A Bigger Hug

 Maina Kageni. Picture by Pulse Magazine.Sometime back, Churchill King’ang’i and Maina wa Kageni were on about whether or not single women above thirty “kidu”-something- get miserably lonely and need to have a man. As usual I was listening to the first part of this twosome breakfast show, while in the bus on my way to work. King’ang’i was having a good time rubbishing all those single ladies calling in to claim their long and/or new found joyous loneliness, and Maina as usual was adding “kudos’” to those same sisters.

Things got heated when the talk got to “pia those over 40”. That King’ang’i …..I have given him a wanted. Churchill, stand warned. Utapatikana. Eeniwe, this here me girl, is forty something. Granted, I could do well with having a good, well mannered, rich, mature, respectable, church going, God Fearing, sober, non-smoking, well spoken and extremely well educated, jocular and hard working man. Actually if I dare say so, so could well, all of my girlfriends who are my age mates. Why not? Majority of us “forty Kidus” have children. None of these are from a holy conception.

Just for one small issue. Where is this man? Please, please, note that I did not describe a perfect man. Note that I did not ask that he can be tall, handsome, or the most wonderful surrogate or adopted “Baby daddy” of my three loves- Miss D, Sonny and my baby. Neither did I state that he be able to help in housework, or cook for us, or pick and arrange his socks and what nots. Neither too is there mention or hope for kind, understanding, helpful, considerate and non interfering “horrors-in-law”. I will take them as they come-mad, nosey pokey, irritating habits and all. Not all relatives can be as perfect as ours (snigger).

In the TV show, “How to get rich” they have an opener…”Show me the money!”

Listen up you all… “Show me the man!” It’s amazing. Of course man and woman are made to be together. None more in youth than in older age. It is just that marriage is so hard in these times. My regret is that impunity has crept into all aspects of our lives. Men cheat on wives and girlfriends with impunity. What are our sons to learn from all this? It is no wonder that son’s born and/or bred in single parent homes, especially with or by their mothers, whether for part or all their lives, are increasingly becoming the preferred, more sought after and better behaved men.

There is, in my opinion, no argument about whether or not women need men. We do. So, so much. However, and we must thank God‘s gracious mercy upon humankind for this; a woman will need a man only so long as their togetherness, is not portended or seen to be dangerous to the survival and progress of herself and that of family- namely, their/ her children. Therein lies the crux of the matter. Most men-read African- have absolutely no scruples about suddenly and without provocation or warning, endangering themselves, their woman and anybody else, in pursuit of carnal pleasure and drink. Yes, again my two cents, and in that order of preference by majority. Oh how rich Africa would be, if these vile deeds were substituted with Endeavour of happiness and development!

Enter Africa’s woman. Empowered with a hard working demeanor, sometimes an education, principles of societal well being and good housekeeping instilled in her. Brought up to offer respect and subservience to her man, in return for a good standing in society, tender care and a life of stability and protection from her man and his family. All things considered, the African woman is as ready, willing and capable to strive and help her man in shared responsibility, as long as he cares, is tender and protects her TOGETHER with his family. African man my brother, I bow down to you, if you have done this to and for your woman. I also stand firm in my two cent assertion, that if your African woman has shown you disrespect, you have failed to do only one of the few things mentioned above.

The entire hullabaloo I hear about me and my sisters being single “*&^ %( **s”, is just all that – hullabaloo. The impunity with which our men have stood us up and their/our children to boot, is despicable. Again, you must thank God for us-The African woman. We, who have elected to ignore that insult and injury, and still go ahead, take care of our loves -through thick and thin- and dare to hope again for love and respect, and tender care, and a life of………..etc
Miss D is now only eighteen, and has already been initiated to the woes of an African woman courtesy of this impunity of our men. It serves a lesson to Sonny, whose allegiance is to his sister. Sonny clearly knows that any show of such impunity in our home, would be met with…..no understanding. My baby, who will soon get to puberty, is watching too. Constantly re-evaluating his opinion and habit, to best suit and please that of his mother and sister. Life is teaching us all. The common way is not the good way. I must stay positive. I constantly hug my baby. Big boy that he is now. I love my three loves. It doesn’t stop me wishing I had a bigger hug. Someone to tell my problems and get not only a listening ear, but also a solution. A man to help me father my three loves, to share in our joys, to give us new joys. Someone whom we will so gladly show off to our myriad of friends and family, whom we will cheer up too. I need all this and more. I and as many of my sisters in similar situation in Africa, need a man. What is there to argue about this?

But…..Lord have mercy upon any man , who dare come in like a wolf in sheep’s clothing, to lay bare for slaughter, all this .Out of acts of impunity, a man will throw all this to disarray. We are not mad. No matter how bizarre a woman’s behavior may seem to the onlookers upon dejection or rejection by a man, on closer scrutiny, you may be shocked at what has befallen her. This is why we African women will “go wild” even insane in talk, behavior and other reaction, after a breakup; only to sober and cool off later. It is the shock of realization that beats us. I cannot even begin to say to what levels some men risk our lives and those of their/our children and families, our happiness, our ability to progress or even barely survive, in exchange of often temporary satisfactions and joys.

Mercifully, love truly is the greatest of all. Love still manges to creep in past all the hurt and wronging and bitterness, to again bring hope and happiness. For the sake of my three loves, I look forward to getting a bigger hug sometime soon.

Photo by Pulse Magazine

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Emerald Sua is a Christian single mother who prides herself as a voluntary organizational guru for lives, systems, situations and homes.

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