Tick tock… Tick tock.
It’s hours later when it hits me. Mutale would have come by to visit me right at this time on a Saturday. I look at the wall clock watching the time tick away.
Why am I looking at this clock counting seconds?
What if he shows up? What if he’s finally realised what he’s missing and he comes by?
Get it together Yolanda. You are stronger than this I tell myself. You are the Queen of moving on so move on.
But I miss him. What am I supposed to do with my Saturdays now?
A typical Saturday for us involved Mutale coming by my flat at eighteen thirty; dinner at nineteen at whichever restaurant was the pick of the week – me paying at the end of dinner; going out clubbing – me paying too – and then heading back to my house for a sleepover and other things that made beds break; he always said my bed was the best he ever slept on, something about being well rested when morning came; but today will be different. He’s not coming by. He’s never coming by. Cut the hope, burn the rope -bridge too – I need to find my way forward. I’m still not going to cry over the idiot. How dare he.
Time is moving slower today more than ever. Why do breakups slow time? Is it because the brain is so stuck in memory land that it chooses to relive all painful memories over and over again I wonder. But then again how does that slow time? I’m losing it. I should have convinced the ladies to stay longer because now I’m facing silence and the silent treatment never worked for me. Gosh Mutale why did you do this. After everything I gave up for you.
I was the perfect girlfriend. The one men around Zambian men claim they wanted for themselves. The so called lady in public and freak in the bed. The never burden your man with bills. Always hopeful something good will come his way. I was it to the core. And isn’t that what Mutale said he loved about me? My ability to look past his lower than nothing status. He could show me off to the world and be proud that I stood by him through his worst and when it came to our -my -bedroom that lady he showed the world off to would turn into a… well a very nice girl. I should have seen the truth. I ignored it all. And for what? Because I fell in love with him against my better judgement.
Who the hell falls for an unemployed man in his thirties?
Was he ever really unemployed? Or maybe he lied about that too just so he could use me for my money. Why am I doubting him now? I know he loved me. I know he had close to nothing to his name. His home that was more of a house told me so. Gosh I hated his bed too. But what if he had another home, I mean which sensible woman – I know I’m not sensible – would want a broke ass unemployed man with horrible bedsheets. Unless she paid for his bills while he told me he was a hustler. Lies. Men can be gold diggers too
Eighteen fifty-four and twenty seconds.
Eighteen fifty-four and thirty seconds.
Now I’m counting seconds too. I’m waiting in my living room waiting, still hoping I hear a knock on my door and hear him cough. I should have done what I always did when I met him, used him, tagged him and thrown him out. But no. I didn’t. I let myself get caught up in dating a normal guy for a change. No more playing. No more games. No more lodges and secrets, instead I opted for a simple honest relationship that had a future. I should have slapped him the first day I met him in the club. Or even better I should never have given him my number altogether because I wouldn’t be in this situation. Dealing with a breakup.
When was the last time I was dumped I wonder? That long. I gave up on love. I gave up on the elusive one until Mutale made me change that view. It was the way he made me feel. Special. I didn’t have to share a man. I didn’t have to worry about wives and other girlfriends. No. All I worried about was if I had the perfect lingerie and I shaved right for Mutale. And now I know that was all a sham. Oh well. It was good while it lasted I guess. Can’t go wallowing in self-pity forever. No way.
He’s not coming and I need a drink as soon as possible. I pick up my phone off the sofa and scroll through my contact list. Shaking my head at the names that scroll passed. This just plain sucks. Who would have thought I’d resorted to looking through contact lists for old friends I had then. I wish I could just see my ladies right now. They would know what to say. Breakups always hit you hard when you are alone. That’s when they break hearts. Idle hearts that is. I can’t stay home. I need to leave and get me a drink. I stand up from the sofa and head to my bedroom. Our bedroom. I painted the room brown for him, gosh I even changed the bedding colours just for him because he loved brown. All for him. And now I’m stuck with the ugly colour. I pick up my handbag from the bed without looking at anything else in the room. I can’t be here right now. I’m still in shock maybe. I head out of the room and quickly head to the livingroom picking up my car keys off the livingroom table.
