Felix Omondi famously known by his stage name Dr King'ori spoke for the first time about his relationship with his mother and why it inspired his stage name.
Touching story of how Dr King'ori's mother influenced his stage name
Dr King'ori shares about his mother's sacrifice, breaking her heart twice and finally reuniting after his successful career
Appearing in an episode of Engage Talks, King'ori recalled how he forged his comedy career which ultimately landed him a show on one of Kenya’s leading TV stations.
However, the journey was not easy, especially since it tested his relationship with his mother who had sacrificed a lot to raise him
His mother, who worked as a casual labourer in a hospital, had always wanted him to become a doctor.
She saw education as a way for him to surpass the limitations she faced and hoped that he would be the first doctor in the family.
Despite facing poverty, Dr King'ori did well in primary school. He mentioned the creative ways they dealt with their financial challenges, such as going to school with his mother’s shoes when he didn’t have any.
His mother worked hard to raise the school fees for him to attend a top provincial high school.
King'ori recalled the sacrifices his parents made for him to join high school, including the financial strain it put on his mother.
He remembers receiving very little pocket money, and his first pocket money was only Sh8.
However, he emphasized that his mother’s focus was on raising the school fees, not on trivial things like pocket money or shopping.
When he was admitted to Nguviu High School, it seemed like his mother's dream was coming true.
The school had a high reputation, and its performance was so good that it had a 100% transition rate to university.
Becoming a doctor was within reach and his mother worked hard with the expectation that the government would support his university education if he performed well.
Changing perspectives and contemplating dropping out
However, King’ori’s perspective changed when he reached Form Two. He started feeling different and began considering dropping out.
He mentioned that he was inspired by a cousin of a cousin who was a self-made man despite being a dropout. These influences made him contemplate dropping out in the hopes of achieving success without following the traditional education path.
When he shared his decision with his mother, it broke her heart. She had invested so much hope and sacrifice for his education, and she couldn't bear the thought of him not continuing with school.
She cried and pleaded with him to at least get the certificate before making any further decisions. Eventually, he made a deal with her to return for two more years.
Pursuing dreams in the entertainment industry
After completing high school, King'ori still had a strong desire to explore his dreams and follow his passion for the entertainment industry.
His friends disagreed with his decision to quit a job his mother had arranged for him, but he was determined to come to Nairobi and make his mark in the industry. This was the second time he was breaking his mother's heart.
He made another two-year deal with his mother, saying that he would travel to Nairobi to pursue his dreams for two years and if that failed he would return home and repeat his high school education to secure a government-sponsored slot in university.
However, when he came to Nairobi, King'ori’s dreams took longer than he expected but kept his hopes up, Many times he was forced to call home to request money, sleep in his friends' relatives' homes and even sleep hungry on some occasions.
An ambitious King'ori had prophesied that he would have his TV show but the dream was fast fading.
A leap of faith and the turning point
One day he took a leap of faith to attend a comedy competition in Safari Park to gain insights into stand-up comedy from the audience’s perspective. King'ori walked from Dandora to Safari Park, and on that fateful day, he got an opportunity to perform alongside JB Masanduku.
Among 10 groups, the duo won, handing King'ori another lifeline to stay in the city, having been close to giving up.
“I can tell you that I don't have enough words to explain how desperate that situation was and what that situation meant waking up and going one more time,” King'ori recalled.
“That decision is what marked every other phone call I've ever gotten,” he added.
Convincing his mother of his success
Three years later, even after achieving significant milestones, such as being featured in a full-page newspaper, it took time to convince his mother of his success.
A year later, he received a surprising call from his mother who told him she had seen him in a promotion by NTV and that she was calling to confirm to her friends that he was indeed her son.
“So my mom calls me because she is at a shop trying to convince the shopkeeper that the person on the poster at her at his door the person on the billboard is her son. So my mom wanted me to come to her defense,” he recalled, adding that later that day, he had one of the most memorable phone calls with her.
He concluded by saying that she was proud to call herself Dr King’ori’s mother even though he was not a medical doctor like he had wanted him to become.
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