MEMOIR OF AN AFRICAN GIRL; My first ever memory [Part 2].
You see, by learning about sex and sexuality, I realized what had happened to me. I realized it was sex and it was tagged ‘sexual molestation’ by society and that it was wrong. Then followed the inevitable questions that accompany enlightenment….Why Me?….Was I the weakest of all the children seen by this ‘Uncle’ then? Was I so obviously scared and subdued by the fear of my mother that I became the target of a predator? [At least that’s how Nat Geo Wild describes Hunter and Hunted animals in its program]. This questions and every question afterward resulted in anger and thus the birth of the aforementioned monster.
I became an angry person. Oh! I was angry at everything and in every way possible. I was angry at myself for being ‘weak’; I was angry at my peers then for being obviously stronger and better than me since they were neither molested nor targeted; I was angry at my dad for being busy to the extent that we had to be with our mother for most part of the day and week; I was angry at the ‘’Uncle” for what he did to me and for stealing my childhood viz-a-viz forcing me into womanhood without me being mentally, psychologically and biologically ready; I was angry at men for their very existence; I was angry at women for what I deemed hypocrisy-they claim unconditional love for their child but they never truly care; I was angry at children because of their innocence since mine had obviously been lost; I was angry at adults for not doing their jobs of attentiveness and protection, among others, right; and most importantly, I am angry at my mum for putting her business before me, for not being attentive and approachable, exposing me to the predator, not caring when I told her I was hurting and then coming back to beat me to near death upon discovering what I was subjected to. Worse of, she did not place a finger on the ‘uncle’ #OMG…Like it’s my fault?.
Oh! Yes, It is not a typo….I know I just used present tenses…..I know my tenses……….I still harbor some resentment towards her.
My major reason for still being resentful towards her is that because of the emotional and psychological trauma I felt especially upon my ‘’enlightenment’ viz-a-viz her beating me and not punishing the ‘uncle’, I felt ashamed, worthless and dirty..… and as a result, I have no memory of my adolescence particularly since I spent the period by my lonesome and with a migraine for companion. I attempted suicide once by overdosing on Valium prescribed for my younger brother when he suffered frequent convulsive episodes. Till today, my mum still asks me Why?…..Lol……why indeed……hypocrite [#lordforgiveme].
Anyway, let me take you down my memory lane for a clearer picture of my adolescence.
I went to a semi-prestigious boarding secondary school, had everything a well-balanced boarder could ‘want’ and more, yet I was alone and empty. I had people I passed time with but had no friends. Brave juniors identified with me for ‘’security purposes’’, seniors steered clear of me, not one of them sent me on those senseless errands boarding schools are infamous for and peers just went in a separate direction when they see me coming.
Please bear in mind, I was never rude or outspoken, in fact I was the living embodiment of a nuclear device……’’’Silent but Deadly’’. I was violent and charged without heads-up but I never cursed or explained myself. Apology was non-existent. For my ‘’No Bull-Shit Allowed’’ attitude, I was made the Hostel Prefect of my hostel in JSS 2 [my school was not those kind of schools where senior hostels are separated from junior hostels. No, we cohabited together in the same building and room viz-a-viz every room had a JSS 1 to SSS 3. You can imagine being in JSS 2, having four sets of seniors ahead of me and being the hostel prefect, for me it was like taking candy from a baby. When I announced it was ‘’Lights Out’’, My hostel becomes pitch dark [actual truth was, I hated sleeping with the lights on so I made sure that rule was adhered to for my own benefits….hehehehe]. When other hostel prefects come to borrow my lawn mower, for example, [they all spoilt theirs through playfulness and nonchalance], I made them sign a document giving me permission to either end their lives or they leave the school for me, should they damage my lawn mower in any way [they actually poke their fingers with a needle and drop their blood on the affidavit agreement. In retrospect, I do not know why I demanded it but it registered fear in their brains and that was all I needed].
Can you see why I am still angry with my mum?……can you see my memory of adolescence?……can you see the memory people in my secondary school will have of me till tomorrow?…….I did not deserve that. I deserved to be asked for a dance during our weekly Saturday social nights; I deserved to be invited to those tacky garri-cake and ground-up cabin-biscuit-and-milo cake birthday parties organized in boarding schools; I deserved to be smooched in those dark cornered classes and cause a scandal [Naaah not really!!!!Lol] but I deserved to be eased into sex and sexuality gradually as nature and physiology permits; I deserved to have friends with whom I will sit and gossip about boys; I deserve to learn about boys in phases like my peers; I deserved to get a school back pack full of valentine’s day gift [the whole school made such a huge fuss when they see a girl carrying a boy’s back pack to the hostel on Valentine’s day]; I deserved to enjoy my birthday……but Noooooooooo, I was too angry to notice things around me, too angry to care, too angry to appreciate color [I wore only somber colors, brown, camouflage green, black; too fearsome to be asked to dance; too fearful to be approached and too ‘’hot’’ to stand close to;. I never got a birthday gift and never got a Valentine’s Day gift. I practically punched a male peer in the mouth for a reason I still cannot remember as I write. I just know I broke his tooth. Now tell me how I can attend my high school renewal ever?!!! The guy is married now and will definitely attend the function [#iamsoooosorry].
My university experience was no different. I spent the entire time I was there away from non-school activities viz-a-viz I never stepped in school if I did not have a class and disappeared if my lecturer was not showing up. I never slept a day on campus even though my home was like a million miles away. I was in a class of 76 students for my first degree and I can only mention the names of 8 persons I knew off my head-one of them is deceased [I remember her because her death made the news. She is the girl Rev. King is currently on death row for killing….Ann…#RIP].
Irrespective of my recluse lifestyle, it was in this class, like Isaac Newton, that an apple fell and hit me on the head and I felt a need for change…..i.e. To Let Go!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
To be continued….
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