Nineteen zero three.
I wear my black ankle boots quickly and head to the front door. See you later home I think to myself as I open the door and gasp. I take a step back when someone steps in front of me. Hand on my chest I look up and smile.
I knew he would come.
A little wine never hurt nobody. That’s what Fergie should have sang in her song. I sip my wine and place the half empty – I prefer half full – glass on the table.
I turn and face my eleven year old daughter, Samba and smile. She has in her hand a book and she places in on my laps. I take the book and I can tell it’s all mathematical stuff.
“Home work done. You have to go through and see if it’s correct.” She says happily.
I look at her, then the book then back at her. She has my eyes. Big and brown. Her nose is small like her grandmother’s – my mother’s, it’s cute. She also has my lips, the naturally pink ever beautiful ones. I see Chinyama in her too. I know she will be beautiful when she grows up. Hopefully she won’t make the same mistakes as me. I regret my choice of thought in that instant. She is not a mistake. She’s my daughter. My most precious child. The child who defined my life. Her long natural hair is tied up in a bun on top of her head. She has a slim face that reminds me of myself when I was young and slimmer. I miss those days. Samba sits next to me on the sofa and I put my arm around her shoulders and kiss her forehead. She laughs at me. Children. Typical. I miss the days when she was a baby and her life depended on me. How time flies. I will have to look at this homework before I go to bed.
I’m the perfect mother.
“I will look at this before bed.” I say slowly.
“Okay. That’s okay.” She responds.
“Knowing you, every answer is correct.”
“They have to be.”
Sampa lifts her head and our eyes meet. Her brown and my brown. I carried her for nine months. This is my baby. One of my babies.
“Where are your brothers?” I ask
“In the bedroom playing.” She responds.
“Please go and check on them. Make sure they clean up the toys off the floor.” I respond.
Samba stands up and walks out of the livingroom. Soon she will be a teenager and I will start counting down to her going to university. Not tonight. I stand up from the sofa reaching for my glass as I leave the room, my feet getting warmed from the lush dark carpet. Chinyama has spolit me for the worst. Not that it’s a bad thing. No. I leave the livingroom and my eyes run over the tall vases in the hallway, pieces of Zambian art that litter the walls as I head to the kitchen. Modern with a touch of tradition is what I would call my home. And I love every inch of my home. Chinyama made sure when he built the house that everything modern on the planet would be in it. From the bedrooms to the garage. Never lack for anything he would say. And yet I find myself wanting more and never really feeling happy most days.
I reach the kitchen and gulp the remaining wine in the glass, place the glass on the marble table next the stove. Time to cook. I have not heard a word from Chinyama since the day he left the message. Not one single phone call. I have no idea if he is alive or not. So unlike him to leave me in the dark. I hate being put in this position. But I’m sure he doesn’t care. Men. I pick up my cooking stick and take the lid off a pot of boiling porridge. Time to cook Nshima. My best friends have always wondered why I still cook and clean when I have maids to help me. Well I’m a house wife. All I can do is cook, eat, take care of my home and raise my children. Ohhh and drink.
After eleven years of marriage it has become so engraved in me that I don’t think I can do anything else. It’s the least I can do and besides I’m not willing to trust a maid with cooking my husband’s food and clothes. These maids and their black magic trash ruining homes every month these days. I’ll cook thank you very much. Besides Chinyama is a picky man when it comes to his food abd clothes. Only I understand what he needs and how. So the maids in my house are there to take care of the home and the kids when I’m not home. That’s it. They do not go anywhere near my matrimonial bedroom and my husband’s clothes. Ever. I do all the cleaning for Chinyama. That’s how it’s been for eleven years. To think I’m only thirty now. I burn my finger slightly and wince.
