My name is Rukundo Rose. I lost my father when I was nine years old. We were raised by a single mother. When I was in my first year in high school, I met a man who convinced me to leave school and start living together. After two months of living together he didn’t want me anymore, but I was already pregnant. I knew I could not go back home either because I had run away from school. I therefore decided to just bear with all that was happening. Later on we started working and got a better life and that is the time I conceived the second child. Even with the improvement in our living conditions, my husband went on and married another woman. He started a business of a retail shop, left me with the kids and I had to start from scratch again. Time passed and he separated with the second wife. As usual he came back and showed me that he was for us once again. I let him stay until one day when he sold everything we owned, left for Kampala to work and we never saw him again for five years. His family was against me and they always encouraged me to leave and go back to my family.  I didn’t because I wanted to look after my children.

One day a friend came and told us that he had seen the father of my children in Kampala.  I told my father- in- law about it. He gave me transport to see him. When I got there I found out that he had another woman there as well. I came back feeling like a fool for the way he treated me and my son, but I was glad he was still alive.  He again came back a few years after and apologized. He stayed with us for close to three years. I conceived again. Little did I know he wanted to sell some land that we both owned. When my son was one and a half he sold it all and I never received a penny. We didn’t see him again for years until I decided to go with my son and find out how he was doing.  When we got there, to our surprise, he treated us well so we stayed for two more weeks.  The other woman he had was staying at some place different from his. When I returned to kabala I realised I was pregnant again but didn’t want to tell him because it always caused problems. When I was five months pregnant I told him about it and he told me that it was not his. I now decided in mind to just completely let go of him. When I gave birth he sent my older son to the hospital to come and check to see if the baby had any resemblance to him. After two weeks, my child fell so ill that I had no option but to call him.  When I told him, he said that the child was sick because she wanted to go and see the biological father.  He went ahead and came to kabala and had the policemen throw me in prison on allegations of me bringing men in his house. I later called my mother, who talked to my cousin, who helped me get out of prison. When I had got out my mother asked me to leave my husband, plus my children, but I declined her suggestion and told her I would stay and take care of my children in any given situation. When my daughter was two years old, he came back and tried to befriend me again.  One time he told me Rebecca was his child he now knew. That used to make me very bitter because I would remember the times he put me in jail.

One time I had come for fellowship, a friend of mine called and told me that my husband was very sick and that if I could, I should go take care of him. I asked her why he didn’t ask the wife in Kampala.  I went to Mulago where I found him, plus his other wife. We spent a week there, even though she treated me harshly. They didn’t tell me what was wrong with him, but I kept seeing them with the doctor being very secretive.  I asked myself what kind of illness he had gotten that they had to be this secretive. I came back to kabala and one Tuesday he called me again and asked if I could go and take care of him because the wife had abandoned him and he was extremely sick.  When I asked what he was suffering from he told me he had HIV/AIDS. My heart was so heavy with anger, bitterness and hatred. I decided to come for fellowship to see if I could feel better because within me I knew the right thing to do was to go and look after him but because of all that he had done to me I knew he didn’t deserve my help. I went back to my house and cried so hard because of the conflict in my heart. I later decided to send my son to see if he was really ill. When he got there he found out it was the truth. He was very ill.  I asked to have the strength to do all this. I chose to look after him in Kampala. When he was discharged he came to kabale to ask me to be his signatory in the hospital, in case he needed help. It was very hard for me to forgive him, but I agreed for the sake of Christ. Now he takes his medicine and he went back to Kampala.

My journey of knowing Christ was not easy just like my marriage was. I had a lot of anger, hatred and bitterness in my heart and it always weighed heavy on me. Before I accepted Christ I had spirits that would tell me to undress and go out on the street. I also had another voice that always questioned me as to why I hadn’t gotten saved. Because of all this pain one day I decided to go to a witch doctor with a friend. As we were almost reaching there, the motorist told us that I hope you find peace where you are going. When I came back I just threw the medicine I had gotten from there away. I went to a mental hospital to get medicine but still the spirit told me not to take it, and so I didn’t. One fateful night, a very big bright light came to my heart and I heard a voice asking why I haven’t accepted Jesus. I wept so much, and the next morning I went to church and accepted Christ into my life.

It’s been the best decision because in my journey with Him I have gotten rid of anger and bitterness. I am now a free person filled with His peace.  One thing I know is, I don’t want to ever leave His presence. I have forgiven my children’s father and I help him get his drugs and send it to Kampala as we co-parent. His family members now call me to pray with them and have asked me to introduce them to my God, which I have done. I am grateful for this fellowship because it has helped me come out and talk about my struggles, for which I hope has acted as an encouragement to the rest.