As I knelt before him in apprehension, I watched him closely, trying to read through his thoughts.
His eyes were filled with confusion and disappointment. He picked his phone from his pocket, and went to his browser like he meant to google what kind of punishment I deserved; then he typed in the familiar words- www.facebook.com.
I became even more scared. What exactly was he planning to do? In seconds, the browser took him to his homepage, then he clicked on his profile information and waited for it to load. It was at times like this that the network seemed to always cooperate, I thought angrily! He scrolled through his page in an unfamiliar manner, taking his time to read the little detail he had there.
I didn’t have to read along with him, as I already knew it all by heart. .
Birthday: 15th of June
Relationship: In a relationship with Sandra Peters
A man of little words, I thought to myself.
I watched him anxiously; wondering what next he was going to do, and why he decided to log in at that moment. . .
Almost immediately, he scrolled up a little, and clicked on Sandra Peters. I was scared. What is he up to? I asked myself.
He checked my info, saw my picture and smiled. Then he scrolled down a bit more and read every detail carefully again.
Birthday: 15th of May
Relationship: In a relationship with Kelechi George
Quotes: Be yourself.
Be yourself, he echoed and gave a short laugh.
Bio: Simple, honest and sophisticated.
University (postgraduate): Oxford University
University: University of Bedforshire
He gave another short laugh again, as more tears filled my eyes. Why me? Why this?!
After a long while, he looked at me, stood up and walked out. .
Out! Out of my life forever, I thought.
Sitting in hopeless fear, I thought of how things would have been if I hadn’t lied. . Or perhaps, if Tina hadn’t been such a back stabber to tell out on me. Why me Lord? Why?
Drenched in my own rain of tears, I surrendered to despair, as I closed my eyes in weariness.
I don’t know how long it was that I slept, but I remember very well that it was a heavy kick in my butt and screams of joy or perhaps, surprise, that woke me up from my sleep; on the arrival of my aunt and her children.
‘Ifeoma Sandra Peters!’
I stood before her in fear and shame, as I responded to her call.
‘Where have you been?’
‘Aunty, I . . I . . ‘
‘You? Oya o, ayam listening, ngwanu!’ She retorted in her usual Igbo accent.
A quick rush back of the days event threw me at her feet.
‘Aunty I am sorry. I am very sorry, please forgive me. . . I know I have been ungrateful aunty; I know you have been good to me, and even taken me as one of your children. Aunty I am sorry for being a bad example to my younger ones, aunty please. . . .’
On and on I went, pleading with her in all sincerity. I exhorted her, and called her even beautiful names that she wasn’t. I didn’t expect her to draw me into her arms and tell me its alright because that was very unlike the poor woman, who had over embraced poverty that there was not even a little space left for her to embrace her kids. I just hoped that my sincerity would move God to help me touch her heart of stone. I had truly learnt my lesson, and was ready to behave like the ifeoma, that I am!
‘. . . . Aunty please I promise. . . .’
‘Enough!’ The thunderous command forced my speech to a halt as I fluttered my eyes wide open.
She seemed at the verge of tears. Did I say something wrong? Did I. . . .?
I saw her stretch her arms forward gesturing for a hug.
‘Come here!’ She commanded again.
She should be in the military, I thought to myself!
I was happy as I closed into her warm bosom. It felt good- like I was home again.
‘Thank you Aunty. Thank you for understanding. . .’
Only then did I feel the hands of the three ‘little rascals’ around me. Damn! That night was bliss, except that something was missing; or rather someone- Kelechi George.
The next day, I went over to Tina’s apartment where I had been staying since I decided to be a ‘BIG GIRL’. On seeing her, it was obvious that she was uncomfortable, and even more obvious that she wanted me to put up a fight; but it seemed I had miraculously grown over that one day. All I wanted to do was take my things, and leave! Leave her, her house, her lifestyle, her choices, her opinions; basically just leave the new me, that was totally made up of her!
I decided it was time to take control of my life again, embrace that small family, wealth and life that there ever was, and appreciate everything the little I have can afford.
