I am lying face down on the cold tile in my one room apartment, trying hard to forget the pain I feel in my stomach. I let my thoughts wander back and forth, to the first day I met ufuoma and the day he dropped me off at the hospital.
I was only twelve years old when I first met Ufuoma, the man whom I hopelessly fell in love with. I had accompanied my older sister to her friends birthday party. When we got there, a handsome young man came to greet us in. From my own assessment , he was in his early twenties. He gave my sister a very tight hug and told her she was welcome. But for me , he gave me a peck on my cheek and smiled a quick small smile. I was too embarrassed to believe what happened because I Had never gone that close to a man who was neither my brother nor father.
“What is your name little princess ?” He asked looking straight into my eyes.
“Ani”, I replied clearing my throat in search of my lost voice. That was where our friendship began.
When I finally caught up with my sister, I just stood beside her like a glue board while she drank and chatted away happily.
I was so lost in thoughts that I only realised that. Power had been restored after my neighbours shouted ” up NEPA”. I stood up to turn on the celling fan, but to my horror Ufuoma was standing at my door. I hissed and turned away without saying a word to him.
“Ani i am really sorry” he said
“I couldn’t stand being at the hospital to see you go through all that pain”. He opened his arms wide and I walked in crying, sobbing as if he was the solution to all my problem when infact he was the major cause. Ufuoma knew well that it only took him the words “sorry” to get my heart back when ever he wronged me. Even when I caught him sleeping with my friend , he said sorry to me. I forgave him but as for my friend , we became sworn enemies.
I dug my fingers into his chest and wept. “I wanted to have that baby” I said in a shaky voice.
At this Ufuoma held me some distance away from himself.
“Don’t say that again”, he said . “You are just too young for that. The abortion was the best decision we made”.
I hated myself over again, here i was in ufuoma’s arms. The man who was responsible. For my pains but I couldn’t help myself. He was the first man I loved, the first man to make love to me.
“Do you love me” ? I asked him looking into his eyes demanding nothing but the truth.
He looked away before he answered.
“Ani we have gone through this before”.
I repeated my question. And this time Ufoma gave me an answer.
There was no guilt in his eyes, all I could see was shame.
“I am trying to love you” he whispered.
My sobs grew louder but I still clung on to him.
“I love you” I said.
He kissed my fore heard and pushed me away as if I hard a contagious disease..
He dropped the drugs and food he brought on the table while I starred at him in shock.
“You are just too good for me, just too young” he said before he walked out the door. When I heard the sound of the closed door, I jumped on my bed and held my pillow. I cried into It until my eyes hurt. Then I kept whispering “I love you!!!” Till I finally fell asleep.