Mzansi Stories : Diary of a Single Mum
Showing posts with label Diary of a Single Mum. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Diary of a Single Mum. Show all posts

Thursday, January 14


Diary of a Single Mum Episode 78

The memories are still vivid as if it keep on happening every day. The day he proposed wasn't something I expected to happen any time soon.
I never understood why Isaac was so interested in how matters stood with my mother. I chose not to say much because my mother was a difficult woman and I didn't know what she wanted of me. The more I kept out of her life, the more I stay out of her way which was better for both of us.
" Babe what do you think of us visiting your mother over the weekend?" Seriously his question over dinner took me unawares. He had no idea my mother wasn't somebody he would want to be in the same room with, not for now maybe later when things took a serious turn in our relationship. Introducing Isaac to my mother meant I had made myself vulnerable to her criticism and demeaning. This could be the third man in my life and to her it either meant I had serious problems on how to keep a man and make him put a ring on my finger or I simply wasn't woman enough for having two kids outside wedlock.I don't know why she made such conclusions on me. Can somebody make a man commit himself when commitment wasn't something on his mind yet? I don't think so.
" I don't think now is the right time to go there." I answered.
"Why not? I think it would be a nice surprise. Besides she will be happy to see her grandchildren."
Well my kids were not fond of my mother, until then I didn't realize that I was the cause of the gap between them.
I could see that Isaac was determined to go to Nkhatabay. It was a Wednesday so I only had Thursday to make preparations so that we leave on Friday evening.
Different thoughts were going through my mind at what drama tantrums my mother would throw this time. I hoped she didn't get to embarrass me in front of Isaac...
Friday came and when the kids went to school, I started packing. Isaac would pick us up at 5:30 pm and he hated to be kept waiting.
I prepared meals and set aside bottled water.
Beatrice didn't go to South Africa with her husband as they had planned because her pregnancy was in advanced stage and she couldn't travel. She had a baby girl a month later and I named her Ulunji wa Chiuta. They found a house for rent which was two bedroomed but it couldn't accommodate the other two wives and each of their two kids. They had to be sent to the village while awaiting for the husband to find a better paying job so they could afford a bigger house. Beatrice couldn't keep down her joy at having the man to herself after she had suffered bitterly at the hands of her co-wives. I told her that she had wished for herself to be tangled to a polygamous man so she didn't have to complain.
That Friday afternoon when I was waiting for the kids to be back from school, Beatrice came and wanted to join us. I told her not to because I didn't want her husband to think that I in anyway was enticing her to visit the village at such a short notice thereby undermining his authority.
I made a mental note to visit Joy's children at the village. I was prepared to face Peter's mother with whatever criticism she could throw at me.
I made the kids have early dinner. I didn't want any trouble as we had to start off on such a short notice. Right after eating Laurent fell asleep. It saved me from chasing him around the house as he had developed this habit of throwing the ball inside when I wasn't watching. He refused to play outside for fear of having it stolen by other kids.
Amanda was an angel relieving me the duty of picking plastic water guns and cars back into their toy box that found themselves scattered when Laurent was awake. I found this job tiresome as I had to be doing it everyday. Laurent only knew how to play but putting the toys back in order was a taboo. Sometimes I was tempted to hide the toy box, but when I did, his puppy face and adorable eyes would melt my heart with love as he begged me to give him the toys with promises of putting them back in order. I always gave in. # joysofmotherhood .
When Isaac came, we were ready. He picked Laurent to the car as I started loading the bags. Twenty minutes later we were good to go. I didn't see the need to call Ben and tell him that I was taking the kids away for a weekend because we weren't going to stay long.
We chatted and listened to music along the way until Amanda fall asleep around 11. Isaac needed me to continue talking to him so that he shouldn't fall asleep while driving. He took energizer drinks until ten hours later when we arrived in Nkhatabay. It was so quite with a full moon. The lake was also calm and standing at my mother's house looking beyond, we could see the shimmering lake lazily hitting the shore and sparkling like an outstretched slate of diamond.
I knocked while Isaac was unloading our bags and it seemed like my mother had been waiting for us all night. She took Laurent from my arms. He was awake now and looking puzzled at the woman who I told him was his granny. Amanda had some memories of her but she was also not used to seeing her around.
I put our things in the room which she had prepared for us. When I was back I found her kneeling at the far corner while she greeted Isaac. I watched in fascination because my mother had never kneeled when greeting Ben or Peter.
"Ma we will talk later. We just want to go to sleep... and please don't inform people early in the morning of my arrival. I don't want the whole village waking us up."
I told her because she had now started telling Isaac the history and gossip of the village. We went to bed.
I woke up from the sun blinding my eyes. Isaac wasn't beside me and neither were the kids in the bed next to ours.
I got up and made my way outside. Nobody was in the sitting room but voices could be heard outside. I smiled to myself.
My mother was sitting on a bamboo mat while Isaac sat on a stool not very far from her. Amanda and Laurent were sitting on the ground eating fresh mangoes.
" Morning sunshine." Isaac said as he beckoned me to sit next to Him.
"Morning love." Then pointing to the kids I said,"don't tell me that you will be finishing that whole basin."
"The way they are carrying on I'm sure those mangoes are in trouble."
I laughed. My mum said she had prepared breakfast boiled yams and bananas as well as roasted nuts. She had a pot of tea on the fire. I went to freshen up before joining them again to eat.
Later on when the kids were outside with others, fascinated by cattle and goats that one of my uncles owned, Isaac sought for a word with my mother.
"I'm sorry if it will take your time mama but I have to ask you of this thing that has brought me this far."
My heart started beating because Isaac had not first discussed with me whatever he wanted to tell my mother. I didn't say a word.
"Go ahead my son I'm listening."
Wonders shall never end. These two were already on mother and son basis.
"I know sometimes things are hard but that doesn't mean we have to give up in life." He began.
"Trust me that I have made this decision with a sound mind and its how I want things to remain for the rest of my life. Life may give us lemons when we expect apples but we won't feel the pain when we learn to make lemonade."
I had no idea where this conversation was driving to.

