#TheProposal

Overwhelm Me

That relationship you are in or have even been in is like a thread, woven into something beautiful, a cloth of a kind. Pieces of the woven art attracts your attention because they seem not to be as perfect as you would have wanted it. And that’s where you sometimes would want to rather focus on, in order to figure out a way to make it perfect. While you are at it, there is someone out there also busily looking for you, and all of your imperfections; someone willing to love on you, just the way you are – if you would only let them.

Do you love yourself enough to be loved by someone new? – DBM

#TheProposal

“I was 47 years old when I met my husband at a bar. I wasn’t waiting on a date when he approached me. I remember he had a glass of wine in hand, and was all excited about why he was smiling at me. He looked good, well dressed, athletic physique, seemingly gentle and young. He asked politely, if I was waiting on someone.

“Maybe” I responded, and he smiled.

“Will he be joining you any time soon?” he asked

“Maybe” I replied.

I liked his smile. I think that was the one thing that got me to still be engaging him in a conversation. Then he told me I was beautiful. Lol! I still remember the way he said it. It was funny and romantic. I liked the sound of it.

“Okay, so what if I decide not to be waiting for anyone anymore?” I said

And that was the beginning of our love story. Apparently, my husband was a friend to my late brother, Nana Osei, 32 years ago. And he used to visit our home a lot when we were kids. He and my brother would play football together with the other kids in the neighborhood, and would come home with Nana, to eat at our place. I did not remember any of that, but my husband couldn’t be wrong. He described our home, the location we once lived, the schools we all attended, the names of our pets, and many more. He knew my family from 32 years ago.

According to my husband, he would sometimes even sleep over and I would serve him and my brother their meals. Nana Osei gave so much of his things (clothes, toys, books, shoes, etc.) to my husband to take along, because according to hubby, his family did not have enough to be getting him those stuffs. He was that close to my late brother and loved our family. I still do not remember any of that. Perhaps, because I was young. But I loved the stories he was telling me, because that was Nana’s nature. He was kind to his friends, and to himself. He was kind to his family, and we all loved him. So when my husband mentioned,

‘You look so much like my friend, Nana Osei’ at the bar, when he sat next to me to chat, I couldn’t help but to be interested in the conversation. I do look like Nana.

My husband was a single man, in his early 50’s but looked nothing close to 40. He is 6’3’or maybe slightly taller, well built for his age, very muscular, dark, with a strong jaw. His eyes are so bright and intense whenever he looks into me. He had no children but wanted a child of his own. I was divorced with two teenage boys.

“We could get married, you know?” he said, sheepishly

I thought I didn’t hear him well so I asked him to repeat his statement, and this time, there was so much surety in his voice. He wanted me. I was dazed, because it wasn’t like we were even on a date. We were still at the bar, trying to get to know each other. There were no sparks flying within me or anything. It was just a moment on the memory lane with a nice man. I had been divorced for four years and wasn’t sure I was ever going to date. But my husband was talking marriage already, over a drink, on our first meet.

“I’m very certain this might be the alcohol talking.” I tried to make a joke out of it but he wasn’t joking. He had been around me for almost an hour and he already felt his life could be better with me in it. I just kept quiet. I didn’t know what I felt for him. It wasn’t love at first sight, no! But I liked him. I knew that for a fact. It was true likeness and attraction within the hour and some minutes at the bar. We’ve been married for six years and I gave birth to his first child, my third, a beautiful baby girl, at the age of 48.

I’ve been married before, for over a decade, and I stayed in that marriage for as long as I could because I felt I owed it to my children not to disappoint or disrupt their understandings of love and family. I knew I should have left earlier but I stayed, with the hope that, my ex-husband would someday, change into a better man, the man I fell in love with, the man I married. I equated my happiness to his change of character. I believed I could only be happy if he changed, and committed more to me, and to our marriage. I wasn’t thinking. I was rather being emotional. And I almost ruined the lives of my children in the process by staying married to their father. All they saw their father say and do to me, how he treated me like a used thing, the tears I shed, the weights I lost, the level my womanhood was reduced to … I couldn’t let those boys witness anymore of that.

And it took my second child asking, “Mum, why are you allowing yourself to be treated this way by dad? Don’t you love your life? Don’t you love us? Why are you always allowing yourself to be miserable because of daddy? I can’t study in school because I am always worried about you. I don’t want to be worrying about you. That is not my place Ma.”

That, was my wake-up call. Did the wellbeing of my children enhance after the divorce? Not really! But they survived through it all with me. We survived, until my husband came our way. I thought staying with my ex, for a time in my unhappiness was purely for the kids’ sake, because I feared having difficulty parenting them alone. I wasn’t earning much to cater for two kids. But I realized along the way that life shouldn’t be all about financial security. Life is meant to be lived, happily, and in the moment of every single day. I wanted to be a good role model for my boys, and being with their father wasn’t bringing out the very best in either of us. He wouldn’t stop lying and cheating and speaking to me anyhow he pleased. The kind of home I wanted to raise my kids is what God has given me in my second marriage: warmth, safety, nurturing, peace, love, unity, friendship, togetherness and respect.

I’m overwhelmed by this second chance I’ve been given in a marriage. The shock of my life actually came at me when my two sons talked me into taking just the two of them out on a date. I had re-married for three years then. They used to call my husband by his first name, because they claimed they didn’t know how else to address him – since he isn’t their biological dad. But on that day out, they both spoke in turns, how happy they are that I am happy. They shared their examination grades with me. They had both excelled. And then the topic of the night: my new husband. They wanted to let me know they approved of him in my life and in theirs too. They told me they love him very much, and wanted to ask whether or not I would be okay with them calling him ‘DAD!’

I cried!

My babies had all of a sudden grown in my eyes that instant. They weren’t babies to me anymore. They were men, though in their teens. The seriousness at which they attached to wanting to call my husband, ‘Daddy’ broke me to tears.

Do not throw in the towel simply because your husband is cheating on you. I thought counseling could help my first marriage. I thought staying for my children’s sake was my best move, as their mother. I thought staying because we needed his financial support was a good decision to make, but they weren’t. Every woman in an unhappy marriage, especially with a cheating spouse, ought to be bold to take the walk out.

My husband wants to know what I need, so he can help or come through for me. He wants to learn from our relationship. He wants us to talk about issues, about the things he does that sometimes, makes me feel insecure. He doesn’t want me to be taken for granted by him. He just doesn’t want to disappoint. Every woman needs that in their life: that one person who is there for them to help them give to themselves first. I give to me – what I need. My children can now tell the difference between their birth father, and their new father. I have come to learn that even in fatherhood, there is a difference, and if you think staying in an unhealthy marriage is all there is to you and the kids being taken care of, then I am sorry to say you haven’t the slightest clue.

There is a difference out there in the unknown future. There is hope out there for you. There is a second chance at everything out there for you. My children want to be with my husband. They don’t hate their dad, but they choose my husband as their father figure. They want to be reoriented into what it means to be a man, from a real man who loves his wife, their mother. They love the joy in my eyes whenever I smile at them. They love to watch the way my husband talks to me, and most importantly, treats me with respect. They help with house chores because they see my husband do it at home just to help me. They respect him because he respects me.

I am very happy. I never believed any of this could be possible when I divorced. But everything is possible to anyone who dares to take a stand for themselves. At 54 years, I feel like 20-something in my heart. Every woman deserves to feel this feeling I am feeling today. It’s called, difference!” – From GB

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