They say ignorance is bliss, but what would they know?
I was born like most children in the world, but I was very different from most. My parents couldn’t afford to fix me so they kept my secret from the neighbors in our village. I don’t blame them because they already had to deal with family members who saw me as a curse. But still, I grew up, trying to be happy, hoping one morning I would suddenly be normal like my friends. Every morning the rooster crowed but every morning nothing changed. So I just learned how to live with it.
At the age of fourteen, I looked outwardly like any other boy, but privately I had developed like a girl.
It’s hard to keep a secret in our village. They knew who I was. One day on my way home from school they cornered me in the bush. It wasn’t just one or two, but three boys They ordered me to take off my clothes; they wanted to see. When I refused they raped me, each of them. As I cried out for help, someone came running and I thought I was safe. With tears running down my cheek I tried to explain what had happened, but the man couldn’t stay focused because he had never seen anything like me.
“Oh God, what is this?” he said.
“Turn around, open, open… Oh my God, this is witchcraft!”
were the words that came out of his mouth as he stared at my nakedness. His shock and distraction were so profound he had forgotten about the violence that had set him running in my direction. My mother and father were not there to help. I had never before felt completely alone. Kneeling in the midst of these men, I lowered my head and stretched out one hand to pick up my clothes. I attempted to cover myself. Not one set of eyes from these people indicated they were looking at a human being.
So they say ignorance is bliss. Well, I don’t think so.