I was not particularly excited when mum returned especially the emotional trauma she made dad go through.
“You look lean” she told Dad. Are you sick? She asked
“I am fine.”
“Anyway my parents said I should greet you. They said you should try and send them some money.”
“I will try” he replied mechanically.
Cheta and Blessing hug dad.
” We missed you” they chorused.
“I miss you more angels”
“I bought many things for you Dad. A man usually visit us and he took us out almost every day.
The last outing we went, I bought somethings for you” she said handing
a polythene bag to dad but he told her to hold it.
“You couldn’t even call us Ikechukwu.”
Dad just smiled.
“Since you didn’t miss me, I didn’t miss you either. For your information ijeoma just got admission into the university and my dad says he needs your support.”
“That’s good of her.”
“So try and support them ooo”
“I will see what I can do” he said
“All the time we spent with our grandparents, nobody even preached or called us for prayers.” Said Cheta. I missed how we pray together dad. I told mum to bring me home but that man kept telling mum to extend our stay”
“Instead of our original one week, we eventually spent the Christmas and New year there” Blessing finished jumping to hug dad again. “You didn’t even call us dad”
“Forgive me my princesses.” Dad told them
Dad never asked who the man is. Rather I saw tears in his eyes. I saw he struggled to control himself.
“I missed you girls. Come here Susan.” I left my seat and join them. “Whatever happens, know I love you girls dearly.” He said hugging us.
“Susan go and fetch water in the drum” mum ordered. ” Don’t stand there like a fool”
I quickly ran out of the house to carry out her instructions.
CRY FOR ME: Part 1 – 10
Months went by but dad didn’t confront mum. He continued to treat her with respect and love even though she was mean to him.
He would give her money for food but most times, she won’t stock the house as dad intended. Just to avoid her trouble, he would go to the market himself.
Once when dad’s bike had fault and was in the mechanic, dad didn’t go to work.
Mum refused gisting with her husband. Her phone was her friend. She would press her phone and laugh hilariously.
I forgot to tell you that she returned from her parents place with a big phone that she carries with her even to the toilet. She warned her kids never to touch it.
In all this, dad was trying to be happy. He sleeps little. Most nights when he isn’t praying, he would just sit on the chair doing nothing.
Dad never ate from the house. He was dying slowly and getting lean, mum was adding weight.
One day I heard her talking to someone on the phone.
” Don’t mind him” she said ” he hasn’t seen anything yet. I will so frustrate his life. Finally I will tell him, my kids are not his”
I knew she was talking to the father of her kids.
At that moment I wished I was big enough to squeeze life out of her.
CRY FOR ME: Part 1 – 10
Dad surprised us one day. He showed up from work and took us out. We went to an eatery and he asked us to order for anything.
“Did you win a lottery? Blessing teased.
“I just want to spoil you girls a little” he said smiling.
We ordered for ice cream and we talked about many things. Dad told us how he held us in his arms when we were babies and how we would sleep on his legs until mum would carry us. He was so relaxed and happy.
“Look how grown you girls have become. I must make sure the men that will come for your hands in marriage pay heavily and they must meet my conditions.” He said laughing.
“Daaaady” Cheta called.
“I am not joking Cheta. Just watch.” He said.
While we ate, dad didn’t order for anything. Not even for water. He smiled at us and we jingled like the little girls we are.
“I want you girls to remember that I love you.”
“You don’t need to tell us. We know” I said to him. I watched him go emotional. He wiped tears from his eyes.
“Why are you crying?” Blessing asked. She wiped the tears with her palm and hugged him.
“There are things beyond my power. I wish I can change some things but don’t worry I will be fine.”
We ate in silence afterwards while he was contented watching us eat.
“I know it’s because of mum. How she treats you unfairly” Cheta blunted
“Let’s not discuss her please” Blessing said.
Outside the eatery, dad brought out his phone and we took a selfie with him.
It was still dark when Dad woke everyone of us.
“What’s so important that you cannot wait till it’s morning” mum fired at dad. She gave a long hiss.
“I married you chiamaka because I thought you complete me. My eyes and heart saw only you.
Since I married you, I have shown you only love. I did everything to make you comfortable.”
“What is the meaning of this madness this early morning”
“I am not a man of many words chiamaka. I deserve better in life. If I meet you in this house when I return, I will kill you with my bare hands. Make sure you take Cheta and Blessing to their father.
“What? Blessing and Cheta cried in unison looking at dad in shock…..
CRY FOR ME: Part 1 – 10
Written by Franca Uwuigiaren
Inspired by the Holy Spirit
TO BE CONTINUED
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