"What I'm trying to say is would you be kind enough to consent for me to have your daughter's hand in marriage?"
The bombshell had been dropped. Immediately my mother stood up and started doing a dance around the house while singing and ullulating. I thought I was dreaming for I had no idea things were this serious. Personally I thought his decision was full of maturity and he wanted me to take him seriously by coming to my mother.
I was short of words as he came and gathered me in his arms. I was so happy.
My mother called my uncle from my father's side and they set a date with Isaac when his people would come to pay lobola. My uncle loved money and alcohol so when he was offered a bottle of wine and some money, he was all smiles. He assured him that he would personally make sure nothing went wrong during the negotiations until Isaac had his bride in his house.
The date was set in three months time and I felt buoyant inside. My mother who looked like she had been waiting for this all her life as she couldn't stop smiling and she couldn't stop telling me how proud I had made her as her first born.
God is a God of second chances and He has great plans to bless us and make things right for us in His own divine time. I for one I'm one of testimonies...
wht's yours? if it's not here yet keep praying until God will do it.
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Thursday, January 7


Diary of a Single Mum Episode 77

Love and deceit do not mix.
So Peter was married and he only wanted to take me for a fool's ride. I was free from his snare as I had resisted him and his charm. I was sitting on my bed and laughing to myself how close I had been to falling right into it. 
I will never understand what else he wanted from me. One thing that intrigued me was how long he had known the lady for them to get married. Anyway that wasn't my headache. I wished them all the best in their married life and I hoped she was made of steel enough to withstand Peter's mother.
I didn't like Peter's messages the moment I stepped into a minbus back home since he couldn't drop me anymore because he had to go home with his wife.
"Please let me explain. Its not what you think" read one of his messages. What was there to explain? I didn't have time for married men, besides he owed me nothing. It was his life for him to live how he saw fit.
I didn't reply to all his flooding messages and eventually broke him.
Amanda came to tell me that her father had come. Ben was now coming to my house whenever he saw fit. I didn't like it one bit.
I put on my slippers and went outside. Ben was looking so jovial for a moment I thought he was a different person.
"What brings you here? I don't remember you calling me to say you were coming."
"Kids please go to your room I have to talk to your mum."
Laurent was reluctant to go until he was promised an ice cream if he did as he is told.
"Should I make you a cup of tea?" I asked him.
"No thanks."
I seriously didn't want another suprise after what happened with Peter that afternoon.
"I know I have wronged you countless times." He started.
oh please...
"I haven't treated you with the respect and kindness that you deserve. Trust me that has given me sleepless nights..."
I interrupted him.
"If that's what you have come to say please don't bother because that is water under the bridge and I have forgotten all about it."
"Please hear me out."
In all the time I had known Ben he had never pleaded with me before because all he did was being bossy and ordering me about.
"I have come to ask for your forgiveness. "
If he expected me to play along with him just like Peter had wanted then he was in for a big shock.
"I already forgave you..."
"Thanks alot.I want to make up for lost time by being a better father. I have realised that while I was busy making your life hell, you never took revenge.You have been a good woman despite all our differences."
Was he drunk perhaps?
"What has made you say all this?" I couldn't help asking.
"Nothing only that I have taken time to reflect upon my life and if I'm not careful it will affect my future."
"Okay.I don't hold any grudges against you."
"Thank you very much. In case you should know, Cindy and I are expecting a baby."
That was it then. All the new softness that had risen was due to this news. I offered my warm congratulations and knew that Laurent and Amanda would fuss over the baby once it arrived.
If having more babies had the power to change Ben then I prayed that he should have more babies for him to have a big heart overflowing with love. God has His own divine way of doing things.
A week later Beatrice came to visit. She was heavily pregnant and I was tempted to say she fall pregnant even before the wedding. The passports were not yet ready, her husband it seemed did not have extra money to bribe some Immigration officials for quick processing. You know how they work.
As we were talking about the village and her family. She told me that she had noticed some sores in her private Parts. I asked her if she had visited the hospital to which she said not yet. The husband was blaming the wives for sleeping around. If he had three wives what would stop him from having extra girlfriends? He had the guts to point fingers when he was the one entirely to blame. I told her to come with me so that I escort her to the hospital. We went to a government hospital because she didn't have enough money to go to a private hospital. We stayed on the queue for two hours before we saw a doctor.
She had an STI and couldn't be treated in the advanced stage of her pregnancy. She tested non reactive to HIV and She was advised to bring her husband for treatment.
"You should also bring those two owls here." I said on our way back home. I told her to avoid sexual contact with him if she valued her life and her baby's. Sharing had its own disadvantage for real.
Isaac couldn't just let me be. Day by day he was coming to my place to see me. He made it his business to be closer to me and I can't deny saying I let him. We talked and texted all day when he was at work until late at night when we both retired to bed. I was falling in love with him every passing day. I gave myself a chance to trust him and set aside the circumstances that had broken my heart previously. Isaac was just different, perhaps it was the maturity in him. He was some one who didn't make decisions based on his emotions. If I was in one of my 'moods' that came by because he didn't reply my text in time or didn't call me back after seeing a missed call. All that feeling of being betrayed would come tumbling back. Forcing me to imagine what was not there and anticipating the worst to happen any time. I taught myself to have self control over my emotions by trusting him and loving him. Trust is vital and many of us have trust issues basing on our past but we can't keep on harbouring distrust in our present relationships because somebody didn't think twice when betraying our feelings.
Isaac understood that I needed time to shed off the dead skin of my pains.
He told me to ask him anything if I wasn't clear on it because it couldn't help to be angry with him based on speculations and imaginations...
I didn't realise how serious he was with me until eight months into our relationship he proposed...

