OMG!!! The test was positive. It was like a dream and she took a second look at the pregnancy test and it was a plus sign instead of the minus sign she had hoped for. But there were no symptoms, she wasn’t even throwing up or feeling nauseous; just her delayed period. I have to tell him, Richie needs to know about this before it becomes noticeable. But how do I break the news?
Bella was so excited when she got her call-up letter and it was Lagos, the fun-city. She was the pride of her father and her mother’s jewel; a vibrant young woman full of knowledge and wisdom. She had honours from the University of Sheffield, United Kingdom where she obtained a B.Sc (Hons) in Finance. After four years outside the country, she was happy to have returned home and in the comfort of loved ones, family and friends. She was too focused with her education that she gave no chance at all to relationships but now she wanted to find love, this was one of the things she looked forward to achieve in Nigeria. She fantasized about the Nollywood movies she had watched on the internet and blah blah blah…now it was time to face the real deal, so here she was in Lagos. It was the 7th of March and the long queue for NYSC registration had gotten out of the school gate when Bella arrived. She was shocked at the long queue; luckily for her there was someone who recognised her face from Corona Secondary school, her name was Lola. Lola and Bella were in the same class but it has been years since Bella left the country so she couldn’t recognise Lola. She beckoned on Bella and gave her a spot just in front of her, not minding the shouts and grumblings from others behind her in the queue. In less than 2hours, Bella’s registration was done and she had settled into camp; thanks to Lola.
The anticipated 3 weeks was like 3 months to Bella, she couldn’t wait for the 3rd week to elapse, infact after the 2nd week she couldn’t take it and wanted to leave camp. Lola persuaded her and told her about the Banky W show that night on camp and somehow Bella decided to stay back and see Banky live. Lola’s cousin was also coming that night to give her some stuff she requested from home. It was 45 mins before the show and Lola’s phone rang…Bella saw the caller ID (Richie) and after the call she teased Lola saying, “I thought you said you didn’t have a boyfriend, so who’s Richie?” Lola chuckled and told her Richie was her cousin and she can walk with her to the gate to meet him and see for herself. Not wanting to sit in the boring hostel alone, Bella went with Lola to meet her cousin. She hugged Richie and introduced him to Bella, h..h..hii (he stuttered), my name is Richard but you can call me Richie. With a smile on her face, she said ‘hi my name is Isabella but you can call me Bella’. Their hands were still held together and eyes stuck on each other; *cough cough*, Lola cleared her throat twice and that was what broke the chemistry that sparked between Bella and Richie. We have to go now, thanks for bringing this for me; please send my regards to everyone at home. That was the beginning of a new thing but Bella didn’t want to get so excited since she may not even see the guy again and she shrugged the thought away. Guess what? She was wrong.
Time they say flies and soon camp was over and Bella got posted to Zenith Bank, her branch was the head office in Victoria Island. On her way to work, she was trying to meet up with time so as not to go late to on her first day. She didn’t see the black camry pulling into the Ajose Adeogun round-about and with a sudden reflex she stepped on her brakes. Thank God for seat belts, she wasn’t launched forward to the wind-screen. With fury and anger she rained abuses to the guy and dashed off with a long hiss, mmssscchheww. The guy recognised the face and followed suit without her noticing. As she parked her car and stepped out, she saw the same car that almost caused her an accident and she wanted to formally apologise to the guy for the curses only to stop two steps away. He was smiling now as he saw the look on her face, he stepped out of the car and walked up to her.
Richie: Hi Bella, nice to meet you again.
Bella: Hi Richie, I can’t talk right now, it’s my first day at work.
Richie: I work on this street too, Oando. Can I call you sometime?
Bella: OK, here’s my number (she scribbled it down on a paper and handed it to him).
Richie and Bella soon got talking over the phone and gradually became fond of each other, one thing led to the other and soon they became RICHELLA. Bella was keen to tell Richie about her intentions to wait to get married before doing it and Richie respected her decision. He loved her and didn’t want to hurt her feelings but was also not going to wait that long even though he didn’t tell her. They soon became the talk of their friends and everyone was happy for them; none was seen without the other. 6 months later, Richie decided to surprise Bella on her birthday. He had planned a trip to Obudu Cattle Ranch and got her tickets ready. He begged Lola not to ruin the surprise as she was to trick Bella to accompany her to a colleague’s place where Richie will meet her. It worked, Richie popped out of the blues with tickets to the ranch. It was just for the weekend so it meant nothing, after all it was her birthday so Bella packed a few things and was off to the airport.
