Tears rolled down her cheeks, her lips shook violently, the girl I had grown up with.
We had bathed together, fought over panties and Christmas dresses, she had watched me grow hairs and breasts and become a woman by the time I saw my menstrual period, we had laughed together when I told her I thought I had a cut and might bleed to death.
She had seen a new perspective of life while we bowed our heads in deep sorrow and anger, it was a mixture of both feelings for me; a baby was on the way.
“Ng, I will abort this baby”
“you have to abort it” a friend supported
“Gini, I won’t watch you abort that baby” I said taken by surprise
“he doesn’t want it and I want nothing to do with anything from him”
Her pains spoke more than her words, she was ready to risk her life just to be alienated from him.
More than the complications, the culture was against it but her pains ran deeper than that.
“I would rather die than have his baby, this man hurt me deeply” her bushy hair was packed afro style but almost began to look like a load was balanced on it, it swayed gracefully and sensually side to side.
I listened, hands supporting my jaws, I fought back the tears that stubbornly gathered at the corner of my eye, if I blinked I was sure to let them flow but one of us had to be stronger
“I know you are hurt, but let’s keep the baby”
Much struggle, argument and agreement, mum and dad were on top of the matter.
She smiled up and nodded.
She stayed with us, the stomach grew and became visible: to avoid questions, she travelled down to the village, nine months gone; pains, morning sickness, extra weight, sleeps and stomach ache, a lot accompanied it but she remained strong like an iroko tree about to be cut at the root, almost like yesterday ; a baby girl came out of the heartbreak, fresh like today, beautiful, skin like glass I could see through them (no, am not exaggerating, she was a sight to behold and she still is a beauty).
Her Mother was disappointed, father felt he failed them but I was more fulfilled, a child has come into the world, no matter how anyone saw it and judged the situation, she remained an innocent bundle of love and joy.
She came back with the child, we stayed together, baby girl grew picking words of wisdom from elders and beaten by the sun
The harsh sun beaten against their umbrella, they were trekking back from compulsory hospital visits, baby strapped to her back; they needed a bike.
Over a plate of good food; head bent over, nodding to the beats of the season. She stared at the bundle of joy that reminded her of her foolishness, wave of guilt and regret flushed through her system, this time she smiled better and fulfilled.
“I met him” she said. Another smile trailed her lips forcing her chubby cheeks to look more like lumps of cooked beef.
“The father of my child, he was shocked, he thought I had died or probably locked up somewhere in the dark, he was surprised I had a healthy child, he even wanted to touch her, gave us some stupid change, I rejected it”
“I and my child are not hungry, we feed well”
“Ng, I took off my pants for the wrong man, my skin cringed while I beheld him”.
“he denied me, said I wasn’t educated enough for him” one could sense the bitterness in her speech.
“I felt like killing him but I won’t want him to stay alive and see us survive want to see him kneel and regret his actions”
“it would be difficult to raise her, but she is going to grow up fine, I will make sure of that”
I smiled again
She was different from the voice I had interacted with a year ago when the pain of rejection was heavy on her.
Years rolled by, years keep rolling, baby is growing surrounded by love from people that care, she has become stronger and appreciative.
A promise of marriage on basis of pregnancy first isn’t proposal at all.
Does it mean nothing else attracts him to you except the fact that he expects a child, which means no child no you? Got it? No child no you
You invisible, child -visible.
It may not be easy but you have got to wait on the lord.