Even if I had lost someone’s love, I felt the need to win back my life; then maybe, just maybe I could win back my love. . .
Ii moved back into the school campus, focused on my studies, and went over to my auntys house during every school break. I helped her with her tailoring business when I was chanced, and sent her some money from the little I made as a hairdresser at school.
Of course, it was hard trying to re- adjust but I tried my best to stay focused and determined. Though my chances with Kelz seemed awfully slim, as he refused to pick my calls or even reply my text messages and emails; a part of me told me there was still hope because for some reason or the other, each time I checked my facebook profile, my relationship status still remained intact, untouched, as though nothing happened. He had to have a reason for that, because the Kelechi I know would never be without a reason for something as crucial as that.
Year after year, I kept up, trying to be better than I was, and hoping and believing that someday everything would be fine again. So many guys had asked me out but I declined as I kept assuring myself that Kelechi would pick up my call someday, or maybe even call me himself; and that someday may be the next day or maybe even the moment I decide to let that other fine guy into my life; or perhaps that moment I decide to take that my first kiss that I’ve always been dreaming of. . .
And God knew, I wasn’t ready to disappoint him, not once more!
So many times, he posted really romantic updates that got me totally sure he had forgiven me. Only for me to call him and have him not pick my calls again.
One day, out of rage, I broke my sim and bought a new one; only to find myself reciting his number by heart in an attempt to call his phone again.
Damn him, damn him, damn him! I screamed!
Doesn’t he realise I would someday get tired of trying to call him, or trying to make him forgive me? What if he was the one that made that mistake? What if this, what if that?
I cried my eyes out over and over, and finally, after two years of constantly trying to get him back, I just QUIT and let him be! When he’s ready, he’d come back, that I was sure of.
A year after, on completing my NYSC, my job hunt began. I submitted my CV to various organisations and after six months of series of interviews and tests in various organizations, I got a job in my dream place of work- Unilever!
I was over- excited.
On my birthday, exactly a month since I settled in my place of work, I went to my facebook profile to update my information.
Quotes: Every disappointment is a blessing in disguise.
Bio: I am a 1st class graduate of Accounting from the prestigious university of first choice.
Heartbroken but happy, and hoping to be happier. . .
University: University of First choice.
I felt renewed as I typed in those words that were once mere lies, but now were my world; my reality.
Just as I was about to log out, I received an Inbox message which read.
”Hi Sandra, my name is Kelechi George, a 29 year old first class graduate of economics. I work at Mobil as a manager. I would love to know more about you. Please, kindly inbox me your details as well as your bb pin. Thank you.’
I was overwhelmed. My face was wreathed in smiles even as tears trickled out of my eyes, and my hands shook on my qwerty keys.
Yes I now own a BB, and No, ‘maga no pay!’ I bought it with my money, of course, when it was the cheapest it could be. My aunt still lives in the heart of Ajegunle, but I now call her mama. My then cousins, now siblings have grown so big and very beautiful and good looking. The house has been repainted, we now pay our bills regularly. Everything is now fine, and I don’t need a man to make me and my family happy; I just need to do well at work, get paid and better my lot. But do I still love Kelechi? Why did it take him so long?
Just then, my phone rang. It was a strange number. I picked it up anyway.
‘Thank you. Who’s this?’
‘How did you get my number?’ I questioned angrily.
‘I have my ways. . ‘
‘Ok fine, your aunt!’
I just wanted to cut his call off and slam the phone on the ground, and in fact I did. . . The former alone of course!
Later that day, I received a visitor. It was Kelechi again.
Looking up from my table, I met his gaze; his chocolate brown sexy round-eyed gaze. Oh damn! How I’ve missed this man.
I swallowed hard. I couldnt dare to stand up because I was sure my legs would make me run to him. And no, he didn’t need that at the moment. He needed some attitude!
‘What can I do for you?’ I questioned in my meanest look.
Damn him for knowing he had charm!
‘Will you marry me?’ He questioned going down on one kneel without moving any closer.