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‘Yes’ i said turning away from the window, looking at her with puffy red eyes. Sometimes I would not even realize I was crying.
‘ come here’ she said pulling me into a hug.
‘I really don’t think I can do this Lexa’ I said trying not to choke from the tears that where threatening to escape from my eyes.
‘yes you can, you are definitely are going to bring the best’ she set down next to me on the window pane overlooking the plain ground where apparently the forever green palm tree, which was full of life, was suddenly turning into a shade of brown color. ‘you know I am here for you and will be there every step of the way’
‘I know I am just being a baby again’ but who could blame me, I slowly watched my life go down the drain, all my dreams, hard work and hopes of being the best version of myself just being flush down the drain.
‘Well good for you I am good at being a mom’ she was not lying. She has always been the one to take care of me. There are times I almost forgot we only had a two month old difference. Our friendship was the kind that stood the test of time, from being a stranger to a friend to being the sister I never had. Ours was the type of life you would read in novels and admire. It all changed when our father was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and died a few months after. As for my mother rumors had it she had left my father to pursue her career and no one heard from her since. After the death of my father my uncle agreed to be the one to take care of us thereby we had to relocate where life was a little less than what I was used to.
My uncle was just a midiocre city man who lived in a high density suburb, the one where guys sit o the street corners. Most people thought she was my elder sister because I had a slim figure and naturally was considered tall but Alexa was few inches taller, had a big figure compared to mine, with a cheerful chubby face. We went to the same university and after graduating decided to move in together in the Avenues in CBD.
‘you need to also start eating cause in the end you need to be strong for yourself and the child you carrying’ I would always flinch at the mention of the word baby ‘you come now and eat otherwise I will shove down the food down your throat, using a shavel’ we both started to laugh walking out of the room to the kitchen.
I had always admired the love that was showcased in romantic movies where the girl in waiting is easily swept off her feet by that mr right. This type of love is the one that existed between Alexa and her boyfriend. There are times I could be jealous as to how can someone find real love so easily and effortlessly. I was not popular in the dating world because I had always wanted to focus on making a name for myself before I settled for anything serious. However seeing how happy Alexa was made me feel so lonely at times I wondered why I was not able to find such.
Then something just happened one magical day. It started as a usual meeting where I had to represent my boss as he was abroad. I caught glimpses of this handsome guy who kept glancing my way. After the meeting he came asking me out for just casual drinks. He was outspoken and from his accent I figured he had done his education abroad. I was completely gone even though had I barely known him. After a couple of drinks with him and the short visits he paid to my workplace I was convinced he was just the one. Everything with him went on so fast we started dating only after two weeks. The kind of charm he possessed made it so easy for me to just let my guard down, I had found a love.
He was a gentleman in every way, well at least at first. He offered to help me with my finances I was finally at peace. My head was wrapped around the finances I kept telling myself I was finally getting a sweet taste of the good life. Little did I know I had walked straight into the devils claws and I was trapped. As the weeks grew by I was slowly able to pick a lot of his flaws, he got very violent when he was drunk and he could manhandle me even in public. At first I just tried to ignore it thinking he was just having bad days. But I later figured dealing with his temper was just one of the many hurdles I was supposed to face in the relationship if it was going to work.
Ever since he came into my life, it was no longer just a petty life. I was living lavishly, my rentals would always be on time, my closet was starting to look like the one from the real housewives. All the things he did made me feel so trapped I sometimes wished I did not have to feel like I owed him this much. I was happy with the material things I forgot to do a rain check on my emotional self. I had to deal with his anger episodes almost always, we just kept on going in circles.
As days passed by he no longer could contain his temper. There are days I could vividly remember where he would slap the life out of me just because of a simple misunderstanding. He slowly grew from being the best guy into become the most savage of them all. There are days I wished I could just walk away, I wished I had never been that dependent on him to the extent I could not shift even a little in the relationship. But fact of the matter was, what where a few bruises compared to the lot of things he had done for me so far. He found me when was crawling on my knees and he managed to give me wings I was able to fly amongst the birds of the gold feathers.
‘you where supposed to let me know first than to just make a decision all by yourself. It is actually quite senseless’, he was against me traveling to Canada for a business trip which was actually one of the glorious achievements of my life. My hard work and commitment was finally being realized and I could not understand why he was not celebrating with me but instead was against it all.