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Wednesday, January 6


Diary of a Single Mum Episode 76

He took off his glasses and I looked into his eyes.
I just couldn't believe it. I smiled shyly at him.
"Wangu what are you doing here?"
I looked back at the receptionist then to the envelope in my hands.
"I came to drop an application letter."
"How come you were leaving with it?"
I looked at the security guard then back to the receptionist who quickly looked down and started fumbling with papers on the desk.
"Come with me to my office and we can talk about everything."
I looked at his smart suit considering how shabby I looked.
He took my hand and we walked right past the reception.
We arrived in his office and he called his secretary to bring refreshments. The office was cooler than the heat I had walked under for half of the day.
The refreshments were brought in and I greatfully digged in the cold drink and biscuits. All along Peter was looking at me as if we had just met.
"Tell me everything."
" About what?" I asked laughing.
"The kids, yourself and life generally."
" How is Chris?" I asked instead.
"He is fine. He went to the village for the holidays but he is back now and growing everyday."
I wanted to say Chris will absorb his grandmother's character like a sponge instead I just smiled.
I didn't know why Peter was now being nice after everything that happened including the last incident we had at Joy's funeral.
I hated telling him that I lost my job knowing that he might feel the push to help me.
He told me that he was now the Project Manager of this organization. He was really doing good for himself if I was to be honest. I told him about the kids and how they have grown as well as Beatrice's wedding.
His telephone rung. He answered and was a bit hesitant as he said, "Please let him in."
I wondered who was coming as I watched his face.
"Mike is coming."he said after putting the phone down.
I didn't know if I was ready to meet him.
In the next few minutes he strode in.
"Well did I walk in on something." He asked amused.
"Sit down bra."
I looked at his face and clothes. He needed a shave and a shower. Even his clothes didn't suit him as the Mike I used to know.
I greeted him and almost got tempted to ask after the kids to which I kept quite.
"I can see you two have a lot of catching up to do. I am off to Nkhatabay this afternoon.Mum called that the kids need some gloceries and other stuff."
Joy must have been turning in her grave. Those kids were going to have their brains whitewashed and manipulated. I hoped they wouldn't end up with their grandmother messing up their lives like she had done with their father and uncle.
"Greet the kids for me." I said unable to restrain myself.
"Sure." Mike answered.
"Let me see him off. Wait for me I will be back in a few minutes."
I nodded in agreement.
They went out together and after some time Peter returned.
"Sorry for keeping you waiting. You know how Mike is like." 
I shrugged my shoulders to mean I didn't mind waiting.
" So...tell me, what do you think about us?"
" Come on Wangu don't pretend you don't love and want me anymore because I know you do."
I had seen this coming the moment we had bumped into each other.
"Leave me alone. You and me are done thanks to your mother."
"I know my mum is not your most favorite person in the world but come on she is just a lonely woman with only her kids in the world that's why she is overprotective."
I only sighed.
"I promise this time she won't come between us again"
"I don't want to go through all that drama again.Find a woman who will suit your mother's taste and you won't ever complain a day in your life."
He gazed at his wristwatch then said,"how about we discuss this over dinner tonight?"
Going out with him would mean betraying myself.I knew the tactics he was likely to use to get to me again. I couldn't deny that I still loved him so much more but there was enough baggage between us to last a life time that I couldn't stomach.
His habit of flirting with other girls was something I couldn't tolerate. I hated a man who made me feel like I was nothing to him compared to other girls he accomodated in his life for all the different reasons.
If other girls meant the world to him, why was he still tailing me? Wasn't it better that without me he was free to mingle and tangle with whoever he wanted when the fancy took him?
"I'm sorry but am not going anywhere with you."
"Give it time. If you change your mind just call me I still use the same number."
" If you need anything please don't hesitate to call me. Do you still use the same account number? " To which I said yes.
He started doing something on his phone and after some time I received a bank notification message that money amounting to twenty thousand kwacha has been deposited into my account. I was speechless. I knew it was him.
" Why did you do that?"
"Just keep quite we both know you need it."
I couldn't protest because it was true. 
" Thank you very much.God will bless you for that. I should be on my way back home,the kids must be back from school by now."
"Alright let me drop you.I'm also knocking off. Give me your letter and I will personally take it to the HR's office."
"Thank you so much once again for your kindness."
"You are welcome."
I waited for him while he took his briefcase and car keys. He told his secretary to clear the desk and to remember to lock the office.
We walked out of the building to the car park, leaving the receptionist puzzled as she bade Peter a nice ride home. I was laughing inside as we were going towards his car.
Suddenly we heard someone calling his name behind us.
We stopped and looked. She was a beautiful lady in black stilettos,purple and pink floral dress. 
She approached us and I watched almost mouth agape as they engaged in a hug and kiss.
"Sweetheart you didn't wait for me.I sent you a whatsapp message that I was coming. "
She said,her full red lips smacking his cheek again.
"Sorry honey I didn't see it."
I was irritated the way these two were carrying on. It was like I wasn't there at all.
"Forgive my lack of manners. Babe meet my good friend Wangu. Wangu this is my lovely wife Alice."
"Nice meeting you Wangu" she purred.
I only sighed...

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Thursday, December 24


Diary of a Single Mum Episode 75 (Part B)