Everyday I cook Nshima. I cook his favourite meals. Even when he is away I will still cook what he loves just in case he comes home. Who knows when he will show up. Eventually he shows up. There are times I’ve thought of following him to see what he does but I never go through with the plan. I’m afraid of finding out the horrible truth that my husband must be cheating on me with a younger version of me, probably some twenty-two year old UNZA student. Or maybe NIPA. Gosh. Paranoia becomes me. I choose to use the ignorance is bliss statement. It hurts at the end of every night when it all comes down to he still won’t touch me like he used to. It’s like I have become the most unattractive woman in his eyes. I have no idea how it happened. Probably when I became fat.
Sex became a joke for him. Something to plan. Maybe he is tired of me. Eleven years of marriage is no joke. It is a crazy. Gosh if Chinyama and I did not fight tooth and nail to make us work we would be divorced today and maybe much happier. Who knows. But we made us work. And three beautiful kids later we gave up. We gave up within the home but to the world we were perfect. We should call it quits and move on I think. I place the lid on the pot of almost ready Nshima and place the cooking stick above the lid and walk to the refrigerator. I take a bottle of chilled sweet white wine and pour the liquid in my empty glass. This is why I drink. To help me feel numb. To help move forward. I do this for my children. I stay with Chinyama for our children. I take a sip and smile. Well at least he makes sure I have good wine in the house. I feel my phone vibrate and I take the phone from my pants pocket.
So I found your number
Don’t ask me how.
Just checking up
Hope you’re good.
I read the message again and smile. Day officially made. Yes. Officially best thing ever today. Oh my gosh. I don’t even care who gave him my number. I take a sip of wine and read his message again. Talk about perfect timing. I bite my lip to stop myself from smiling wider. I should not be tolerating this. I kissed another man who wasn’t my husband and I’m smiling like a little girl right now because he found my number. I’m a bad bad bad woman and I like it. I place my glass on the table and quickly type a response.
Thank you for the check up.
I would like to know who gave you my number, but I won’t ask.
I am well. Hope you are too.
I place my phone on the table and rush to the pot on the stove. It’s ready. I am done putting the Nshima in the warmer when the phone vibrates again. I rush to pick it up and I find a message from him.
Already off to sleep?
You surely can’t be that tired
Just when I was about to invite you to hot chocolate and cake
Spare a few minutes for me and I promise I’ll make your night.
I smile again. Hot chocolate and cake. Oh my. That should be interesting. My response?
On a Saturday? Really.
Not very random
And you making my night at this time of night?
Predictable is good too.
What’s the use then?
Tequila and cake maybe?
Hot chocolate and cake and nothing else
I hear chocolate can get one high. On what I have no idea. But I’d like to try.
Are you interested?
I laugh then. A very hearty laugh. Is he asking me out? What do I say? Yes or no. Hot chocolate and cake is just hot chocolate and cake. Nothing more to it. Right? Hmm. Yes. No. Gosh what do I say? Why am I scared? I kissed the man already. So why am I acting as if he wants to see me naked. What if I want more? The kiss was that good. Thank God no one knows about it. It will be my secret till I die.
Let me think about it.
Oh not so random are you?
Take a risk here
I promise you won’t be disappointed Mable
He knows my name. What do I….
I hear the kids shout. I curse loudly as I almost drop my phone. Chinyama is here? I did not think he would be back today. So unexpected. I put my phone back in my pocket and quickly leave the kitchen. My husband is home. He comes first. The rest comes after.
I can respond to Isaac later.
“What if they don’t like me at first sight?” I ask aloud
“Why wouldn’t they?”
“Because I’m not what they expect. I’m different.”
“You’re a beautiful African queen Sonia.”
“But what if I’m not queen enough.”
“I love you. That’s all that matters.”
“I know that, but it also involves them. Let’s be serious Ian.”
