To see another woman suffer because of domestic violence hit home. I've never been a victim of abuse but I know the pain it causes the victim and her family. Ntombi thinks that I do not understand but as far as domestic violence is concern I do. My father used to hit my mother too. People think rich mean no problems but the darkness that goes on behind those heavy expensive doors will shock many. I used to be the little girl who would sit in the corner in my bedroom trying to block out my mother's cries and daddy's shouting by covering my ears with my hands. I think they always thought it asleep because it was always late in the night. My mother would wake up cook breakfast while humming her favourite songs as though nothing had happened the night before. The young me did not make much of the situation at home because apart from the occasional exchange of words everything else was fine. Daddy still kissed Mommy's cheek in the morning before going to work. We still went out for family time. Mommy looked happy each morning and she never had a bruise on her body. It's only now that I'm older and have a better understanding of life do I realize that it was all an act. Mommy acting to protect me and Daddy acting so he could always be the good guy in my eyes. They were good at acting. I'm an opinionated woman always been so I asked what the occasional shouting and crying from my mom was. They both mumbled reason I still don't remember to this day. The fighting stopped after I asked about it things were good or so I though. My father was a doctor and that came with a lot of respect from the community. My mother was a nurse but retired early. That's how they met both were medical professionals at the same health care Centre. It's no surprise that I'm a doctor medicine runs through my veins. I don't see myself doing something else. I had a good and privileged upbringing. I was a happy A student until things took a turn for the worst when I was 15 years old. I came home from school to find out house surrounded by law officials an ambulance and nosy neighbors. I made my way through the crowd and chaos only to be greeted by a man pushing a bed on it was my father with a silver cover over him. I knew it was him because he was wearing the shoes I had gotten him as a gift. I knew they only covered the deceased like that but I refused to believe my dad was dead. My mother came out of the house looking like a zombie. It was as if her mind was far away. She was escorted out by the police. I remember running to her to get some clearity on the situation. They would not allow me near her. All she said was my grandma was on her way to get me that she loves me and was deeply sorry. The police took her away. My grandma sat me down explained everything to me and my entire world came crushing down. My mother was not arrested because it was self defense but I hated her. Our relationship was broken. I was a typical daddy's girl. I remember hearing the fighting but I didn't believe my father hit her.
Ntombi will go home today. She should actually have gone home the day after she came in but I told them she has to stay at least three days. I thought I'd try to convince her to open up but I couldn't. I also managed to keep Bonga away from her by breaking a few visitation rights but I don't care. All he wants to do is scare her more into silence. I went to her ward she was sitting up straight. I went to her bed and closed the blue curtain around us. She hasn't spoken a word since that day she told me off. The psychiatrist fears she'll hurt herself again but I don't think so. She wants to live she just needs a reason to. I'm not one to talk about her personal life with patients in fact I've never done it before but today I'll open up to her in hope of her doing the same.
Dr Zim: "You're going home today" I said knowing that it's not really good news for her.
Ntombi: "I should have gone home long time ago but you have been keeping me here. I heard the nurses gossip. What do you want from me Doctor?" she said while looking at me.
Me: "And I will not apologize for that. Ntombi I might not understand your pain but my life is not perfect either" she rolled her eyes at me.
Ntombi: "l never said it was. All I'm saying is that you have rich person problem" she said.
Me: "The things about certain issues is that they don't choose who they will affect according to class and status like domestic violence for instance"
Ntombi: "How many times must I tell you that Bonga is not an abuser?" she raised her voice a bit.
Me: "I'm not here to tell you what you already know. Like I've said certain life issues don't care about how fat your bank account is. I might never have been a victim of abuse but I know someone who has" she looked at me.
Ntombi: "Let me guess one of your patience who you only saw once and never again?" she said with raised brows. This girl though.
Me: "My mother" I said softly. She suddenly looked at me attentively.
Ntombi: "What happened?" she asked sincerely and with softened eyes.
Me: "She gunned down my father with his own gun in self defense" I said in a whisper to avoid the gossip hospital staff from hearing. I hate that there is no privacy in this place. I told her everything and she looked at me like I was about to crack and break down. I wasn't because I've dealt with my demons by confronting them.
Ntombi: "I don't blame your mother for protecting herself. I'm sure she is a strong woman."
Me: "That she is sometimes too strong." I laughed softly by the thought of my mother.
Ntombi: "Do you still hate her?" she asked.
Me: "No through intensive therapy individually and together we were able to find forgiveness for ourselves and each other. I love her my life is nothing without her. I loved my father still do even when he's no more but it was all his fault. I've also forgiven him though. I have my bad days but I've healed Ntombi. If you can get out of the environment that is making you sick you can heal too" I said. She was fiddling with her thumbs.
