There is an old adage in our culture which says, ‘Ngwana yo o sa utlweng molao wa batsadi o utwa wa manong.’ It basically means that a child who doesn’t listen to his or her parents ends up in turmoil. We have all made decisions that made us happy at one point, but when it gets real hard we immediately wish we could turn back the hands of time and change the decisions we made. But, some people say that we wouldn’t appreciate the good in life without the bad.
Hers is like a story from a typical African American movie.
“I thought I could change him.” These are the words she starts with. These are the words that some women tend to utter after it has all been said and done. They admit to have seen all the signs of what they were getting into. The divorcee, who preferred anonymity, said that she felt cold feet on the day of the signing but she decided to ignore those feelings and just follow the good feelings that he gave her.
“He was an older guy and I was young and wanted someone mature. He was appealing to me because of his maturity. But then I realised that even though he was older, he wasn’t steady. He was a womaniser but I thought with time, he would change for me. But it did not work out like that.”
She said that when they got married, she was happy that she had finally found the right guy. But she quickly adds that it would have been better if she had married someone her age as she would have been able to argue back and have a stand in the relationship. She said she was fooled by the fancy car that he had. She added that although she was a very beautiful girl in the eyes of many, she never thought that such a guy would pay much attention to her. He didn’t have much money but he spent his whole paycheck on the car installments just to look good to the outside world.
“The thing is most guys get attracted to independent women. I took care of him. Even though I was a woman, I was everything that a woman would want in a man. I catered to his every need and I took care of him. I clothed him, dressed him and took him to the fanciest restaurants but everything changed when the company I was working for started to fold.”
She said that looking back, she realises that she bought his laughter. She bought the joy she thought she had when she was still with him. She said that after losing her fancy job, that’s when her knight in shining armour started showing his true colours and the shine in his armour disappeared immediately.
“When my company collapsed the marriage also collapsed. I’d go for two months without a salary or half a salary and that’s when everything turned upside down. I realised that what I had was not a marriage. I had always known that he was a womaniser.” But like she said before, she thought he’d change for her or the love she gave him would make him change. But all was in vain.
Tearfully, she said she thought she was over her past but she then realised that she would have been better off had she listened to people’s advice. “My friends and age-mates are far and they have reached their destiny and I have to start going up and going back up is hard.”
She looks into the far distance and says, “I wish I could have listened to at least one person but I failed.” As she ends the interview, she stands up, with emotions running high and remembers the physical and emotional abuse she suffered.
“He’d come with his girlfriends and he’d ask me to make them something to eat. He’d ask me if I wasn’t aware that there were visitors in the house.”