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Life is unfair, unjust and unforgiving for us the poor people. Poverty was the norm when I was growing up I the humble background. Life was unkind as we could barely afford anything. Having two meals a day was seen as a Christmas day. Being born in the family of ten did not make it even better. It meant our parent, a single mother had to work extra hard to sustain us. Being the last born, I was having a slight advantage as elder siblings had to go help mom raise our family income by doing casual jobs.
Born and raised in poverty was not an excuse for me to fail in life. It only gave me the motivation for me to work even harder. People in our village used to ridicule us. There were things happening in our family which by virtual of being in Africa and a society deeply rooted in its tradition the only explanation given could only be witchcraft. When I was born my father was healthy, strong and hard working. Life was not as hard as he could help to raise us both financially and morally. He died mysteriously. No one knows caused his death. The world had robbed us a great man, a father and our bread winner.
My father’s death was a big blow to our humble family mostly to my mom and Peter, John and Paul. They had to stop school and take responsibility so that we the other children could eat and at least go to nursery school. As the time went by, it was like moving from hot pan to the fire place. The remaining siblings had to drop school one by one to help increase the family income. At age of eight, it was my turn to join. This was the worst thing I had hoped for. That year there came the El Niño. This meant that too much rain than expected. Rain is a blessing as we all had hoped and prayed for it to come in abundance. As of life everything has its ugly side. The rain being more flooding was expected. Living in a flat area did not help us either. A catastrophe was expected to hit and hit us bad. Water borne diseases become the order of the day. Our first born Peter was not spared as bilharzia claimed him. He was my favorite of all our siblings. Cool character, understanding and always encouraging us. He was like a father to us that death had robbed us.
This meant life was becoming harder for all of us. We had to choose for the better of our family. In a country where the rich continues to be rich and the poor continue to ravage in poverty one of us had to go to school, as it was the only option left for us if our hopes of our family being out of the miserable state was to come true. This was my idea but my brother Tom who is the seventh born had other views. I thought could benefit but this was never to be. All except mom said am was spoilt to even grasp anything. Tom was categorically jealous. I had to concede defeat and Tom taken to school.
School is over and with all the hardship he managed to pass with flying colors. Good job in the offering, money for once never becomes a problem. Women love what’s free. They throw their beauty as long as they get what they want that is good lavish life and money they never worked for. All this is because men are weak before them. This was the new head ache in my Brother Tom’s mind. The pressure was too much. My mom finally had something to boast off. He was doing great from the humble origins. He did not forget us either, although we were not in the best of terms, he helped me to start a shop which at least kept me going. Not thinking of crime to survive.
Two, three four and the fifth year our family history repeated itself. My brother was no more. At least that was the news we heard. This was the hardest news for us to take. The most notorious gangster in town was dead. “Tom a gangster?” this was not true this was a case of mistaken identity. That was the words from all those who knew him. The police were convinced he was behind a criminal gang which was terrorizing innocent civilians. We all could defend him against that claim but could not account for his money. He had become an instant millionaire but had been just earning a salary of a mere teacher.
Gone was our new found hope the messiah that we had all embraced. The choice of being poor again not even for an hour could not even be tolerated. “My children you know your brother is now no more, we have as a family go to forge ahead. He had assets and could be his will to be managed properly. Am old now and I know nothing about money so choose one of you to be managing it and the profits be shared equally amongst ourselves”. My mom was devastated. She uttered those words in a family meeting after the burial. Her sincerity could be seen in her eyes and her grief on her face. Remorseful and blaming herself this could be her last days we could enjoy having a mother alive.my mom was depressed and could not forgive herself as she believed she did not do her duty as mother to advise her son. On other hand, Tom was forced by circumstances to go that extra mile for the hopes and dreams we the family had bestowed on him were too much to bear. When he realized he could not deliver money wise, he turned to ugly ways to make the ends meet. Moms died mysteriously just like my father. Life could not have done a worse thing to us as it was three months after Tom’s death.
Having to choose between your family and a girl you in love with is one the most difficult task that could ever be faced by a man. You want to make all happy in your decisions but deep in your mind you know that one of them is going to be hurt. This was the dilemma I had to face. My siblings needed me but the lady I wanted to make my wife was a chance I couldn’t let pass. Being mean and egoistic you could say but I had to go for the lady; as one’s happiness is number one priority for any human being.
The lady was not to come cheap. Being born and raised in urban areas all she demanded was classy, lavish things. Women in general have this power over men. When they want something from you, they use that power and you will have no choice but give. I was not spared either; she knew all my weaknesses, where to touch. Her way was all I could do. My recourses were diminishing very fast. She used to say “no love without finance” and remained true to her words. My family apart no one wants to see me. I was quickly becoming poorer. Only source of income was to be the properties income that was not going to be enough. The beauty queen won’t take or understand any of that. God in heaven is the only person any human being turn to when the world turns against u. I was not going to perish. I was born to live and make a change in this world.
God never fails someone. He has everything as his plan. He opened my eyes. I had not learnt by my brother Tom about women. She was after all money I had. She mercilessly took it all, ate and left me with nothing. What did the world turn into? It was an eye opener to me. Beauty was all in the beholder’s eye, it comes and goes. I also learnt to never trade anything for the people who loves and cares about you. Life although harsh has a way of repaying.
Having tasted success at some point and a springboard start from, it was not long before I was able to regains my status not being a rich guy but a person who can afford or life by his means. By time all I cared for is the family unity we once had. Women although are meant to be our helpers are our source of downfall. Even in the bible in the case with Adam and Eve is no different. Eve become the downfall of Adam.
Some people might say life is unfair or just them but I believe God had a purpose for all of us. We all cannot be equals but have our destiny on our own hands. Hard work and determination is the key to your success and never give up when the situation are against you.