EPISODE 75 continuation
I was in a maze of thoughts, too tangled up to get out. Thousand questions were invading my mind. I watched him talking on the phone cautiously to avoid saying what wasn't intended.
I could have interrupted him there and then, ordering him out of my house. couldn't he show a little respect?
The whole conversation was full of no.. yes...yeah...we will see... until they bade each other goodnight. By then my patience had run out and I was fuming with anger.
"Sorry about that."
I looked at him.
" Do I look like a fool to you? What are you playing at?"
He sat down and looked at me straight in the eyes.
" You should understand Wangu that some friends don't necessarily wish you well." He said.
"What do you mean?"
"Do you remember the day I came to your office and left a note with my number on it?" He asked.
"yeah I do remember. so?"
I was becoming more and more puzzled.
" Marble read the note apparently and saved my number because she has been calling me ever since"
"Do you want her to continue calling you?"
"How can I stop it?"
seriously I thought he must have been the dumbest man I had ever known.
"You mean you can't control who you want to talk to on your own phone? "
"She might think I'm being rude."
The way he was defending all this made me think he must have been enjoying the attention.
"Can she kill you if you tell her not to call you again? oh wait...wait maybe you want enjoy talking to her. I'm I missing something here?"
" Seriously I don't want to talk to her. She calls me everyday as if to remind to take my medication."
I laughed so hard.
"Well if you want us to continue being friends, please get rid of such unnecessary callers."
" After today, are we still 'just friends'?"
I laughed again.
" Listen here Wangu. I want us to be more than friends. I want you to be a mother of my children, the person I see everyday when I woke up in the morning. I love you Wangu so very much you are torturing me and giving me sleepless nights with your rejection. I have waited long enough and I'm sure you don't think I want anymore games."
The look on his face was of one who has gotten rid of a heavy burden. Was this what he was keeping inside him throughout the night?
"Please don't start again?"
I was trying to dismiss this issue as best as I could.
"I shouldn't start what? why are you afraid of yourself? You think running away from me is what will prevent a heartbreak? That's where you are wrong. You will keep on hurting from the past if you don't learn to let go. Love yourself enough to love again."
This lectrure really got into me.
"Look I heard what you have told me and we will talk about it later. For now why don't you go home and catch some sleep."
"sure...good night then."
With that he came to me hugged and kissed me on the forehead.
He left me with too many questions I couldn't have been able to answer in one night. I watched him until his car was out of site.
I locked the door and went to the bedroom. My money was dwindling pretty fast yet there were electricity and water bills to pay.
I couldn't stop tossing as Isaac's words kept replaying in my mind. Perhaps it was true that I was pushing away a good man.
Old wounds had really hurt me and new love could have a tough time settling in. I wasn't in a rush anyway.
A week later I received a call from Beatrice that they would be coming to Lilongwe at her husband's uncle's place while they were waiting for their passports in Area 25. They were planning to go to South Africa in search of green pastures. Well good luck to them. I asked about what happened to the other two wives. Were they taking them too? Hahaha imagine a man with three wives and several children embarking on such a journey and creating pressure at his uncle's place would look like the whole village was migrating. I told her that if anything, she was free to pop in at my house and say hello.
I continued my job hunting without success. Isaac offered to give me money to do business but I refused because I wanted it to be a loan that I could repay but he wanted it to be a gift. I wasn't comfortable with that sort of arrangement. I could have easily received the money and moved on but my conscious wouldn't allow me. I was afraid of tomorrow, as much as it seemed to be a sign of goodwill but it might have also been a trap.
I was in City Centre at Live and Love it Foundation feeling tired, hungry and thirsty from the scorching heat that was draining my strength . I had gone to leave an application letter for the post of cleaner. The receptionist was one hell of a lady who acted like she owned the company. I could have easily told her some home truths if not for the fear of the rumour that some of them tear application letters when the fancy take them. I could still feel her gaze upon me like I was leprous. I knew my shoes were dusty but she couldn't have been so rude as to ask the security officer at the door to help me out so I could clean up. I felt so low, so out of place. The time I made it to the door, I was so consumed in my own thoughts that I bumped right into the person in front of me. I murmured my apologies and fearfully stepped aside as I watched him take out his sun glasses. I couldn't forget that face, especially those eyes that sometimes haunted me deep in my sleep...

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Friday, December 18


Diary of a Single Mum Episode 75 (Part A)

A week after losing my job, I had dropped application letter almost at all companies I knew would employ me basing on my experience. I didn't want to limit God but always prayed that He would intervene in my situation and give me that which was best for me.
The kids were doing great and Ben was taking care of them. Since Amanda was growing up, I told her that if she wanted anything she had to be the one telling her father about it because Ben always had it in his mind that I wanted to play chess to con him behind the children's name.
I really didn't understand him at times.
Cindy once answered Ben's phone when I called him one day. The kids' had a school trip out of town and needed some money. The way she talked to me made me feel like I was a beggar.
Anyway I didn't blame her but it was unnecessary because never in my life did I ever dream of dating Ben again.
One Saturday afternoon I was ironing the kid's clothes. There was a knock on the door. I was alone in the house since I had sent the kids at the corner shop to buy me airtime. Norah had gone back with her husband to heaven knew where. I couldn't tolerate her sleeping over at his place whenever he felt like. If he wanted her around him, no harm would be done if she went to stay there afterall they were husband and wife. If anything happened, I would always be there to offer her my shoulder.
I went to open the door, Isaac was standing there grinning widely as if he was expected.
"Come in." I told him.
"Thanks. It's nice to see you again."
He was carrying a paper bag which he gave me and I took it hesitantly.
"You really shouldn't have bothered"
"Don't try to be polite with me come on Wangu it's just bread and juice for the kids."
I muttered my thanks and we sat down.
"What brought you here?" I asked.
"I was in the neighborhood and thought of saying hie"
We both knew he was lying because he didn't know anybody else there.
We were both lost of words. He was waiting for me to break the ice and I was waiting for him to speak.
"I heard that you lost your job.I'm sorry."
"Who told you? "
"Marble. don't blame her because I was a bit persistent to know why you were not at work at all the four times i have been coming there."
" oh I see."
"Is it okay if I can talk to some of my friends and see if they can offer you another job."
I wasn't sure if that was a good idea but it didn't sound so bad.
"I would appreciate it so much."
I was speechless.
"where are the kids?"he asked.
Immediately the door opened and laughter filled the room. Amanda and Laurent were chasing each other.
"Mumie tell Amanda to give me my sweet. She has three and I have two.I need to eat the other one
I'm a man."
Isaac and I burst into laughter but honestly it gave me food for thought. I didn't want to raise a man who would think being a man gave him power over everything. He had to learn that he must earn it or ask politely.
Isaac carried him on his knees. As if he had read my mind, he said, " Listen here buddy.If you want an extra sweet, ask for it okay"
"Yes Uncle" he said.
"Now you two go and play." They run outside. Kids always seems to be running all the time.
"Can I take you out?"
he asked suddenly.
Immediately I touched my hair, honestly I was a mess. I didn't know how much it could cost to have it back in shape.
" Take this and do your hair." He must have seen my distressed look, he gave me five thousand kwacha.
We agreed for a date the following day at 7:00 pm. He would pick me up. We would go and leave Amanda and Laurent at his place with his daughter's babysitter.
I was over the moon to be able to be taken out again after a long time.
We went to city mall cinema and watched an Indian movie which we left mid way. We went to have dinner at Steers. It was a lovely evening and I felt happy. Problems aside, Isaac acted like a perfect gentleman, not pushing me too far and only commenting where required.
He was on a mission to get to know me more.
He laughed more and I felt at ease in his presence. We ate while talking and by 9:30 pm we decided to start going. He suggested that I sleep at his place since the kids were already there but I refused. We went to pick them up and they were asleep.
Throughout the drive, I felt truly happy. Once in a while he could pat me on the shoulder to emphasize a point.
We arrived at my place and he helped me carry Amanda while I carried Laurent.
I tucked them in bed and went to where Isaac was.
"Thank you very much for going out with me today. I really appreciate."
I didn't reply, I just smiled.
His phone rung. Since it was on the table, I saw who was calling, Marble. My heart thumped so hard in my chest. It was a terror considering the odd hour as well as the ignorance of how deep rooted their relationship was.
He looked at me, sighed then picked up the call obviously irritated by the awkwardness the call had caused him. I waited...
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Tuesday, December 15


