I am the third and last born of the family. I was 20 years old when our father died in a car accident. I was his favourite child because he used to tell me I look very much like his late mother whom he adored and loved dearly. Although we loved our father so much, we had to move on with life.
My mother told us she would not have anything to do with men again since we were all grown ups. We told her it was her life so she should do whatever makes her happy. Both my elder brother and sister got married the same year, three years after our father died. I was married three years after them. I have been pregnant thrice since I got married, but in the fourth month, I usually had a miscarriage. When the third miscarriage happened, the doctor said it was stress and anxiety and that I needed to take things easy. “Alice, I think you stress yourself too much. You need to take things very slow and easy if you ever want to have a baby,” he warned. “She is just a workaholic. I know she stresses herself too much but I have warned her too to take things easy but she won’t listen to me,” said Jide. I am pregnant for the fourth time and the doctor advised me to take things easy.
I therefore suggested to Jide that I want to resign, take a house help and also want my mother to stay with us and keep me company since she is all alone at home even though she runs her own business. He agreed with me as long as this time there won’t be a miscarriage. When I discussed with my mother she bought the idea. “Alice that is not a problem, but you must promise me that you will rest,” she said. The following week, I resigned and also started the search for a house help but my mother insisted that there was no need for one. “Alice dear, I am still strong enough to do household chores. So, there is no need for a house help because that would be an extra mouth to feed and money to give to a stranger,” she suggested. When my pregnancy was exactly four months, the bleeding started and I was rushed to the hospital immediately. Thank God, the doctor was able to stop the bleeding in time. He suggested to Jide that I should be put on compulsory bed rest until I delivered. “Jide, we have stopped the bleeding but I would advise that she be placed on compulsory bed rest until she delivers so that we can monitor her. Don’t think about the money but your wife and your unborn baby,” he advised. Jide agreed and I was confined to a hospital bed. I didn’t find it funny at all.
My mother cooks and brings food for me thrice every day. She also bought all the things I and my baby would need after delivery. In fact, she did all a mother is supposed to do and I thanked God for the kind of mother I have. Jide my darling, too visits me every day and ensured I was comfortable. He even spent some nights at the hospital with me. True to the doctor’s words, I was well taken care of and after five months, I gave birth to a bouncing baby boy. I was discharged three days later. When I got home, my mother and husband had already set up the baby’s cot and decorated it with assorted toys. In fact, the house looked so changed and new. Silently to myself, I said “God, thank you for giving me such a loving and understanding husband and a caring mother.” One month later, my mother was bathing my baby when she told me she had this nauseating feeling. Before I knew it, she started vomiting. She told me not to worry as it could be ordinary malaria. But when it persisted for almost a week, I suggested she see a doctor. We went to the hospital together and after all the test; the doctor told us that my mother was eight weeks pregnant.
I was shocked. “Pregnant? This can’t be,” I said. We did not say a word to each other on our way home but stole glances from time to time. When we got home, I asked her why she never told me she had fallen in love again. “Mother, so you are in love and even pregnant. Why didn’t you tell me you have found love again?” She just shook her head and told me she needed to rest. When Jide returned from work in the evening, I told him about my mother and he said, “Your mother pregnant at age 45? Has she told you who is responsible?” Not yet, I told him, but that I would still find out. He also promised to talk to her about the matter. When she was not forthcoming about the man responsible for her pregnancy, I had to involve my siblings since they are my elders. On a Saturday evening, my siblings, Jide and I had a meeting with our mother. “Mother, at least start by telling us the name of the man.
The doctor said a D & C cannot be performed because it is risky. Also, the guarantee of a safe delivery is also in the hands of God because of your age. Did you forget you have four grand children? How would they look at you with pregnancy,” I questioned. Suddenly, she said, “I did not know I was going to get pregnant because I have reached menopause age. I was just doing it for fun. Please my children you have to forgive me.” My elder brother who was obviously impatient said, “Mummy, we will forgive you but who is responsible?” She pointed at Jide and said, “It is him, he drugged and raped me.” At this point, there was so much tension in the air. Jide defended himself by telling us it was not true.
“I did not drug and rape your mother. I could not do such a thing. But I will admit that the pregnancy is mine,” he said. Jide narrated to us that while I was at the hospital, he noticed that my mother started wearing revealing clothes and made advances at him but he never gave in until that fateful morning. “When she started making advances at me, I always reminded her that I was her son-in-law and I love my wife. But one morning, something happened that made me fall for her tricks. I was dressed for work but observed that my breakfast was not served. I looked for her in the kitchen and around but I did not see her, I knew this was unusual. So, I decided to check on her in her room. When there was no answer when I knocked, I opened the door but she was not there. As I walked towards the bathroom door, she appeared at my back; obviously she was hiding behind the door. She locked the door and threatened that I would not go to work if I don’t sleep with her. I thought she was joking. I spent almost an hour begging your mother to open the door that I was late for work but she refused. At the end, I had to give in. That was how we started sleeping together. She told me she can never get pregnant so there was no need to use protective drug.
I am very sorry.” At the end, she confirmed what Jide told us and begged for mercy. It was as if I was watching a Nollywood movie. We were all shocked and disappointed. I could not control my tears and anger because I have been betrayed by the two people I love and care about the most. “Alice, please take it easy. Remember you just delivered and you are not strong enough yet,” advised my sister. “Mother, you are a big disgrace. You have committed an abomination. If you want to sleep with a man, must it be your son-in-law? I can see that you have no shame,” my brother scolded. After the narration, I despised them both immediately and I knew we could no longer live together under the same roof so my sister advised that I moved in with her because the matter was beginning to affect me psychologically. What kind of mother would kill her daughter’s happiness and scatter her home by sleeping with her son-in-law? Can I ever forgive them? What do I call her, a second wife or a mistress? My baby is just two months old and my mother is three months pregnant for my husband. What do I do?