Ntombi: "You and Bonga were no different then. Only his father killed his mother and then himself. He didn't choose to be like this. Somewhere inside is a hurt boy. I can't give up on him." she said softly.
Me: "I'm sorry to hear that he had to go through it all but you are not his place to bleed on Ntombi. Bonga is hurt and tries to put bandages on his wounds to stop the bleeding but he bleeds over those bandages. He needs to acknowledge he has a wound and be prepared to clean it out. The cleaning will hurt a lot but it will come with healing. If he is not doing that he will keep on bleeding and he bleeds on you" I said while brushing her shoulder.
Ntombi: "Do you always make emotional wounds sound physical? That description was hectic." she sais trying to change the subject.
Me: "You can joke all you want but you know I'm talking the truth. You are also hurting and not dealing with your past traumas. You two will continue to hurt each other if you don't seek help."
Ntombi: "We are fine. Things aren't always bad. When will I go?" she asked trying to appear unbothered. She might be too scared and stubborn to hear me now but at least I've planted a seed. She'll realize soon that I was right.
Me: "You will either be my mom or be Bonga's mom in this story Ntombi. If you get out now
Ntombi. If you get out now you can choose to be neither. I'll go sign those papers and go home I'm tired."
Ntombi: "Tired because you have been playing bodyguard refusing to let Bonga in." she said and laughed a bit. "Thank you Dr Zimmy. I appreciate all that you're trying to do for me. I'm sorry I assumed you've never felt real pain." she added with a smile.
Me: "It's nothing you just need to learn to accept help. Not everyone wants to break you further. Let me go. I'll tell that gorilla of yours he can see you now even if I don't want him to." she nodded.
I left her bedside and went to sign her release forms. I sent a nurse to tell Bonga he can go see her. I'm really sorry that he had to go through the pain that I did. I'm sure his was worse because he most probably witnessed his dad hitting his mother and also because he lost both his parents. It still givea him no right to hit his woman. If they don't seek healing Ntombi will either kill him or he will kill her. There is usually no in between with such issues. I was tired and all I need is my bed. Maybe I should introduce my mom to Ntombi. Perhaps she will listen to a woman who went through the exact same thing. I don't know why I feel connected to Ntombi but I do. I'm hoping that the next time I see her will not be to treat her at the hospital but to grab a bite and a movie. I know an intelligent person when I see one and she is one of those she has just forgotten because of all the lies people like Bonga and her step mom feed her about who she is. I don't have any friends because I rarely connect to people but with her it's easy. In a different story I'm sure she'd have been a great friend.
I felt so bad for assuming things about Zimmy. For her to actually open up about her issues means that she cares about me. But I care about Bonga and if I leave we'll both be alone. At least now we have each other. I saw Zimmy's point after her very descriptive pictures about us not having healed from that which broke us as kids but we can still try. I'm thankful for the peace she managed to give me by not allowing visitors too
Bonga walked in and gave me a long tight hug. He smelled okay today the tabacco scent was not strong and no trace of beer.
Bonga: "I was not going to rape you Ntombi. I'm not such a monster. If there is anything that I hate is the raping of woman and children. I just wanted to scare you but not to death baby." he said softly.
Me: "Why did you bring me here?" I asked him.
Bonga: "I don't want you to die. Who will you leave me with?" I should have known he did it for his gain.
Me: You don't want me. You tell me day in and day out how ugly I am how stiff I am in the bedroom and that's why you buy sex. You bring your drunk friends and their high girlfriends to the house. You don't do anything when one of them grabbed my behind that one night. You don't see me you don't respect me. If I die you'll be burden free because that's what I am to you a useless burden. I'm tired. Your fire destroyed my mother and father's pictures. All I have is the one and it got saved only because I always keep it with me. You have destroyed my identity. I'm nothing white an ID. You refuse to have a new one made for me. You lied about the prices because dumb me does not know these things. You accuse me of cheating when you're the one cheating you hit me. I could go on and on. I left with you years back because you were the first person I confided in about what my father's wife is like the first man I loved. You promised to love and take care of me but you failed. If I had to choose between the two hells I'd have chosen Nomvula's. If I had money I'd have gone home face my fathers anger and endure Nomvula because the pain you cause me will kill me." I said while crying and I was shocked that he let me finish "accusing" him.