Ian looks at me and smiles. Gosh why does he have to smile like that now. He knows it gets me giddy and excited. This is not the time for excitement. His family is coming to meet me and hopefully my family too. I am genuinely worried that his family will not like me at all. Why are interracial relationships so hard when it comes to things like this? I know Ian loves me, I love him too. Love between two people is easy to figure out but when families get involved it’s a whole different matter.
“Sonia. Baby. They will love you as much as I love you. I promise.” He responds.
His hand pats my back gently.
“What if they don’t?” I ask.
“What if they do?”
“I’m serious Ian. Stop playing.”
“Fine. Look they will love you. I’m certain of it.”
“Because you’re the best thing that’s ever happened to me. I’m a lucky man. I love you. You love me. Our families will love each other so much they will want us to get married.”
Ian pulls me to him, his lips brushing my forehead.
“Don’t stress about this Sonia.”
I sigh. He knows I’m super stressed about meeting his parents for the first time. Ian seems fascinated by my reaction to his parents coming to meet me. That’s the thing about race. It’s easy for him to make a joke out of it because his family isn’t as traditional as mine. The worst part about all this is that I’m meeting them after he proposed. Maybe he should have waited for them to come through before he proposed. Just for good measure. Did he ask his parents for their blessing like he did my family? I am freaking out!! Do I courtesy when they meet me? Do I have to dress up or dress down? Is having my hair in an afro bun appropriate or do I have to get extensions sewn in. What of my dark skin? Will they love it? Do I need to talk like I’m o e of them? To fit in and not make the situation awkward. These are the days I wish Ian was black. If Ian was black he probably would not have proposed the way he did. I would have met his family a long time ago. I wouldn’t have to deal with his family loving me because so would already know.
I hate that I have to deal with this.
“Calm down.” He says
“I know you’re far from calm.”
Our eyes meet and he laughs. Why is he finding this funny? This is not the time for jokes. I get up from the sofa. I am super angry now. This isn’t a joke. Ian grabs my arm and pulls me back onto his laps.
“Look.” He starts. “I want them to see you as you are. The woman I fell in love with. I love you. I’m marrying you. Everything will be okay. My family is amazing. You’ll see. Look at this…”
He takes my left hand in his, turning my have over so that the diamond stone shines from the light.
“I choose you. Over and over again. We are going to be a family. Have little beautiful black babies with afro hair and we are going to be together forever.”
His words calm me down for the moment. I love him. Everything will be okay. It will be perfect. His parents land in tomorrow and I get to meet them on Monday for dinner. I’m so nervous already. I have wondered what it would be like to meet his family. We have talked about our families, his mostly because mine is almot non existent.
While I am only child – more like a lonely child to two parents that died in a car accident when I was nineteen- Ian gets to brag about both his parents being alive, well and travelling to meet me. “Kinda old” he said the first time he told me about them; he being the first born of three kids, born to parents who are kind of well off, never been to Africa and this trip would mark their first visit. According to Ian, his mother was a happy pasty baker in the community while his dad was a professor at a local University. I know he loves his parents and there are times I get jealous at the bond they have. He calls his family at least five times a week and he talks to them for hours. And I watch him most times, getting to know them through the conversations they have while I have nothing. But, marrying Ian means his family becomes mine so I won’t be alone anymore I guess. Knowing his mother is a pastry baker means maybe she and I can get along when it comes to food. I am a chef and food is my second passion after Ian. Just maybe this might all work out.
“Thank you.” I whisper
“Being the man you are. Thank you. I’m over panicking for nothing. It will be okay.”
Our eyes meet then and he kisses me. Days like this will follow me from now on. I can’t wait to marry him.
“What’s for supper?” He says against my lips
“Hmmmmm. Just tell me.”
“We are having…..” I start.
I kiss him.
“Nederburg Cabernet Sauvignon 2011.”
“What’s the occasion?” He asks.
“Nothing. Just a normal meal for my man.”
“Hash tag blessed.” He says
And I kiss him again.
