Dec 10 2011, I was snooping and wrote down my husband’s email password on a piece of paper which he saw when he returned from work. He yelled, screamed and cursed and I begged. Oh I did beg. I knelt and begged with my 2 year old son watching on. I begged and cried, even though I had found evidence of several lies and manipulation dating back to plans of getting married to me; but I was scared.
This was in Akwa Ibom. My parents were far away and I was fresh off the boat from America. As I knelt and begged, he carried his plate of food and flung it at me. He missed. Even the carpet has never recovered till date. I went inside wiped my tears and packed my bags and carried my son to leave. He said I could leave but not with the kid but I wasn’t going to do that. He held my arm and twisted it. The pain was sharp and excruciating but I endured it.
Next day the doctor said I had a fracture and I carried a caste for 6 weeks through Christmas and New year celebration. I never left. I learnt I wasn’t skilled at snooping so I stopped.
Fast forward 5 years and 2 kids, my husband – the love that was never was meant to be, and never was – has gone to the police to report that I abducted our kids. I ran for my life after yet another tirade of curses, anger and threats, with our now grown kids watching on. He has confiscated the kids’ travel passports and he has reminded me every day of the 2/3rd of my life of how worthless my life is, and how I should feel free to leave as soon as I am ready as long as I do not leave with the kids.
So what have I learnt in 2016? that I am worthy of love. That there are actual men that protect and cover you. Beyond that, that I can face my fears and fix my flaws. That my insecurities are mine to tackle and not for my supposed ‘biggest fan’ to use as a tool to destroy me. That I am able to choose better and wiser while I still have the vitality of life. That I owe it to my kids to break the cycle of abuse and neglect.
Will this road of self discovery and rebel towards society expectation be easy? Probably not..but the will to fight is a major stride.