“This Diary should be a soapie. It reminds me daily of always trust your instincts. Some people only glitter in the light. Because we want happiness so bad we ignore the signs and accept what we think we deserve” – Zinhleigh Zicky Habile (DOSC-M reader)
Black people will back me on this one. No one calls an urgent family meeting to share good news. Meetings for good news are normally planned in advance and everyone gets to have the agenda long before the meeting happens. Meetings for bad news are communicated just few hours before they happen. I know because my father used to call family meetings when my mother denied him his bedroom rights. I remember one morning my father called his uncles at 2am because my mother didn’t want to ride him. I was at the bedroom door listening to their argument. Few hours later the house was full of elders raising all nasty words at my mom. A day later my mother struggled to walk. Please don’t ask me why because I don’t know. I stopped Mpho before he could continue. I asked if we could have a moment in the bedroom. His aunt went “what did I say? She doesn’t even respect elders. Where on earth have you seen a woman interrupting while her husband is talking? I repeat, Mpho should have found himself a beautiful girl from Bokone Bophirima. Limpopo is full of dinyatsi, not wives. Even the most famous person in Limpopo, Penny Penny, married a girl from Pretoria”. My mom tried to arrest herself but failed. She stood up and pointed her shaking finger at Mpho’s aunt “heyi skobo, leave my child alone. I didn’t come here to be insulted by you. If you want a fight say so and I will fix that ugly face. Nxa basadi ba Batswana le tella batho sies”. It was so embarrassing to see my mom taking on my in-law like that. I know she was trying to defend me but she could have done it differently. Marcus tried to calm my mom down but she was fuming. She reminded me of the days when she used to take my father on. Makoma still had it in her. Dick stood up and said “my sister, the reason you are unmarried is because you think you are Miss South Africa when you are not even Miss Mogwase. If Tswana women were marriage material why aren’t you married? This meeting was called by Mpho because he has something to say to the family. Keep your opinions to yourself if you don’t have anything to say. Mpho, you can continue addressing us. Ignore this spinster aunt of yours”.
Tjo I was glad Dick put his sister in her place but it was not necessary to use the words he used, especially not in front of my family. One of the reasons black marriages fail is the influence from some family members, especially female ones. Instead of being supportive to their son’s marriage, they will go to extra length to find wrongs on his wife. They will do their best to discredit the poor girl. If your man is weak he will listen to them. Mpho continued “I think we need to understand that we are family. Throwing salads at each other won’t help to build us. Can we at least be united for the sake of this family? Right, the reason I called you is because I want to make one thing clear. Sharon and I are continuing with the wedding this week. I know almost all of you are not impressed with the way are doing things but this is our wedding. As our parent you should give us your unconditional support”. I was expecting the worst. I thought Mpho was going to tell the elders that he was leaving me because I didn’t want to go to Cape Town with him. Hearing him telling his family that the wedding was still going on made me smile. He paused for few seconds and continued “I know Sharon sorted the issue with her mom and now we have her blessings. I cannot say the same about my family. All of you told my father that you will not come because I didn’t follow procedure”. Mpho’s aunt interrupted “yes, you are right. You didn’t follow any procedure ya Setswana. Our ancestors will never bless this wedding until you follow procedure. I suggest that you postpone the wedding until we find you a proper Tswana girl who knows how to treat a Tswana man. I think I have support of all my brothers”. What made me angry was the fact that I was the one who forced Mpho to continue paying tuition fees of his aunt’s kids when he wanted to stop because of her big mouth. I didn’t know her much but Mpho once told me she was like Dorris of Muvhango. I think every family has that aunt. She would have kids out of marriage or be a return soldier but she would still think her relationship advices are laced with gold and diamond.
