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In Love With A Man

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I want to share this story told by a dear friend that I wrote down with you hoping that you solve the puzzle I have been looking for the solution. Here the story goes:

We met on the 11th December, 2012. This lady is chummy and sonny. Her beauty is rich for use. Her smile radiates with some forces of illumination. In short, she is a beauty. Although, beauty is in the eyes of the beholder! And I have seen this in her!

She did one or two publicity stunts to provoke me for some days we were relating. But as I had nursed myself towards WOMEN EDUCATION, I remained unprovoked. She later told me that she was doing all that to test the man in me. She later gave me an oral report card thus: “You are mature in heart.”

We became close friends, very dearly. No romance, please.

It was long that I had been looking for a woman like her. I needed not to know (date) her for years before I could make my intention known to her. From the day one, I told her that she was the woman that I had been waiting for. She always chuckled, whenever I said that.

Apart from her beauty, her smile is the most selling points of hers.

She one day complimented me for what she observed was the personality in me and broke the jinx that I had been waiting for in anticipation: “I have a boyfriend, but I wonder where you had been these years that I was looking for your person.”

Her testament did not bother me since they were not married.

“Was your boyfriend it who sponsored your university programme?” I had asked.

“No!” she said in affirmative. That was my problem, and it was cleared.

I knew that if a woman likes a man and is of age, she is ready to let go her courtship of many years for the serious man who wants to go see the parents for the marriage rituals to begin. I was so curious of this and was seeking her consent to allow me come with my people to her village during the past yuletide for marriage introduction. She was pondering. And that never happened. When she gave me the address of her village was the day that I was returning from the village to Port Harcourt. As my town is not too far from hers, I branched there with my small cousin. She was so happy, and introduced me to the parents, whom I later dropped at a function within their area, and zoomed off.

But one thing played in their compound before the parents: This lady handed me two of her bags. I was agape. She said that she would be coming to collect them as soon as she visits her brother and her boyfriend in Owerri and returns to Port Harcourt. I kept mum.

As I got to Port Harcourt, we kept chatting on phone like people who had known each other for years. She's a brain. The unique thing about her was that she was brought up in the village, just like I. We had the same childhood orientation. We were flowing. She knows the Igbo culture just as I do.

When I fell sick on the 7th January, 2013, she was calling me from her brother's place in Owerri, asking how I was feeling. She had not gone to her boyfriend's place.

She went to visit her boyfriend on the 10th January, 2013. She called and told me as she was about to leave her brother's house, and we had the moment on phone together. I told myself that I would not call her at her boyfriend's place, since she had given me the assurance that she was interested in me for marriage. But one thing happened: She didn't call me again to know how I was fairing with my health.

Between 10th and 12th should be about two days, no communication. I hid my number and called her to ascertain her position, if she was safe. We discussed for seconds. I asked her why she didn't care to call or send sms to know the state of my health. “Nothing,” was her response, and she laughed, and I cut the call. Some minutes after, I sent her a sms alerting her of the need why I have to go to the hospital because of my health. She didn't reply, and had not been replying to many of my texts, albeit most ladies are good at this. No prejudice, intended!

The straw that I think is about to break the camel's back was that she called later and apologised that I should help her send her belongings which she kept in my custody to her cousin who lives in my neighbourhood. She gave her reason thus: “My fiancé said that I will not be coming to Port Harcourt for some time now.” I said, “Okay, I will do just that as soon as I recover.” Not upto five minutes again, she called and said, “My fiancé said that he is not happy with your calls.” I did not want to put her straight because of the state of my health. I've not been calling her since she went to visit her “Fiancé”. I told her, “Okay.”

On my sick bed, I have been ruminating if her later outbursts were also part of her examinations of me to know how faithful I was towards my proposal, or was she saying for real? Where did I go wrong? Even if she did not want me again, I thought it was something we were supposed to sit down and talk over and remain good friends, instead of her indirect derogation of my person. I am finding it very difficult to afford missing or losing this rare gift of nature. But what can I do! If I miss her, I must say, such is life. The annoying side of the long story that was cut short is that she says she loves me but she is the first to hate me.

Odimegwu Onwumere, Poet/Author, Media/Writing Consultant and Motivator, is the Coordinator, Concerned Non-Indigenes In Rivers State (CONIRIV); and Founder, Poet Against Child Abuse (PACA), Rivers State, Nigeria

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Articles by Odimegwu Onwumere