A FATHER’S PAIN
WRITTEN BY MICHAEL DOKOSI
I stared at Efe in silence. I could feel her pain. She was totally broken because the family she had come to regard as her family had disintegrated. And, it was clear she would do anything to get the family back.
Women often have a much more forgiving spirit than men. (Ironically, they also have the penchant for vengeance than men). As I sat starring at the house-help, I wished I had the strength she had to forgive my wife. But, I just couldn’t.
Thoughts of someone else making love to her was just too much for me. And worse was the fact that she had the guts to say I was not the biological father of my children was something I could not forgive. For a woman to say her husband is not the biological father of her children is for the woman to admit that she has been cheating on her husband for ages.
But, I had no doubt that Peter and Pamela were my children and I was prepared to fight to death to have them back. As far as I was concerned, no authority, no law, no judge, no court and no human born of a woman was going to stand in-between me and my children.
“Efe, you wouldn’t understand what is happening until you are in my shoe. Just start getting used to the idea that your madam is no more my wife. However, as for Peter and Pamela they will be back to this house. They are my children” I said. John for the first time spoke up.
“Sir, I know and understand how you feel. I support you totally in the path you have taken. It is one thing for a woman to cheat on her husband and another thing for the woman to say her husband is not the biological father of their children. As a man, I can’t forgive my wife for cheating on me let alone forgive her for daring to say the children I have had with her are not my biological children. Madam Nora did not try at all!” the driver said. It was the first time I had even heard him speak with such conviction. I thanked him for his support.
Efe, I could see, had resigned herself to the idea that Nora would no longer be my wife. After the talk with the two, I went to have my super of kenkey and fish with slice tomatoes and onions. I was very hungry in spite of the setback I had suffered at the court that day. So as not to feel lonely, I invited John and Efe to join me at table. They were understandably reluctant at first but later, understood why I needed them at table; they were the only ones I could call family. Without them, I would feel lonely sitting at table alone.
John had been driving me for nine years while Efe had been with us as house-help for seven years. She was 27 while he was 35. Now, they were the only ones I could call family.
After supper, I retired to my room, had my bath after which I went to bed. By 8:45pm, I was sound asleep.
I woke up at 3:35am and sat up in bed to think over all that had been happening to me; my wife, her infidelity, her claim about my not being the biological father of my children, the court verdict and my lawyers’ stance. Suddenly, I began to wish that all that was happening was just a bad dream. I wished I would wake up to find that I never caught my wife in bed with my best friend and that my wife never dragged me to court saying I was not the biological father of my children. I wished I would wake up to find my wife up and about in the house, as usual, getting breakfast ready for me to go to work and the children to school.
Maybe I was going to wake up from the dream to the usual morning scene of my children being chased around so they could have their bath and prepare for school. Then they will appear at table later on all dressed up for school and looking excited. After breakfast, I would get them into my car and drive them out of the house with their mother waving and smiling affectionately at all of us.
I snapped out of my fantasy. What I was dreaming of was a mirage. My wife was gone. The unity of my family had been shattered and there was nothing I could do about it save fight for the return of my children.
A FATHER’S PAIN
WRITTEN BY MICHAEL DOKOSI
I got up from bed, went to my gym which I had not visited for days and spent about twenty minutes exercising. Later, I had my bath, had my breakfast and then had my driver take me to town.
We found ourselves at Glo Estate. It was a well-planned upper class area of residencies and offices. Some of the crème de la crème of the society had their homes or offices here. At Number 6, Lollipop Avenue, we stopped. I got out and walked to the gate while John stayed put in the car.
I rang the bell and was startled when a voice asked me who I was and who I was looking for.
“I am Dr. Ofori-Mensah and I am looking for Mr. Oscar Brew. I want him to handle a case for me” I said. A few seconds later, the voice, through the phone at the gate, asked me to open the gate and enter.
I pushed the small gate backwards. It opened. I stepped into a beautiful yard of very green grass and flowers of all hues. I walked up to the front-door. I turned the handle. It opened. I stepped in and found myself in a corridor.
“This way, sir,” a lady who suddenly appeared from nowhere told me. I followed her up the stairs to another room. She offered me a seat while she stood waiting. After about three minutes, she pointed to a door and asked me to open and enter. I did.
“Welcome Dr. Ofori-Mensah. Are you the Dr. Ofori-Mensah of Mother & Child Hospital at South Ridge?” he asked me.
“I am, sir” I replied. He had obviously run a check on me. I took a seat.
“Welcome, sir. I am Oscar Brew. My friends call me OB. How may I help you?” he asked. I thanked him and within five minutes, narrated to him everything that had happened concerning my wife, ending with my decision to change lawyers.
He did not stir or show any emotion as he listened to me. His eyes bore into me as if he was trying to determine whether I was lying or telling the truth as I talked.
Oscar Brew was one of the city’s top attorneys. He was noted to be expensive but delivers to the satisfaction of his customers. He was also noted to have handled very high profile cases and gotten quite a number of suspected murderers off the hook.
A tall slim looking man, he was in his mid-sixties and greying. Everything about him indicated he was well to do.
“Your entire cost is $50,000. You will make a deposit of $35,000. As soon as you do that, I will take over the case” he said, neither smiling nor frowning.
I had come prepared. For my children, I would go any length. I took out my cheque and wrote an amount of $35,000 for him. He stared at the cheque for a while after collecting it. Then he said we were in business. He called in the woman who had brought me in and asked her to take me to see another person.
A few minutes later, I was seated in front of a fat looking man. He looked like a man who was perpetually happy. An identification tag on his table identified him as Kwabena T. Torto. He was the junior partner in the law firm. He made me write down all that had transpired, from the day I caught my wife in bed with my best friend to the day the court declared I was not the biological father of my children.
“Okay. Thank you. Tomorrow, you will meet me at Accra General Hospital. You will be undergoing tests to determine if you can father a child or not” he said. I stared at him,
A father’s pain Episode 19 & 20
A FATHER’S PAIN