Dick stood up and dragged his aunt out of the house. She continued shouting. It was funny because she was the only one with a big mouth there. I wanted to laugh but didn’t want to show the elders I was happy. Mpho’s stepmother laughed out loud. To cut the long story short, Mpho told his family and my family that the wedding was continuing. His family nodded even though I could see they didn’t agree. My mom went “I must say, I agree with the family that our kids are not doing things properly. At the same time we need to admit that things have changed. Let us not try to impose our beliefs on these kids. The least we can do is to offer them the support they need”. Mpho and his family nodded. I was surprised Mpho didn’t tell them I was pregnant. My phone rang. It was the wedding planner. I asked Mpho if I could answer the phone and he gave me a green light. I went outside to answer the call. The wedding planner wanted to run few things by me and I told her to come to Midrand. After the call I heard Mpho’s aunt’s voice from the other side of the house. She was going “that Pedi girl is a witch. She turned everyone against me. My own brother and his son kicked me out of the house. I am sitting outside like an orphan. If we are not careful we will lose everything to this Limpopo girl. The sangoma she is using is very strong. We must do everything in our power to ensure this wedding doesn’t happen. Nxa imagine a little yellow Pedi girl thinking she is all that. She will be crying very soon. They don’t call me Sebolai for nothing”. I don’t know who she was talking to but I assumed it was one of the family members in North West. I didn’t understand why she hated me so much because she didn’t even know me well. I went back to the house and told Mpho what I heard. Mpho laughed and told me not to take his aunt seriously because she was not okay in the head. I took Mpho’s words but part of me was still concerned. Mpho told me he had a surprise for me. He didn’t want to tell me what the surprise was. I asked why he never told me about the meeting and he went “because I was angry at you. I was angry you didn’t want to go to Cape Town with me. I gave everything to Eunice. And baby, please don’t say anything about your pregnancy”.
I asked if he knew Eunice took his father to Cape Town and he went “please tell me you are lying”. I laughed and said nothing. He didn’t look surprised. He knew his father was an older version of a f#ckboy. What started as a hectic meeting turned out to be a good family party. Dick provided booze and the place became a happy zone. I was sad my mom left Selfie’s mother at home. It would have been nice to have her around. Mpho’s aunt asked to have a private moment with me. We went to the garden and she went “I want to apologise for the way I spoke about you earlier. It was uncalled for. I sat down and processed everything in my mind. My nephew loves you and you are part of this family. I want you to know that you have my full support. In fact, from today I want you to call me Mama”. The woman was either a psycho or she was planning to do something very bad. Not long ago she was telling someone that she was against the wedding and jikijiki she wanted to be friends. I gave her a fake smile and told her I was cool with her. She smiled back and offered to make me a cup of coffee. Her super nice attitude was so suspicious. I consoled myself by remembering what Mpho said about the woman not being okay in the head. She headed to the kitchen to make me coffee. She came back few minutes later with a cup of coffee in her hand. I said “thanks Mama” and pretended to drink. There was no way I was gonna drink coffee made by someone who hated me. When you are from Limpopo you get to know such things at a very young age. Even babies from Limpopo only accept breast milk from their mothers. They are born with fear of alephirimi lol. When the aunt disappeared I threw the cup away with its content inside. The neighbour’s little puppy appeared from nowhere and started licking the coffee on the grass. I went back to the house to join my man. I told him the wedding planner was on her way. His phone rang and he spoke for few seconds. After the call he told me my surprise was on its way. I was so curious to what my surprise was. Few minutes later Mpho asked me to follow him to meet my surprise. I followed Mpho like a slay queen following her Nigerian blesser. The struggle for Brazilian weaves is real. The guy was carrying something I loved wholeheartedly.
Mpho went “babe, meet Lehlohonolo Sedie, founder of LHS Distillery & Brewery. He is the talented guy who makes your favourite vodka. His vodka is our wedding’s main sponsor”.
I am a man aged 37 and my Zulu wife is 39. Last year she found me in bed with our neighbour and she beat the girl until she bled. When she was done with the girl she hit me with a broom. I couldn’t fight back because I was wrong. Our families intervened and we sorted the problem. In January this year i cheated again with a colleague and she found out. She tried to beat me and I showed her who I was. I beat her up and she laid charges against me. I tried to lay counter charges but the cops refused. I was arrested and released on bail. My wife dropped the charges before I appeared in court. Since she dropped the charges she hit me twice and I’m scared to fight back because I don’t want to be arrested. I can’t leave her because we have a joint bold. I can’t go back home. What am I supposed to do when she hits me? The cops don’t want to let me open the case. When I fight back she lays charges against me. Please help me.
Yours in the struggle,