"Merciful God, what could this dream possibly mean?" I woke up to a strange dream, I saw my life rewinding till I became a baby and returned to my mother's womb, my heart was beating very fast as I sat up.
That aside, I am Alisha Abdulsamad, I was a 16 year old secondary school graduate back then, my parents are Alhaji and Hajiya Sani Abdulsamad, my Dad back then was a business man and my mum was into minor women politics, basically I'll say my parents were well to do.
As I kept pondering on the dream I had that day, I had a knock on my door, it was Mum, she asked me to meet her in Dad's living room downstairs as they needed to talk to me about something very important.
"Maybe I got the admission in Michigan," I whispered to myself as I ran downstairs to see my beloved parents.
Bowing down, I said "ina kwana Baba, ina kwana mama." That was how we had been taught to greet our parents and elders in the northern part of Nigeria where I come from, after the exchange of pleasantries I sat on the floor beside my parents.
"Alisha, there is something very important your mum and I would want to discuss with you, more of a good news," Dad said as he chuckled, "Do you remember Alhaji Aliyu Bagudu? The richest man in our clan, the one who stays abroad? The former deputy governor? Hehehe, in 3 weeks time, you will be his wife, hahahaha" father said happily.
I sat there lost for words, my parents were laughing like they had achieved something, "So Alisha, you must get ready, be of good behavior too, soon you will be Mrs Aliyu Bagudu," mum added still sounding excited.
"NEVER" I said as I stood up angrily "Which Bagudu? That 70 year old man?" I fired, "Haba Alisha, he is only 68 and by the way he looks 45, he is still very strong and active," mum spoke to his defense, "what is the difference dan Allah? Baba this man is like my grandfather mana, you are still in your early 50's and you want to hand me over to that old man who already has 3 wives? You have just a wife baba and you married mum when you where still young, It won't work I won't marry that old thing," I angrily said as I stormed out of Dad's living room.
How did they even think of this idea? I then had a flashback on the dream I woke up to that morning, I used to think my parents were wise enough, as I sat on my bed, mum came in without knocking, "where is your manners Alisha? Why did you walk out on us? Haba mana, is that how to act?" She said to me, "Mama, why will you sell me off to that evil politician who ran out of the country to escape justice? I am sure it is because of the benefits Dad would get from him, haba! This is totally mean, it is obvious I am not loved by you both," I fired still sounding angry, "Alisha, nobody is selling you off, have you seen the goodies he sent to you? dan Allah, think about it, you stand to gain many things too, your education abroad would be guaranteed, let me not mention the good and flashy lifestyle, clothes, shoes and all these beautiful things in life..." she added, "mummy enough, what do you lack? Here yourself, you are talking about clothes and shoes? Haba? mummy have you looked at Alhaji Bagudu's face well? Ahhh! This is wicked, mama please... Just leave now" I said pointing at the door to my mum.
I had never been the angry type but this issue had left me with no choice. "I must call Jibril," I said in my thought, I hatched a plan with Jibril and patiently waited for the day that evil man would come for my hands in marriage, I played along with them and they were over joyed, I found out that Dad had been offered 100 million naira by the said Alhaji, it hurt me but I just played along.
The D-day had arrived, my relatives, makeup artist, stylist and designers where already on ground, I went to have my bath in the bathroom and that was the last time my family ever saw or heard from me, I escaped through the window, I wore a nikap so that the security guards wouldn't realise whom I was, I had already bought my ticket thanks to Jibril who never supported my parents decision to marry me off at that early age, I didn't mention, Jibril was a human right activist who never tolerated such cases, I flew to Ghana that morning as I already had an international passport.
I would endure a lot as a woman but being married off to an old man at a tender age when I knew my future holds a lot for me is a total no.
It's been 10 years since I ran away from home, I am now a renowned lawyer and an activist for the girl child, I do not have millions in my account but I am completely fulfilled.
I would be visiting my parents next week and I am sure they would be proud of the woman I have become.
-There is more to the female gender than marriage.
A 16 year old is underaged and not ready for marriage.
Let's encourage our girls to go to school, proper education should be every parents gift to their children.
©️ SOPHY BLESS
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