Part 2: Kwasia Dat
Kwasia dat trans: That foolish person/thing.
Some of you have journeyed with me for the last 5 1/2 years through the metaphoric hip-deep cesspool that Douche Bag has attempted to drag me through. Fortunately, I have managed to hover above the mire, coming out with only the stink clinging to me and not the filth. Today, I believe the battle is finally over.
Douche Bag has conceded defeat.
Before you break out bubbly and the gay pride parade booty shorts, let us be cautiously optimistic. I mean, this is DOUCHE BAG we’re talking about here. It ain’t over until the fat lady sings, and at this point, she’s just jockeyed up to the piano to get her voice in check.
Part of the amazing part about being in Ghana for as long as I was was that I had virtually little-to-no audio or personal contact with The Platypus (my brother’s moniker for DB). He called Ghana only to say hi to Nadjah, tell her he missed her, and then hung up. Each call was no more than 45 seconds. I timed them. Then we got back into the country and he got wind that we were here. True to form, he began his slight harassment tactics. He sent me a text:
Can I talk to Nadjah please
I dialed his number and handed her the phone, same as I have for the last 2 years. Suddenly, she brought the phone over to me.
“He wants to talk to you!”
“Hello,” I said flatly.
“Hey. Ummm…what do you want me to do with her clothes?” he asked. “I have no use for them.”
Him and these frikkin’ clothes. He had asked me the same question 3 times previously, and I had given him a different answer based on my mood: I could get them/He could donate them/He could do whatever he wanted – after all, they were HIS clothes.
“I dunno , Douche Bag,” I replied wearily. “You can give them to a friend if you want to.”
He suddenly bristled.
“Look Malaka! We can’t keep going at it like this! It isn’t healthy for either of us, and I’m just trying to move forward!”
“What are you talking about? All I said was ‘give them to a friend if you want to’!”
“Look,” he said. “I been doing a lot of thinking. And if you want to move to Africa, that’s fine. I just wish you had come and talked to me about it first. If you said said ‘Douche Bag, I need to move to Africa because it’s cheaper for me and the kids to live there’, then I…”
“Then you would have what?!” I shouted. “Like you told the judge in court 2 months ago, even if I had come to ask you for permission – which I don’t need to – you STILL would have said no. So why would I jump into my car, waste gas and waste time to come and ask you for something that I KNOW you’re going to say ‘no’ to?! Huh? Do you think I’m stupid?”
“No. But what I’m saying is, is that I don’t know anything about Africa and you takin’ my daughter all the way over there (he said ‘there’ like I was taking her to hell) and I don’t know if she’s living well…”
“Oh! So you think I’m a fool, eh? Do you think I would take my children all the way to Africa for them to suffer?!” I was enraged.
“No. Let me stop you right there. You can be a b*tch, but you’re a good mother. I wouldn’t take that away from you.”
So now I’m a b*tch, huh?
“Yeah, I can be b*tch,” I hissed. “Am I’m proud of it.”
“You should be.”
We raged on about other things. Then, I decided to go silent. Why was I wasting time on the phone with this imbecile? I was weary of this verbal volleying match about nothing.
He ended the call by finalizing when he could pick up Na for the weekend, and promising to put his child support in the mail. As he rightly confessed, he will eventually be put in jail if he does not pay – and he’s currently 2.5 months behind. He also said that he had been sick and had not been working and that’s why he was late. (Mind you, he just started a new job in August.) He said he was not going to go into detail about his illness, because he did not want any sympathy from me – as though I had some to spare for him! In anybody else’s universe, that would have ended the call, but then I got 2 more texts and another call to change the day and time. Jeez!
Part 2: So now you want peace?
A few days later, we met at McDonald’s for the exchange. As in times past, it was wordless and swift, with Nadjah crossing over the shrubbery to get into his waiting car. Soon after I drove off, he called me to ask what time he should bring her back, because she wanted to attend Harvest Night with us on Halloween weekend.
“6 o’clock, ” I said unequivocally.
He hung up the phone. I drove for a while and began steaming suddenly. I called him back.
“Do me a favor,” I said between a tight throat. “Don’t ever call my phone again and call me a b*tch.”
“Malaka, when did I call you a b-word,” he said innocently. “You must have me mistaken for someone else.”
Was he off his knob? I took the phone away from my ear and stared at it.
“When?? Just the other day!!!!”