‘it was not a senseless decision you know that’ I was trying not to escalate the situation cause I knew exactly where that would lead us ‘ you know I really need this opportunity and it’s a way I get to be at the top you know it too’
‘And who cares about that, are you saying what I am doing for you is not enough’
‘ You know that is not the case, at some point I also need to be on my own two feet’
‘You ungrateful little bastard’
‘Do not call me that’ I said raising my voice, I was starting to get annoyed, I mean why would he be so intense about such a minor issue, and calling me profanities was just raising my temper. I was on the verge of crying, this time from anger and resentment towards him‘ I have only tried to do what is best but you just don’t seem to appreciate any of my efforts, you always try to find fault in everything’
‘what did you say’ , he said pulling into his drive way as he had insisted on changing into a more comfortable outfit though I was starting to regret my offer of going to watch the movies.‘ who is not appreciating whose efforts here. You really have a nasty way of appreciating things you know’ he said walking out and slamming the door. I followed him out of the car.
‘ I honestly don’t…’ and there I felt my whole body smashing into the wall and I was almost convinced I heard a bone or two crack. I was caught by surprise It felt like a really bad dream however the excruciating pain all over my body was a reminder of the reality I was stuck in. My left arm which hit the first impact felt like it had broken. He yanked me to my feet and had my back pressed against the wall my body felt like it was on fire. His lips suggested he was saying something, but my head was spinning and the pain was taking over all my other senses I did not even feel the hard contact my face had with his open hand. The hot liquid that trickled down from my nose was what made me realize that he had slapped my face really hard.
He leaves me there in pain and confusion and I just fall back to the floor. My body could not cooperate with my mind as I was struggling to get up and find my own way home. I took my purse and jacket which I had left in his car. Took out wipes and tried to clean the blood staining my cream blouse I had on, though it did not help much. As I was walking to the nearest bus stop his car pulled over and he just came and grabbed me by the arm and threw me into the car like I was a useless bag.
‘what do you think you are doing, you are trying to get pity from the people right’ he said as soon as he got in
‘I am sorry’ I said with a raspy voice, trying not to cry.
‘you better be, and stop acting like a child, get it together before we reach your place’
I was lucky Lexa was not back yet so I quickly took a bath and tried to hide the bruises on my face. But I knew she was going to notice the crack on my lip which had also formed from the slap he gave me. As soon as I was done dressing she got in all excited. Turns out her boyfriend had finally asked her a hand in marriage, but it only took her a second to notice that something was wrong.
‘Hey you don’t look so good are you okay?’
‘Yeah I am alright, just a headache, might be work’ I lied, well not entirely cause I was really having a massive headache from the impact I had with the floor
‘And what happened to your lip’ I knew she could just see past my lies
‘I-I-I walked into a door’ I was on the verge of tears, ‘ I will be heading to bed first, I am not hungry so you can have whatever you want tonight’
‘ You don’t owe anyone your life and you deserve to be happy, even if you feel trapped in this relationship Tessa, you should know you are able to leave anytime you want, you can still do without all these material things if it’s costing you your happiness’ she said giving me a hug’ I don’t know why you still putting up with him, he is just causing you pain which you are not even supposed to be dealing with’
‘ I will be fine’ I said giving her a tight smile masking the real emotional turmoil I was going through, ‘it is really nothing I cannot handle, goodnight’ I said kissing her cheek and immediately retreating to my room. Obviously she did not understand the situation. I could not leave this guy cause of all the sacrifices he had done for me, he was my pillar and how was I supposed to let go of that. He had been the foundation that I needed. If I left him then I would have to start paying the bills, buy food and the worst I did not know what would happen with my brother, he was finally settling into the college. She could not understand all this and I felt like I was just being judged. But who could blame her she was a princess Barbie and yet I was Cinderella well minus the evil stepsisters and my prince had a stone in place of a heart.
Days passed without a word from him and my hopes crushed as I was waiting for him to apologize for the trauma he caused but the call I received from him was when he wanted to confirm if I had received the money he had transferred to my account. I knew in the back of my mind that my expectations were just too high and was just relieved to be able to pay my rents and mostly to be able to finalize my outfits for my pageant which gave me a settling feeling. The pageant was due in two months and I was making sure I give it my best cause I knew if I won the pageant then it would definitely be a start of a new chapter In my life. I had been very optimistic about winning the pageant I could almost taste my freedom. I was convinced nothing could even stand in the way of me having that crown on my head. All the bruises and endless nights of crying would finally pay off. Even though a part of me was starting to hate him i also felt indebted to him because he made most of it all possible.
It had been a month when one night he called me drunk and due to the fear that he was going to get into an accident I ran to the bar he was at well that is where he frequented. I found him reeking of alcohol, shouting all sorts of obscenities to the bar tender. The security helped me to his car. He always gave me reasons why I would not get married to, he never gave me a reason to believe I would be happy with him. He was reckless, inconsiderate and worse of all violent. I would lie to myself as much as I wanted that I would be able to handle him but I knew there was going to be a time when I would need to be taken care of emotionally than to be the one always caring. With him it was like walking on eggshells.