I look at the Indian couple sitting at few tables from us. The couple seems to be arguing about something. The lady looks angry and the man is looking at her with eyes that imply he would rather be else where. Wait till you’re stuck together forever I think. I look away from the couple and look at James who is typing away on his phone. I should be angry that he is not playing attention to me but I’m not. James has been on my case since he found out we are expecting so whatever chance I get to have some silence I will gladly take it. It’s our sort of date night. Sort of. Night out having dinner. Indian. At my favourite restaurant, The Delicious Deli. I take a sip of my juice – not quite happy about this – wondering what time the food will be served. I am starving. I’m starting to wish we had stayed in. Could have had supper done by now.
My thoughts wander back to my predicament. I am going to be a mother. I don’t even like children but I am going to be a mother. I can’t believe it. I still don’t understand how it happened – I know how it happened but how did it really happen? Sheer luck? I God trying to tell me something? I was on family planning. Never late. James knew I didn’t want a child just yet. But God works in mysterious ways I guess and now I’m pregnant. Talk about bad timing. I look at the man I called my husband and purse my lips. James never wanted me to go on family planning. He made his mind clear in the beginning. But he listened and let us wait claiming when the time came then that was it. He cared about my feelings. That’s how it’s supposed to be right? A man must love a woman more than she loves him then a relationship works out right? Who even made that analysis. Probably a hule who couldn’t find a husband and needed to justify her actions. Gosh I’m losing it. I do not hate my husband. No I love him. In some kind of way I love him. If someone told me to list the things I love about him I would say.
One. He’s kind
Two. He’s smart
Three. He’s caring
Four. He loves family
Five. He’s funny when he’s not trying to be funny
Add in the part that he’s got money and he’s career oriented and there is a bonus. So it shouldn’t be hard to enjoy being married right. Let the money do the talking. But who am I kidding sometimes it’s not enough. Did I not want this for myself. A man who would take care of me? Well I got him with extras. Now I’m having mini regrets of the life I chose. If I had stayed with Misheck I would probably not be married today. I would probably still be the punching bag Mable called me to be. Probably with more scars than the few I have now. I look at my phone on the table, Misheck is a bad past I need to forget ever existed. I made the right choice in choosing James, even it i did it to make another man jealous. The wrong choice for the right reason? So I should not have regrets.I should make my marriage work. Besides now that I am with child I have no choice. Mable’s words ring on my mind. Taking over every other thought. A trip. Just us two.
“We should take a trip.” I tell James.
James looks up at me confused.
“A trip? Is something wrong?” He asks
See. Ever the worried husband.
“No.” I respond. I smile at him reassuringly. “I am alright. I said we should take a trip. A short trip.”
“Okay to where?”
“I don’t know.”
I really don’t know. The only trip I’ve been on since I married James is our honeymoon when he surprised me with a trip to Mauritius. It was amazing. I had fun. Newly wed and all. When getting married seemed like the best thing to do. I enjoyed my honeymoon. I smile to myself when I think of all the walks on the beach, the trips into town, the late night dinners and the nights after. Somehow I was the happy bride, proud to be married. I miss that happy me, the me that could be open with James. When did I close up on him? Did he notice I was closed up. Did he notice I was unhappy?
“Within Zambia or abroad. What works for you?”
“Within. Somewhere near. What do you think?”
“I like the idea. Are you sure though? The baby…”
“Will be in my body for seven more months or so.” I respond. “I am healthy. No issues.
I smile. James is worried about the baby. The doctor said I was slightly over two months pregnant and healthy, when I went for a check up days ago. Though the doctor did wonder how I had not known I was pregnant as if it’s easy to tell a baby is sitting inside of a woman. I was not paying attention to anything that involved consequences from sleeping with my husband. Having the doctor tell me the news was the confirmation I needed. The real truth. I didn’t believe the result from the pregnancy kits tests. Well now it’s official. Someone will be calling me mummy soon.
“Okay. You suggested it. You must have had an idea.” He says
I was hoping he would come up with a plan himself. Now I have to give him ideas too? This is not what I want to do.