Diary of a Single Mum Episode 74

As long as the principle of nature stands, man shall reap what he sows.
I didn't know what to say to that because my mind was reeling with confusion. Mike thought he had walked a step ahead of life but now fate had caught up with him and given him a dose of his own medicine.
After I had finished talking to Marble, I had a burning desire to know how Joy's children were doing. Poor souls having had to endure hardship at such a tender age. I didn't know if Mike was in a good state of mind to take care of them.
I made a mental note of finding where I had written down the phone number of Joy's mother.
Time run down so fast and it was evening already. Ben was nowhere to be found. I couldn't go to his house because I didn't know where but even if I did, I couldn't go there. Cindy might have misinterpreted my presence for a mission to tear her home apart.
If this was a test I had to endure, I didn't know if I would pass. I could be uncontrollable when it came to my children.
The night passed and I went to bed with a heavy heart laden with fury and worry.
The following morning I had to get ready for work and asked Norah to stay home if she could so that when Ben brought the kids, they wouldn't be home alone.
I arrived on time at work and when i was signing in the attendance register, The Human Resources Manager called me to his office. My heart thumped so hard in my chest.
I meekly followed him as I wondered what he had in store for me.
When we arrived in his office, he motioned me to close the door and sit down. He wasn't in a mood of pleasantries because he immediately pulled out an envelope from his drawer and handed it to me without a word.
With a deep sigh, I received it and tore it open.
It was a letter of dismissal with immediate effect. Well it wasn't the job of the year or that which could make me stand on top of the world for all to hear that I had it but it was able to put food on the table for me and my children.
I felt a tightening sensation deep in my chest as this news sunk. Where would I get another job?
" I am sorry Miss Banda but the boss asked me to do this."
I only managed to nod my head as he told me to go to the accounts department and get whatever money that I was entitled to receive after dismissal.
I only got a dismissal letter because I already got several verbal warnings.
I went inside the accountant's office and got my severance pay stashed in an envelope silently.
The accountant was an old man who frightened me with his silence. He didn't like talking much unless he really had to.
When I got out and went to clear my drawer, I felt a hand touch my shoulder. I looked up and gazed into Marble's eyes. This time they were deep with genuine compassion and empathy. She smiled and I smiled back.
"It will be fine."
Just the word I needed to erupt the dam that was threatening to break out the dam inside me. The tears came. She handed me her handkerchief and patted me on the back until they were spent.
I took my things and packed them in my handbag.
"Before you go, there was a man who came looking for you while you were in the HR's office. He left this for you."
I took the folded paper from her and read it. It was Isaac's number inscribed inside.
"He said you should call him immediately because he can't get you on your mobile."
After I had finished talking to Isaac on my way from Nkhatabay, I put him on my blacklisted contacts. I simply didn't want to get involved too much with him.
I mumbled my thanks and took leave. To where? I had no idea but I just wanted to go home and see my kids before I remembered that they were not even there.
How much chance did I had of finding another job? The following day I had to start job hunting if I was to survive.
My mother, bad timing as usual called me and expressed her disappointment for my MIA at the wedding. I wasn't even bothered by her ranting because she couldn't understand my present situation. When she realised that I had been quite, she thought I had hanged up on her. I simply told her that I had heard all that she has said but I had to go.
When I arrived home, Norah wasn't there. Trust her to disobey me. Matters of the heart are peculiar and unfathomable.
I went to lie down on my bed and thought about my life. Something had to be done if I needed a change because I couldn't afford to keep on living a life of torment. A low paying job at a low standard company that didn't give me any job security.
What would become of me and my children in the next five years?
My life was becoming a gamble I couldn't afford. No qualification for a proper job. If people with degrees were suffering to find jobs, What chance did I have of securing one? If I needed God's grace then it was now when the blunt rope of unemployment was fresh and choking me.
At around past 3 pm, Norah came with her husband. She was shocked to find me home and was quick to say he just wanted to know where she was staying. Well silently I said to myself, here comes baby no. two.
I left them chatting while I went out for a walk. My thoughts were directed to my babies. Whatever mind games Ben was trying to play me, I was yet to find out.
I passed by the market and bought fresh fruits to make fruit salad with Chambico.
I arrived home and started making the salad. I heard a car screech to a halt outside and I looked through the window to see Ben's car.
I wiped my hands on a dish cloth and went outside. He walked towards me with arms outstretched for a hug. I folded my hands and ignored him.
"What is it with you? Are you always this serious? " His voice had an underlying mockery but still I ignored him.
"I came to see the kids.are they inside?" Was he kidding me or what?
"Which kids?" I asked.
"What do you mean? Go get them I don't have all day.I have a meeting in an hour's time, I just came by to say hello."
I looked at him for any trace of lies but there was none.
"You know what, you can't deny taking the kids because Norah was there. Let me call her then we shall hear all about it."
I started making for the door before he pulled me by the elbow and brought me back. He started laughing so hard.
"Take it easy... Kids you can come out now."
At that moment, The car door opened. Amanda and Lawrence came out, stifling giggles.
I reapt in excitement and hugged them so hard to me, forgetting my earlier worries.
"That's a lesson. If these kids trust me, why do you fail to do the same? " Ben asked me after the excitement had died down. I didn't have time to answer because I was basking in the happiness of seeing my pumpkins.
He took out the bags from the car and bade us farewell.
What a plank I had been pulled!!
I really had to stop worrying too hard before I made a fool of myself.