I had helped him into bed and had to get him water to try and sober him up. I was on my way to his room when I heard him talking on the phone arguing. From what I could hear I could tell he was on the phone with a female. I had always had a feeling that I was not the only female person in his life but I had always tried to convince myself otherwise.
‘Hey listen I told you already I don’t want that child!’ he was screaming on top of his lungs
There was silence
‘you know what I don’t care what you say but I am not changing my mind. You can as hell kill that child and yourself in the process I don’t care’ he then through his phone against the wall
I was not as startled by the fact that he had been with another woman but rather with the cruelty of his words. I knew he was as evil as they come but this was something she could never live with.
‘So all this while you had been cheating with me.’ I said in disbelief and hurt already on the verge of tears
‘and what makes you think that ’he glared at me with his bloodshot eyes but this time I told myself I was not going to be intimidated by him.
‘I heard everything you said over the phone and do not even think of lying to my face’ I was beyond furious, my heart was pounding like it was going to get out of my chest.
‘ You have such a nerve listening to my private calls. It has nothing to do with you’
‘Nothing to do with me you when just got another lady pregnant’
‘So?’ I could not believe my ears I mean how can an individual be so mean and cruel. ‘so you owe me an explanation cause I would certainly appreciate it if you would treat me just like how I deserve’
‘and what makes you so special’ he got up walking towards where I was standing ‘ answer me what right do you have in questioning what I do with my life. You are nothing special than all these girls I have been with all this while. You just a gold digger after my money just like all these girls’ he said spitting every word like a dagger aiming straight for the tender spot. I got so worked up , I could no longer contain the rage inside I slapped him as hard as I could. Then he just froze there without saying a word.
Next thing I knew I there was a hard impact on my face and as I was trying to make sense of it all he dragged me to his bed and he continuously slapped me across the face blood trickled from both my mouth and my nose. He was shouting all sort of insults and he went own to remove my pants with all the power he had. I was struggling to be set free but with every word I said I received a slap in the face one hotter than the previous one. I will always remember the hurt I felt as he forced himself on me. I knew I could not set myself free there was nothing or no one to rescue me. He had turned into a beast I had never seen. I could see the darkness in his eyes he was like a devil. He went on and on and suddenly there was a grip on my throat. I could feel all the air inside me escape. I was nearly convinced this was the day I would see my death. The grip got tighter and tighter and I was struggling under him. The thought of living my brother in this scary world just broke me. I was all he had and I had promised to take care of him as much as I could. I knew if I could not save myself now, I could not save him.
I moved my hand on the nightstand on the side of the bed. I grabbed the first thing my hand came to contact with. I took the lamp and with the little power left within me I smashed it as hard as I could onto his head and to my surprise it knocked him out I used all the force I had to push him as far as could. The pain I felt was excruciating, my legs where just unbearably hot. I was able to grab my phone and I rushed as fast as my legs could carry me. It was a cold eerie night the darkness around engulfed me along with all my fears. It felt like the night was crying with me through my sorrows. I had no shoes on but afraid he would follow me again I walked as fast as my legs could carry me.
My phone vibrated I jumped my heart skipping a beat. It was Alexa.
‘Hey I have been very worried where are you’
‘He-he’ I lost it and I broke into a loud cry
I managed to tell her where I was and she came to pick me up after 15 minutes. It was a very dark night and on a normal day I would have been scared looking right left center. But today the devil I had witnessed was greater than death itself. This was the day I could tell there was no good in this world. Alexa had tried to convince me to go the police to report him for abuse but I had begged her that all I needed was just sleep. I had not told her about the rape afraid she would make me go the hospital. All I needed now was just a moment to my self. I took an overdose of sleeping pills hoping to just sleep through the night. I had no energy to fight the battles in my head. I had brought a knife into a gun fight and lost the battle even the one in my head.
Dealing with what came next was like dropping on a roller coaster, but in the end you always take responsibility for your decisions. I had decided to tame a monster, made excuses for him and felt all entrapped just because of the material stuff. I went to testify against Xavier and turned out that he had history of abusing women but used his money to keep them quiet. He left my life along with any last hope I had of making it out of this dump. He had me trapped even when he was no longer a part of my life.

So according to me #StewieLeSavage today we celebrate the eleventh day of the 16 days of activism against gender based violence with Panashe Gurira

Published by According to Stewie Le Savage

Tackling your day to day issues and introducing you to new people that might inspire you. Everything according to me #StewieLeSavage a self taught writer who believes that change is possible. Best Humanitarian Blog Award Winner for 2021 under the Zim Bloggers Awards.

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