A husband (let’s call him Peter).
And another man.
I once heard this movie-like story in a men’s group forum I had attended. We were a bunch of men from various walks of life – different careers, ages, privileges in life, marital status and all that. Brought together to pursue a worthy cause; that of becoming better men. We had been out on a camp retreat for the second day counting. Just men. Out in the wild bushes and thickets of Sagana. Occasionally, we would talk, share and reflect on everything manhood as we got to learn from each other.
It was a hot sunny afternoon. The sun had fiercely approached our land. Most of us had our strength sapped out, left desert dry as we slowly trod back from a ruthless 16 kilometre hike. We took turns to bath at the tiny makeshift cold-water showers, freshened up then lunch was served. We sat down on plastic seats in a curved circle formation under a banda to recap the lessons we’d been learning over the last ten weeks or so.
During the 2pm session, Peter shared his story with us. He stood up and for the next couple of minutes, he grabbed everyone’s attention. Our ears and thoughts rendered captive to his words. The blowing wind also got the cue and held it’s breathe too. It was simply silent. He went on to narrate his story to us allowing himself to be vulnerable in front of other men. I’ll never forget his tale.
Peter was a faithful husband to his wife – the only woman he’d known sexually all his life. They got married and had a daughter. For a few years, life was kind to them. He loved his daughter so much, did everything he could to provide for his family. But at some point, things weren’t working out for him. At that time, he struggled financially. His business was at the verge of collapsing. Doors were slowly closing as he gazed. He was running out of money and options.
What followed thereafter broke Peter’s heart and dented his manhood. It dealt him a hard blow to his face. Life would yank him from one path and set him on a cruel one. His wife started having an affair behind his back. She constantly cheated on him for a while. When he found out, he confronted her and to his utter dismay, she didn’t deny it. She went on to justify it and kept repeating to him in a heated argument that the only reason she did so was because he couldn’t provide for her and their daughter. She told him that he wasn’t man enough! Those words tore he apart. They soon separated and the wife left with his daughter. Now he was all alone.
In Peter’s futile attempts, he went through the trouble of stalking his wife until he got the other man’s number and called him to warn him to stay away from his wife. The guy, a lawyer by profession, didn’t seem to care much about wrecking a marriage or tearing a home apart. He shrugged the threats, laughed it off and hang up! And that’s when Peter decided to tail the guy one day. He followed the Lawyer in his car, waited for him to park and when he got out, he cocked a gun and tightly held it in his hand. Ready to send the son of a b**ch straight to hell. But the Lawyer wasn’t alone, he had his daughter with him. Peter couldn’t get himself to shoot and kill him, he thought about his own daughter; his only true love. She was around the same age as the Lawyer’s child. He couldn’t live with himself not being able to see her or maybe seeing her through rusted prison grills if he ended up in jail. He aborted the mission.
That’s why he joined the men’s program. Amid many imperfect and wounded soldiers as himself. He needed to learn how to forgive, something he felt was alien and he’d never really do. But eventually he forgave.
Let me pose for a second and ask you a random question. Do you think all this would have happened if the husband was able to sufficiently provide for his family?
This post goes out to every lady out there who believes in her man. She sticks with him despite the never ending raging storms of financial instability and even though a multitude of richer men keep hitting on her, she stays loyal. Sticks with her man and roots for him. The underdog. All because she loves him so much.
I must confess, I am a recipient of such love, I know too well how it feels. Its priceless (and that word is an understatement!)
I’ve been through the woods for a minute. Things have been slow at times. The last employment job I had was a shitty job. A terrible boss, peanut pay and a company culture that was too intoxicating for me to thrive in. At least I made a few cool pals, got to learn and grew in some ways for the time I was there – but I had to leave. I’m glad I did.
That meant I didn’t have any stable source of income for a while. I still had to be the man and provide. Because really, a real man pays his bills and provides for his own family. That’s Godly truth. It brings pride to him and those he loves. He is celebrated for it. But what happens when your efforts seem to take too long to bear fruit? What happens when you find yourself scared that you might fail? What happens when you can’t give your woman what she needs let alone what she wants?
What is a man to do?
Such times are definitely hard. They can either break you or unearth a power element that was hidden in you all along. My point is, ‘you better keep hope alive, you better keep your head up high and you better keep trying and trying and trying’ until you make your break – and ultimately, it will come. Though this provision duty stares at you like the giant it is, you have to fight for her, for you and anyone else that depends on you to come up with a plan. You must possess a gladiator-will that will bring the giant to his knees.
A man is at his best when he gives the best. Nothing else, but all of it.
I’m at a crux place in my own manhood journey. This is where I believe in myself more than ever. I wake up each day and with all God has gifted me with, I have to find a way.
To Reina (my beautiful fiancé),
Thank you for loving me, for believing in me and for holding the fort when storms tried to break me. I am a better man, loved and highly esteemed by a Queen such as you.
I love you so much and I’d like you to always remember this – to the best of my ability, God helping me, I will fight for you.
With Love – Muindi.