BN Prose: What It Means To Want
You are conscious of the curious furtive glances thrown at you; the curious suppressed whisper, hidden in a means that solely made it extra apparent. If you adored this information and you would certainly like to receive more information pertaining to human kindly waterfall braids instructions browse through our own webpage. You’re conscious of the lengthy seems in the direction of your your vacant ring finger; the tilting of heads and shrugging of shoulders to suggest, perhaps you felt snug without your ring.
You are conscious of the slight doubt of their coronary heart that trailed the assumption they formulated. You’re conscious of the cheerful look on the faces of strangers once they address you as Mrs; a look which quickly turns sour when you correct them: Miss.
You were conscious of that puzzled look on your nephew, Kenechukwu’s face while you snapped at him, threatening to slap him, as a result of he playfully pulled a strand of white hair out of your head, and informed you, in between innocent laughter, that you just had been progressively changing into a granny. He stared at you for a while before he said he was sorry. You knew he was not sure what he was being sorry for. He did not understand your swift agitation; how you had immediately switched from enjoying with him to being malevolent. But how may he presumably bear in mind of this ache in your heart This presence that hovered over you when you lay at night, aching for the feel of a warm skin in opposition to yours How may he presumably know that this reminder, like an invisible sceptre that hung around you, made you brace up for reality He would by no means know that you needed, desperately needed to bask below the attentive gaze of a man, your man, and that you longed to partake in this aura of belonging.
The week before, you met Patricia; timorous, awkward Patricia who was nicknamed ‘Chameleon’ again then in secondary school as a result of she turned purple swiftly when she caught a lot sun on her light skin, or when she offended, or hit. Patricia asked about your family, smiling an easy smile of the sated. You took a deep breath because that was what your answer required – a deep breath. Your mom was tremendous, you told her; you lost your dad a couple of years ago to diabetes. She shook her head vaguely, perhaps sad with your information, however then obviously uninterested in your father or mom. Your husband Your kids She requested. You instructed her, wanting into her eyes, searching for signs of what you were not significantly sure of, that you simply have been nonetheless not married. She gasped; ever so slightly, a gasp she shortly channeled to a cough. You imagined her choking, whereas she coughed, if this information of yours might make her choke.
You are aware, too conscious, of your status: unmarried. Most occasions, you go away the section inquiring marital status vacant, whereas filling forms, and you later questioned with slight irritation why marital standing was even necessary for odd varieties; for any form at all. Solely as soon as had you aired your discontent in public because a silly, bush-haired banker had insisted you fill the type, a coy look in her eyes, dangling her diamond ring so that you can see. You imagined, maybe till lately, she had been such as you; ladies that woke up at night to long for the impossible, ladies that suffocated on their beds, leaning on the wind ever so barely for re-assuring whispers.
While you have been prevented from joining the nice ladies fellowship in church since you weren’t ‘up to the criteria’, you told them you were properly over thirty, and also you could not see your self becoming a member of the youth section. You have been unmarried; they instructed you within the subtlest of all voices. You didn’t have a man, so that you couldn’t probably perceive or observe their discussion on marriage. You were ‘inexperienced’.
You stared at them for some time, quiet; then you called them fools. They have been stunned. You felt the heat surging via your mind threatening to explode, and also you raised your voice above theirs, hauling insults. They told you to calm down. The chief apologized on their behalf, a sincere, surprised apology. The others watched you quietly. They didn’t understand your outburst, their expression stated. You took a deep breath and instructed them, with a whimper, you have been sorry; you merely misplaced your thoughts. It was superb, they mentioned, and but you knew it wasn’t. It could by no means be. You took your bag and left them, and you never went back to that church again.
Josephine, your next door neighbor told the story of her boss, a ‘useless old woman’ who would not find a husband to settle down’, and as a substitute chose to carry boys young enough to be her sons. You stared at your arduous picket table that still smelled faintly of whatever spray that was used on it and you wondered if this was some form of message to you as well, if this mild in Josephine’s eyes was a delicate mockery. You did not need to think about what the girl appeared like; what her private life was like. You did not ask Josephine for details, as you always did with other gist. You could not possibly probe into other people’s stories once you had yours.
Josephine confirmed you her Facebook footage, and you nearly did not know what you felt watching her – a smiling woman with cat-like eyes and dimples. She was beautiful, in whatever context that was. In one picture, she was clad in bikini, much to your astonishment. It had probably not occurred to you that someone as plump as she was would showcase her body, but then this drew, from you, a reluctant admiration. Here was a girl bold enough to damn the society and be herself. But you did not want to be like her, no, you did not. You did not want to damn society and be yourself, and carry small boys. You needed to hold a man. You needed to own a man. Josephine went on and on about how annoying it was, watching those small boys name her ‘baby’, and how refulgent her skin was, and how stupid her smile was. But then, it wasn’t really the smile or the skin you had noticed. It was the look in her eyes, beneath the smile, beneath the pores and skin, beneath the sated air about her. It was a glance you understood. A glance you had been acquainted with.