“What did you have in mind?” He asks.
“Chisamba? Game viewing. Swimming. Nature. I think it will do us some good. Before the tummy grows and the baby comes.”
“Okay. That’s a good idea. I’ll check my work schedule.”
“Just make the time James. It’s for us. A mini holiday for us.”
He sighs. “Okay babe. You’re right. No work for me. I’ll make the arrangements. When did you want to go?”
“The coming weekend? Are you free?”
He looks shocked at my question.
“Thandi. I am always free for you. And if I’m not I’ll make the time for you.”
Now I feel bad for asking. He’s right. He always makes time for me. Even if it means going to a party because one of my best friends is hosting it. Supportive is the word.
“I didn’t mean it that way. You’ve been busy that’s all. I noticed. So I have to ask obviously.”
“You know what this coming weekend we are going to Chisamba. Pack your sneakers.”
I laugh then and so does he.
“She laughs. She laughs!!” He says aloud. “My wife laughs. She’s a happy woman.”
So he has noticed my change in mood. Shit. His phone rings then and he looks at the bright screen. He starts to type away on his keyboard. I see the waiter coming to our table with a tray of food. Finally. I’m so hungry. I look at James and I smile. Mable was right. I need to work on my marriage. I married a good man. He’s tolerating me just as I am tolerating him.
My new motto for the day: Marriage requires effort.
I am super mad.
I am a mad black woman.
Raving mad dumped woman right this moment.
I look at Sangu’s car parked in his spot in the yard. My yard, now that he sort of moved out. What the hell. Now he’s here? Why today? Unless he is here to pack the rest of his stuff. If I stay in the car then maybe I can avoid him till he leaves. Give him space. But I am too mad to stay in the car. I’m too mad to leave either. I’m too mad to think of going into the house. And too mad to imagine him packing his way out of our home. I don’t want to see him and break down. But it beats staying here. I should call Sonia and tell her Sangu is home.
I sigh, grab my bag from the passenger’s seat and get out of the car. I have to face him. I don’t know why he said what he did but if he wants to talk then I’ll give him a chance to talk. Then I’ll throw him out. I take deep breaths as I walk to the door. What if he is not here and he left the car here for no reason. What if he was going somewhere else and thought leaving it here would be safer. We do live Kabulonga and the area is fairly safe. If he has done that then I’ll remember to thank him for leaving the lights on for me outside. I play with the bracelets on my hand as I walk to the door. I have not yet admitted my relationship is over, not by a long shot so I might as well talk to him. Our plans are on hold for now. For the first time my heart feels heavy. Gosh I am nervous I feel like turning around and driving off. But I need to face him. Now.
I take a deep breath as I reach for the door knob when the door opens. Sangu stands in front of me. So he was waiting for me to come home. Not like old times. His face shows signs of stress. And the fact that he is wearing his specs tells me he has been having issues with his eyes. Working late I assume. I am elated that he has been as stressed as I have in the past week. Is he regretting his decision? I hope he is because I am sleeping in the bed he’s made for me. Well gotta get this out of the way.
“Sangu.” I say
“Sampa. Hi.” He responds. “Hey.”
Gosh I missed his voice. I miss him. I feel tears well up in my eyes. I’m gonna cry. Shit. And to think I was strong minutes ago. I hold the tears back. I am not ready to have the bandaid ripped off me yet. No way. He should leave. Maybe I should leave. I’m not ready to talk but I don’t turn around to leave. Sangu stands back and I walk into the house we call home. I don’t say a word to him. I leave him standing at the door and head to our bedroom. The love room we called it. Now it’s just the room of fading scents. I hear the door close behind me and I hear his footsteps behind me. Why can’t he leave me alone. I sit down on the bed in middle of the bedroom ignoring him when I can see him leaning against the door. I bend and take off my heels, pretending to look at my red coloured toe nails to pass time.
