THE MIND OF A CHILD BRIDE

My mom says we are going on a little trip to my new home, I don’t know what she means by that. I asked why my other siblings weren’t coming too and she said it was just me. I don’t understand, that. I want to cry because my supposed new home is far far away and I wouldn’t be able to see my little ones or my dear friend Zainab; we were suppose to go swimming in the village stream today. The tears are stinging my eyes but I can’t dare cry cos mama will beat me. It’s all I have done since I was told, I was going to my new home.

My new home is bigger than our home and it is filled with women a little older than me and some much more. The owner of the house; who mama calls ‘in-law’ is to be my husband. I don’t like the way he looks at me! Mama I want to go home, but I don’t dare say it out or I will get punished. The women are fawning over me, like I have seen mama do with fishes in the market. Oh Zainab, I wish you were here.

I am trying to sleep but I can’t, mama went home and left me in a strange place, they say here is my new home, but it doesn’t feel like it. Tomorrow is our examination and I have been studying hard so I can impress my teacher, but mama says that’s not important now! But I want to be a doctor when I grow up! But I don’t dare say it or mama would strike me.

It’s dark and I can feel his breathe on me! What is he doing, why is he touching me so? God I am scared! What does he want to do to me? I want to scream, but I don’t dare or this will never pass. What is this pain I feel, God I have never known anything like it! I thought husbands were meant to love their wives, why does he torture me so? I wanna go home to Abu, Isa and Maryam.

It’s raining outside, I want to go play in it, but I don’t dare cos the senior wives say I am a grown woman now! I don’t feel like a grown woman, I look just like I did when I left Gaskiya village. I miss dancing in the rain, I miss building sand castles with Abu and Isa. I miss skipping rope and playing with Zainab. All I do nowadays is sit in the kitchen and watch the senior wives cook. I don’t like that much.

I think my parents hate me for bringing me here. Maybe I am being punished for stealing meat from mama pot last month. I should apologize, maybe she will come take me home. I don’t want to be here. I don’t want to be called the ‘new bride’ I want to go home, I want my mommy.

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