Friday, 3 November 2017

MY WIFE, MYSELF AND OUR BLOOD; A story of a love gone sour

   'Sometimes, love is not enough.' This is my own story.

It all started on a Thursday afternoon, after my usual interesting class for the day. The lecturer, Para, as we fondly called him, dazzled us all with his knowledge in the field and jokes and banters were top of the highlights of the class as usual. So I decided to unwind and chill at my isu-atewa (yam and beans) joint very close to the V.Cs office.

After ordering a plate of yam and peppered Ponmon (cow skin), this gently-slim and well-sculptured lady entered the joint. Assuming she were an animal, I would have called her zebra. If she were a bird, peacock is the right nick for her. If she were in heaven, that means she is an angel.

Well, at first, I thought to myself, this isn't your calling bro. But I was amazed as she made her order. She ordered exactly what I ordered and she sat on the vacant chair at my table. Well, I had a rethink, maybe this is my chance to see what my calling is at the moment or not.

After about five minutes of staring at her through the corner of my left eye, ‘Sorry to disturb you milady, but it is very rare to see ladies come in here, make order and sit to eat, I said after many moments of reluctance. She smiled without a word, looked at me, and had a bite on the peppered and soft ponmon. Well, perhaps you are the one in a million girl I do hear all around, I said obviously to compliment her. This time, she had swallowed the bite on the ponmon and she responded with a big smile, 'I get all these whenever I come here to eat. Guys do say that I am the only lady that eats here and as you can see, I am the only one here right now. I eat here every Thursday.'

Wow!, I  responded. And from there, we started talking and I gisted her about the lecture I had that day and about the lecturer. She had enough reasons to laugh and laugh. Well, I 'get' skills for 'womanology'  and I am just too good at winning  a girl's heart with jokes and lively chit-chats.

After several minutes of gisting over plates of yam and peppered ponmon, I finally found my brain.

"My name is Kay, sorry I didn't introduce myself earlier", I said with that 'Yoruba demon' smile plastered on my face. And with a smile, she responded, "call me Dammy."
We then shook hands with lots of smiles and big grins. We also exchanged numbers. You wouldnt expect me not to collect her phone number nah when I no be 'Õgbęni Nàgęrę'.

We started talking over the phone and Whatsapp did saved me some airtime. It went on and on for about three months before I fnally asked her out at our usual Thursday shrine (the joint), as we fondly called it and she agreed without much hesitation. We were both level mates. She studied English and I studied Mass communication. We graduated and we both started working. She works with a newspaper organization while I work as a media consultant.

We had been dating for about five years and everybody expects us to tie the knot soon. But on a Thursday afternoon (Thursdays have become our special day from the university), I had prepared my mind for whatever will happen. Today na today, I said with lots of confidence. I got to the venue of our date earlier than I used to. And twenty minutes later, my Madam Dearest walked in majestically and regally. She was putting on a fitting blue gown and a light make up.

Make I no lie you ehn, I lost balance at the first sight. I can't really explain how beautiful she was that day. It was as if she knew my plans.  I was lost in the view of this look and didn't notice when she got to where I was sitting with my well-ironed starched shirt. I just got a new body spray and I smelt like a prince from Kuvukiland.
"Hey charming", she greeted.

 I just looked at her with a stern look and replied with an emotionally starved hi. She paused for a while and I could see how puzzled she was.

"What’s wrong with you, Teminikan?" She asked with a confused look.

"Nothing, I responded shaking my head here and there like an Agama lizard.

She looked at herself and I could send she was wishing a mirror would appear so she could have a look at herself to see whether it was her dress or make-up that was the issue.

"I have something to tell you", I said with a very weak and worried voice and she sensed something was actually wrong and instantly became uncomfortable.

"Dammy, this isn't a good time and as you can see, I didn't order anything except this bottle of water", I said raising the bottle of water to show her. Then I looked straight into her eyes and continued with her right palm held firmly with my left fingers.

"I am sorry to say this on this special day of ours; for years now, you have been a very good partner and a great shoulder to lean on. But I'm sorry, our friendship will have to hit the rock", I said with all the seriousness I could gather.

Hearing this, she took her palm from me and felt like saying something, but the state of surprise she was couldnt let her. She went pale and her eyes were already laced with tears but she fought hard to stop the tears from rolling down her cheeks.

 "I know this will shock you but I have no other choice than to tell you. I want this friendship to stop. I don't want you as my girlfriend anymore. I am sorry Dammy, I can’t just continue." I said  throwing the last genade.

 Even though she tried harder, the tears still found a way to roll down her cheeks and she went mute and downcast. She couldnt believe all I was saying.

