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“God placed the best things in life on the other side of terror” – Will Smith

I want to tell you something about myself. Very brief: I always believe that the best people to listen to are those who have the experience of where you’re going.

I mean, once you, who had experience of the path tells me something, no matter what I see, no matter what comes my way, my subconscious mind will be guided by your advice and warnings. I’d want to be very careful not to do anything outside what I’ve learnt from you.

Ok, this is it: most people believe in that practice, there’s 70% chance that you reading this do. And it’s not bad, experience, they say, is the best teacher, and I can understand.

Alright, maybe you’ll have a different perspective towards this belief once I share my experience with you.

When I got into marriage, and I found out my husband was a woman beater, I was really scared. He practically beats me like he’s fighting with a fellow guy. So I went to my aunt for counseling, although before visiting Aunty Sola, I already wanted to call it quit.

Aunty Sola, whom I assumed had a lot of knowledge because she’d been married for over 29 years, gave me words of advise. She told me there was no perfect man around. If I thought there could be a perfect man that would treat me right, that is an illusion. More so, I’d had two kids for Samson, and if I step out of marriage, I might never find another man that would accept me as a wife since I’d be stigmatized, second hand.

She told me the best thing a woman can ever do in a marriage is to endure and find solace in the way of life you has gotten into. She told me even if I got out of marriage, I may find a man, but he could be a chronic womanizer, and could make do with my little daughter since he’s not the father, or I could find a drunkard, or a stingy man who’d let me suffer.

She said marriage is a hell one must get used to living in.

She told me instead finding a way out of the marriage, I should find a way to build my home. I should find a way to please my man, to serve him, to let him lord over me because it’s a man’s world.

Aside from her experience in marriage, Aunty Sola was one woman I respect a lot. She’d helped me when my parents died, and had contributed a lot to my success in education and a lot more other things, so her influence on me was so much.

I went back to my family with a prepared heart to serve my man, let him lord over me, to abstain from the things that spikes him up, and to find solace in whatever hell my marriage was.

There was a strong will to be committed to my husband after I met my Aunty, coupled with the fear she made me see on leaving my marriage.

When the real hell began, I had no voice. Samson did anything he liked to me. And everyday, his pattern changes. He developed into flogging me with his belt, he’d asked me to lay on the ground and whip my whole body till he was satisfied.

Not that I ever cheated, I knew if I did, he’d get a gun and end my life. But at the slightest mistake of not making food on time or coming late from work, maybe our son did something bad, he’d say it’s my bad behaviour that the boy was exhibiting, and when I try to say something, he beats me up.

We could just be seeing a movie and maybe he understood it wrongly, and I try to tell him otherwise, argument will come in and before I know it, he beats me up.

When I take his money to get something for the house without his permission, I get it hot.

When a friend calls and he’s skeptical about the call, he turns it into a fight until he beats me up.

I didn’t want to leave, I was ready to get use to it because of what Aunty Sola had made me believe, I was ready to please him, I was ready to die at his hands.

Until I found out that truly, the best things in life are at the other side of terror.

There was a scene in the cartoon movie, Moana, where they sang Where You Are; at the part where Moana’s grandmother sang — she told the little girl; “mind what your father says, but you may hear a voice inside.”

I began to hear I a voice inside my head that was telling me that right across the horizon, there was a better life for me. I told myself I’d rather live alone, or live with what Aunty Sola refered to as second hand than continue in the hell I called marriage.

I got out of marriage, I spent few years learning a new trade, I wanted to do away with men forever until the doctor, who always treated my bruises anytime my ex husband beats me up, found beauty in me and was ready to do anything for me.

They say all men are the same, it is just a phrase. I found peace, I found life, I began to really live when I found Dr. Ken.

It turned out I was just a decision away from finding true happiness. And my greatest and most successful decision was leaving Samson. Was leaving hell.

Take hold of your life. The driver’s seat of your life will always be yours until you handle it to someone else.

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