She goes to school every single day with a lot of pain in her heart, her eyes are swollen and she doesn’t know what she will tell her teacher when she’s asked what’s wrong. She honestly can’t remember the last day she had a decent meal, or when she slept without crying herself to sleep. She loves going to school, it makes her forget her problems, she works very hard in her studies, she’s a top student, but lately things have being going downhill for her, she rarely gets time to read or even do her homework. How did she get here? will her world ever get bright?
I call her Roselyn, a beautiful tall dark skinned girl. Her parents separated when she was younger, her dad was a violent drunkard man who used to beat up her mum. It got so bad that Roselyn’s mum decided to run away for fear of being killed by a man who once loved her, a man who was a father to her two children. One evening after he came home drunk and beat up everyone in the house including her children, Roselyn’s mum had had enough of it! So when he blacked out on the sofa seat, she packed up what was important to her and her children and fled for their lives. It was dark, it was cold, you’d expect she would be afraid of thieves attacking them as they ran away. What would become of their future? she didn’t have a job, her husband provided everything? However, she was done! her mind was made up, she couldn’t stand to live a life of sadness, and we all know when a woman’s fed up, you can’t talk her out of nothing! They walked the whole night until they came to a school, her mum pleaded with the watchman who gave them a place to rest and lay their heads, for in few hours the school would be opened.
No sooner had they laid their heads, they were awakened by the noise of children jumping up and down as they got into school. They had to leave, the watchman showed Roselyn’s mum a nearby place where they could rent a cheap house and they were on their way. They got a house and settled down. Roselyn thought that this would be the beginning of her great future, she had no idea it would be a horror movie! Roselyn’s mum soon found a nearby government school that would take her children in, she only had to buy them uniforms, which she did and her children joined school.
Days passed into weeks, weeks passed into months, everything was going on well until one evening when Roselyn was going to the shops late in the night when she was attacked by a man who raped her. By the time Roselyn was getting to their home, her mum was so annoyed with her for staying longer than expected that she punished Roselyn. That night she wondered why her mum didn’t want to find out what had happened, instead, she just got annoyed and hit her. She cried, until she couldn’t cry anymore, she just slept. Morning came and she wondered if her mum would listen to her, she wanted to talk about the rape, but dearest mum was still annoyed that she didn’t prepare any breakfast for her, she went to school on an empty stomach. That was the longest day of her entire life, she thought of telling her teachers, but she was too scared that her teachers will tell her mum who was still annoyed at her. So she kept quiet, it was her little secret, a secret that was full of pain and anguish! she kept asking God why her? she was young, she was a christian virgin who thought she would be pure until marriage? why now?
Weeks later, Roselyn starts vomiting and getting sick in the morning, she had read about this in class, so she didn’t need to go for a pregnancy test, she knew she was pregnant. But now what to do? will she have a baby? will she get an abortion? She knew abortion was wrong, she knew abortion was killing an innocent child, but to her, she had no other option, her mother was too overwhelmed with life, she didn’t want to burden her anymore! She had given up! She was at the very end, suicide was even a better option for her. To leave this world and die than go through the pain and shame. She finally made up her mind, she would go for an abortion! Roselyn finally decided to talk about her story to her friend Paulette who even suggested where she would have the abortion. You know those girls who know it all? yeah those one’s. But there was a bigger problem, Roselyn needed money and she had no dime! Paulette told Roselyn not to worry, she would take care of her! Paulette took Roselyn to have the said abortion and even paid for it. Days after Roselyn had healed, she asked her friend Paulette where she got the money and Paulette confided in her that she gets girls from school who sleep with older men and in turn she gets paid by the men for bringing the girls.
Roselyn was shocked, what had she gotten herself into, she thought? But Paulette seemed to have better plans; she told Roselyn to sleep with the said older men and when they paid, she would have cleared the debt she had with Paulette. She thought hard, but in reality she didn’t have much choice, she was in too deep, so she gave in and slept with men after school, and finally paid off Paulette’s debt. She slowly developed a don’t care attitude, life had given her bitter lemons, and so she continued sleeping with older men for money. The worst part of it all, she also started recruiting other small girls into the club and felt zero chills! Her brother got wind of it and swore to tell their mum, Roselyn was too scared of her mother that she blackmailed her brother by giving him money.
To the outside world, she seemed like the girl who had her life going on for her, she now had money and could buy anything she wanted, but deep inside of her she had a lot of pain and shame; she had continuous nightmares, she stopped concentrating in school, her grades dropped and she ever wondered if God noticed her life? if He saw her pain, if at all He cared. She wondered why her mum had become a different person who didn’t care about her children, she had slowly sunk into depression and had now become an alcoholic, all she ever did was get high and sleep. Roselyn was the bread winner, her mum didn’t even ask where she got the money. Hence for Roselyn, this was the life that she had now being accustomed to, she threw guilt out of the window and continued living as a child prostitute. She was in grade eight (8) and was just about to do her final exams, she had planned that after the exams, she would quit school and do full time prostitution, after all, where would her mum get fees to pay for her secondary education?
One day, just weeks before doing her exams, some group of Christian men and women came to her school to have a talk with the students, encouraging them to work hard and to have confidence during the exams and believe in God. Roselyn looked at them and sneered, saying to herself “these people have no idea the kind of problems that people here go through,” why wouldn’t she think that way anyway, these people looked decent and of good morals, what would they know about ghetto life? But she was so convicted that at some point she cried during the presentation and one of the speakers noticed her. Afterwards, she went up to her and asked if she wanted to talk? Roselyn had waited a long time for someone to just ask whats wrong? or are you okay? Roselyn cried, poured out everything that she had gone through, she was counseled, and finally she gave her life to Jesus Christ.
There are many other Roselyn’s out there! Young people who have gone through so much, but have no one to talk to. Parents, listen to your children, even when they have made a mistake, let them explain themselves, if we don’t do it, then slowly by slowly our children will grow apart from us and even hate us for never being there for them. Roselyn’s mum was shocked when she got to know what happened to her only daughter, she cried and asked her daughter to forgive her for being so ignorant, to which Roselyn did and their relationship was restored. They are slowly building their relationship. Roselyn did her grade eight (8) exams and passed with flying colors attracting scholarship from various organizations. As I write this, Roselyn is in Secondary school, grade twelve (12) almost doing her final exams before proceeding to college.
Roselyn’s story had a good ending, what of the many other children out there? what will become of them if there is no one to mentor them? Be that person who brings change wherever you are! God put us here to serve! serve others as if your living depended on it!!