How would I ever have known the ins and outs of the man with whom I shared the same roof, the same bedroom and the same bed for forty years if what had happened had not happened?
And it was only during the fortieth year of our marriage that it happened.
It was so unexpected; just like abrupt rainfall on a bright sunny day.
On that particular day, I knew a bitter truth. It was so bitter, I could not swallow it.
I asked myself how it happened that for forty years that I lived with this man, I did not know him when I thought I did.
In fact, I found him to be the opposite of what he really was. I called him my angel.
He loved me passionately. He was the husband every woman loves to have.
I adored him. I cannot say how hard I prayed in Thanksgiving to to God for the blessing that he was in my life. In truth, I never knew if my late husband would have brought so much happiness to me.
On that early Friday morning, when the police appeared in uniform and knocked at our door, I had no reason to entertain any fear.
I told myself they were mistaken to come to our door.
When I got out, they asked for Fepo; and told me they had come to take him. I didn’t believe them. I could not imagine my husband being taken by the police.
“For what? What has he done?” I asked myself silently.
I was certain he had not done anything to be taken by the police. To myself, I tagged it an expensive joke.
But I was wrong. It was reality. They made it clear to me they meant every word that came out of their mouths.
I was soon to understand what they meant. And that was where I got the shock of my life.
Right in front of me unfolded the drama; a page opened in my life story that I never dreamed of.
If you have been reading the papers, you might have read the story. It was widely covered by the media and many people read it.
My name is Karen Mary. I hail from the Philippines. My father came from a Middle class Filipino family.
At 18 years of age, when I was ripe for University, I won a scholarship to study in America. In my first year, I stumbled on this young handsome American, Telky Moor. It did not take us long to fall in love.
I was considered one of the most beautiful girls on campus. Every boy wanted to date me. Telky was the one I fell for.
We dated for a brief period of six months and got married.
Ours was a life of passion. We were mad in love with each other. Everywhere Milky went after school to socialize, he went with me. We were living in heaven on earth.
One day, Milky left me in the morning for school as usual soaking me with hugs and kisses. But that was the last I saw of him. He never returned and I never heard from him again.
That was the end of our love story. I was traumatized.
How could our romance end that way? It was a night mare.
I did everything to trace him to no avail. I could not guess what must have gone wrong. Many thoughts came to my mind.
Many said he must have run off with another woman. He was too good to betray me that way.
I feared something evil might have happened to him. I was in total confusion; bewildered.
When I reported the matter to the police, they did their investigation as best they could; but never had a way out.
Many of my friends and people who knew me sympathized with me and encouraged me to have faith in the Lord. That was what I did. I resorted to prayers.
Three weeks after, I got word from the police. My husband had been found dead, in an advanced state of decomposition in a stream in the neighbourhood and had been immediately buried.
A few days later, they led me to his grave where I placed flowers and said prayers.
It was too much for a young girl of my age. I was in my early nineteen; just married, with no child. I had never imagined that this could happen to me.
With the love of my life gone, life seemed to have closed its doors to me.
I could not figure out how I was going to cope without him. I became a young widow. Darkness filled my heart and mind.
It was during this low moment in my life that Fepo showed up. At first, I was not interested in going into another relationship. The pain of my tragedy was still on me. It was too early for me to start listening to the stories of other men.
I kept thinking that the report about Milky’s death was a mistake; and that he would soon be back.
Each time I thought of him, I shuddered and feared the experience could one day repeat itself.
But I didn’t have to fear for long. Finally I gave in to Fepo; and it turned out that he was a charming young man; well refined; a gentleman. He knew how to keep a woman fine.
I found him irresistible; we began to date.
In less than six months, I was again married. It was hard to say who of the two men I had had in my life loved me more; and who was better. Both of them were like angels.
Although I was happy, I still missed my first husband. At times when I thought of him, I would isolate myself and cry. But I never let Fepo know this.
We lived for forty happy years. He was an ideal husband and father. We had four kids – two boys; two girls who were all excelling in life.
My husband was a straight man; who lived a straight decent life. When that day the police said they had come for him, I could not. Imagine.
Hardly did I know that was the day my whole life would shatter. On that day, I knew the man I had been living with. Myheart beat fast. (To be continued)