Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Watching Jack and Jill Fall Down The Hill

Ok, so a lot has happened in a short while. At least emotionally, to me.

I know I am hormonal and all that 'isht' but at the same time that doesn't explain how or why this should have happened or why I am letting it happen. I know why : I am a very proud person. And I've never known how to reconcile with friends. When I was in school, or just when I was younger, if I had a fight with a friend I would pray to God to reconcile us, or be hoping that someone does. It never worked. LOL. But we always settled eventually.

Anyway, the real story here is that I am feeling quite lonely and alone and it's because the two people who have been closest to me in Lagos have been given a wide berth by me. Let's start with my closest friend and benefactor, J. Everything was going well until one Sunday when we went to Shoprite together. After a few hours of shopping, plus the fact that I had woken up really early, about 6.30 am, even though I slept in the early hours as well. I wandered off to the room to sleep and was quite fast asleep when her sister barged into the room, not once,but 3 times! Now if she did this noiselessly it would be less of an issue but she does this noisily and all the time. Also, getting to sleep is a luxury I cannot afford to waste, in this condition. I find it difficult to sleep at night, because of the baby, and during the day because of the noise of people in the house, so when I can catch sleep I do, and I guard it jealously, or else I wake up with a headache. Which was what happened with this girl. I was so angry I went to the kitchen where she was and was scolding her, she knowing me and my sleep issues was smiling and saying her sister, my friend, sent her. I was like ' Even if she sent you, how many times did she send you,? Don't you know how to open doors quietly, etc. Her sister, J, then said 'Joie, I sent her. I said ' How may times?' She said ' Joie, If I didn't send her she would not have come'. I don't know if it was the tone or the message but that came across badly to me. I felt, for one, she had just given her sisters- there were two of them there- permission to go into the room at any point in time and disturb. I also wondered what would happen when I really needed the peace and quiet, when I gave birth. Then it occurred to me that I had got too comfortable here and was beginning to feel like I had rights in this house. For a day or two, I sulked and then finally gave it up. I was in Dolf's house one night and I noticed he had no plans to take me home that night so I called her , J, to say that I would be late and she was extremely cold. I also noticed that she was not nice at any point in time since then and had been like that since then. If she liked she would say a good morning to me, or reply mine, or if she did not like she would walk past , and that's the way the situation has been. Maybe she thinks I have taken her kindness for granted. To properly understand this story, let me situate it. I had stayed in a spare room in J's house for about a month before she told me that I would have to move cos the room was for her housemaid. She wanted me to move to her room, which I did, with the understanding that she and I would stay together. Barely 2 days into that arrangement she started sleeping on the couch. I tried hard to get her to the room, and to this day am still uncomfortable with seeing her on the couch but nothing worked. I guess she's tired and I have gotten too comfortable having the room to myself. It's just that rest gets more and more important to me as the weeks go by. Oh well, time to move on, I guess.

As for Dolf, I sense that he's reached his limit as far as this our 'love' can go. A few weeks back I was at his house, J was fumigating hers and I needed somewhere to go. He came to pick me up but while there he seemed determined to do everything, and to go out of his way to show me that he does not care for me intimately. I was making lunch for myself, cos I always carry food with me, and he sent an sms that he was on his way home and he was hungry. I gave him part of my lunch when he came and while he was eating I asked if he minded that I was going to change into a small, top. (Pregnant women get incredibly hot at some stage, a lot of my friends have testified to this.) He said I should allow him finish his food first, as though the sight would disgust him. Again, later that day we were talking about my job situation with him asking what happened with the office and so on; it would be the first time he would ask about it. I told him the story and he said maybe they would come back. I answered that they could go to hell for all I cared. He then said, 'look I can take this risk cos I have no wife who is pregnant for me, no child at home to feed, nothing. You have a baby on the way, no house, no money , no car. You cannot afford to be [nonchalant]. Ok, even if you don't want to go back what are your plans? Your friend J, and I, and everyone you think you are relying on now can only take you so far, blah, blah, blah, and on he went. As he was speaking I was growing more and more frustrated with the situation, angry that a useless company like that had pushed me to this point of desperation, unhappy that I was so dependent on people and tears just welled up in my eyes and started dropping. As he saw me crying, for some reason he got angry and stopped talking. I tried to explain to him that it had nothing to do with him, but I was just thinking of the general situation but he would have none of it. after, trying to get him to understand for a while to no avail I got angry. We spent the next few hours in silence until he was ready to take me home.