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Diary of a Single Mum Episode 73

My journey back to Lilongwe was not something I would wish to do anytime soon. The feeling of uneasiness that engulfed my heart made matters worse. What was wrong with me? I knew I had to trust Ben with the kids but a part of me screamed in protest. Not that he would hurt them but taking them far away from me was scary enough that I shivered even though sweat was trickling down my face.
Isaac kept texting me on watsapp. The conversation diverted back to his love declarations. I simply didn't want him to be more than a friend. To me what he wanted was a replica of his late wife. I didn't want to be chained down to excuses that would see my every action critically scrutinized on the magnifying glass to see if I performed the way she used to or could have. It could have made me mad being in such a relationship which couldn't have had any love in it but rather pity and mercy. Her pictures still hanging on the walls and everywhere around the house intrigued my mind. I probably would have felt like I was trampling on sacred ground, a temple that had inhabited two soul mates until death robbed them of their time together. I laughed to myself having had conclusions like those when I didn't even give him a chance to prove himself.
I had burnt my fingers enough to know if I would burn them again or not.
The few months I had known him were not enough to convince myself that I had undying love for him.
I asked him for time, which he said he didn't have. Why was he in a hurry? I believed a little patience couldn't have hurt him nonetheless.
My battery died when we were passing Salima, so I slept for the rest of the way.
We arrived in Lilongwe in the wee hours of the morning and waited until 5:00am to go home.
The moment I knocked on the door, it opened as if Norah had been expecting me the whole night. The atmosphere was tensed between us and she tried to explain why she didn't tell me when Ben came to take the kids. The court case can back to my mind and I shuddered in protest that I would never go through that agony again.
" Even if you had told me or tried to stop him from taking the kids, Ben couldn't have listened to you. He is stubborn." I told Norah.
" I was afraid of how you would react." She said with a smile on her face. The ice had melted. I wanted nothing but my bed because lying down in the bus had felt like bricks were beneath my back. I ached all over.
I went to sleep until 10:00 am and went to take a bath. The following day was a monday and I was worried to face my boss who calling him Hitler was an understatement. I was one of the staff who gave more excuses to tend to one problem or the other. This other time he even bellowed at me that his company wasn't a charitable organization that paid people who worked less.
Before leaving for Beatrice's wedding when a few days previously I was attending Joy's funeral, The Human Resources Manager had told me to go to the boss myself and tell him the excuse. I couldn't risk it, I made sure I kept out of the boss's way the whole day and almost sneaked out when it was time to knock off. I didn't know what calamity laid before me on the morrow. As a defense mechanism to maintain my sanity, I allowed 70% of his insults to penetrate and pass as undecoded from one ear out to the other.
I went to get dressed and later took out the kids' clothes to wash. Ben's phone was still unavailable but I knew that he had to bring them since they had to go to school the following day.
Norah was making lunch on the charcoal burner outside and we were chatting. She told me that her husband was back from Mocambique and he was requesting to see her and the baby. She asked me on whether she had to go or not. I answered.
" That's your decision to Make. You are the one who know the depth of your love for him because alot can happen. Whatever you do bear in mind that a hyena may only change the forest he is in to another but that won't him a giraffe."
She was left more puzzled than she had been before. I wasn't an excellent adviser on love matters, if I was perhaps my previous relationships couldn't have suffered catastrophe.
Later in the afternoon, I received a call from Marble. I was reluctant to pick it up for fear of reopening wounds.
" Hello"
"Wangu how are you?"
"Great and yourself?"
Then a moment of silence.
"Er...I just wanted to say hie since I haven't been seeing you at work recently."
She made it sound like I had been off work for like forever when it was only four days ago. Besides how would she act like all was well between after everything that happened.
"Have you been sick?"
" I went to Beatrice's wedding in Nkhatabay."
"Wow so she got married. All the best to her." I hated that feigned enthusiasm as if it was the reason for her calling.
I waited.
" I...I'm sorry about Joy." She stammered.
How will I ever get over the pain of losing Joy? Hearing her name mentioned was even more painful than just thinking about her. Atleast in thoughts I would try to summon only the best memories to my mind while hearing it from Marble made me realize how mad I still was at Marcy and Mike for driving Joy to suicide.
"Can we talk about something else because what is done is done." I couldn't bear prolonging this conversation.
"Am sorry I just wanted to give you my condolences."
" condolences or not but nothing will ever bring Joy back. I guess your sister is happy to have Mike all to herself."
I could feel my sarcasm cutting across to her like a sharp knife. Why did she had to say her condolences at that moment when at work she had been avoiding me like a plague? Whenever I entered the room she was in,she could immediately leave. She was acting like my sworn enemy and looking like she was the victim of circumstances that I triggered.
"It was nice of you calling but I have to go..."
"Wait...wait please." She almost begged me.
"Marcy run off to Kenya with her boyfriend."
That was the most outrageous thing I had ever heard. Run off? Like the devil she had come to steal, kill and destroy when she didn't have the slightest love for Mike. She could have left them to keep their world as it was yet she had ventured on a campaign to put assunder that God had joined. Mike had urged her on, making the devil's plans fruitful for that which is forbidden is sweet but the devil always hides the price tag. For all the gold in the world, I didn't wish to be him at that moment and have a lick of what betrayal felt like...