“No. I said you ‘can be a b*tch’, but I didn’t call you one. There’s a big difference.”
“I’m sorry if you took it that way. I apologize – but I didn’t call you a b*tch.”
“Fine. OK.” This conversation was going to get me no where.
When I got back to McDonald’s to pick up Nadjah, he followed her over to my vehicle and buckled her in. That was not part of the rehearsed script! I was instantly irritated, but tried not to show it for the sake of the kids. Aya was in the car as well. I looked over my shoulder to make sure she was strapped in and started the car. He was making small talk with Aya about how big she had gotten and how cute her cheeks were. They were covered in cotton candy residue. Aya, true to form, ignored him. She doesn’t talk to ‘strangers’.
“Malaka! What was with that evil look?” he queried.
“What evil look?” I retorted. “I didn’t look at you at all.”
“Exactly! You still can’t be mad at me, are you?’
His tone soft and jovial, like the Douche Bag that I knew during the times when I was overtly in love with him. I was disgusted that he would try to coax me back into his loathsome web, even by changing the inflection of his voice. He pleaded with me to come out of the car so we could talk. Again, the girls were present, so I did not want to make a scene. He began speaking in earnest, looking me in the eye as he spoke.
“Look. I been doing a lot of thinking, and if you want to go to Africa, that’s fine,” he started. (He has a habit of repeating himself and therefore sounding rehearsed.) “All I want to know is that Nadjah is succeeding, and to hear from her and stay involved in her life. I’m just gonna pay my child support and step back. As long as she’s happy, I’m happy. And that’s what I’m going to tell the judge when we go to court in a few weeks.”
“Uh huh,” I said in disbelief. “This is a reversal. And you’ve said you were going to tell the judge other things in the past, and as soon as we get to court, you change your mouth. Why should I believe you now?”
“I’ve been talking to my step-dad a lot lately. I almost had a nervous break down when Nadjah left for Africa (he almost had a break down when he could not find his son that he NOW claims is not his, as well!). My dad told me ‘Nigga, you a Marine! Get yourself together. You gonna get a good job and get your health back.’ He told me I need to keep taking my medication. My blood pressure has been way up (like I was meant to care). But I’m going to make a change now, you’ll see. I know you don’t trust me with Nadjah now, but I’m going to show you that you can trust her with me, and as long as I get my summers and Christmas with her, I’ll be happy. I’ll even share some of the summer with you, if you want. From now on, I’m just going to sit back and go with the flow. I’m going to tell the judge all that.”
“Your face is saying ‘Yeah nigga, whatever.’ But you’ll see!”
“Yep. That’s exactly what I’m thinking: We WILL see. You haven’t stayed true in the past.”
He could have had this epiphany before I spent $6000 on return airfare? What a tool!
“That’s in the past Malaka! I’m trying to move forward. On the corps, I promise.”
That’s when I got pissed again. Every time he makes a promise on the corps, he fails ABYSMALLY.
“You and your f*cking corps,” I spat contemptuously. God he brings out the worst in me!
“No, no!” he joked. “Don’t say that about the Corps! Your son may go in one day!”
He ended his performance by requesting a hug from me. I stood firmly planted in place. He stepped forward and took a hug as my arms remained folded across my chest. Like I said, in any other universe, that would have ended things. But NO. Douche Bag likes to gab himself into a hole in the ground.
“Damn, you look good for someone who’s had 4 kids!”
“Thank you,” I said through thin lips. I could actually FEEL my mouth turn into a slit!
“I mean really! You look really cute. Usually, women who have 4 kids don’t look as good as you.”
“Yes. I said ‘thank you’. You’re the second man to tell me this.”
“That didn’t come out sounding like a compliment, did it?” he laughed.
“I’ll take it as one,” I replied tersely.
“It was meant as one.”
He informed me 3 more times that it was a compliment. He attempted to hug me once more, and once more I kept my arms folded across my chest, maintaining appropriate distance between us. I drove off with my head in a fog. What was that all about? Is he actually going to pay his child support and let me and my family be? My DFCS account says ‘no…there’s no money in there yet’. And then there’s my gut, which is screaming like a horde of fans at a Lady Gaga concert: NO! It’s a trick!
We’ll see on November 19th. If all goes according to his plan and promise, this will be my last post about Douche Bag; because that portion of my life will be cut, dried, and stowed away.
But if not! Hmmmm…Part 3 awaits!