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According to the old man this is how families without fathers should live.

Did you grow up in a remote village or did you at one time or the other experience the lifestyle of people living in the village before? If you can affirm positively to the question, then you can to some extent attest to this life story you are about to read.

While growing up during my early days as a little kid,I lived with my parents and three other siblings in our little village. We're not rich but we lived comfortably. My parents did everything within their power to make sure we had the best of life. From the little income my father earned from his farm he sponsored my other siblings to the only school that was available in our village at that time. My father bore all the responsibilities of catering for the financial aspect of the home with my mother contributing her own little quota. We were all living together happily until that fateful day.

P.S : All images used are for illustration because the writer has no images of the events when they all happened..

It all began on one fateful day, I was still very young, being the last of the family ,to know the exact day of the week but I vividly remember every of the events that day.

I was in my friend's house playing since I was not going to school then ,when we suddenly began to hear loud cries from the direction of my house. We at first thought it was one of those village drunks who constantly beat their wives at the slightest provocation. As kids we enjoyed watching such scenes as it was an avenue to make stories to tell. Therefore we cheerfully ran to the direction where we thought the cry was coming from. I was able to outran my friend so that I could have more to add to my story before he would arrive. I got to where we assumed the cry was from but to my disappointment it was not the house we had thought but my house. I ran home as quick as my little legs could carry me ,only to behold different sad faces ,some were familiar some were not. I knew so well that my father had never lifted a finger on my mother ever since I was born so it was really a strange sight seeing my mother wailing. My little brain could not make anything meaningful out of the scenario. I was still trying to get to my mother when a woman came and led me away. After some time,the people started taking their leave in twos,threes until only our father's relatives remained. Not a moment too soon, my older siblings were running and crying at the same time. I was more confused because I was to tell them all that had happened but here they were ,also crying like every other person. The thought of my friend suddenly came to mind,I tried searching for him with my eyes but could not find him. I later got to know that his mother sent him home immediately she sighted him .

I was taken to live with an uncle and returned home a few days later. I longed to see my father return home just like he does every other day. But all was to no avail I kept asking my mother who in return said that my father has gone for a long journey. My mother called us together one day to narrate how my father had died. She advised my elder brothers to start taking responsibility as they were now the father of the house

Fast forward to the day the unknown man gave us the advice which I have come to tag as " one of the best pieces of advice of my life". Me and my siblings were seated under the shade of the mango tree that stood in front of our house that evening. As it has become our regular routine to everyday sit there and wait for our mother to return from the market. My mother sold bean cake at the village market after the death of our father. We waited for so long that we felt like she was not going to return home that evening. We waited and hoped she would return sooner than later so as to have something to eat for that night.

After sometime we noticed the figure of someone coming towards our home. We knew it was not that of our mother as the person was walking with the aid of a walking stick. Fear gripped us except our elder brother who was bold enough to stand and went to meet the oncoming person. The person got to where we were sitting and we all greeted him. We offered him one of the locally made chairs which our father sat with his friends those days. We hoped he had brought news about our mother though we do not know who he was. He asked after our welfare and our mother . He proceeded to tell us about our father , how he was a very good man before died. He told us how a lot of the villagers had at one time or the other come to him for assistance which he never turned down.

Here is the advice he gave to us: " My Children I know it is a very hard time for you all and your mother. The pain of losing one's father can be so unbearable, your father's death reminds me of how I felt many years ago when I too lost my father. I want everyone to know that life will no longer be as it used to be before. Life will throw stones at you but never forget to use those stones to build thrones for yourselves. You will now have to fend for yourselves and mother . Never allow anything to bring disunity among yourselves. Ensure that unity and brotherly love reign supreme. Stay together as one family and you will be unconquerable. Though adversities will come, challenges and trials will set in but never back down. Always remember who you are. Show your mother more love and care ,live lives that will constantly bring smiles to her face. Do not allow jealousy to come between you people. Heed to everything your late father told you and abide by the words of your mother. Put all your faith and hope in God. Trust in him and pray for the repose soul of your father. " He stood up and quickly added " greet your mother for me". He said those words to me and my siblings before he left. We thanked him though all his words made little meaning to me then. Our mother returned after some time and we told her about the old man's visit.

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