Please note that this series contains some sexually explicit content, violence and offensive language. It is not appropriate for children nor an immature and sensitive audience.
Copyright © Ufuomaee
"Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour" (1 Peter 5:8).
My story is sad, because it is so common. We all think, or at least hope and pray, that it will never happen to us... That our man is different...or that we are different, and so will never give him reason to cheat on us. But sometimes, it's not about us. It's really not about how good we were...what we did or didn't do. And sometimes, it's not even about them.
If anyone had told me three years ago that one day Ifeanyi would hurt me in this most horrible way, I would have sworn on my mother’s grave that he wouldn’t…and couldn’t! How could he? He loved me so much! His love was intense, and I reveled it in for almost three years of marriage…before I found out that he had cheated!
Yes, you might know me. I am the one they call 'The Church Girl'. This is my story. The story of how my Prince Charming fell, and my world came tumbling down after him.
I lay in bed now, wondering how this could have happened. After all that we had been through…that I had been through, how could he do this to me? Life, as I know it, has no more meaning. It is like a cruel joke someone is playing on me, and I just wish it would end!
I wonder if it is possible to die of a broken heart. I can just imagine the headline; “Young Wife Of Ifeanyi Chukweke, First Son To Chief Chinedu Chukweke, And Mother Of Three, Dies Of A Broken Heart!” Oh, Ifeanyi, how could you?
My body is overtaken with sobs as I lay in bed crying…the tune and lyrics to Mariah Carey’s “All I Ever Wanted” playing in my soul. Oh God! Why did he betray me? I lament. How could he throw our love away…? How could You let this happen, Lord? O God, Why???
I still remember our wedding day like it was yesterday. I relive those moments each night as I mourn the loss of what used to be. It was truly the best day of my life! I felt like Esther, chosen as the most beautiful woman in the Kingdom, to marry the Prince…from rags to riches.
Funny how I thought we would last forever, but we are yet to celebrate our third anniversary…which is only a few days away. But now there will be no more kisses… No more “I love you”s… How did we get from happy to here?
In the beginning, life with Ifeanyi was everything I dreamt it would be and more... He was and is an amazing lover. Romantic and passionate. He was also sold out to God, and loved me with complete devotion, as I did him.
When we found out that I was pregnant, about four months later, we were both overjoyed! I was relieved to know that I could get pregnant again (because I had some fears about that after my first miscarriage), and I was also happy and excited to be carrying Ifeanyi's baby. We were even more in love and wrapped up in each other, during that first pregnancy.
I didn't know he could dote on me more, but he scaled new heights in the attention and love he showered on me. I remember he would return from work and plant kisses on my tummy, before he would proceed to give me a foot massage, while talking about his day. He would even come home to cook, and ran me a hot bath most nights. Looking back, I think maybe he had me up on a pedestal, and I now wonder at which point he realised that I was only human too.
We were blessed with twin boys. However, the twins were a handful, and motherhood was a shock to my system. It destabilised the fantasy world I had been living in for the past year. I didn't cope with the change well, even though Ifeanyi was very understanding and helpful.
I had been caring for my brothers for a good part of my life and I really was looking forward to enjoying my husband, without any mothering obligations for a while. I think I would have been happy with only one child. At least for the first few years...
The arrival of the boys took a toll on our sex life for a while. For the first year, I was tired and stressed a lot of the time. I was also afraid of getting pregnant again (in case I had another set of twins!), and was always careful to make sure Ifeanyi used a condom, even though I was also on the pill. Ifeanyi wasn't too pleased, because he eagerly wanted more children, and even hoped for twin girls. I guess we never really discussed our expectations for a family before we married.
God must have been on his side, because I found out I was pregnant again, soon after the twins' first birthday in April last year. We had Abigail almost two months ago. She's gorgeous, and I love her as I do our boys, but I lack the joy of a new mother. I feel anxious a lot, and wonder about my parenting. The twins are even more needy now, after the arrival of our youngest.
I knew our lives would never be the same once the kids arrived, but nothing prepared me for how they would take all the focus of my life. I was suddenly thrust into being a full-time mother, and my dreams of a blissful, easy life with Ifeanyi and pursuing my passion for human rights' activism were shot to hell. I really wonder about those women who seem to be able to do it and have it all!
When I got pregnant with Abigail, it was agreed that I would focus on the children, and continue work on my blog from home. I agreed because that was what Ifeanyi wanted, and I wanted to please him. Ifeanyi thought I needed to spend more time at home with the boys, so that we could bond, and that I would be happier without the distraction and stress of work. But I was passionate about my work...it gave me purpose and joy.
While I was pregnant for Abigail, I noticed a change in Ifeanyi too. He tried to be as doting as he had been when I was first pregnant with the twins, but I could tell that it wasn't coming naturally anymore. At times, he looked at me strangely, as though he was disappointed...as though he didn't really know who I was.
We tried to talk about our feelings, and I told him how I missed the time when it was just us. He was surprised because he thought that this was what we both wanted...a family. He couldn't understand why that would make me unhappy, when it was a fulfillment of a dream to him. He said that I had changed. So I tried even more to bury my feelings, and rise to the occasion of my new role as mother.
I learnt recently that my feelings that first year of motherhood were quite common. In fact, there's a name for what I went through. Postpartum depression. I wished I could snap out of it, and I prayed many times for God to restore love and joy in my heart for my children, but I felt cheated. I still feel like my idea of marriage was a camouflage...and I have been living someone else's dream.
It was in the midst of this that she came in the picture. She who had no babies. Whose figure had never been marred by childbirth. She whose appearance was always flawless, because she had no other responsibilities but to look after herself. When I was looking my worst, she came in to remind my husband how a woman looked at her best. It was really quite unfair.
I can't help but wonder now if he would never have strayed if I had had it more together... She breezed into his life from his past. His first crush. At least, that's what he said to me. He never meant for it to happen, he said. But I knew when I first met her that she was trouble. I could smell it!
To be continued...
Copyright © Ufuomaee
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