Are You In Charge Of Your Life
I am sharing part-one of a chapter from my new book It Is My Life And I’m In Charge.
Coming To England
I arrived in England and was equally shocked and awed
by the autumn weather. I wrote to my parents describing all
the new and ‘better’ things in England. Maybe this might
just work out after all and I would get the lifestyle I always
dreamed of in England. I did not tell them about Simon’s
ex-wife. I don’t remember why. Maybe I didn’t want them
to be worried, perhaps I didn’t want to admit it myself, or
possibly I didn’t think it was important because it was in the
past and done. I also wrote to Jim telling him how I missed
him. I promised him that once I had the baby we would start
working on our plan.
Three and half months later, I gave birth to my first baby.
That winter I saw both my beautiful baby boy and snow for
the first time ever. In fact, it snowed on the day I gave birth
and it didn’t stop for three days. I was in the hospital the
entire time. On the third day we went home. Simon held the
baby because I was afraid of dropping him if I slipped in the
snow. I wasn’t about to take any chances.
Soon after my son was born I got a response to my letter
from Jim. He told me how much he missed me. Simon had
intercepted my letter and read it before handing it to me. I
could not believe he read my letter before me, especially this
letter from Jim. He interrogated me about the letter. Finally
he told me that Jim could not do much with me since I was
so far away; unless his penis was as long as the distance
from Nigeria to England.
I was hurt by Simon’s invasion of my privacy and told
him I did not like him reading my letters. That did not stop
him. He opened and read all mail that came for me. So I
wrote to Jim telling him that it was not a good idea to keep
writing me. I explained how Simon was reading all my mail
and it might cause problems for us. I didn’t want our plan
to be jeopardised. That letter that Simon intercepted was the
first and only letter I got from Jim. I cherished it so much
and would read it over and over. It was my comfort and
solace when Simon would try to harm me with his spiteful,
I had been in England, a strange country, for only four
months with a new baby. I had no friends or family. My
husband was a stranger who controlled me and censored all
my letters and called me vile names. Plus, I had not been
going to church so I began to feel as though I was losing my
spiritual connection with God.
The nearest Catholic Church was two bus rides away
and I couldn’t drive. Simon worked on Sundays or Saturday
nights and claimed he was too tired to drive me to church.
I kept asking him to drive me but Simon kept refusing.
Since the baby was born I began to miss church increasingly
more. This made me anxious because I wanted the
baby to be christened and Thanksgiving was important too.
I kept persisting that Simon should take me and reminded
him of his commitments he’d made to my parents and I back
in Nigeria. He had promised to take me to church because
he knew I was very religious. I also reminded him that he
promised my parents and I that we would be wed in the
Catholic Church as soon as I give birth and we would raise
our children as Catholics. Simon had assured me that I could
take the children to any church I wanted and he didn’t mind
because he didn’t have time for church.
In the end, Simon was not interested in the baby’s christening
or Thanksgiving. He certainly wasn’t interested in
taking me to church and finally told me so. That’s when he
threw in that he was a Jehovah’s Witness and wanted our
children to be raised the same. That meant they would have
to be adults to be baptised. Simon continued with his feelings
and revealed to me that he had no intention of wedding
me. He only made that promise to make my parents and I
happy so that the marriage would take place. He went on to
say that not all promises made to a woman before marriage
needed to be fulfilled.
This hurt me and I felt deceived. I was deceived, but
there was more. He went on to say that he didn’t even approve
of me going to church. As a Jehovah’s Witness he
didn’t even have the time to attend their meetings and that
meant that I shouldn’t go anywhere near my church or even
consider working. He continued by saying the only friends
I could have needed to be approved by him and I needed
permission to see them. When I asked why, he said it was
because his ex-wife was allowed to mix with other people
and she got corrupted from their behaviour. She felt that
she had wised up and ended up leaving him and filed for
divorce. Simon saw this as a disgrace and promised himself
that it would not happen to him again. Simon claimed that
the divorce was the reason why he was forced to sell his
property in South Wales, where he and his ex-wife lived
before moving to London. They only moved to London because
she requested it. Simon continued to say that the loss
of his property, combined with a divorce, made him vow to
never let anyone he married mix with other people. This rule
especially applied to associating with Ghanaians. He was
very bitter and upset as he spoke. I told him I was a different
person and it hurt to be punished for someone else’s wrongs.
He refused to see the common sense and ignored my pleas.
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