At some point in my life, I came to the conclusion that any woman who accepts to date my husband is a loser. You don’t get a man if you get my husband. He’s not the man he wants the world to believe. He’s a weak man whose only desire is to woo women, use them and part ways with them. He’s a walking facade, always trying to hide something, including the fact that he’s a married man. When we were dating, I saw that in him but I thought he would change. Any time I caught him, he told me, “Walahi, this is the last time this would happen. A month or two later, I will catch him again and he wouldn’t know what else to say.
Because of that, marriage wasn’t part of my plan. I was dating him because he was good to me in certain areas of my life. My mom became very sick in those days. I was jobless and my other siblings were also not doing very well. I told him about my mother’s situation and it became his responsibility. He would go to the hospital and settle bills without my knowledge. My mom always wondered why he was doing all that. She didn’t know he was my boyfriend then. After she was discharged, I introduce him to her as my boyfriend and she said, “I pray you two get married someday. You’re too good a man to let go.”
In my mom’s mind, a kind man is everything and as far as Musa was kind, he was the ultimate man. I didn’t see him like that because of his cheating ways. I was always waiting for the last cheating that would rock our boat and destroy us but each one that came was forgiven. I wasn’t truthful to myself just as he wasn’t truthful to me. I told myself “I will walk away when he cheats again.” He would cheat again and I will tell myself, “Let’s give him one last chance. This one, nothing will change my mind.” I was waiting for that one last chance to go wasted so I could walk away then I found myself pregnant. I cursed my stars and cursed the day I was born. I didn’t even want to tell him about it but later when I realized there was nothing I could do about it, I told him, “Musa, I’m pregnant. I’m going to have your baby.”
This guy jumped up and landed on the floor as if he had won some lottery. Right in front of me, he called his parents and announced to them that I was pregnant and that he was coming home so they plan the marriage. His happiness rubbed on me. I was excited that he was excited about it. He told my mom about his intention to marry me but I was still doubting. I didn’t want to marry him. In his last attempt to convince me, he said, “A child comes along and changes everything. No matter who we are, a baby’s face can change us and make us responsible. Trust me, all my bad days are over. I have a child to take care of.”
So I agreed to marry him. I packed my things and went to live in his family’s house so they take care of me until I give birth. His mother is a saint. Sometimes I look at her and ask myself, “How could a dove like this give birth to this vulture I’m with?” But I looked at his father and reminded myself that a crab can’t give birth to a bird. His father has three wives but that isn’t enough, he still goes around with another lady he’s not married to. While there, his mother told me a lot of things concerning her husband and finally concluded, “I pray Musa doesn’t turn out like his father.” I laughed in my head.
For the nine months that I was pregnant, Musa was all over me. Right from the shop, he’ll come home to be with me. On days he doesn’t go to the shop, he will stay with me all day. I was checking his phone often but there were no women. Even the old ones were gone. I looked up and thanked God for the change. I gave birth to a boy and a few months later, we got married. Musa was a changed man so why not? I changed my mind and married him. Once the baby arrived, he went back to his old ways, changing women and lying to them and then trying to justify his actions to me.
One day I checked his phone again and there was a new girl he had stored her number as Zainab. Musa is very bad with passwords. He can have a new password today and the next minute he’ll forget. To prevent that, there’s a little book in his bag where he writes down all his passwords. Whenever he changes his password, I go around looking for that book until I get the new password. He thinks I see the new password by watching the movement of his fingers. well, that’s what I told him and he bought it so he hadn’t made any attempt to hide that book. Instead, he keeps changing his password.
When Zainab came along, we had a fight about it. She was new and going through the photos she had sent him, she was way younger than all the women I’d caught him dating. Usually, he’ll apologize when I catch him but he never apologized about Zainab. They’ll rather talk later about me and mock me. I was growing indignant every day but he didn’t care. It was all about that girl. When I realized that I couldn’t do anything to change his mind, I gave up and watch him live his life.
One evening he came home looking like he was sick. He wouldn’t eat my food and wouldn’t even talk to me. He ignored the child and me, went straight into the bedroom, and began sleeping. I thought he had lost money at work or something. I wanted answers so when he slept I went through his phone again. His mood was because of Zainab. It looks like the girl was seeing another man and they had a fight about it. I laughed in my head and told myself, “Oh now he knows how it hurts? Zainab, give it to him black and blue so he will learn.”
For close to a month, I never saw a smile on my husband’s face. He got angry quickly and each time he was angry, he won’t give us anything. Not even money for the child. Bills came and I told him. The way he insulted me that evening, I nearly packed and left the house. I was checking his phone. He was still having trouble with Zainab. The girl was angry about Musa’s anger and threatened to leave the relationship. Musa started apologizing to this girl, something he has never done to me. From all indications, the girl had become the controller of his emotions and we were the ones suffering the results.
Not once, not thrice. Whenever he has issues with that girl, our home suffers. I could go for days without chop money. It could be weeks before he eats my food. We would owe bills for months before he pays them. At some point, we slept in the dark for three consecutive days because he wouldn’t buy prepaid. He and Zainab were fighting so our world has to go dark as a result. He proposed marriage to the girl one day and the girl snubbed him; “Do you think I’m the kind of girl that becomes a second wife? No, I won’t. If you get a divorce as you promised me, then I may consider.”
I was shocked. “Divorce? Musa has promised the girl that he’ll divorce me for her?”
I told my mom about it and she didn’t believe he would do that. I told her, “The way Musa is into that girl, I won’t be surprised if it happens.”
I won’t wait to be caught off-guard so I’ve started buying and selling, something he discouraged me from doing. Currently, I have nothing of my own. I depend solely on him. It’s the reason he could treat me the way he wants. He can leave me today and I will drown. So I won’t wait. I’ve started something small. His mother is also helping me to get a shop. Once that shop is established and I can be on my feet, I will leave him and concentrate on building my business so he can concentrate on building a relationship with Zainab.