On the way he tried to make me talk to him, but I refused. When I got home, my friend, J, did not think it was safe for me to be in the house because the fumes were still strong.She called him and tried to get him to take me back while explaining the situation, he said he would come back but that he was going out with his friends so I would be alone at his house. She said if I was safe that was not an issue. He called me and said he was coming to pick me up. Later he sent me a bb message that he was going out with several guys and that they were in his friend's house where he was, so would I stay in his friend's house? I had only met this friend once so I said no, it was okay, but inwardly I was seething. I knew he felt like I was a hindrance to his plans and that he did not want to be bothered, but I felt wronged especially because, in the past, I had gone out of my way to give him money when I noticed he was broke, to bring food over to his place when I knew he had nothing, to constantly take care of him when things were not so good, business-wise. And now, on something as critical as my health or maybe even my baby's life, he walked away. It made me feel he was just saying.' wetin concern me with your wahala?' Anyway, to cut a long story short, I had to sleep on the porch to avoid inhaling the fumes. The other members of the house all slept in the living room cos the rooms were still too unsafe.

After that I began to avoid him for a while, he noticed, and after unsuccessfully trying to solicit conversations via bb and phonecalls he came to the house late one night and began to apologise for whatever he had done, and ask that I forgive him. I did, and that matter ended. After that we had a long bb conversation where I said we had to lay down rules to this our friendship so no one would get hurt. He agreed but kept breaking all the rules deliberately, just to avoid putting a wedge between us. I shrugged it off and continued as before, but we mended things when there was a fuel scarcity recently, he was flat broke and hungry and I had to go and help him out with some money. Only for him to do something more nasty recently.

So I come home from the hospital, to find the doors locked. I had been struggling with a bout of malaria, or so my doctor thought, and he was worried about it because of my condition, so that morning I went o the hospital which is not far from the house and was given some medication. When I got back to the house everyone had gone out and the doors were locked. The onl person with the keys was J, and because of how she was behaving I could not call for the keys, so I had to look for somewhere else to stay. I then called Dolf to see if he could help out, he agreed and I took a taxi to meet him up. As we were going to his house he told me he was searching for a girlfriend. Inwardly, I wondered why he would tell me such a thing except he had found someone and was trying to hint me me to move over. I however, joked about it and said I would take him to the depot where they kept girls for foolish boys like him. At his house his flatmate was there, I sat down to eat the food I brought - I'm pregnant, sue me- and he sat down beside me probably to eat too. As he did this I raised my feet to plac ethem on the couch but they landed on his laps. The next thing he said was' Please,don't let my wife catch you o'. Again we joked about this with me telling his flatmate that I didn't understand this girlfriend/wife business all of a sudden. Then a friend of his who came in from London, for the holidays, came in to join us. The friend and I apparently have the same taste in music and we hit it off. At some point, the gfriend tells me to 'balance the equation' by calling my female friends to join us. That's when Dolf said what for me was the last straw,' Don't tell Joie, he said, all her friends are either 38 or thereabouts or 'after-one or after-two'. Meaning, my friends were all either single mothers with one (after one) or two children (after two). He said he was joking but I took that seriously for several reasons. He's met just my friend, J, who IS a single mother. I am older than him by one year, and 'after one' is a derogatory way to refer to anyone who has had a child. The way I see it it would only be a matter of time before I become an 'after-one' myself, spoiled virtue, discarded trash, if he hadn't started thinking in those terms. He could tell I was upset but I denied it vehemently. In my mind my decision was clear; the road had closed on this relationship. For what it was worth, I had to leave with at least some part of my dignity intact.

