Counselor – Activist
She is an orphan raised in the Orphanage but the Sister in Charge adorned her as she sees a great potential in her.
“You are going to be a great leader Yvonne with your fiery eyes and eloquence you are going to be an Activist never give up in life we found you wrapped in a blanket and placed by the wayside our transport got stocked in the deep forest as our driver went to find help I was strolling when I saw your innocent small being struggling in the old basket I went to enquire what was inside you stared at me with your beautiful shiny eyes inviting me to pick you up at that moment I got bonded to you I did picked you up with your sweet scent I embraced and started kissing you all over I heard myself shouting ‘I’ve picked up a beautiful, sweet baby girl I call her Yvonne! Yvonne.’ I prayed to God to make you a great woman of substance who is going to be a Right Fighter.” Sister Superior narrated my story to me.
“That is the story of your life your beautiful life God be with you all your life my child.” Sister Superior prayed for me.
“I excelled in my studies and got qualified with Double Honours Masters in Social Work, Gender and Development Studies I opened an NGO and is now partnered by International Partners who are interested in what I do for battered women.
Men feared to marry me I was branded as Anti-Culture, Anti-Religion and a Western Spy I care less but a man Noah (Naak) showed up and dared to ask for my hand in marriage I jumped to the idea and we were married in a quiet, simple church wedding organized by the Convent. We were not blessed with an issue for 5 years after our marriage.
We contented and waited for God’ time but my In-law became impatient as she pressurized my husband to marry another woman whom she was grooming for him.
“I have an only child I was operated in a difficult birth then my fallopian tubes were tied on doctor’ advice if not another pregnancy would mean death for me, marry another lady to give me grand -children I want to see them before I join my ancestors.”
My mother-in-law became vicious and very hostile towards me my husband becomes vicious as well and did everything to get rid of me.
Using Rape as a weapon against Me
My husband now uses rape as a weapon against me he will brutally springs on me every night and rape me until I’ll scream with pain.
“You are hurting me I am seeing my period I am not enjoying it please stop.” He continued until he satisfied himself then will get up and go and get his bath; this humiliation became my way of life I am a Counselor Activist who helps people but cannot help myself. I live a life of sexual slavery and the ring became my chain I cannot recluse myself from the torture and slavery whenever I speak about gender based violence I shiver seeing myself as a hypocrite who cannot heal or save herself and this became my dilemma; society what will society say an Activist Counselor cannot save her marriage this forces me to stay in a devilish relationship.
Talking in the Mirror
I have a life size mirror in my room as well as in my office every morning I stand by it and measure myself and my double life as our people would say in one of our local languages ‘kebba dibitilola ning moo majay ayafang jay.’ (a man in the dark if anyone does not see him he sees himself.) I’ll cry myself out get relieved and go out as I live a double life.”
Beatrice discussed with her friend Panka;
“I advise we try and see the Activist Counselor she knows our problem and might be our answer sis we need help.”
“There is sense in what you say let us try.”
“It is a big risk if my husband get to know he will certainly kill me.”
“But who will tell him will you?”
“No I’ll not but we have to be very careful and discreet about it I’ll not even mention it to my children they might get excited and spill the bin.”
“Suit yourself but we have to go no turning back.”
“What are we waiting for? Let us go.”
At the Counselor’ Office
The duo came at a worse time for Yvonne who was raped and bruised at that material time she arrived late to work with bruised face, cracked lip and swollen eyes wearing dark glasses and found the friends waiting for her she cannot dodged them but has to devise a plan not to entertain them. She avoided to look into their direction she talked covering her mouth as she spoke with cracked voice;
“As I was climbing down my stairs I slipped fell down and broke my mouth my two teeth knocked out I want to go to the clinic am very sorry but you should have called me before coming all the same I have an appointment come another time I am very sorry.” She left in a jiffy feeling ashamed of herself.
“Did you see what I’ve seen?” Panka asked.
“I’ve seen it girlfriend our Counselor Activist is herself an abuse survivor we are hopeless survivors seeking help where we cannot find it let us go before gossipers alert my husband then I would be dead.”
She hide from her friends and listened to their conversation very ashamed of herself.
To be Cont.