” Just when my hallelujah was tired, you gave me a new song”
Sometimes in 2000..Superman
Today,Aunt Kate left me at home-as usual. She is the Choir Mistress in a church that isn’t so far from our house. It is never a problem that she goes to church o. In fact I am always happy when she goes to church but it is just that anytime she goes to church, she always says “Eno, don’t go outside. If I catch you outside, I will beat you and then, put pepper in you bum bum and eyes”. Me, I don’t want Aunt Kate to beat me o. Besides I don’t want her to put pepper in my bum bum, it will pepper me. The other time she beat me, she used the head of her belt and then sent me to go and buy ‘kunu’ for her. All these things that they are doing to me in this house, God is seeing it o!!
After she went out, I tied a black scarf around my neck, I now climbed the net to unbolt the door. As soon as the door opened, I ran outside and made sure the scarf was flapping like Superman’s own. As I was running, I started singing “I believe I can fly”.I had barely gotten to where the other children were when I felt a big, familiar hand grab my Superman thing.I turned around to see my Uncle (I will not mention his name so that nobody will know).I saw him holding a belt and immediately,I tried to protest. But he was too quick. He landed one on my back and I threw myself to the floor to cry:but, he dragged me till we got home.
As soon as we got home, he took me straight to the bedroom and threw me on the bed. Then, he unzipped his jeans trousers and was about taking it off when I heard a knock on the door. “Aunt Kate!!” I screamed. “Eno, come and open the door” she said. He pushed me and zipped his trousers. Sweating, I headed for the door with a smile-Aunt Kate saved me today.
September 2014..The Bad
Today, I met a child who was nearly my age mate. She was 13 years but had the mind of a woman who has seen a thousand years.
“Aunt Eno, I’ve stopped following boys o. Daddy told me to ask him for anything I want so I said let me stop following boys. My mother put pepper in my eyes the day she heard I went to a boy’s house. I cried that day ehn!! Me and mummy ehn, we were like cat and rat.” I looked at her beautiful eye brows and smiled.I was finding it hard to assimilate what I had heard but I had to act like it wasn’t new. So, I said “Ehen?? Give me full gist jorh”
She gave me a weird glance like she was expecting me to judge her. Her shock face was epic. She bowed her head in shame and said,”last year, I had two boyfriends.I liked one. I didn’t like the other one. The one I liked was working. He had a barbing saloon. He used to give me money. Last December, he gave me money to make my hair.I went to his house to collect the money. My mother now heard. When I went home, she put pepper inside water and poured it on me. She now put it inside my eyes.” I was already amazed at the ‘two boyfriends at 12 part’..so, it took me like 7 seconds to assimilate the gist I had begged for. Next I heard myself say was “were you guys doing anything?” She shook her head and said “No. But..” and in my heart, I was like ghenghen!!! “but…when I was staying at the other house, the pastor used to touch my breasts every night while teaching me.I was so happy they took me away from the house. Me, I could not tell anybody because one day he told me it was my fault” At this point, I think I asked for my inhaler. What is wrong with the world???
Sometime in 1996..The Ugly
Today,Nelly (the househelp) left me at home. She went to see Uncle Emma (her boyfriend). She said I should go to Gabriel’s house to wait for her. When she came back, it was very late. She came to pick me up from Gabriel’s house. I was very hungry. But when I got home, there was no light. We live in a very small house with two big wardrobes. It practically took up all the space in our one bedroom apartment. Today, she came back with some ladies. I don’t know them. But they were all smiling when they saw me. Nelly placed me on the table and took off my skirt. Her friend brought a torch light. She took off my pant and asked me not to move. She accused me of sleeping with Gabriel. How is that possible? I’m just 4 yrs old. She pointed the torch light down there and they were feeling it. They opened my legs wider and claimed they were checking to see if I had sex with Gabriel. I can’t remeber how many they were, but there were hands and it was so painful and humiliating. As soon as they were done, they left me lying there-on the table feeling so ashamed. I’m just 4. I cried my eyes out. Nobody saved me today and nobody needs to know.
25th,September 2014..The Good
When people say things like “…I’m glad it happened” after a very bad event, (maybe its just me o) I usually say hmmmm…you can lie! I don’t think anyone is ever glad they were raped or molested or sold into sex slavery or forced into prostitution or abused or…#sigh#. I don’t think they’re the kind of things that you’ll remember ‘with fond memories’. If you’re still saying that thing, better go and repent and be honest with yaself..see your mouth like fond memories. (I’m now taking it p)
There are still things I’m walking myself through. But there are days I laugh so hard I forget anything bad ever happened to me.
But this child in front of me might know worse pains; she’ll probably cry every night to sleep or feel insecure around men because literally every man in her life has acted out their role poorly. I mean, I could go to a pastor for counselling but what now happens if the pastor I live with actually harasses me every night? How on earth can I trust other pastors? What happens if the man who is supposed to protect me, love me and call me his child is promiscuous and because of him my little sister has HIV:how can I trust fathers? How can I even trust people’s intentions?
I found rest in God.
It was a hard process..but He healed my heart.
I remember growing up with insecurity issues. I always felt the world could see my nakedness..I always felt like a naked child spread out on a table (like butter) for the entire world to just ‘observe’. I grew with a lot of issues-Trust issues, Daddy issues, Men issues, Truth issues, Mummy issues. I’m not done healing because in my attempt to move on, I covered a lot of things and that’s what a lot of us do but I think we should decide to face it and move on (I’m here if you need to talk)
After my first encounter with molestation, I hated my Mum deeply.I blamed her for everything. I wanted her to be there, at least, make little time for me but she wasn’t. But then I came to understand that to forgive anyone, I had to forgive myself. FOR WHAT? For hating myself so much. For thinking little of God’s perfect work. I had to let it go..let that girl that was spread out (like a sacrificial lamb) on the wooden table go before I could move on. I had to understand that it was never my fault in the first and second case. It was not my fault that I was young and vulnerable. It wasn’t my fault and I survived. I was weak but I survived and that should count for something.It was hard, but God saw me through by being there for me always and opening my eyes to know that I have been healed to help others heal.
And that’s the story I told her and more..I hope God heals her heart as well as every other person; boy or girl who has ever been or still being molested. My prayers are with you..