I suddenly wiped off my eyes and pretended like all was normal when I saw Ken, my five-year-old son standing before me dressed in his neat school uniform.
I knew it was too late to hide the tears when I saw Ken, but I tried as much as I could though. But trust Ken; he's so smart regardless of his age that he can't easily be befuddled "dad, are you crying?" He asked with a disturbed look."Oh common, champ, not at all," I responded pretentiously. "It's Mom again, right?" He asked again
"No champ, I was just overthinking....eeeehm...you know what, let's go. You're already late for school," I said, trying to outsmart him. I knew he understood the game I was trying to play but obliged as an obedient son he was, you know. I took him to the car and drove him to school.*******
Ever since Jane got promoted in her place of work, she never had time for our son and me like before. All she normally talked about was work, work, and work. Unlike when I was working, I knew how time occupied my work was, but I made sure my family was my optimum priority. Most times, she would leave early in the morning and come back late in the evening. Very uncharacteristic for a married woman. She was doing all of these without minding my feelings. The few times I tried to reason with her to see how we could settle some of these squabbles that had crept into our marriage ended up in great fall-outs.
"Babe, why are you coming back from work at this time of the day?" I asked calmly that evening."What sort of question is that? As my bodyguard or what?" She asked nonchalantly. "For crying out loud, Jane, I'm still your husband, and so, I deserve to know your way about it," I yelled, provoked because, at this point, I couldn't take the rubbish anymore. "Husband, my foot. A husband that is jobless. The husband cannot provide for his family. Husband, that is so useless. Husband, that is so....." She was yet to complete the statement when out of a burning rage, I landed a slap on her left cheek.
Oh my God! What have I just done? Did I just slap my wife? Something I had never done ever since I got married to her. In fact, normally, I had always been a huge enemy of domestic violence. But look at me now promoting it now, chai! What's all these naaa. "Chris! Did..did..did you just slap me?" She asked with a teary voice. "Please, babe; I'm so so sorry, I...I...I..never meant to please," I spoke and was stammering like a confused goat at the same time. Chai! You see this thing they call anger. Guy, e no be your mate oo.
That night, my wife didn't sleep in the same room as me. She slept in the guest room. Upon all my pleadings that night to forgive me as I ran after her around the house like a chick running after the mother hen, she paid deaf ears. All she tagged me that night was "a wife beater" I felt so horrible because I had never put a hand on a woman since I became a man, talk more of my own wife. For a week, Jane decided not to talk to me, eat with me or even sleep In the same bedroom with me. We were like total strangers in our own house.
One evening, my wife came back from work as usual. Freshened up and ate the meal she came back with without minding the Jollof Rice I made for us. I was busy with my laptop in the sitting room when she came to me and dropped the unthinkable. At first, I was beginning to feel happy gradually within me that she was going to at least talk to me after a week of shutting me out totally but far from it. The next thing I had was, "Chris, I need a divorce."
© Udochukwu Winner
WAIT FOR EPISODE 3
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