So I stay away now, it hurts when I imagine what I hoped could have been but c'est la vie. Meanwhile I am house-hunting o, with no money. Wish me luck.


Monday, December 14, 2009

My dear tiny Tot,

In the length of time I have spent being pregnant, this is by far the most enjoyable thing I have had to do, and has been my most anticipated task. I don't even know why I did not think of doing this ever since. But it's better late than never, isn't it?

I'm supposed to describe, in this paragraph, how it feels to have you growing inside me. For someone who earned a living as a scriptwriter and content creator for television, you would think I have all the powers of description at my disposal. Well, I did, until this. Words fail me in describing what I feel towards you; I love you fiercely, I am in awe of your presence, of the obvious miracle that you are turning out to be- and all inside this unworthy body of mine. I will die 300 times before I hurt you, and I don't even know you. I felt this way from the minute I suspected you were in me, and I have felt it more strongly as the days rolled into months. One night when I felt pains that seemed like contractions, I panicked, thinking I was having a miscarriage, not just that I was losing something precious, but that you were in trouble. And instead of praying to God to ease my pain, I began to shout aloud in prayer, all the dreams I had for you and how your life would not end in that hotel room in Abuja. ME, praying! Turns out I had UTI, and God heard my prayers. And when I saw you flitting around on the scan, my joy, my happiness was indescribable. You were, and are, as fit as a fiddle, and you looked like you were having fun. I love your 'kicks', and I worry when I know that my sadness or my anger has made you still for that day or that moment. Gosh, my precious, I could go on and on.

When you finally make your grand entrance and you're big enough to go out with me, and understand it, I hope we have a lot of fun together, travelling, going swimming, eating out, going to the movies,playing. On a perfect day we would have a good breakfast and then go to the amusement park for a swim, and some fun activity like shooting water guns, or the water slide, or whatever you want. When we are thoroughly exhausted, we'll go to a nice restaurant and get some delicious treat as lunch, before we go home to just flop in front of the tv. Or we could go shopping for nice story books, then see a movie and then have a nice treat. And during holidays, we can travel to lovely, exotic places. I will show you Zanzibar and Nairobi, we'll see Spongebob in Hyde Park, and discover Disneyland Paris, together.

Oh, I pray for you daily, my Love. I hope that all is well with you physically, and me materially, so I can provide for you. I worry that at this time I have nothing to even offer you and that I am bringing you into the problems that I have. I worry that you will be born in someone else's house, a place where I am already a burden, that I will still have no job to support you when you are born, that I will fail in providing materially for you. I worry that I will transfer my physical affliction to a poor, helpless innocent, that you will be born, already at a disadvantage, before you can even see. I worry about what will happen when you begin to realise that other children have two parents but you have only one. I feel somewhat angry at myself for not making the situation better - not that I could. I worry that I am too human, too fallible to be the perfect guide you need.

Despite all this, I have high hopes for you, darling. I pray first and foremost, you find happiness in life, early on. That you are not consumed with thoughts of self-sustenance that you forget how to be thankful. I pray you find love, in someone other than your family, and that you both hold on to it forever. I pray you walk down a career path that you love and are successful in it. May you be your own person, and may God be your compass. But most of all may He show me the best way(s) to point you down this path.

Speaking of me, I wonder what sort of mother I'll be.Me, with all my failings, my flaws, my shortcomings, my imperfections. I want to be a good one, but who is a good mother? And who is judging? To me, I think it is when you are there for your child, to wipe the tears, to share in the victories, to teach the child what you know, and to admit that which those you don't. These I'll try my best to do, Sweetie, even though I make that vow with fear and trembling.

