By Shamiso Chigonde
The way you forced yourself onto my body, squeezing me, scratching me with your nails. Those long and dirty nails that know no cleaning. They left marks on my back and my thighs. You sucked my nipples until they hurt and I never complained.
You kissed me with a stinking beer-filled breath. I was raised in a religious way, and only knew the smell of beer from your tongue. Only knew how alcohol tastes when I kissed you. You forced yourself on me every night. It was not love making, it was sex. As your sweat dripped on me, I held back the tears. I wiped away your sweat but could not wipe away the hurt.
I could not tell you to shower because you are the man and I was supposed to be a submissive wife. Yes the true African woman. Her body belongs to the man. You took the second, third, fourth rounds until I was helpless.
I tried many times to touch you gently so that you could know how I wanted it. You never read the signs. Maybe my sign were blurred. It doesn’t matter because you never asked how I felt. You wanted it your way and I always gave you what you wanted.
I always knew how bad your day was, not because we talked about it but I felt it in the extra strength you used. I sat and wondered if you were the same man who said he loved me some years back. The man who bought me fresh roses. That man who drew a picture of me with a green crayon on canvas at the mall. That man who lifted me and carried me on his back as I ate vanilla ice-cream. I doubted more than once.
You came home in the early hours of morning. I could smell the odour of another woman on your body. The smell of her sweat not perfume. You made her sweat. You made me cry. Being a submissive wife, I kept quiet for years, three children, twelve years of marriage.
I was silent but now I ready speak up. My words are, “No! I have had enough. My mother endured the same pain and it led her to an early grave. Enough is enough. No to your stinking body. No to sex. No to sexual violence. Yes to love making. Yes to being romantic. But I am gone. I have left your house. I am doing this for my two daughters. I have had enough of you.