How My Husband Acquired A Property In The Name Of His Brother And Later Paid The Ultimate Price- Woman Narrates
My husband started talking about a car even before we got married. He had a job that paid well but it still wasn’t easy for him to buy a car. We had rent to pay. We had a room to decorate. We had a wedding to do. We had a life to plan. But all he wanted for himself was a car. Right after marriage, he said, “Let’s put some money together and get the car. It will be beneficial to us both. Remember, a child may come soon. Accra is tough to navigate when you don’t have a car of your own. Let’s save toward it now that we are a family. “
To me, a car wasn’t the biggest need of a newly married couple. It’s not the navigation of the city that scared me. It was rather the prices of rent that scared the woman in me. You make money all year but you can’t spend it to your satisfaction because you have a landlord who knocks on your day once a year. I told him, “To own a car is a good idea. It’s something we can easily do when we are a little bit comfortable.
But let’s buy the land first. Let’s begin to build something for ourselves so we can stop paying rent. After that, we’ll have all the luxury to own other things like a car.”That was my humble suggestion but my husband saw it as a challenge to his authority as the man of the house. He spoke about a direction and said something like, “Two captains can’t ride a ship. The direction would be lost and soon they’ll sink. I’m the man here. You have to listen to me and follow my lead. I say a car first. You say a land first. We may end up owning none of that until you give me your mind. A car first. Owning a piece of land isn’t automatic ownership of a mansion.
Let’s solve the solvable first before anything.”I didn’t agree with him but I wasn’t going to fight with him on that. Our marriage was new. I had to allow him to exercise his leadership for him to feel like the man he wants to be. I allowed him to win so we can make progress. We had a joint account together. We contributed some percentage of our salaries to it every month. Apart from that, we had definite roles to play in the house. Roles that involved monetary contribution from each side.
I did my part as a supportive wife and he did his part as the husband that I married. I won’t rest on his weakness as a husband. To be honest, he had a lot of shortcomings just as I had mine but when it got to where it mattered most, he came through for us.After that initial discussion about land and a car, he stopped discussing things with me. He brought his cousin to live with us without discussing it with me. When his cousin left, he brought his senior brother’s son to live with us. He didn’t discuss that too with me. He brought a dog home one day. I didn’t think we needed a dog but he brought one home.
I said, “Why a dog?” He answered, “Why not a dog?”My husband has a special way of getting defensive about things. He has a pose when he’s defensive. He has a facial expression and a tone to match that pose. When he puts that demeanor together all at once, nothing you’ll say would make sense to him. I saw it on that day when I asked about the dog so I didn’t go any further with the argument. Winning an argument is good and may last for a day but peace of mind reigns supreme for many days.
I allowed him to win so I could fight another day.His senior brother’s son was living with us so he came by often. He would come to our house and spend a week or two. He was a divorcee. He had married twice and divorced twice. He has three children. Two from his two marriages that failed and one from infidelity—infidelity that broke his second marriage. It was that child who was living with us. Apart from the fact that he couldn’t hold a relationship together, he also had mastery in not being able to hold a job together. He’ll get a job today and lose it tomorrow. He’ll move from one sibling to another sibling giving them the advice he himself wouldn’t take. My husband trusted him so much that he became the man he shared his thoughts and intentions with.It was him who gave my husband the final push to buy a car.
He said, “You can even run Uber with the car, gather some money and later buy the land she’s talking about. Don’t listen to her. Women are like that. If you don’t take care, they’ll scatter your plans and leave you where they found you.” If I were my husband, I wouldn’t take advice on women from a man who had been poor in women management. Who takes moral lessons from a brothel? My husband did so one day, he went into our joint account, scrapped everything in there, added some to it, and came home with a car that looked like its glorious days on the road had already been spent.
He was happy for being a car owner and I was happy for his happiness. He stopped whining in the house and channeled all his attention to his newfound toy. He spent hours washing the car and turning the interior over. Every conversation we had in the house ended with the car; “Can you imagine? Today I was on the road and this one tiny car wanted to overtake me. I was like what? I won’t allow this small car to overtake me. Come and see us on the road. Seconds later, he was behind me chopping dust.
