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The Captain - Thaddeus Fon

My name is Fon Thaddeus and I am the team captain of the family team called FC (Football Club) FON.
I am a petroleum engineer by profession and now the General Manager of a manpower supply company called TEFON as in Thaddeus/Elizabeth FON with headquarters in Douala the economic capital of Cameroon on the West coast of Africa.
When we got married in 1985 some 31 years ago, I was a young handsome sub Saharan man who had just returned from Britain where I had gone to study. I had some set ideas about how a man should rule his home. We were so madly in love with each other that I did not see any flaws in my bride. She could have asked for the moon and I would have gladly plucked it just for her.
We did not have any pre-marital lessons or any preparation for Work/Family Life Balance seeing that we were two career people hoping to get married.
Prenuptial preparation by the Religious gentlemen? We skipped that bit because I guess my career wife did not want to hear that she had to submit to me.
The first few years of our marriage were as idyllic as depicted in the romance fairytales. We had very few problems in our relationship and we were beginning to think that we would live happily ever after.
Then small issues started becoming tension-starters in our relationship. It was nothing big at first but with time, we found out that we were not completely happy in each other’s company. In fact we irritated each other whenever we found ourselves alone without company. We shouted and screamed at each other or went for days in sullen silence answering questions only in monosyllables.
Our troubles only got worse when we were unable to start a family after three miscarriages and still childless eight years down the road. We started the blame game and that didn’t help our relationship either.
Then my wife, the coach of the family team who happens to be a medical doctor started talking to her patients. She took time to listen to them and realized that her patients had the same stress-related illnesses we were already having. Digging deeper, she found out they too had the same stress issues we were grappling with.
That was when we started communicating and listening to each other. As a sub-Saharan man married to a career medical doctor, I always had it at the back of my mind that she was not going to respect me enough. Now that I look back, most of how she interacted with me was filtered through this thought process. What with friends calling me “the husband of Dr Fon”, our relationship was slowly going to the dogs.
Then God stepped in with the TESHO inspiration and our marriage really took on wings. Just to prove how comfortable we are in our relationship, I will relate one incident that happened to us. We had gone to Boston two years back for the graduation of my kid sister from nursing school. A huge party was given in her honor and during the party, the emcee made the faux pas of announcing over the loudspeaker system, “Dr Fon has come from Cameroon with his wife and he will be giving us a speech to grace this occasion”. He knew Dr Fon was a man. When I got up to talk, I made a joke about how I have been called Dr Fon several times but all I knew to prescribe was paracetamol. The emcee was mortified over his gaffe and was about to apologize effusively when I told him not to mind because he was not the first to make such a mistake. We had gotten used to it and actually made fun of it. A lady in attendance came to my wife the coach afterwards and asked her how come I had not abandoned her at the party accusing her of instigating the emcee to give me a “public disgrace”. When my wife recounted to me what the lady had said, we had a good laugh. However, the truth is that a few years back, such an incident would have brought on a 3rd world war in our family.

Truly TESHO is our family life saver. The relationship we have with our kids, our star players is the subject of another discussion. FON THADDEUS Team Captain of FC FON, the winning team.

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