I love you, Baby, and I'm anxiously waiting with open arms.

Mum ( I can't believe that's me, soon!) XOXO.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

A Day In The Life

It was kind of a slow day today. I made breakfast that seemed to knock everyone out. LOL. We all slept the whole day ! I think my baby enjoyed it if anything, he/she is back to the hyperactivity this evening. I still can't believe I'm actually carrying a baby in me! I sometimes wake up in the morning and expect to have a flat tummy, and I'm surprised that it is this large. A baby will actually come out of that? Wow. God is wonderful.

( As I write I say a prayer for the unborn. May he/she be free of affliction in Jesus name. Amen.)

In a related development I googled the drugs that my doctor is giving me as ARV therapy and I am a bit worried. The first was contraindicated for women who in their words 'wanted to have a pregnancy' and was never to be used alone! We broke both rules. The 2nd one is labelled highly toxic and has several warnings. He did tell me that we had to do a liver function test every month or so now because of the drug, but I think it may need a little more than that. I really need to get educated on this disease but where do I find a place with the time and the interest and without all the negative attention?

Plus, it's beginning to set in financially that I no longer have a job. A deal that I tried to cut fell through today with the guys cutting me off by about $200. That's money I could have used 'cos I am recession-compliant now. LOL. I hope I will be able to make enough money, somehow, this month to take care of my antenatal charges and have a little Christmas. So help me God.

Pray for me. :)


Tuesday, December 8, 2009


I did not start this blog to rant or rave. I started it to talk about the issues facing me with my peculiar situation, in the hope that someone, somewhere, in a similar situation would draw strength, and companionship.

So today, I am going to write about all the things which I am grateful for and which have been the highlights in this funny, turpsy-turvy year.

1. I'm immensely grateful for the life growing in me. The fact that I am experiencing a dimension to life that I never desired, deserved, nor even considered existent. The fact that I am allowed to share in the magical and mysterious process of creating a miracle with God. I am so grateful. When I loked at the baby things I got as gifts today, the tiny, tiny socks, the little booties, the vests, feeding bottles, I felt like breakdancing! I am having MY OWN baby. Thank you, Lord.

2. I am really grateful for the presence and support of my friends and family around me. I have literally been living on love for the past few months and now I know how important it is to share in the life and issues of those you care about. For my mother whose daily calls teach me that giving birth to a child is just the beginning of motherhood. I joke that she and I are both pregnant because she calls everyday to find out what I am eating, what I am doing, how I am coping. My best friend who took me into her home for the past 5 or 6 months and left her bedroom to sleep on a couch when I became pregnant, ensures I have my own kind of diet and has not uttered a word of complaint ever since, there cannot be many people like that. That defies all understanding. My sweetheart, Dolf, who takes care of a woman who got pregnant by another man, as though she were his own, without pausing to wonder what the hell he is doing. My brothers who are eagerly anticipating the birth of their nephew or niece without a thought as to the fact that their sister is unmarried. My friend, Joyce, who would call me everyday when she heard I was ill despite the fact that I was not even picking up my calls. My colleagues who gave me a break when I was ill and encouraged me and bought me gifts and helped me when I couldn't help myself. The list is endless. God bless them all.

3. I'm grateful for the abilities I have; the fact that I excel in EVERY job I do.It is only by His grace that I succeed.

4. I'm grateful that in pregnancy I look even much better than I did when I wasn't. Everyone cannot get over how I am not showing, how pretty I look, and how attractive I am.

5. Despite my lack of a car for over a year, I have not had the need to get into public transport, i have paid my way from cab to cab. Despite my lack of a house, I still have a roof over my head, and a great one at that.

It wasn't easy, but it has come, and we are surviving. Thank you, Lord.