He wants to compete with my car.” In his eyes and soul, his car was a cheetah because it ran like one. It was also a range rover because it felt like one to him. It was his everything.His senior brother would come around on weekends and use it as Uber. I didn’t know how much he brought back but each weekend he came for it. The two of them had become like twins who took decisions together and did most of the things together. I didn’t envy them. I rather asked myself, ‘To what end?”My husband started getting sick just a month after our third year anniversary. I was then pregnant. Two months pregnant or so. At first, the sickness would come and go. Then it started getting worse. He would spend a week or so at the Hospital before he would be discharged. He started growing lean. He got well and stable when I delivered but he never went back to his original size again. He became lean and gaunt. Our child was six months old when the sickness struck again.
This time it was very serious. He saw blood in his stool and couldn’t eat anything. We sent him to the hospital and it was later found that the issue was in his liver. He spent over six months in and out of the hospital. He didn’t have money. At this moment he wasn’t working because he had been sick for so many months.We needed money. His parents tried their best and came up with something every once in a while. His sister sent me something every month. That girl is an angel. When life got very hard for us, she shopped for us every week and also sent money for his upkeep every month. His senior brother was nowhere to be found. He would pass through every now and then to see him.
He would say, “I’m praying for you. All would be well.” He would disappear and come back a week or two later with prayers. One dawn, my husband passed out on my lap and we had to rush him to the hospital. I didn’t have anything on me. I had a baby to feed and a house to keep. When he regained consciousness at the hospital, I told him, “I have nothing to sustain you here. Your sister is trying. Your parents are trying but you know this sickness had been around for close to a year. Everyone is dry.
I suggest we sell the car to raise money for your health.” He nodded. He was too weak to speak.He showed me where the car papers are and said, “Speak to my brother and let him help you sell it.” I was angry to hear him bring his brother into the conversation but I later understood why he brought him into the conversation.
I went home, searched for the car papers, and guess whose name was on the document…his brother. I said to myself, “Oh I get it. Everything is making sense to me now.” I was supposed to be angry but we were in a critical situation so anger wouldn’t help. I called his brother and told him we want to sell the car. He asked, “Who asked you to sell it?”He went to the hospital and spoke to my husband. I don’t know what he told him and I don’t know what my husband said in response. He called to tell me, “I know my brother is in a bad condition but we have to take our time and find other means of raising money instead of selling properties. We haven’t gotten to that level yet.” My heart.
It was boiling to the nonsense degree. I said, “What do you mean? Do you know any means through which we can raise money? And you haven’t done it all this while? I’m not here to fight with you. The document is in your name. If you love your brother’s life, help let’s sell it as quickly as we can.”I spoke to his parents about it. I spoke to his sister about it. They all added their voice. Finally, he said, “I’ve traveled. Just put a “For Sale” sign on it. I will come soon.” We put the sign on it on Monday. On Tuesday a man called to buy it. I called him and told him that we had found a buyer. He said, “I would be there tomorrow.” I told the man, “You can have the car. Pay the money. The owner would come tomorrow so the two of you can start the process.” The man said, “No I have to see the owner first.”
It took my husband’s brother a week before he came back. The very night he touched Accra, that same night, my husband died.I didn’t blame him and I still don’t blame him for anything. It’s my husband who handed him the dagger, trusting it was in a safe hand but in the end, he pushed the dagger right through his heart until my husband went silent forever. The reason for the sale of the car was over. The sadness of the day overshadowed everything. When we were doing the funeral, he came for the car to run errands for the funeral. After the funeral, he didn’t return the car.
One year later, when we went home for my husband’s one-year rite, I saw a ‘for sale’ sticker on the car. I didn’t say anything to him. His sister walked up to me and said, “I’m glad you’re not fighting over the mistake of a dead man. It’s been a year already. After today, every link you have with him is broken. You’ll be good. Life would be kind to you because you’ve been kind.”It’s been five years already. I’m married to a man who sees me for who I am and he’s ready to build his world around me. I’m not angry. I’ve never been. I’m sharing this story so some men would learn that once you’re down, no one owes you anything except the woman who made a vow to be with you for better for worse.
If you can’t trust that woman then you have to question your own judgment. Why make a vow to a woman you cannot trust? Why choose a woman to live forever with but take forever decisions with someone else? If the car was in his own name, things would have been easier.
He trusted his brother to be a brother to the end when his brother had not assured him of a forever brotherhood. I stood in front of God and the congregation to make a vow to him. He didn’t trust my vow. Maybe, he thought blood was thicker than a vow before God but that’s where he failed.Wherever he is, I wish him a beautiful rest. I wanted to help but he didn’t let me.