I grew up with my father at a small town in the Ashanti Region, where polygamy was somewhat superficial and acceptable. My late dad got for himself as many women as he could lay hands on.
He was a handsome young man who had the charisma, charm, vibes, power and money to sweep any woman off her feet.
Dad was a profound herbalist and his medication was very potent against malaria. At a time when ultra-modern production of herbal medicine was rare, he was ahead of the game. He was producing herbal medicine in bottles and exporting. I’m talking about the famous “Gye Dabi Bitters”.
He was so famous that, Daddy Lumba mentioned him in his song, ‘Obi Ato Mi So Bu?’.
Related: Father’s Day Torture
More Filla About My Father
He had kids all over the place: from Ashanti, Western and Central Regions; he had kids totaling seventy (70). Yeah, you heard right; Seventy. I forgot to mention that it was during his funeral I got to know the 60 others. I am sure if it wasn’t for the funeral, some of us might have committed incest, lol.
Ten years after the old man’s burial, a young man in his late twenties came around. According to him (Kojo), the mum sent him to the northern region when he was just a child, though he hail from the Brong Ahafo Region. So now that he was fully grown, he thought it wise to come look for the whereabouts of his dad. There was this striking resemblance between the Kojo and my late dad. Kojo was the exact replica of daddy. So we didn’t needed any DNA to ascertain whether he was his son or not.
Why My Father Had to Die
Let’s cut to the chase. Shall we! My dad was at a point irresponsible, partly because he couldn’t trace all his children talk less of catering for them. This rendered most of his wives single mothers; those who could take care of their wards all by themselves tried their best. Those who couldn’t left the kids to wander. This made most of us gain little to no education. I for one was fortunate to have little education until I was old enough to sponsor myself.
Now, let’s talk about where things went wrong. Growing up as a teenager and even up to my early twenties, I couldn’t see any lady without thinking of her as a sexual partner. This continued for a longer period of time; I got my chance with those I could. I had been with about twenty (20) girls already. At that younger age, I was a serial womaniser already.
I was growing irresponsible each day, as a young boy who has freshly landed himself a job. Considering the fact that I got no responsibilities, I could squander my salary the very day I got it. Talk about evening sittings, alcoholism.
Incredibly, I was doing this alone; I never moved around with lots of friends, else I could apportion the blame to bad company. But this was a situation where I was a bad company to my own self.
This was how I lived my life. Even though I’m still trying to find my feet in life, I could have been far ahead of where I am today if I wasn’t any of this. I never liked how father lived his life. Not because he gave birth to many children; no! I’m very proud to have so many siblings and step mothers. It’s very exciting when we meet during family gathering. I just don’t like the fact that, he lived part of his life unplanned.
As a young man growing up, I didn’t want my wife to have a husband like my dad; and my kids having a father like my dad. So I had to kill that, part of me that, was just like my dad. It looks like I was playing the role better than him. I wanted to have as many children as I could. And I also had to consider if I could really give them the best future.
I didn’t get that, warmth and fatherly love so, I wouldn’t want to be the kind of father who will have his kids scattered around without taking care of them. I didn’t want to be the reason why a hardworking woman will become a single mom! So to do this, I had to kill the traits of him in me. Even though my father died some decades ago, I didn’t kill him literally.
This piece is also to every young man out there; to every dad out there. Be responsible to your kids even if you have nothing to do with their mum. I want fathers to be celebrated with the same enthusiasm we celebrate mothers.
By AkasaAnoma Kwame Boakye Yiadom Jnr