Abandoned Life ~ Autobiography: Part Seven:
Chapter Four: For the Children
Tinka got married on March 29, 1975.
What a wicked day that was for Tinka. She took it on herself to design and make all the dresses…her own wedding gown also the bridesmaids and flower girls dresses. She even did all the hair on her wedding day; starting at 5:00 a.m. By the time it was time to do her own, her husband to be walked pass the room making a nasty comment as he strolled by. She wanted to do it up in a very curly fashion and he said she looked like a golly-wok while she thought she had that Shirley Temple look. She burst out in tears and brushed her hair out to nothing and just did not care anymore; too hurt and tired to argue. Then it was time for her beauty bath before she got dressed now feeling very sweaty and worthless. As it turned out there was not hot water left so she had to take a cold shower instead all the time wondering what next! After all things happens in threes and she was highly stressed out, wanting nothing more that to run away from it all.
But she made a promise and she would never go back on her commitments even though it made her feel very uncared and used.
At 4.00 pm that afternoon, Tinka was ready to take the biggest step of her life. As she got out of the car a very strong wind came up and almost blew her away. Her dad had to hold on to her for both their sakes because at that point they only had each other. Emotions were tense and wind would just blow her far away from this ill-fated marriage.
As her dad walked her down the isle, she was blinded by tears that filled her eyes and with fear deep within her heart. Praying that she would be the perfect wife and praying that she would never want to say no to her husband’s desires; but somehow she knew better.
As her father lifted her veil from her face, she knew she was no more a virgin standing there dressed in white. The most terrible guilt filled her heart knowing she was not the happy bride she thought she would be. That day she signed away her freedom and all she had hoped to be.
Tinka and her husband had their first argument as a married couple that very same night. He wanted her to do things she did not even know were possible. And instead of leading her to a night of ecstasy… he forced the act on her implanting the fear that it would be like forever and closed up. Tinka doubted herself feeling undesirable filthy and much like a whore.
The next morning they left on their honeymoon visiting his family for five days before they left for Cape Town. Visiting family was not what she had in mind for a honeymoon, but rather a fantasy of walking on the beach, even making love there. But she realized it would remain her dream only.
Tinka fell pregnant soon after that, and ten months from her wedding date her first child, a little girl was born. She had problems keeping the baby because of some severe stress she had to endure and almost lost it at the same stage as she did with the first pregnancy she miscarried.
She had to stay on medication for the rest of her pregnancy, and the vitamin B12 injections left a very nasty spot like a bruised mark on her butt cheeks for close to a year.
Tinka was feeling that she had no strength left by the time she was in labor. She had a difficult time in the delivery room and after 20 hours of contractions a so - called “DRY” birth that followed.
January 20, 1976 by the time it was over, she was just thankful it was all over but worth knowing she did it on her own.
Then the shock came…it was a girl 8lb 12 ounces, not the boy her husband wanted. Thinking what Michael would say she cried out of relief that it was over, but feared for rejection at the same time.
She felt so guilty not being able to give her husband a son that day. Through her pregnancy he never gave it a second though that it could be a girl, he always said he will be spoiling his son and would call him Michael too, and teach him to be a strong leader and rugby player.
As it turned out to be Michael was never there for her as each of her babies were due. So Tinka went to her mothers place each time and waited till a week after the baby was born before she would return home traveling long distances.
Their home was a caravan that they had to stay in due to the fact that her husband was working for the Railway as relief stationmaster and had to travel and move around a lot; not the ideal place for a newborn, but what choice was there?
Things worked out well while there was no fighting. But things were about to go wrong for Tinka. Baby Wallace got very sick with whooping chough. She had to be hospitalized at the tender age of only four months; having been born with a hernia of the navel just made things worse for her. Wallace almost died when the whooping chough had been wrongly diagnosed. Finally the hernia got so big they had to do surgery to fix it.
But at the end Wallace seemed to have been a fighter like her mother and made it through. She started to walk at only eight months about the time Tinka was pregnant with their second child.
May 21, 1977 their second child Michael junior was born and Tinka was happy that she had given her husband the son he so wanted.
Life was not that bad up to that point, and she started to believe she did the right thing for once in her life. Her husband got promoted to Senior Station Master and they moved into their first house. Life was good for them both well and the children took much of the loneliness away.
She even was thinking of having another child two years later; perhaps the saddest choices she ever made, trusting fate that day. It changed her life into a living nightmare. Things started to go wrong, her husband started to abuse alcohol. Their sex life became a punishment that she had to endure once more without the choice of freedom. During that time Michêle was conceived and Michael junior started to develop asthma becoming a very - very sick child for days on end.
During her pregnancy she lost a lot of weight but had no problem with the pregnancy itself. Physically Tinka was feeling good and there was no indication that something would go wrong with the child.
Then on February 9, 1979 the day came, Michêle was born, a healthy 9 lb 2 ounces baby girl. Tinka was happy to some point that she did something right this time. But it was for a very short period of time. It was time to go home and face her responsibilities now with three kids and an unhappy heart.
But Tinka never gave up hope that her life had a purpose that’s why she had to struggle all the time. Her three kids kept her busy and she had no time to think about herself.