We are all wearing one mask or the other, covering something that is eating us up. That is life. It is what it is and there is nothing anyone can do about it.

In my pains, not self inflicted or conjectured, I cast my mind back to one of the teachings of Pastor Jerry Eze and one phrase in the whole message woke me up: “this is to all the men. Please do not die”.

We can only be mourned a few months and the living moves on. Sounds funny but it is the hard truth. Even those you sweat for while doing what you must to make happy, will at a time tell whoever cares to listen that “eluwa bu ofu mbia”. They ain’t lying. We live only once. They will certainly move on and do whatever with whoever tickles their fancy. After all, they have become single again. They have become free.

The past few days taught me a lesson. Even the person who hurt you does everything to blackmail you to submission, twisting every narrative to make you the guilty party. It is part of life but people, do not yield. Do not brood for too long. Do not die. If you do, this life will not end. The person by the side who covets your wife or husband will be emboldened to tell her or him that “onye nwuru anwu anwuola. You wan dey like this”?

One of my lecturers during my First Degree, Prof Imo Ben Ubokudom Eshiet in one of our Courses, I think it should be Harlem Literature, hinted of a writer, please I have forgotten his name, who solemnly conveyed some bottled up emotions with a single line: “Nobody knows the trouble I have seen”.

But that is not enough to make me contemplate murder and suicide to balance things up.

Michael my son held me, not knowing what else to do to help me, in my uncontrollable tears, simply mustered courage to say “daddy but you told me men do not cry. Forget everything. I saw everything. You did not do anything wrong daddy. Forgive….You call me Enyinnaya. Daddy be my friend now. Please daddy”.

If you were me, what would you do?

I have refused to die. I have refused to take my life or another’s. Life goes on.

During my Undergraduate days, I was almost blackmailed to accept a pregnancy that indeed was not mine. I knew little or nothing about the deceptive nature of some women. I used to hear that something you know nothing about can be pinned on you. It happened to me. The girl in question was the very first woman I “knew”, through deception though. It took several voyages, spiritually speaking, for me to know the truth. It was not mine. It never was. It was all lies. I remembered 1st March 2000. The day the truth spoke for me in the University of Calabar.

Today, the above narrative was used to subtly blackmail me. If I had not told who I told, as part of my experience, nobody would use same against me.

That is an aside.

Be good to yourself first. Be fair. But also learn that it is not every truth that must be told, though it is ideal to tell the truth. My fellow men, please be strong. Onye anwula. Do not die. Barnish the thought. It is not of God.

There is no unconditional love anywhere. Someday, the person you think you are doing everything to love will be so emboldened to ask you if you were forced to love.

I thought of many things. I thought of my sisters. I thought of my mother. I thought of Michael and Uriel, who shall carry on with my family name. I thought of Chinaza who is growing everyday and also learning the complicated nature of life. I buried all the negative thoughts.

There is danger in loving anybody too much. They take advantage of that and trample on your heart, making you vulnerable, helpless just because you chose to love. Listen, this thing called love means nothing to some. Be wise.

Play the fool. Infact be the fool but please, do not die.

It is well.

(c) Henry Onyema Madubuike


  1. I slowly and carefully read in between the lines,I saw and feel nothing but the truth and reality, none can love you more than you.
    Most people do not die when stabbed, but they do when they know the identify of the person who stabbed them,we continue to learn everyday…The lord will remain your strength and guide in navigating the Stormy sea….May you find peace that surpasses all understanding…..


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