Monday, December 7, 2009

And Here She Blows

Unsure of what the balance held
I touched my belly overwhelmed
By what I hadn't chosen
To perform

Lauryn Hill/ To Zion

Wow! A lot has happened over the past few days. For one thing my attempt at negotiation with my company did not work. To cut a long story short my manager came back to me with an apologetic email saying the VP and the HR lady did not agree to my terms and since that was a deal breaker for me it was nice working with me and he hopes I would keep in touch. Just like that! No counter offer, no nothing.

To say I was mad was an understatement. I am VERY good at what I do, I know that, everyone knows that, so it was not an issue of them trying to get rid of a useless employee. It was just that moving forward with someone who demanded to be treated like a human being was not on the cards. That day, I was supposed to go around with a colleague of mine from SA, visiting independents/ freelancers. Just to be a good sport - and maybe partially pretending that I was not too hurt by everything - I went along. But a few hours into the ride, my anger and hurt began to affect my baby. I started hyperventilating and finally threw up over and over again. i had to go home, but I continued throwing up. Throughout that day and the next I did not feel a single movement from my baby. Then I realised I had to calm the fuck down! This was hardly the end of the world.

It's been almost a week now - 4 days to be precise- and I feel much better. My little bump is back to his/her restlessness and I am not worried anymore. I just am praying to make some money this month so I won't be totally broke. (kinda late, though, LOL). On a more positive note, two of my former colleagues sent me some lovely baby stuff from SA. And I went to church on Sunday, prayed about the problem, and felt good about it. God is good.


Monday, November 30, 2009

Dolf And Other Matters

Today was the last day of my old contract with my company. Since they have said nothing in relation to my demands, nor sent me a new contract, I shall have to stay back home until they do. But I trust in God; I have prayed about this and I am not going on the wrong path. Dolf dropped me off at work, today. I know I seemed a bit distracted and quiet but he did not notice because his mind was on his own itinenary. I mentioned to him about this being my last day and he said to sort it out with them and let him know. But these days, there's no time to talk to him anymore.

I realised today what it was I liked about having Dolf around, the way he was, then. I appreciated the fact that he saw ME. Not the baby, not the celebrity, ME. He looked into MY eyes and held MY hands and kissed MY lips. He spoke to ME. He wanted to hang out with ME. He was actually the first guy who had seen me in a long while. He would take time out to come take me to work and back home. No guy I've ever dated had done that for me. He would kiss me when he picked me up and kiss me when he dropped me off. (I must admit I miss the spontaneous kisses the most; the most obvious portrayal of affection. And I am a kisser, anyway.) Now, since the decision to avoid intimacy, we live on BBmessenger, phone calls and short rides together in the car. I get jealous when he's out with friends and he calls me to check up on me: I want to hang out too! I just cannot afford the cab fares for leisurely activities. I am not my pregnancy. I am still me, I want to shout. But at the end of the day, who sen' me message?

My mum says I should ask him to wait for me. I would, if there was anything to wait for. But she, like he, doesn't know that. She doesn't know that I can offer him no long-term bliss, no marriage, no children. She doesn't know that it's an HIV-infested body that I live in now. That is too much to ask anyone to share.

And especially not my baby. Lord, please protect this child from HIV, please. May he/she be untouched by the virus. In Jesus name.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Tuesday, 24th November

Today was not such a good day. It started on a high note with me talking to Dolf and generally being wrapped in a cocoon of warmth and love. I had plans to go shopping for baby stuff, after all it's 20 weeks already, and maternity wear, because nothing seems to fit anymore.

On the very traffic-congested streets of Lagos, I saw a copy of the True Love magazine for December. As is my usual practice I bought it, only for my attention to be drawn to an article as I skimmed through. IT was an article about an HIV positive lady who died from the disease despite fighting her best. She spoke of how difficult it is/was to plan for/have children when you have the disease, and so many other pregnancy/motherhood related issues.

