I Watched My Father Suffer And Die With No Guilt, The Reason Will Shock You

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The first time I went to my dad asking for help, I was in Junior high school. I needed money to pay for my BECE registration. Mom didn’t have it. I went to see my dad on my knees. He told me, “I’ll never give you anything until your mom apologizes to me. She thinks I’ve forgotten what she did. It will be a curse on me to give you something from my pocket.” I left his place with tears.

When I asked my mom about the apology she laughed. “I should apologize for what? What did I do to him? He should rather apologize for abandoning us. Don’t mind him.” Since that day, I formed the impression that it was my mother’s fault that my dad didn’t take care of me. I pressed her to apologize so I could get the money for my registration. She didn’t but the next day, she gave me the money.

When I was going to SHS, my mom had to call on all her siblings to give her money for my education. They came through for her. She sold two pieces of clothes. I took those clothes to the woman who bought them. We were still short of money. I told my mom, “Maybe my dad will listen this time. I’ll go and plead again.” I went on my knees when I saw him. He said, “You know the story. Don’t make me repeat myself.

Your mom owes me an apology. Until she gives that apology, it will be a curse on me to give you money.” I cried. I put myself on the floor. I even asked my dad’s wife to plead on my behalf but the woman ignored me. She and her children watched as I remained on the floor with tears in my eyes. Again, I blamed my mom. It was easier to blame my mom. I felt she made bad choices. I didn’t have a father.

My two other siblings also didn’t have a father. It’s my mom’s fault. She was driving our fathers away with her bad behaviour or witchcraft. Yeah, at some point, I believed my mom was a witch. Because what would make her not say sorry to my dad if it would ensure peace? When I came home on vacation, my mom sent me to her cousin to get something for her. Her cousin had a big poultry farm next to his house.

I asked if I could work there. He laughed; “This is not a job for girls. It’s hard.” I told him I was harder. I told him I needed to save money for school. He spoke to my mom and later employed me on the farm. I worked like there was no tomorrow. I made enough for school. Mom also added what she had. When I discovered the poultry farm, I didn’t need to go to anyone to beg for money. I earned it.

When I needed money, I called my mom’s cousin, Atakora. He gave me a salary advance. When I came home for vacation, I worked to pay the salary advance. I worked at the poultry until I completed the university. Whenever I was home, Atakora left the farm to my care. I managed the other workers. I paid their daily wage. I sold the eggs to customers who came to the farm. I rose through the ranks until the work got easier.

Atakora became my father. He gave me a lot of things I didn’t work for. When I needed something in school and I called him, he gave it to me freely. It was no longer a salary advance. At my graduation, I showed him to my friends as my father. I was in Kenya on a work trip when my father called.

The first question I asked him was “How did you get my number?” He mentioned about four names. He asked all of them until they combined effort to get it for him. He was calling because he had been admitted to the hospital and needed money. I was confused, “And you called me? Where are your kids? What happened to them that they can’t help you?” I called my mom to tell her.

She asked the same question, “How did he get your number after all these years?” And then she asked, “Are you going to give him the money?” I screamed, “Mom, why are you asking me this question? Have you forgotten what he did to me when I was a child?” She responded, “He’s still your father. If you decide to help him, God will bless you so you have more. Shame him.” I felt my mom was using me to wipe her shame in front of my dad. She didn’t apologize to him so she was going to use my benevolence as the apology.

When I came home I asked my mom, “What’s the story? What did you do to that man that makes you think we owe him something?” She laughed. She told me she didn’t do anything and then said, “Is not everything the mouth can say. If you can help him, fine. If not, just leave him. When he calls again, tell him you can’t help.” The next time my dad called, he said if I didn’t help him, they’d amputate his leg.

He needed drugs urgently before his sickness got out of hand. His wife also called. She was pleading with me as if I was the only person on earth who could help. “Forget about the past. He didn’t treat you well as a kid but he’s your father. He’s the reason you’re alive. You even have his name. Help him. God will reward you bountifully.” I asked her to give the phone to him and she did. I asked what he needed.

He listed heaven and earth and even added a feeding allowance. He concluded, “I would have been a good father to you had it not been for your mother and her bitter attitude.” I asked what my mom did and he told me to ask my mom. “I’m in the hospital, sick and weak. I can’t say everything here.” When I told my mom she went crazy. I’ve never seen my mom that angry. She was so angry she was shaking. “Who does he think he is? After all these years he still blames me? Don’t help him.

He should die. After all, that was what he wanted for you. Leave him. Don’t answer his call again.” I said calmly, “Mom, what is it that you two are not telling me? He’s blaming you. You’re blaming him. What happened?” When my dad was discharged from the hospital, I went to see him with my mom. His leg was in bad shape, swollen and had liquid coming out of it. His right leg.

When he saw us, he sat up. My mom said, “Kofi Adu, I’m here. Do you want an apology? Say what I did and get your apology. What did I do to you? The insult? I swear I will insult you again if it happens today. Your daughter wants to know. Tell her.” It was a small room but my mom kept pacing up and down waiting for him to talk. He was mute. I kept asking him to talk but he looked away.

My mom started telling the whole story when she realized my dad wouldn’t say a thing. After everything, she said, “Tell her I’m lying? Do you still need an apology? Should I throw myself at your dead feet and cry for forgiveness?” She left the room for us. We were both staring at each other not knowing what to say. He said, “That’s not everything. One day I’ll also say mine.” When my mom got pregnant, my dad denied it. Out of anger, my mom uttered some words my dad felt were a curse.

He reported to the elders of the town and they made my mom retract the curses. Libation was poured and my mom was asked to apologize to my dad for the curses and insults. She swore heaven and earth that she would never apologize. They told her my dad’s life was hanging around her neck. If anything untoward should happen to my dad in the next five years, my mom would be held responsible.

My dad was waiting for the apology that never came. It was the reason he didn’t take care of me but instead married a woman who already had three kids. My dad never had his own child with the woman. The story broke me into pieces. My mom didn’t want to talk about it because she knew I would be enraged. Somehow, she wanted me to feel that I had a father so I wouldn’t blame her for the bad choices.

After that day, I decided I would never pick up my dad’s call again. When his leg was amputated they called for money. I didn’t mind them. He denied me so I wasn’t his child. Months later, his situation got worse. One of his stepchildren called to tell me. I told them I would pray for him.

When he died, they called to tell me, I wished him rest in peace. And then they came to ask for my contribution towards the funeral. I told them I didn’t owe them anything. “The man didn’t accept I was his daughter so why should I?” My mom went to the funeral.

She was acting sad and all that but it didn’t bother me. I understood her. At least she had a life with him. I didn’t. I Didn’t Tell Anybody Because I Enjoyed It

My son is ten years old. I’ve started teaching him about responsibility and how to treat women well. I tell him to watch his father and learn how to take care of a home. Whatever his father does, I tell him. I tell my daughters to choose carefully.

I’m teaching them how to choose a better man but in case they make a mistake with the man, they shouldn’t make a mistake with the child that would come forth. I tell them to never forgive any man who’ll run from his responsibilities towards his own kids. I hope they listen.

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