By Janice Johnson Pemida
That was where I met Dapo who is now my husband. Dapo was very nice to me. He was always there for me and gradually we fell in love with each other. He was a Secondary School Certificate holder but was into building construction at the time. Since all the rich men were not looking my way, I saw Dapo as my perfect match considering my situation and what I had been through. He lived with his mum and sisters in a two bedroom apartment in Abuja. So after some few months of dating, he asked that I quit sleeping in the shop and join them in their house.
I had already met his family at the time and they loved me so much. Also, considering the fact that I was already inconveniencing my madam by staying in the shop, I decided to obey Dapo, so I packed in with him and his family. They all loved me and treated me nicely so I got carried away and soon became pregnant. Dapo and his family couldn’t contain their joy when they found out. I wanted to abort the pregnancy since I wasn’t ready, but they assured me that I had nothing to worry about and that they will take good care of me. They promised to travel with me to Lagos to meet my family and perform the customary marriage rights as soon as I deliver the baby. I agreed and kept the pregnancy. With the little money Dapo was able to raise, he got me a shop and I became my own boss with apprentices too.
Everything went on fine and for the first time in my life, I was genuinely happy without sorrow. Soon, I had a bouncing baby boy. Two years later, I took in again and gave birth to a beautiful girl. Dapo and his family still loved me and their attitude towards me didn’t change although they never fulfilled their promise of going to marry me the proper way. I didn’t really worry much about that as long as they treated me with love and respect and I was very happy. All was well, and our home was full of joy until suddenly, one afternoon, the house we were living in caught fire and everything in the house was completely burnt to ashes. We couldn’t retrieve anything, not even one dress. We became stranded and had to relocate to my Husband’s village in Ogbomosho, Oyo State, Ibadan with the help of some of our neighbours.
Life became another nightmare. Life in Ogbomosho could not in any way be compared to Abuja. My husband was no longer getting the contract jobs he used to manage in Abuja. There was hardly any building construction going on in Ogbomosho village where he could work and bring something little home. I managed to erect a board outside our compound indicating that I made hair, and put some chairs outside. Within a short time, I started having customers but unfortunately, the environment we live in Ogbomosho is full of house wives who do not make hairs like fixing and braids, which are the kind of hairstyles that could generate enough money. All they come to make is ordinary weaving which cost just 100-200 Naira. There are days i don’t even get a single customer, yet I have a husband, Children and mother in-law to take care of. I cant help but wonder why life is being so unfair to me, that I just cannot find genuine happiness that will last for a long time. Why must sadness always come to still my joy. Now I feel that my husband and children are being affected by my bad luck. Probably my dad and all those who called me useless and unfortunate were right. There may be a bad omen lurking around me.
(Episode Eleven Loading)