For me, buying baby stuff was just out of the question. I actually wished for a miscarriage. What will I do if my baby comes into this world HIV positive? Why would I do that to another innocent being? Why the hell did I sleep with the idiot that fathered this child? Am I sure of what I am doing? Even my mother doesn't know that I am HIV positive. How will she feel when I finally tell her that I am having a CS and that I cannot breastfeed my child because I do not want to transfer my virus, my status? And what becomes of the man I care about after? What if he waits for me, and askes me to marry him? These are the thoughts that have been whirling in my head throughout today.

Coincidentally, I have run out of ARV drugs and my doctor is having a tough time procuring some. God seems to have pushed me aside, because when I thought it could not get any worse, things went terribly downhill.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

mY bABy

I went to my ante natal yesterday. I was to have a scan and just check on my health generally. I saw the little bugger frolicking inside me. He/She would not stay in one place long enough for the doctor to get a good view. It was so amusing and so endearing at the same time. And I marvelled at the power of God who could create such magic out of my stupidity.

I pray he shields the child from my stupidity aftermaths. Please, Lord let my baby be negative. Let the innocent have a good chance at life.


This Is Why We Are Hot


I finally had to move out of the accommodation I had been in for almost 5 years. The problem was that I had nowhere to go. My landlord probably wanting to charge more on the house concocted some cock-and-bull story about his having sold the house. Gradually, the place became deserted and lonely. He sent away the security guard, neighbours moved out, until there were only a few -3 actually- of us left. When it began to seem a security risk to be home at night, I had to pack my things and store in a friend's place, and move out to stay in a hotel. I had no money for rent and had only just began a new job. To say I was worried was an understatement. It was what I thought the loneliest time of my life. Little did I know that that was just the beginning.

Staying in that hotel was quite relaxing and weird for me, at the same time. At that time, I had sold my car so I had to call taxis, to get something to eat, to go buy something, to get to work. It was annoying but not burdensome. The hotel was centrally located and taxis were abundant. (I don't know why I am going on about the non-specifics of this issue when there are more important things to talk about. I guess it is still incredible to me.) Anyway, one day I went to eat in a place I normally would not eat and I ran into an ex. (Now to call him an ex would not be putting it the way it should be. We had this on-and-off relationship for 6, maybe 7, years. It was the way we started it from the beginning and it would continue that way over time. Every time we spoke to, or ran into each other it was like we never separated. Looking back, I would say it was just animal magnetism- pure sex- then it looked like I really liked him and he could not make up his mind or was afraid to commit.) So, prior to this time I had not seen him in a few months and I did not really care, or so I thought. He was with his friends, we had lunch together and then he kissed me full on the lips and left.

(Steve Jobs in a speech he gave at Berkeley(?) university said in life we had to connect the dots or trust that the dots would connect by themselves. I am trying hard to connect those many dots in my very disorganized life at that time, so my speech is a bit disjointed.)

Several significant events occurred in rapid succession during the next 2-3 weeks. R Kelly would come to Nigeria for his first-ever concert and I would get VIP tickets to the command performance. On the day of the concert, in trying to get fuel from a closed filling station, my friend and I would lie that I was pregnant, and that I needed to get to the hospital. A week later, I would actually be pregnant. (But it wasn't R Kelly's baby, just so you know. LOL. ) I would find out that my ex boyfriend, who I ran into at the restaurant, had actually been married the week before! I would send him stinker, he would come looking for me in my hotel room to explain how he was not married, we would spend two days together in that room, during which time I would be groaning with severe lower back ache. Finally, I would find out that the hotel costs were too high for me to continue with on a long-term basis and I would move out of my hotel room to squat 'temporarily' in a friend's house.



Everything changed when I discovered I was pregnant. I confirmed using a home pregnancy kit that a colleague bought. By then it was already over 3weeks gone. Even at one week I suspected I was pregnant. Some things you just know in you. Funny enough, I had no fear or trepidation about it. I was quite excited. When I confirmed it through the test, however, then I began to be afraid. Afraid of what the guy would say and think – it would seem to him like I was doing this deliberately to snare him and keep him from that girl he would marry. Afraid of what my friend, in whose house I was living would say. Afraid of what my mum, my parents would feel. (At 32 they could no longer beat me but there would be that disappointment that no child was ready to face.)