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Sunday, September 27


Diary of a Single Mum Episode 72

To be taken unawares at such an awkward moment when my emotions were flying in all directions wasn't something I was happy about.
"Wow Wangu long time."
"Long time indeed Mr Chirwa." Time had not done justice to his appearance. He looked so older than the last time we had met. It was hilarious to think that I could have been stuck with this old man who had offered me a marriage proposal.
"What are you doing here?" I asked him.
"I'm the uncle to the groom."
This meant that I could have been married in the same family with Beatrice. If the groom's Casanova legacy was anything to go by, then thank God for rescuing me from this promiscuous family.
" oh... okay." I was short of words.
" forget my lack of manners. Let's go outside and I will get you thobwa (non-alcoholic traditional brew)
"Oh I could have loved to but I have to go and see my cousin, she just came in."
" should I say you still don't like me?"
"Well I don't hate you but I hate myself for looking like your match. Enjoy yourself." With that I sprang off leaving him mouth agape.
There was no way I could have let those memories of that evening flood my mind. Did he just want to try his luck again?
I went outside to another hut where visitors who just came in were put before allocated to their rooms.
I saw Janet and I was happy we had met again. We oohed and aahed over each other and her kids. We bonded in the brief time I had stayed with them. Too bad I didn't bring Amanda and Laurent. She promised to visit us in Lilongwe. Chatting with her was the only time my spirit buoyed. I finally had a companion amidst all those strange people who treated me like I was leprous, with their sullen faces as if I was a distraction to their happiness. As much as I didn't like this place but I had one desire I wanted to fulfill before leaving, thus to see the other two wives. Seriously my heart went out to them.I imagined them somewhere within the compound in secluded rooms amidst all that noise, lips pouting with anger and frustration at an additional competitor. Each lost in her own thoughts on how to outwit the new bride, the moment the honeymoon phase was over. Probably they were leaving her to enjoy it while it lasts, then the curtains will be raised to signify the start of a real show.
It was too bad my Aunt didn't make it. She said she was having trouble with her legs but I knew there was more to it than met the eye.
The way I knew her, she didn't want to be part of something she never approved. She knew this was Beatrice's important day of her life, whether for the best or for the worst. I knew her absence was felt with a sting because she was one family whose approval was much sought for in the family.
I took Janet to the room where I slept because it had few people. When I helped her prepare her sleeping place, we went to the kitchen to get hot water for the kids' bath. We chatted and laughed while scrubbing them and then we gave them food to eat. It was impossible to sleep with all the loud singing of chilimika and malipenga (traditional dances) so we had trouble putting them to sleep until after midnight when the commotion died down.
We had so much to talk about, the people I used to know in Mzuzu and how business was like presently. Somehow I regretted leaving Mzuzu because I had to go back to Nkhatabay to help my mum recover from the accident. Perhaps if I had looked for my own place and continue my business, I could have been singing a different tune. Away from Peter and his heartaches.
We finally slept and looked forward to the events of the following few hours, not enthusiastically but with relief that it should be over and we should be heading back.
By 5:00 AM the place was buzzing with activities and my eyes ache like I had sand in them because I slept for a few hours than usual. 
We started getting ready for church. Janet was grateful for Extra hands with the kids and in no time we were done. I heard that some churches didn't agree to bless a marriage when a man was polygamous but I wondered with this one. I wasn't trying to judge but it simply doesn't make sense to involve God in issues that we already know He doesn't approve. 
As Beatrice walked down the aisle to the altar,she looked so beautiful I guess every bride does. I saw my mum dab her eyes with a handkerchief and she looked at me questioningly as if to say,"when is yours?" She must have really been emotional. I knew that this was some of the reasons people get married for all the wrong reason of appeasing nagging mothers who are impatient to let time be the judge between you and your husband to be. If you ask me, I would say it was good to cry now than later when problems began. I wasn't trying to be a horrible soothsayer but I felt a terrible feeling about everything hanging in the air. I won't lie, there was a moment I wondered if I would be able to walk down the aisle with a man of my dreams. That man who by looking at him reduces your legs to jelly and make your tummy an arena of butterflies games.
"Don't be stupid Wangu, God ain't asleep, in His own good time He shall give you your own Adam." I consoled myself.
When it was over, we went back home to change, eat and wait for the reception at the village square.
I called Norah to check on the kids. Laurent had a cough but it wasn't something for me to worry about. Ben came the previous day to take them to his place to spend the weekend. I was mad for not being asked about it let alone having my approval sought. As much as I was sure no harm would befall them but they had to ask for my permission first. Norah said she was scared to tell me because she didn't want to start something that wasn't there. When I was done talking to her, I called Ben but he didn't pick up my call. I was seething with anger and impatiently waited as the wedding reception proceeded slowly eventually I had to leave half way through. Whatever part was there to be played as a bride's sister was long forgotten as I boarded a bus back to Lilongwe without saying goodbye to my mum.
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Monday, September 21


