FROM THE DIARY OF A SANE NON-CONFORMIST: 10/10/2014
If you’re reading this, it probably means that I have somehow found a way to get this across to you. It cannot be by chance, with me nothing happens by chance. You should know this by now.
This is not a love letter, neither is it an embodiment of hate. It is a sincere expression of the words I tried to say, thought to say, but did not say or said wrongly.
Walk with me, back to a time when you were 16, when we met, I remember the day I first saw you, not because you blossomed, but because I’ve always had a sharp memory. If you were beautiful, honestly I did not notice, I did not care to find out. How then did I find myself wanting to talk to you? I know how, I blame it on Tu Face …. Yes! I said it, Tu Face Innocent Idibia’s song “omo to shan” was to blame. I have never told you this before, I thought it would sound ridiculous, and it does, but its true. Listening to that song, I found myself shrouded in sweet reverie, and within the enclose of my imaginative faculty, I saw a face, one I strangely recognized, it was you. The girl I had never once looked at twice, the girl I had no intention of speaking to, the same girl who I would hear the Invigilator call “Retiola”, and the same girl who would sit next to me a few days later, and ask for answers, and called me “guy”. I remember my irritation at the sound of you singing “good morning” by Brymo. But I proceeded to befriend you, and the other boys disliked me for that.
The image of you I had in my head, the innocent, pure girl, the girl who I met at a time when I needed a change, you made want to be good. You could turn everything into a sermon, you told me you didn’t want your deeply religious brother seeing us together, I saw you become scared when your mother saw us that same day, you said “they won’t suspect anything since we weren’t alone” I thought it was nonsense, I was astonished Femi as you called him, didn’t trust you more, I wanted then to protect you, the only good girl I had ever known. That was the beginning of my prayers for you. You said you wanted to discover yourself, I said you should, if you had said you wanted to fly, I would have given you wings or at least tried to, I’m only human. I didn’t ask you how your exams were because I was scared to, but I prayed for you to always succeed, and I worried if you were being scolded at home, I was scared for you, I wanted to protect you.
I didn’t talk about dating. I respected you too much. But when you said you only visited boys you dated. I told you I cared about you, you reacted with hostility, we fought, you deleted, I apologized. I had then, a very big ego, but after we fought, I didn’t feel my pride, I just felt hungry, so I bought the most expensive biscuit in Uniben, me and my guy @Six chilled, talked and ate, my friends had all warned me about you, but we don’t always listen to our friends, even when we know we should. You asked me what I wanted, I said I didn’t know, and that was the truth, I didn’t know. But I told you I wanted you, and till today, I still don’t know what that meant. I gave it time, but I couldn’t let it go, this time we talked, while your cousin secretly listened, and she told you I was immature. She had never met me. You said I replied your messages too quickly, so you ignored my texts. You asked if I loved you, I said no, and I said I wasn’t talking about marriage either, I was 17. I told you you didn’t know where I was coming from, you didn’t understand, so you laughed and mocked me, told me to ask about you, that you were “that Warri girl”. You weren’t the person I thought you were, but neither was I the person you thought I was.
Anyone reading this would wonder what I ever saw in you, they would say you’re a cruel, psychotic, hypocrite, undeserving, fake, b**ch. They would say you were unworthy of my affection, as I once thought, but they don’t know you, even I barely knew you, I just told you I liked your teeth when you smiled, and your neck and your eyes. You said I was the only boy who talked to you the way I did, you thought you were the only girl I talked to, you were wrong, but I didn’t say anything, I just let you think that, if it made you happy, you said that you didn’t really know me, we talked everyday but we were strangers. I was drawn to you, I thought it was amazing how much we had in common. We were the same age when we lost our fathers in the same year, we never spoke about them, yours was a methodist and so was my mother, she even knew him, you attended the same school with my kid brother, you were my elder brother’s birthday mate, our dad’s lived in the same district, and when our families moved, we ended up living close to each other, it’s like we’ve been around each other our whole lives, but it would take 16 years before we would ever meet each other, only because we were posted to the same exam center. I’m not saying it was destiny, I’m just saying, we ignored a lot of fascinating things.
Now we have gone our separate ways, I’m on another continent three days away from you, but I still try to see how you’re faring, you still ignore me or start a sermon. I had to try and talk to you before writing this message, so that you would ignore me, and so that I will remember all you put me through, you never apologized, never said sorry for the way you treated me, not even once … never.
I don’t know if I’ll ever see you again, when I return you would be married, I would be a doctor. And when we meet, I would recognize you, and you would think I have grown so much, if we talk, I would not mention that a guy who claimed to be your ex told me you broke it off because he flirted too much and you were too stiff for him, in my opinion he was an idiot, I would not ask about your husband, for I would understand that one day you would meet someone and your “that Warri girl” stance would melt, and you cousin will like him and all your “ask about me” attitude would be story for the gods. But I would wonder if there was a little Kemi running around, and if she was as beautiful as her mother, but I doubt we would talk much, we would have responsibility, you would be more mature, so you won’t start a sermon, and I would have to run to the theatre to remove a pole from a man’s head, and for a while I would remember how I once felt about you, I won’t have time to remember the bad times, because the cries of a woman in labour pains would tear me away from my thoughts and I would rush to go bring a new life into this world. Then I would forget about you once again, and this time maybe forever.
I have finally figured it out, all this while dating you, kissing you, holding you in my arms all of which I never did, have never really been important to me. In truth all I ever wanted was for you to like me, to be there for you, to be your “friend”. I never got that chance.
I want you to do one thing for me, till we meet gain, if we meet again … be … a good person, and be happy.
The boy you never knew.