I told him, eventually. Tried to get him to see me but he didn't see why, so I told him on the phone. He went quiet for a while, asked if I did not take the morning after pill I asked him to buy for me, then gathered himself together and said since he was a willing participant in the act he would have to be a part of the solution. For him, there was only one solution : a termination of the pregnancy. For me, that was not an option. Over the course of a few phone calls and text messages he tried to bully me into an abortion. The fact that he did not even think it necessary to see me, to check on how I was, made me stronger in my resolve. More so, when he asked me what I wanted to do about it and I said nothing his 'but I just got married' , 'what are you trying to do to me ' shocker did not help matters. When he finally got round to a face-to-face meeting, a few weeks after I had broken the news to him, he had lost the bass in his voice. He tried to give me all the reasons why this was not a good option for him: his wife was also pregnant, another girl had fallen pregnant for him, he had a child outside wedlock, this child would impede my chances with another man down the line, he knew what a child who grew up without his/her father was like. Then he went into the threats, how he would ensure a DNA test was done, what would I do if he walked away, etc. After a while I just walked out on him. It's ironical that it was the same place we had lunch a few months earlier, with his friends, that I would see him for the last time. We had a few telephone conversations around then with him still trying to convince me, but my answer was final. I would not put myself through another abortion. To be honest, I have had 3 in this lifetime. That is too much for someone my age. The last one nearly claimed my life and that was when I drew the line.

I would eventually tell my mother who would ask all the requisite questions about the man responsible. I would skirt around the issue until one day when I would tell her he was not in the picture, and why. To her credit, she has not bothered about that anymore, till date. Next step would be registration at a maternity clinic. I would meet my dear doctor who does everything to make my life a lot easier. Tests would be scheduled and I would become a full-fledged pregnant woman.

Back at work, things will go from bad to worse. I will discover that I have many more years to spend taking cabs to work, as my office, which has its head office in South Africa, cannot provide documents and payslips to support my – or anyone else's – employment in Nigeria. In other words we are all glorified casual labourers. In the same vein, they cannot provide a loan for me to rent a house so I am stuck with squatting for as long as the Lord pleases. Bad month, bad month.


My doctor calls me in for more tests to check my HIV status. The result is POSITIVE. I am to continue fully on the hitherto precautionary ARV drugs. Do I feel bad and wish to die? NO! Were it not for my angel inside me I would never have found out except maybe, through some debilitating illness. I accept my fate.

This is the month I would fall terribly sick and lose 10kg, only to find that I had picked up worms, one way or the other. My doctor would frantically search for medication that is safe in pregnancy, to no avail. My mother would suggest pawpaw seeds, I would google it and try it and be cured for good. This is the same month I will try to get a friend employment in my office, she would be fired after 3 days due to the incompetence of the business development manager, I would still try to get her temporary work and she would attempt to take my job, behind my back due to my illness (it did not happen, though). Despite the illness, I would work like a dog and get into my VP's good books.



I travel outside the country for work. My friend tells me to do a confirmatory test just to be sure. I do not have the courage to. Another positive verdict will crush me. Otherwise, I have fun and wax stronger on the job. My laptop crashes.

I meet my neighbour for the first time, up-close. I attempt t give him a ride back home when his car breaks down late at night. He declines but in gratitude offers me a drink. I joke that all I need is a small bottle of water as payment. He delivers a carton of still water to my place and invites me for a drink, again. I decline but hitch a ride with him at night and find that he would like to be a little more than neighbours. I promptly avoid him from then. He calls me incessantly.