Bonga: "I'm a broken man Ntombi. I'm sorry baby. I'll now show it to you in action. You must just stop making me so angry. It's like you want to see just how far my buttons can be pushed. I hate it when you weae tight stuff. Let's gi home and find a way to move forward. I'll make sure I'm with you most of the time so you won't do stupid shit again"
Me: "I won't. Go work so we don't starve" I said trying to get that idea out of his mind. The thought of him constantly being around the house is not a good one. I know he doesn't work and the only way he can have money is by crimes. Maybe he's a thief. Dr Zim came in saying she wants to examine me for the last time before I'm discharged and she goes home. Bonga had a look of disgust in his face when she spoke. Well she didn't once flinch when he gave her a cold stare she returned the favour until he was the one to look away. She didn't examine me because we both knew I'm good to go. She spoke casually and had Bonga come in. One could cut the tension between them with a knife.
Dr Zim: "Ntombi you have two options. You either get transported to a stay on therapy centre for six months two of which no visitors are allowed or you promise to see a therapist three times a week." she said.
Bonga: "I've never heard of such!" she shouted.
Dr Zim: "Oh and you would know how specialists of suicidal cases guru of psychiatry oh great master of depression?" she asked sarcastically. Bonga was fuming. He hates being made to seem dumb.
Bonga: "She'll take the ou... "
Dr Zim: "Are you Ntombi?" she asked and pointed at me
Me: "I'll take the out patient care" I said trying to stop this fued.
Bonga: "I'll take you sit with you and take you home baby. I want to support you.
Dr Zim: "Not possible. She won't tell what the cause of the suicide attempt was if you're there. Everything between her and her therapist is confidential not even I'm allowed to know. Ntombi this will be until the therapist is happy with your progress. I honestly don't think you have long term depression but you are going through a depressing phase because of certain things" she looked at Bonga.
Me: "I'm not depressed. I'll go and prove it to the therapist. Thank you so much.
She smiled and gave me the details of the therapist and the days to see her. Bonga didn't like it but he took comfort in that the therapist may not speak about what I'll tell her to anyone. He said he'll take me and pick me up again. I honestly don't care what he does. I don't have the love that I had for him but I care about him that's why I keep giving him seconda chances. A senior doctor on duty came in to tell us that the bed is needed urgently and also asked what is goinf on. Dr Zim said she was just making sure I'm ready to go home. She spoke in a shaky voice not too much though but I know that tone of voice. I used to be like that when my father caught me doing what I was not suppose to and I'd come up with a lie in a shaky voice to cover up my deeds. It indicated to me that Dr Zim lied about staying at a centre without visits or that it's mandatory that I get psychological help. She tricked Bonga into agreeing to let me go speak with someone. Heck she even tricked me into thinking I had no other option but those two. I'm not upset though because this might help me heal from the death of my mother. Maybe having someone to speak to in confidence will help in a way. I checked the details of the lady and her name was Zikhona Bam. Dr Zimmy's surname is Bam. What are the odds of them being related? I took comfort in that she can't tell Zimmy anything even if they are related because it might lead to her losing her psychology reputation and perhaps even go to jail for breaking doctor-patient confidentiality. What did shock me though was how Mr "I know it all" didn't realize that the good doctor played him for a fool. For a man who claims I'm the dumb one he sure is slow in certain things. I was nor about to tell him because I'll get an opportunity to go out of the house out of the township for a few hours for three days each week. I know I'll be coming back to Bonga but perhaps I will feel better. I suddenly got a bit excited. I'm a people's person and it was torture to not be out and about. Well I won't be out and about even now but I'll meet a new person. I hope she doesn't get annoyed by me and say she doesn't want to see me. I was over thinking the entire situation so much and the excitement was soon replaced by anxiety. I've learned four things about my Doctor. She is kind she is strong she is sarcastic and she has a few tricks up her sleeve and I like it. I like her. She stands her ground. The other doctor didn't realize what Zimmy had done because he was in a rush to empty the bed I occupied. I swear I saw Zim breath a slight sigh of relief when he said he wants the bed empty when he returned. I said goodbye to Dr Zimkitha Bam and we left. When we got home Bonga "asked" me in a rather threatening way to not hang our dirty laundry for the public to see. I suggested he tries therapy too but he said he's a man and men keep things inside to show just how strong they are. Well each to their own I thought to myself. I'm just happy I'll be breathing fresh air occasionally without having to explain it to him. I promised not to talk about his "mistakes". I'm going there to try and heal from the childhood wounds Zim talked about. She's right we're "bleeding" and perhaps by cleaning out my wounds by dealing with my traumas I can help Bonga heal too. I was suddenly filled with hope of what this could do for us. I'm glad I got tricked into it too because I would not have allowed to go had I known that I had a choice not to. Even now that I know I have a choice I choose healing. I'm going to take the bandages off allow my wound to be cleaned no matter how painful so that I'll stop bleeding. I can't believe I'm now using Zim's terms of describing emotional healing but it was a perfect way to make me realize that there is a lot me and Bonga are hurting from. I'll heal first and then heal him. I was on a mission of healing for me and my man. It will work it has to work.