to upset him in the past?
Not really, for example in 2009; my husband looked at my phone and saw two saved numbers one as ‘My Life’ and the other ‘My Hope’ and immediately he changed his face, but then when he checked the number and saw it was his numbers, he later smiled.
Do you guys have pet names for yourselves since you said you stored his name as hope and life while dating?
I have pet names; sometimes, I call him my life, sometimes I call him my hope and sometimes I call him a whole lot of weird names just to get on his nerves and to make him smile and love me more every day of our lives.
How did your husband’s family accept you being an actress?
I think my husband’s family are quite exposed; they are in tune with what’s happening around. They are very vast and exposed, so it wasn’t like a problem at all. In fact; I have the sweetest mother-in-law ever, and my father-in-law is also very understanding. Yes, they’ve heard a lot of things about me, but it didn’t bother them, they gave me a chance, they got to know me and I was accepted because they never judge the book by its cover, and moreover, I think I prove people wrong in so many ways and because of this, they cut me some slack and ever since then, it’s been so much fun between us and all the family. Character is like a smoke, you can’t cover it, if you are a bad person; it will show and if you are a good person, it will definitely show also, so I guess that was my own case. My character became the judge of whom and what I am, and it turned out good.
Do men still make passes at you despite being married? No, never! since I got married; I have never had that problem of men making passes at me or trying to get to me in some ways, I have been blessed because I have carried myself in a manner that I am married, I only have eyes for my husband and I think a whole lot of people know and see this, so they respect my marriage and let me be.
What (is) are that eroctic thing you’ve done outside the confines of your home to show that you love each other?
I think kissing doesn’t mean you love this person, I just don’t think of doing anything without him when he is not there, so even if without telling you that my husband does mean a lot to me, the way I carry myself will show you that he means the whole world to me. Outside; we do a lot of things together like affectionate things. I think we do basically everything together; even when we go for dinner, unconsciously we do things that you would not expect.
What if tomorrow your husband decides to do something weird like being a homosexual or start doing something you don’t expect from him? These things are impossible, it can’t happen because there is always a starting point, so for us or me, it’s impossible, it won’t start not to talk of happening at all. Please, let’s leave that.
Most relationships are based on trust and being faithful; have you ever suspected or sat down to think that your husband is doing something or question his faithfulness to you or his trust at one point in your marriage. Has this ever happened? Even when my husband is wrong, to me he is always right. The bible says that if you have a faithful husband; then you should be a faithful wife, how do I explain this? those thoughts just don’t come into play in our marriage at any point in time. In fact, they don’t exist at all. It’s not by how many times he is at home but as long as the most important thing in his life remains the most important thing in life; so I don’t foresee or bring out any problem when there is none. So, we are good.
How many kids are you guys planning to have?
Four to be precise; according to our plans and very soon, another one will come when my baby, Henry is of age. Then, we can think and plan to have another child.
What are you wishing for in life that you have not achieved?
The biggest thing or prayer I need to pray for in life is just for things to just be as perfect as it is now. Nothing is important aside from my home; in fact I want to do other things but those other things can never take the space. The three people I have in my life right now and I am talking about my husband and my two children, nothing can take their place. I just want things to just be the way it is now; that will be my prayer.
Whenever you hear or see marriages that were celebrated crash; don’t you get scared about your own marriage, how does it make you feel?
Have you read the diary of a Black Mad Woman whereby the husband stands on a pole and says how wonderful and good his wife is and when they get in the car; he tells her to get the hell out of the car? I think it is a personal thing to be sincere; it hurts me when I hear and see situations like this. If I have issues, normally I’ll say okay and we would work it out and it’s resolved. Some people don’t have this perseverance and patience to endure this; so they just make it a whole of issue. It’s how you handle your affairs in your home.
I am sure you have celebrity friends whose marriages have broken, does it affect you or don’t you feel sad in any way for them, how does it make you feel?
I don’t have celebrity friends that have their marriages broken. Well; what I’m trying to say is that I think the press is too hard on the celebrities because you guys worry too much on other people’s problems. That already is an issue but above all; I feel bad and everything in life has two sides, one you learnt from and the one you get refrained from and for me, I take the learning part seriously because when I see a friend that does something and I didn’t like it, I tend not to do that to my husband because he might not like it; so everything is like a learning process for me and no one is perfect but for our kind of profession, we celebrities you pry too much. You guys are like our biggest problem. Sincerely, you guys are like the intermediary between us and the public but you don’t ever try to paint us in a good light but you guys deserve a lot of prayers for that but please, I will beg you guys-the media to pry less. For example, I went for an event, a wedding and I didn’t go with my husband and before you knew it, they said I had problems with my marriage. The media should try better for us celebrities.
What’s the greatest gift your husband has given you?
My two kids and two more gifts are still coming on the way and then maybe one more later.
Have you ever been jealous when you see your husband around beautiful ladies or do you make an issue out of nothing?
Yes I do, I make an issue out of nothing just because I just want him to pet me. I have never been jealous of him with any lady. In fact, I trust him 100%, he is the love of my life and I definitely know I’m the love of his life.
What’s next for your marriage, where do you and your husband see yourself in the future? I think our biggest prayer is to have this stability in our marriage for many more years to come and to delve into other things together as a couple, having all my kids and getting back to my career. In fact, we have a lot of ambition and aspiration and we pray that we don’t have any negative influencing intruders and also pray that we continue to have peace and love for eternity.
Do you confide in your family when you have issues? Definitely no, but sometimes when he makes decisions I don’t like, then I confide in my mother-in-law, but if I confide in my own mother, she would definitely want to protect me as her daughter and in the process give a bad decision and advice. I tell my mother-in-law because she knows as a wife that I mean well and because I love my husband and my family.