“I’m sorry.” He says
I freeze. I don’t say a word. I don’t sit upright. I keep looking at my toes through my tears. My toes are quite pretty. I have my mother’s toes, square manicured nails. I don’t want to look up. I’m afraid if I look up he will see me break apart. He will see the tears welling up in my eyes right this moment. I choose silence.
“Sampa talk to me.”
What am I supposed to say? I forgive you? Go and be happy? Don’t worry about me I’m perfect? Except I’m not perfect. My happy ending has been ruined. And for what? I have no idea.
“I’m sorry I ruined your birthday.” He says. “I’m sorry I hurt you. I’m sorry I lost my way. I’m sorry I forgot what we went through together.” He says
All the right words. Sweet on the words. He knows how to apologise.
“I’m sorry. But I’m here now. I’m not leaving you again.”
That makes me laugh. Tears falling down to my toes I laugh. So we move on? Move forward like nothing ever happened? Amazing. Should I cook dinner now and open a chilled bottle of wine too? Does he think I will easily forget what he did? Oh my men…
“Don’t you dare baby me.” I answer him.
I look up then. Our eyes meet. He does not look away from me.
“You told me we were breaking up. At my birthday party. A party you helped plan. Why? Tell me. You obviously had reasons then. I wanna hear them.” I say aloud
“You want us to work then tell me the truth Sangu. Why did you want us to break up in the first place? We had plans remember. Maybe in a few months you would bring your people to meet my family about marriage talks. Remember that?”
“I know baby. Its just that….” He halts
“What? Did a patient die?” I ask
“Then what? What would be so bad you’d ruin us?”
“I got cold feet.” He responds.
No hesitation. Just point blank. Hit the nail on the head truth. He got cold feet? Why? Did I do something? Either the man is a mind reader or a face reader because he shakes his head.
“It’s not about you. It’s me.”
People still use that statement? For crying out loud. I look at him waiting for him to explain himself. He leans against the door and groans.
“It’s my fault!” He says. “I’ll make it up to you. I’ll do anything.”
“Explain the cold feet. What happened? Honest truth Sangu or you get the hell out of your own house.”
“I got cold feet because I was worried okay.” He says
“About what? What could be so bad you’d worry yourself to leave your girlfriend? I ask
He keeps silent. Is he deciding what version of the truth he wants to tell me? Break it down to me gently?
“I kept thinking about things.” He says after a minute of silence. “I was stressed. Work. Family. The future. I had alot on my mind.”
“Okay. Fine. Then maybe we need space to think it all though you know. To be sure.”
“No Sampa. It’s not that bad. I just had the biggest family issue and I needed time because it somehow involved you.”
Family issue. I knew it was about her. I knew it. Only one way to find out.
“Your mother?” I ask.
He nods. I knew she had a part in this somehow. Gosh. She doesn’t know how to mind her own business sometimes. Did she know Sangu left me? Did she start this whole thing?
“I needed to breath. I was overwhelmed. But I’ve thought everything through. I will still do right by you.”
What the hell does that mean? He doesn’t want what we planned anymore? I wipe the tears on my cheeks with the back of my hand.
“What did she say this time?” I ask.
“No.” I say. “What did she do? What did she say? Something made you break up with me that night. What was it?”
He shakes his head.
“You might as well leave then because until you tell me I’m not taking you back.” I tell him.
“Is because I’m not her choice? Is she angry about that? Is she angry we are staying together?”
“Then what is it?”
“Well then let that nothing take you home and comfort you.”
He looks at me and looks away. He wants me to let the issue go. But I need to know the truth. Now. Before I do anything I need to know what’s going on. Cold feet? Sangu? The confident Sangu gets cold feet? Oh my this is not what I need right now. No. I can’t deal with this. I stand from the bed, heels in my hand and walk towards the closet. He can stand by the door or leave if he wants. I’m not forcing him to do anything. Clearly he needs time to think through things.
“It’s because you can’t have children.” He says behind me.