" You are joking right?" She asked. "I am very serious", I replied her.

Before she could say another word and act irrationally, I decided to tell her the truth because I was already feeling guilty for making her cry.

"I want you to be my wife, my eternal, my soul mate, the mother of my kids, the first person I want to see in the morning and the last person I want to see at night."

Slowly, her downcast head began to rise and a look filled with mixed feeling could be read on her face.

With a little smile, I added, "you are the woman I have always  dreamt of, and I have made up my mind. You are the only one I love."

 Then I grabbed her trembling hand and asked, "Will you marry me?"

I was expecting to hear her say a resounding Yes but what I got was a heavy slap, the type that will make you see your ancestors where they are in heaven which didn't miss its way because it landed on my right cheek, but I understood.

 Rather than a yes, she dragged me to herself and kissed me deeply. I could see the tears rolling down her cheeks. Yes! Yes!! Yes!!! I will marry you now and in the other life, if it is possible, she said with lots of emotions.

She had been expecting this, I thought to myself. The day was like no other day. We had lots of fun. I made her do her make up again and we took lots of pictures and for the first time, I posted her pictures on my social media accounts. Trust friends and family now, Wow! Wow!! Wow!!! They were sounding like police escorts on the pictures.

Our love radiated like the early morning sun. It spread across the two families and believe me, I never had any reason to look at any other woman twice.

Let me break the ice on this, it was after the proposal that I had canal knowledge of her. She was still untouched. Although, I had made several advances when we were dating but she told me she would give in to no other man but her husband. Well, the two families started the wedding pressure. 'You are both old enough, working and doing just fine', our parents would say on and on.

Well, we began all the necessary steps to finalise our bound. All this while, we never bothered to ask each other about our blood groups and genotypes. To cut the story short, we both decided to visit a specialist hospital for all the necessary checkups.

 We were told to come the second day for the test results. We were both sure we were free from any form of disease or complication. But I had one doubt and a silent prayer, I know I am AS but she had never checked hers. So I have been praying she should be AA.

We went back to the hospital the second day and the doctor asked to see me in private. The doctor told us that the test results showed that we are both AS. We felt very bad about this. I have heard different people share their experiences about AS and AS union and the implications.

Trust women, she cried all day and through the night. I was the only pacifier; the pacifier that needed to be pacified too. I had to be strong so as to make her strong. Dammy has always been a very strong woman but that day, I couldn't explain what was going on with her.

We then decided to go to our pastor to inform him of what the situation was. Truly speaking, he said technology has opened our eyes to many things, especially the dangers in AS marrying another AS.

But trust love-birds, we told the pastor that there is nothing God cannot do; as he used to preach on the altar on Sundays and every other day.

After much talk and deliberations, my wife and I decided to go on with our marriage plans. We told our individual family that all is well. In our silent nights, we prayed and even had a seven days fast, for God to surprise us and never give us a sickle cell carrier as a child.

We had the wedding. It was colourful and was the talk of the town for months. After three months, she was confirmed to be two-months pregnant. Oh! We were going to have our first child. We argued over names for days; just like many new couples will do. After all the name wahala, we agreed that if it is a boy, I will pick the name and should she be a girl, she will pick the name. Seven months after, it was a boy. Omokunrin lanti lanti, as the Yorubas fondly call a new baby boy. I gave him Miracle and Precious.

We decided within us that we will take him to the hospital to check his genotype when he is six months old. My dear, he died when he was four months old. It then dawned on us that he could have been a sickle cell carrier.

It was a painful experience and sympathisers came as expected to console us. We alone knew where the shoe pinched.

After some months, she conceived again. Let me save you the details; it was another sickle cell carrier. This time, the baby boy didn't die peacefully even though he died at age three. He was always in and out of the  hospital. We thought we could save him. I even sold two out of my three cars and my wife sold the plots of land given to her as inheritance from her grandfather.
Semilore almost made us live in a rented apartment before his demise.

All our happy years turned to sorrow. We lost almost everything within a short period. He would be too cold in the mornings and extra hot at nights. There was no moment of happiness over the baby. I can’t even remember the last time we called each other pet names. Believe me, things are very hard right now for the family. I can’t even kiss her not to talk of making another baby.

This now brings me to the question: Should we continue or go our separate ways? Taking a look at my wife and how we started,  I don't want to lose her. But, at the same time, happiness has disappeared from our union.

Right now, I have travelled away from home in the guise of securing a contract, but I am staying with a friend in Ibadan, just to plan what next to do.

Kindly drop your beautiful thoughts on this in the comment's section.

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