Recently, I get many accusations that I may be a woman lover, mostly from men who see themselves as my knight in shinning armour and their families (well, the only person who must make see that knight is me and I’ve not seen him yet). Oh, what is wrong with loving women? I love women and will forever love women and I’m not saying I hate men, was I not fathered by a man? None must judge me for my choices. I will tell you the funny story of my existence.
When the choirmaster of a church deceived a pretty damsel, slept with her and some other women, impregnated her and bolted with some other woman, it was the kind lady who decided to house me for nine months before giving birth to a little child with a big head who turned out to be just me. One would think a child like that would quietly grow without complications, but no, I grew by sending her in and out of hospitals to a point that, she had to give up and say
“die if you want, I’m tired”
(I bore her that grudge but now that I know how difficult it is to deal with a child whose main growth is centered on sickness, I don’t). She left me (to move into her matrimonial home) in the care of her mother, my grandmother; Naomi Adwoa Pokuaa of blessed memory, who continued the battle of making me a living being and succeeded. Many are those who have recounted to me the love that that woman showed me. I was her “walking stick” they would say.
I became that ugly girl (because they say, the only part that grew well, where I was concerned, was my head), whose mouth would never rest and said everything her eyes saw, a sign of witchcraft, and they had proof; I was born after twins, sure, I carried their “witchcraft pot” (a weird superstition I must say). Even so, my grandmother protected me like a lioness. When I turned five, my mother came from her village, saw me and was amazed:
“the girl lived and she looks good to be sent, well, she is mine and so I’ll have her” She was purported to have said.
This marked my movement from the loving wings of my grandmother to the house of a complete stranger who was my mother. I lived loving the idea that I had a father but my mother soon gave me out to her mother in law (Grandma Ofosua) who needed a child to ‘use’ for household duties. I must say I thought this woman the most wicked, but now I know better. She strengthened and made me that strong willed lady I am today and it is quite impressive that she never mentioned that I was a step child. Even in her wickedness, it was a little lady; Miss Georgina Asomani; my step cousin, who fed me with part of her chop money when Grandma Ofosua failed to feed me when I did not live up to her working expectation. Grandma Ofosua’s husband; Oluu of blessed memory, did his bit to introduce me to school (the first man who actually did something for me) but his cruelty (which I now know was his love to make something out of me) made me an alien in the then Lapaz village.)
At age eight, I went back to my mother who wept upon seeing me; for I was as lean as a lean stick. In her matrimonial home; I was introduced to fatherly love because her husband, my father, was the most caring man of all. Still, it was my maternal grandmother, who I heard paid for all my expenses, it was weird, but I couldn’t care less. When my school going turned into a disco light (today I’m in, tomorrow I’m out because of school fees) Grandma Pokuaa was the one who came to me and said:
“Maame Tawia, you are now a grown girl. I need you to go to school but all the people I give your money to, do not pay your fees as they should. With my selling of charcoal, I will come here and give you your money every term so you can go to school. Is that clear?”
It was clear and I was only nine or ten years old. Little by little, I became the breadwinner in a family of five (it has now increased to nine) but that drove me to do odd jobs to earn money; something that taught me all I needed to know about independence and further made me tough.
Even in Junior Secondary School, it was another little lady, Charity Batuure, from Jirapa in the Upper West Region of Ghana, who made sure I completed my education. Yes, she brought food for my whole family and forcefully sent me to school. After completion, it was a lady who helped me live through my work as a stone cracker; Sister Mawusi (who later turned out to be a ghost, well, so we were all made to believe, long story I will tell one day) protected me through the dark forest to and from the stone quarry. Why won’t I love women?
I could go on and on and on but let me make it short. At Senior Secondary School when the going became tough, it was the headmaster who called his staff to help me, and they did, but it was a woman: Mrs. Shirley Naa Agowa Banafoe Doku who protected me like a hawk, loved me like I’ve never been loved before (and still does) and forced me to the university. Even when many stained her name by calling her relationship with me that of a lesbian and her partner, she didn’t care. It did not end there, her friends who were all females, took turns in helping me and showing care by taming my street and struggle urges. Yes, Maame Yaa Asabea Asihene tried her best to teach me how to cook and even when she travelled abroad, she took and still takes care of me like her little angel, although I am over 30 years now. At the university, I met another angel called Juvian Osei Bonsu who became my rock. Yaa Asabea Asihene, my known guardian and mother; Shirley and their friend Dr. Mrs Nana Ama Pokuaa Arthur, decided to help set me up in writing by helping me pay for the publication of my first book which is scheduled to be launched on March 15.
So yes, I love women. I love women like crazy and I will always love women, that is the kind of love I have for women and if that makes me a lesbian, so be it.
Amoafowaa Sefa Cecilia © 2015