Lifestyle and Health

A GIRL BECAME A WOMAN

Aliwa became a woman. She will no longer play kati and skipping rope. She is a woman, women don’t jump, and they also don’t skip. She will pass down her dolls to her younger cousins and neighbors. She would have given them to her younger sisters but she has none. She will no longer play with boys. It is only girls who play with boys, women like her don’t. She says she told her mother. Her mother should have smiled and hugged her tightly. She didn’t. She just told her to cut old clothes into sizeable pieces and stick them between her thighs. She also told her to wear two panties, for maximum protection. (She has three panties in total).  Now she knows why her mother almost strangled her the other day when almost set their old clothes ablaze. She is going to get a wrapper, her mother could have bought her one, but times are hard, so she will just give her one of her own. The young children will tease her when they see her in a wrapper. They will call her old. Some will try to pull it away from her, but she will hold onto it tightly. She cannot afford to let them see whatever will be beneath her wrapper. Maybe she will have soiled her skirt; she can’t let them see her blood. The older women will understand. They will know that she started seeing the color (blood). They will watch her closely, if they see her with any boy, they will foresee her pregnancy. If Aliwa is not careful, she might get pregnant and those women will say; I told you that girl is no longer a baby!  The women of the village!
Aliwa will start missing school like most girls in her class. Every month, she will be sick for three to four days a month. During these days, she will sleep in her bed, covered from head to toe, only waking up to go to relieve herself. She will eat very little lest her mother says she is only pretending. She will walk in a bend, holding   her stomach like the way those women in labor do. She will swallow those piritons and amoxil tablets her father brings home, but she will refuse to go to the hospital. Some months however, like when they are having exams, she will force herself to go to school. She will not carry her wrapper to school though. She will just dress like the way her mother told her that day. A piece of cloth between her thighs and two panties. Then she will walk in short purposeful steps to school. She will not run even if she gets late. Her teacher will whip her for lateness but she cannot risk the piece of cloth falling by running.
She will get into her class and for the first time wish she could sit behind. She can’t; she is short, and everyone has a permanent sitting position, girls sit with boys, boys sit behind girls and teachers are the only ones who can move someone to another desk. She will sit at her desk in front of class. She will sit on one buttock for the whole day; sitting on two buttocks will increase the likelihood of soiling her blue uniform. She can’t afford to soil her uniform. The boys will laugh at her. The girls will gossip. The whole school might even hear that she is on her periods. Then everyone will stare at her during parade. The naughty boys will even squat and look at her from below. It has happened to two girls in her class. They stopped coming to school afterwards. One is now married with a son. The other one is working in town; she washes clothes for a living.
Aliwa will get muscle spasms because of sitting in a tilted position. She will stand in honor of the arrival of her teachers. But every time she stands, her heart will race. She will be waiting to be tapped on her back, or be handed a note, or to hear a laugh from the boy sitting behind her. She will be sad and gloomy. She will sit in class and pretend to be busy with her work even as everyone else dashes out for break. She will leave the class last after the bell for lunch goes, she must look behind her to make sure she doesn’t have a patch of red on her blue dress. Then she will walk home slowly for her lunch. She will walk straight to her room and remove her panties and her pad. She will tuck them under her bed and wear her only spare panties and another piece of cloth. She will then go back to school; she will run late if she sits to have her lunch, so she will walk back to school, hungry.
At night, she will cook, and serve her brothers. She will clear the table and wash utensils before going outside to bathe. She will inhale the smell of rotting blood as she washes her panties and pads. If the moon will be up, then she will be seeing, but if the night will be cloudy, she will only tell that her inner wears are clean when they stop feeling slimy. Dogs will come sniffing after she is done and safely inside the house.
If you were Aliwa, you will probably not do your homework. But Aliwa is different. She will do her homework. She will get used to this life, she must. One day, she will afford sanitary towels and tampons. She will be so comfortable sitting in class during that time of the month. She will play whichever games she chooses. She will be so, happy, she will. For now she must focus or she will be cursed to using pieces of old clothing forever, then she will get a daughter who will have to go through her torture. She must read, if she will never get anything out of education, she might get sanitary towels for her and other girls. That is enough.

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Doreen Saringi

Hey there, welcome. I am Dr. Oyunge. Books are my second love and writing is my third. Once I take off my white coat, I pick my pen.

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Great piece here highlighting the plight of women in the society.

saringin
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thanks for readig MR….

ketihapa
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Reblogged this on ketihapa.

saringin
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auuw….thanks Ketihpa

ketihapa
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This is just epic. Taught me more about what to expect when my daughter turns into an adolescent than any book actually could.

saringin
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thanks ketihapa..

saringin
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thanks ketihapa..

kawkeytrish
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very beautiful and thought provoking…i admire Aliwa!

saringin
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thanks for reading..she is one of the many girls who grow up in the village

mentalasylum
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Reblogged this on I AM NATE M.

andanje
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to think this is still happening around the country. it is sad and heart breaking. but I love her determination!

saringin
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me too …..thanks for reading

nyamwangeo
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No comment….

saringin
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no reply

ELVIN
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ELVIN

Sad to hear the struggle of young girls

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