Diary of a Single Mum Episode 71

Episode 71
Fear looks down, worries look around and love look ahead.
Three weeks after we buried Joy, I found myself in Nkhatabay attending Beatrice's wedding. In life there is a time for everything. One minute we are crying, the next we are smiling. All these two times help to bring out the best out of our lives.
I was only told of the wedding a week just before it happened and had to make haste arrangements for me to go. Seriously I felt so out of place, like an intruder. The wedding felt like that of a friend's friend. Everybody else looked to be in the best of moods and well dressed while I felt grumpy and at a wrong place. The activities seemed to go on without me. You know that feeling when everybody around you seem to know what is next to be done while you wait to be told what to do or wonder what somebody will do so you might follow suit.
what irked me most was seeing Beatrice visibly happy at the expense of another woman's misery. She was smiling at the world as if she was the only woman ever to get married.
Don't get me wrong but being another wife to his already existing wives, wasn't my idea of a happy marriage. No matter how much in control the man might seem to be, he still finds problems in one way or the other in running his house. The way I know a woman's heart, especially if that woman is me, the jelousy that could rise upon sharing my man it's something I can't contain. If a man takes another wife because there's a problem or weakness in you, it's no longer about you as a woman but it's about him to change and mend his ways by stopping to be greed and acting like he wants to own every woman on two legs. Stop blaming yourself and making lame excuses for him so that by the time he is lowered in the grave, he leaves behind a legacy of having many wives and children who he couldn't afford to educate, clothe and feed properly. Wives and Children who live their everyday lives competing and fighting for love and attention of one man who seem to only be selfish but want to show the world that he can have many women at his disposal.
If he can't accept you with all your flaws, imperfections and weaknesses, what makes him think you can accept his weaknesses and mistakes without a fight? 
On the eve of the wedding,I couldn't contain myself but went to Beatrice and gave her a piece of my mind. She knew that I didn't approve of all this but she simply didn't care what I thought. At that moment I could have happily exchanged her for another sister too bad we don't choose our relatives unless we drain all the blood and DNA.
It was already too late for her to adhere to my advice because she had already chosen her path. It was only my prayer that in her quest and thirst to get married, she wouldnt end up miserable. Chances of a happily-ever after were one to ten still more I didn't bargain for it.
I didn't tell her more words than to say I hoped she knew what she was doing. My mother got hold of this and I got insulted and misinterpreted as a jelous person who was frustrated because being the elder sister I should have been the one walking down the aisle. If walking down the isle with all the gabbage, then thank you very much I didn't want a complicated life.
I just wanted to get back to my kids as soon as this mess was over because I couldn't take another minute of her insults.
Just as I got out from talking to my mother, I got out from my mother's room to go back to my own room when I bumped into somebody ...
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Wednesday, September 16


Diary of a Single Mum Episode 70

Episode 70
"Who do you turn to when disaster strike? whose name do you call upon when calamity hits your life so suddenly like a storm? The bible from Genesis to revelation does not talk about somebody who succeeded after he called upon the names of different gods. If you trust in The Most High God with your troubles, there will never be any point of enough is enough, don't give God limitations, He is the one who created you and therefore,knows how to comfort you best. Even Job had enough troubles of a life time but never did he curse God for him to die even when he was hopeless. Naomi lost her husband and two sons but never did she for once think of taking her own life to forget everything. Eventually when we wait upon The Lord, He will always be faithful to restore all the years that the canker worms devoured." There could have never been a more befitting sermon delivered by The Pastor at Joy's funeral.
It was painful to see the premature death of a woman who, God willing could have lived long enough to see her children grow up. All through out the sermon, I felt like I was part of a nightmare that refused to end. Looking into the faces of Joy's children made me cry the more as I wondered what would become of them. Mike was playing the bereaved husband, wearing a sombre face before the people who never knew what a real snake he was. Once or twice, our eyes locked but he ended up looking away guiltily. I saw his lawyer too perhaps coming to see the end of his unfinished business. He had been like an angel of doom, mercilessly bringing bad news from the deepest pits of hell. I saw him leaving the tent to answer his phone. I followed him.
I stood behind him while he finished talking then lightly tapped him on the shoulder. He turned around visibly alarmed at my sight.
" oh...its you" he said forcing an awkward smile on his face.
" why did you come here?" 
" I'm sorry about your friend..." he began.
" cut the crap you don't know half of what am feeling."
" Trust me I didn't know something like this could happen. Its very unfortunate."
"You people have no shame, God will punish you a hundred fold. Why did you have to do all that? What did you achieve anyway? " I could feel my anger rising.
" you have no right to talk to me like that.I was only doing what my client told me to."
" will you sue me? You know what,I don't care anymore. Whatever you will do just go ahead and do it"
"I'm sorry.excuse me."
He left me standing there and I watched him going to join Mike on the next seat.
I saw him whisper something in his ears and he looked back to where I was standing and I felt fresh tears stinging my eyes. My friend killed herself for such a useless man who was afraid to admit his mistakes and sort out his problems. He had ran into the confusion of a young girl's life hoping for change from whatever problems he was facing in his marriage. Joy had never told me of the fights or arguments surrounding their marriage and I had all along believed them to be an ideal couple until the Marble saga. People out there suffer in silence, they keep problems under wraps until they are broken and wasted. I believed that divorce wasn't the main cause of her suicide, there was more than the eye could see and a part of me wanted to find out yet the other part was too afraid to stumble upon skeletons in the cupboard. But the easiest way to find out quickly was getting closer to Peter which was something I couldn't do even in the craziest state of mind. 
The journey to the cemetery began. She was to be buried at St Peter's Cemetery in Area 3 amidst her relatives protests. They wanted her buried at her home village in Ntcheu but Mike said otherwise. I don't know if he wasn't so ashamed to act as if he was the caring husband before the elders. Joy's mother was not in a state to hear news that led to her daughter's death, I decided to keep my trap shut.
As the coffin was lowered down the grave, the sense of loss was acute. Life feels like we will live forever when we are breathing and moving about yet in a twinkle of an eye it all goes away and comes to an end. For the departed person her part is done and gone on this earth, it remains for us the living to mend our ways and our relationship with God so that when our turn comes to meet Him, we should be ready. It doesn't make sense to go to church for the sake of people to sing on your funeral yet you lived this life in vain. What will it benefit man to acquire wealth, respect and status on this earth yet end up in hell. For the love of God let's realise the reason He put us on earth and strive to live to His expectations. Should we say Christ paid that price on the cross for us to throw it to the wind and gutters? Absolutely not, His love was shown so we shouldnt perish but have an everlasting life, I thought as I moved away from the cemetery..
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