I was a little older at the time.
I was in the seventh grade when mama took me to a gynecologist.
The doctor said, verbatim, “she doesn’t need to be circumcised.”
I understood what they were talking about,
What they wanted to do to me.
“The doctor said I don’t need it,” I told them.
“We know better than the doctor,” my aunt retorted
I used to love someone.
We worked together.
I really admired his personality.
He asked for my hand in marriage,
But my parents rejected him,
Because he was from a different social class.
I had a feeling he was ambitious,
And that he’d amount to something.
When we were engaged,
He was always concerned with the apartment,
And getting it ready.
I feel like I aged considerably the moment I got my first suitor.
I was still young, in eighth grade.
After I got married, I started bearing responsibilities, and I grew up.
My father had us thinking that marriage was the end-all-be-all
We weren’t supposed to fight with our husbands.
gender violence, physical violence, parents, marriage, divorce, work
No one has ever experienced what my father put me through.
It’s such a difficult thing to live through,
When you’re a kid in first grade,
And your father takes you home from school,
And beats you with a spiked rod,
Nails penetrating your entire body.
It was a long walk home,
And I was being beaten up continuously,
blood gushing out of the wounds.
All of this for something I didn’t do.
Something that wasn’t my fault.
He was always suspicious of me.
Whenever he went out, he’d wedge a single hair between the door and the doorframe.
When he’d get back home, he’d check the door to see if I’d gone out.
His suspicions were very hard to deal with.
When God was going to bless us with a baby, my husband gave me an ultimatum: “It’s either me or the baby.”
So, I went and got an abortion.
motherhood, social stigma, domestic violence, prison, physical violence
I was in sixth grade.
I got home one day,
And mama told me
“Go take a shower.
We’re going out.”
I thought we were visiting a relative.
I asked her where to,
“We’re going to the doctor.”
She explained circumcision to me,
“It’s a simple process.
It’s like a tiny pin prick.”
They made me lie down on a bed.
Then all of the sudden,
They were taking off my clothes.
I screamed and cried.
They tried to hold me but couldn’t.
I kicked and squirmed.
I didn’t want them to do anything to me.
They brought my older sister in to calm me down.
But nothing would.