Richie also planned another surprise for Bella. It was her birthday and she had been lavished with so much love and affection, how could she say no to him? She loved him so much and he had promised to always be there no matter what happens. He was handsome, charming and romantic…she couldn’t resist him, the insatiable pleasures had engulfed her; all she wanted was to float away to Disney Land and live happily ever after. It started with a kiss on her neck; he nibbled on her ears and stroked her hair back and forth. She gave a deep moan, but she was caught in a dilemma between her heart and body. The heart says no but the body says yes; in a low tone she said, ‘No Richie, not yet’. I love you but…before she could finish her statement he kissed her lips and she lost her speech as she felt butterflies in her heart. ‘I love you Bella and want to spend the rest of my life with you, I want to have all of you-mind, body and soul and I’m giving all of me to you’. Those words melted Bella’s heart and she…she let her guards down.
The romantic getaway ended so soon and they went back to Lagos. Bella was glowing into the new week; she was so excited as she called Lola to gist her about her weekend. Her dreams to find love back home had come true and all she wanted was to lie in his arms all day long and forget about the world. After 3 weeks she remembered she had not seen her monthly visitor. She thought she had been stressed and just needed to take it easy with work. The next week, still nothing and this was when she started panicking. No it can’t be possible, she said; it was just once and can’t have any effect. Then she decided to buy the test kit and………….POSITIVE. Bella was pregnant. How do I explain to my parents that their daughter whom they trusted so much has brought shame to the family?
His phone rang, Richie there’s something I need to tell you; please can you come over to my place after work? He said OK and hung up. After work, he dashed over to her place, ‘baby is everything okay’? Not really Richie, I..I’m…, I think…, Richie held her hands and said ‘Bella you’re stuttering, what are you thinking about’? In a small and shaky voice, she said ‘I’m PREGNANT’!
‘No Bella, that’s not possible’. He took his hand off hers and asked, ‘is this some kind of joke’? She showed him the test kit and his countenance changed immediately; in a high pitch he said, ‘Bella it was just once and I was very careful’. I know I told you I want to spend the rest of my life with you but there are other things I have to put in place first and a baby isn’t one of them so you’ll have to terminate it. He gave her a mean and serious look and walked away; she slumped on the sofa and burst into tears. She clenched the pillow tight and bit her lower lips. It all felt like a dream and she wanted to wake up from this nightmare. The next day he sent her a cheque for the abortion and told her to choose between terminating the pregnancy and terminating the relationship. She called his phone to hear him say the words directly into her ears but he didn’t pick her call, Bella was shattered. He promised he will always be there for me but here I am… all aloneL. Abortion was not an option for her and she didn’t want to lose him but it seems she did already. Many have been laid on the slab of abortion and the thought of it alone made her feel like a murderer. Just in split seconds, RICHELLA was gone leaving poor ELLA standing alone. Dreams shattered, love lost, shame to bear and all she could mutter amidst tears was WHY??? I gave him my all but he still walked away at the mention of the word PREGNANT.
Since Richie wasn’t picking her call, she knew exactly what to do. She decided to talk to Lola and ask her to get in touch with Richie. Fortunately for her, there was a family gathering and Richie was in attendance. She was happy when she spotted his car in the car park, now she will confront him face-to-face and hear his response. He was chatting with a friend in the living room when Bella walked in. Recognising her face, Richie’s friend excused himself so they could have the privacy to talk. Bella was furious and asked Richie why he wasn’t picking her call; he acted like he didn’t hear what she said. Again, she asked ‘Richie, I’ve called you several times but you don’t pick up, why?’ This time he looked up and said, ‘Bella you know what to do so please stop asking me silly questions’; he got up and rudely walked out on her. To get his attention, Bella spoke out with tears in her eyes “you said you wanted to spend the rest of your life with me, i released myself to you because I trusted your words; now you abandon me in this state and ask me to do what you may have done to other women, abort our baby”. Everyone in the living room turned to Richie in amazement. He stood still, looking pale, shocked and embarrassed. His head was facing down, he couldn’t even look at his family. Finally, he summoned the courage to look up and his mother’s eyes alone sent chills down his spine; it was more hurting when she asked ‘RICHARD…why will you make her a mother if you don’t want to make her a wife’?
A PIECE OF ADVICE
Guys, why make her a mother when you have no intentions of making her your wife? I always believe that a man who respects a woman he claims to love will protect her dignity and value her worth. If really you love her and want to spend the rest of your life with her; walk the walk and not just talk the talk. PUT A RING ON IT and SAY I DO before putting her in the family way. Only a hunter and scavenger will treat a lady with such humiliation and subject her to a life of regrets.
Ladies, a moment of pleasure can cause you a life-time of regrets and sorrow. It is said that we are the weaker sex and our emotions are easily swayed with sweet words and TLC. YES, I agree but we are also STRONG. Sometimes all it takes is to turn that switch ON and take control of your body cos when the chips are down, you’ll be the one whose life pauses for 9months; you’re the one who is said to be irresponsible and turn out to be a disappointment. So before you let your guards down, be sure you have a husband to stand by your side not a boyfriend who’s stability is unsure.