Everyone wants to be loved, to be cared for, to be special to someone and I am no exception. Perhaps even more so for me because of what I have experienced. A few years ago, I probably would never admit it. I would have said that I am merely rational, and the power of love is something fictional.
Not that I believe any different, I still don’t believe in true love’s kiss or soulmates and that love is enough for any relationship, but I agree that being loved feels good.
I grew up in what one would call a broken home. My father who was neither a good father nor husband left my mother for another. He wasn’t particularly bad, just a little too flirty and we never got along. Perhaps, guilt kept him from taking me away from my broken-hearted mother.
I never grew up thinking my parents were heroes; instead I understood the frailty of humanity and how unreliable love and people were. So, you could say I had trust issues. Sometimes I despised my mother for becoming a sobering mess after he left and letting me raise myself. It did teach me independence which I am grateful for.
Till I fell in love, at the ripe old age of 29, I realized how much I was in love with my recently deceased best friend Jidenna.
Jidenna was the most clingy, persistent and patient person I have ever met and that probably is why we became friends. Because of my ‘not so sweet’ personality, I didn’t have many friends; I guess they could tell that I either disdained or I pitied them or maybe they pitied me. The truth was that I felt that since people could not be trusted, relationships should be calculated by gains or losses. So, I took what I needed and gave them what I felt was required of me. Sometimes an ego boost or a listening ear.
But Jidenna was different; he was everywhere I looked, and he was never upset about how I saw him. He always stayed and soon enough I had lost count of how much I owed to him. That’s when we became best friends, and I started considering someone else before me. I would never admit it though, not to him or myself.
So, when Jidenna died, something in me broke.
I was a wreck!
I realized how trivial my fears were, compared to my love for him and that I didn’t want to live without him. It scared the shit outta me.
I was more frightened about how much of my mother I was becoming than about my tragic love story. So, I quit my job as a highly paid attorney in a corporate law firm to start my practice with Boma (one of the few friends I have).
Our practice focused on real estate and family law, but from time to time, we took a lot of pro-bono cases on human rights violation and trafficking. It was rewarding and helped me focus on something other than myself for a couple of years.
Despite my reserved personality, not many people were surprised when I agreed to marry Irikefe, my husband.
I met Kefe when I was pitching my recently established firm to a prospective client, which was only a year after Jidenna died.
I was not interested !!!
Not in friendship or companionship.
He was a successful practicing psychologist and public speaker and a whole ten years older than me. He was handsome, charismatic and had never been married.
How is that not suspicious !!!
But after waiting two years for some bizarre aspect of him to pop out, He wore me down. That is not to say that I settled for him or that I was lonely and took advantage of him. In some ways, he healed me. He had so much depth and knowledge and understood that logical reasoning was the only way to win with me and win he did. Because of him, I finally dared to visit Jidenna’s grave. To remember the things about us that I had forgotten and how good it felt to be special to someone.
Soon enough, visiting Jidenna’s grave became a habit, one that seemed to make Kefe jealous.
I found it unreasonable.
But I love Kefe, so I went only once a month which still did not seem to satisfy him.
That was years ago, I’m 35 now, with a successful firm that is branching out into teenage prostitute’s reformation. I have a wonderful husband that supports my dreams and helps give counseling to some of the teenagers that need it.
I am immensely grateful for my life, which probably is why I am currently unable to process what I am looking at on Kefe’s personal computer.
PS. My name is Uju Egware.