I meet a gentleman in the bank, a guy I will henceforth refer to as 'Dolf', short for Dolphin. We get talking coincidentally and I find he is into IT. I tell him I need a new laptop. He knows someone who can hook me up. We exchange digits. I call first; about the laptop. He calls later, about a date. Our first date is going to church together, with him and two friends. After that he insists I stay with him the whole day, he takes me to his house and makes me lunch. He kisses me every opportunity he gets, even when his friends are there. (I have missed that, but I dread what is to come. I know it beggars belief that I am pregnant especially as I am not showing. I IM my friend and flatmate the whole time, just in case I am with a serial killer or something.) When we are finally alone his kisses become more passionate, he attempts to fondle my breasts. I stop him and tell him we should not be doing this, because I am not supposed to do this. He wants to know if I have a curse on my head or if I am married or I have children? No, I say. Then, what is it? I am 4 months pregnant, I tell him. He is visibly shocked. He pulls away from me and wants to know about it. I tell him everything as soberly as I can. I leave out my HIV status. He hugs me and tells me I will be fine, then asks if it's okay to kiss me now that he knows. We kiss and begin a deep, non-sexual, but complicated relationship. He picks me up and takes me to work sometimes, picks me up from work at others, calls me regularly to find out where I am, treats me lovingly. He likes me because he thinks I am a nice person. I like him because he is a man with a conscience and he cares for me. Inspite of my baggage. Suddenly, my focus, totally on my baby and our future, with no room for men, shifts gradually, to allow me hope and pray for a little more.



Dolf decides he cannot go on with this relationship, the way it is. He is physically attracted to me and doesn't want to fall into the temptation of sleeping with me. I am pregnant after all. At the same time he begs that I don't walk away. He cares so much about me. I totally understand, though it hurts. All that is quite a lot for a young man to handle. And he has done quite well. He thinks we should stop kissing, and caressing. He doesn't say it but I sense visiting his house and/or sleeping over are out of the question. All the same, I thank God for the opportunity to have met such a wonderful person.

I fall seriously ill again on another business trip, this time within the country. Urinary Tract Infection. The hotel doctor pays me a 'house call'. Another friendship begins. Can't they see I am pregnant? LOL. My pregnancy begins to 'show' a little now.

My office adds one more thing to my lack of benefits: no maternity leave. In other words, if I chose to go on maternity leave, it will be unpaid so I might as well be going on a long vacation, at my own risk. I rewrite my contract terms for my office. I forget to mention maternity leave.


That's the story so far.





Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Just like a star across my sky,
Just like an angel off the page,
You have appeared to my life,
Feel like I'll never be the same,
Just like a song in my heart,
Just like oil on my hands,
Honour to love you

Still I wonder why it is,
I don't argue like this,
With anyone but you,
We do it all the time,
Blowing out my mind,

You've got this look I can't describe,
You make me feel like I'm alive,
When everything else is au fait,
Without a doubt you're on my side,
Heaven has been away too long,
Can't find the words to write this song,
Your love,

Still I wonder why it is,
I don't argue like this,
With anyone but you,
We do it all the time,
Blowing out my mind,

Now I have come to understand,
The way it is,
It's not a secret anymore,
'cause we've been through that before,
From tonight I know that you're the only one,
I've been confused and in the dark,
Now I understand,

I wonder why it is,
I don't argue like this,
With anyone but you,
I wonder why it is,
I wont let my guard down,
For anyone but you
We do it all the time,
Blowing out my mind,

Just like a star across my sky,
Just like an angel off the page,
You have appeared to my life,
Feel like I'll never be the same,
Just like a song in my heart,
Just like oil on my hands

It's funny how some songs just capture what is in your heart. This one was written for my baby, that's for sure. My yet-to-be-born child. I cannot understand how such a pure and innocent creature would choose a battle-scarred and weary person like me to come through. It's almost 5 months old now and I am still in awe of the life growing in me. This is the story of how it happened and what is happening.