You might be older now; you feel more withdrawn, more alone. When men asked if you happen to had been married, you merely dangled the silver ring in your finger, a faraway look in your eyes, however you didn’t give them a reply, at the very least not directly. Possibly because each ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ appeared false, in a sense, at the identical time, or since you wished to go away them with the vague assumption of
a number of potentialities, wished to permit them the prospect to create, of their minds, versions of the life you merely wished existed. The lives of others, not meant for you.
But not Tony. You continue to remembered that day, at a friend’s home-warming social gathering. You had probably not observed him, not at first, as a result of it was really easy not to note him. The quiet gentleman and gentle man who sat on the cushion, nodding vaguely to the loud beat of Teckno’s ‘Pana‘. Maybe you still wouldn’t have noticed him, and you would have gone residence after the social gathering, and slipped completely into the life you have been used to. However whilst you stood, moving slowly to the music, glass of wine in hand, he nudged you impatiently in his haste to get to someplace and also you dropped your glass. He stopped to apologize, glancing over you worriedly to make sure you weren’t harm, and when your eyes met, it held. You’ll later recall that a second in the past, you have been struggling to handle this awkwardness that rose from staring into his eyes, brushing off his profuse apologies with stuttered reassurances that you have been alright. After which moments later, you have been laughing at his jokes, your hand in his, the wordings of ‘Pana’ filling the transient silence in between the each of you.
He cherished you, you knew, and regardless that Josephine mentioned this thing seemed too abrupt, too sudden, too unrealistic to be love, you knew he beloved you and you cherished him as much, maybe more.
He took you out on exotic dinner dates and bought you expensive dresses with elaborate designer labels; called you at frequently, even during working hours simply to remind you his life was incomplete with out you, his voice trailing on and on till you had been tempted to weep. In mattress, he was gentle, simple, centered on pleasing you than himself, and even after he left, his warmth stayed with you, protected you from this scepter, this impending doom. This was love- This wholeness that sometimes made as if to snuff away your breath.
It began out of the blue. It seemed as though you had gone to bed one evening with him as gentle and loving as all the time and had woken up on the other side to meet a total stranger. His texts became less and less frequent, and he took so long to reply yours, single worded messages that you just imagined took him excruciating inconvenience to sort. He missed your calls easily, and later called back with lame excuses- in a meeting, with friends, sick-, his tone ever so curt, you had a feeling you were wasting his time.
It was so unlike him, your sweet, gentle Tony who might barely survive a number of hours with out hearing your voice over the cellphone, reassuring him that you just beloved him and would never leave him. But then it was effectively. It had to be well. He was simply busy. Port Harcourt in this recession may drive anyone crazy. He still beloved you. He was still the candy boy you knew. You stared at the mirror when you mentioned these, feeling so foolish and so vain, but then you definately hoped- It was all you could do anyway.
You’d nonetheless repeat this to yourself once you saw him one rainy afternoon in Everyday Supermarket, a sleek young girl in front of him, pointing at things on the sales counter and laughing too easily. She reached backwards to kiss him every now and then, as if fearful he would get well from her spell if she didn’t. He did not notice you, no, he did not. Not even when your eyes met from across a low shelf, and his gaze lingered before he appeared away. Not even if you moved towards him, (not notably sure what your intentions had been), and he simply said hey and nudged the laughing girl slightly, an indication that it was time to leave. You knew he did not notice you as he paid for his shopping and drove off afterwards with the woman. The cashier requested you what you needed, and you smiled and shook your head. You needed nothing at all.
Obiefuna was the following; brawny, cool-headed Obiefuna who ejaculated rapidly and demanded too much. It was not really a proper relationship, a minimum of you did not consider it so, and yet when he known as you that morning to say he was getting married, and he would love you to attend, you stared outside, by your window, at the hawker with a tray of cooked groundnuts balanced on her head, laughing at something your gateman, Mohammed, was whispering into her ears, and you didn’t even realize when the decision was disconnected.
Nowadays, you like to carry on an air of aloofness, a forced indifference that you do not truly feel. You like to tell yourself, ‘Love is not meant for everybody, biko’. You understand your pals find it odd that you just roll your eyes theatrically when the subject of dating comes up in between conversations. You think, always, Who needs love anyway But on a pleasant Tuesday morning, in a public taxi, on your way again from the market, or one Sunday morning in church, or when you will attend that book reading at the library next to Pleasure Park, you will find love once more, and you’ll say, However, there’s no harm in attempting, really. And then you will attempt, and it won’t take so long before the news drops. The men think -no offence please- you’re way too unsuitable for their taste. They like you, however their mother and father would relatively choose someone younger. It wasn’t really love- just a mild obsession. Ah! Are you new in Port Harcourt You should know one night of pleasure doesn’t automatically translate to a life dedication.
Tomorrow, you will choose these damaged items of your heart on the floor Mile three round-about, and you will say, Ah, me I won’t love again, abeg. This pain in my heart is doing me somehow. But the day after
tomorrow, you will fall again, this time, deeper than before. Consider me.
Picture Credit score: Dreamstime
About Chukwuebuka Ibeh
Chukwuebuka Ibeh was born in Nigeria. His short stories have appeared in New England Review of Books, New African Writing Anthology, Dwartonline and other publications. He lives and writes from Port Harcourt.