Growing up in such an environment; I had full graphic knowledge of what the consequences of divorce can do to a girl child. Staying with my mother, I had no protection whatsoever from her because she was trying to make ends meet for us in the end neglecting our emotional needs. I remember us eating mangoes for breakfast almost all the time because that is what she could afford, and we never complained because in the end she was doing her level best.
Mum had also remarried a fellow teacher a few years later, he was an alcoholic and she accommodated him and fed him whilst he used his pay for alcohol until he was broke. This was the trend every other month. He insulted me for fun and when I told my mum she didn't believe me and when she found him red handed insulting me for no reason all she could say was ‘get out of here why would you just stand there?’ I was 14 and she could not protect me from her husband who called me a prostitute and insulted me for no reason.
That same year; my cousin started to rape me, repeatedly until I unceremoniously started my menstrual cycle. All this while my mother never noticed anything and I didn’t tell her what was happening because she was too busy to pay attention or show me any form of love.
It was then that I decided to flee for my life because waiting on my mother to notice would cause me more damage than what I was already going through, at that age I had already matured faster than my age and I had to do what my conscious was telling me to do because by this time I accepted that no one could protect me in this life except me.
I decided to flee from my home; I walked from Kabulonga Girls teacher’s compound at mum’s to Lilayi Police Camp where dad was staying by foot. I had woken up at 4 in the morning, packed my bags and started walking and I never looked back. I was going to live my life and as I trekked I vowed that when I grew up I would make my home and was going to do everything to hold it together. I reached Lilayi Police Camp by 12hrs and I found my second mum. She didn’t even bother greeting me, thinking about it now she actually pretended that I was not there. My dad came home at lunch time and he was surprised to learn that I had actually gone there with all my clothes. He threatened to take me back if I didn’t tell him why I left in such a manner but I refused without giving him any reasons, after seeing that I wasn’t willing to talk he let me be.
Above everything else if ever there has been a man in this world that I have truly loved; it is my father, even after remarrying he never made me feel unwanted and he always advised me to work extra hard in school. He promised to see me through my education and finding a job would be my business.
My childhood was never a walk in the park; one would think after moving in with dad everything turned out okay but it didn’t, my relationship with my second mum was not stable. Some days we were okay and others were just messed up but God's grace was upon my life because in the end I turned out okay. My dad told me if I wanted to get an education I would have to stop moving back and forth and I promised to stay in one place which was his house.
He enrolled me at Lilayi Secondary School and I had to repeat my eighth grade because of how the past year had been for me but I was not ashamed because I was just happy to have a stable life. It was a short distance from home and soon I made friends to walk with, I loved School and I wanted to study law. I was full of hope I was doing well, I passed my grade 9 and continued at the same school to grade 10.
Eventually I started to miss my mother and I wanted to see her, dad would organize transport money for me to visit her during the holidays and by that time she had divorced her husband and moved from Kabulonga Girls Secondary School to Roma Girls secondary school on transfer. She opened up on how much her ex (second) husband had embarrassed her too much and she just had to move. She was in a better place now and we related better compared to all those years.
Dad died four months after I wrote my grade twelve examinations due to health complications after His RTA (renal tubular acidosis). And this is where my sole journey starts from; I was lost without him because he was a great pillar. One I would always run to for comfort and wisdom, he never once told me he loved me because of the times back then but his actions made me believe without a doubt that he did.
It was after dad’s death that I met Elias Mwanza, by then a third year student in school of engineering at the University of Zambia. I was a Mills and Boon fan, I always imagined meeting my prince charming made of steel with a chiseled chin as handsome as they came. I was a hopeless romantic because of those books, meeting him was nothing like that - I didn't like him, he was seven years older than me. I was 16 he was 23, I didn't even like his choice of clothes but he was patient.
Slowly he started making me fall in love with him and by the time I was writing my grade 12 exams I was head over heels in love with him and so was he, he would do anything for me and vice versa. He was my ticket to happiness and he knew it.
Your Friend and Author