His work is all that matters to him. Family should matter but it didn’t, not after escaping from a family that almost choked him out of breath. He barely managed to get out sane and swore never to go back to that jail again.
So when Itunu told him she was pregnant in November he was justifiably pissed. He didn’t want a family not his past one and definitely not a new one. Why hadn’t Itunu been more careful? He on his part had been as careful as he could be. He made it clear from the start, he wanted no emotional ties, just a strictly sexual relationship of two consenting adults, she agreed, said she wanted the same thing.
His friends warned him to be wary of her. No Nigerian woman above thirty is looking for a fling. It was obvious she wanted more from him, the signals were everywhere. The way she showed up on weekends with her cleaning kit, cleaned his house and did his laundry. It was obvious in the way she surprised him with homemade meals during lunchtime at work. Her Facebook account had his face plastered everywhere. The signs were clear to his friends but he did not see them.
After all they had talked about it several times and she had assured him she was not gunning for anything more in the relationship.
She lied. Itunu wanted everything from Dubem. She wanted to take care of him and their children for the rest of her life. So he had a tough time growing up with his family, but who didn’t? Everyone eventually heals. She healed, even after years of being molested by her step father, she didn’t turn her back on love. She loved Dubem so much and hoped he’ll come around someday, no matter how long it took or so she thought until she conceived. She realised she couldn’t Wait any longer, the nine months that followed were going to define the rest of her life and she needed to know if she was going to go through it on her own or with her lover by her side.
Dubem did not want a child, nothing could change that. Who would blame himfor walking out on her when she broke the news of her pregnancy to him? It had annoyed him properly but it had also left him lost, lost on what to say, lost on what to do. So he said the first thing that came to him.
And stormed out.
Nonsense was all he said to her. It’s been three weeks and still his only response to the news that he was about to become a father was nonsense. Perhaps she should give her son nonsense for a middle name. Her friends warned her he was bad for her. He would not come around, not until a very long time when she must have been old and ugly and full of regrets. She wasn’t old and ugly yet but she was full of regrets already. She was normally a straightforward person who looked for less complications in relationships. She went for what she wanted, guys with no commitment issues who where ready to settle down as soon as they meet the one. After years of dissapointment from guys who claim to want the same thing, she was done with dating, at least for a while until she met Dubem who turned out to be the man of her dreams. He had every single quality she wanted in the man she would marry except that he didn’t want to marry or have children for that matter.
Three weeks after he walked out on her he wasn’t yet himself. He hadn’t figured out what to say or do. He didn’t hang out with the guys as usual and was not focussed at work. His mind always wondered, wondered where she was, what she was doing, how she was feeling. He had tried his best to avoid it but he was hooked by her.
He couldn’t stop thinking about her, the way her hips swayed from east to west when she walked. The way she looked pleasantly ruffled after incredible sex. He thought about the way she was always there for him. She listened to him like no one had, like he had wanted his mother to listen to him. She defended him in front of others like he had wanted his father to defend him. She didn’t laugh at him or think him dumb, she didn’t make him feel insufficient. With her he was comfortable in his own skin, his feelings made sense. She had brought a certain kind of radiance into his life, one that he had been searching for all his life.
It was Christmas that turned him around. He was attending Christmas carol with his best friend’s family when it struck him. It took Joseph, the earthly Father of Christ to turn him around, to make him realise what he really wanted. He wanted the child, he wanted the woman too. Joseph accepted the child, a foetus that he had not fertilized. He, Dubem, had turned his back on his child, the one he made with the woman he loved.
- He called her after the carol, he was sorry for pushing her away, for pushing their unborn child away. He loved them both so much and was prepared to take the next step. He didn’t want to loose her, to loose them. He wanted the way she made him feel to remain forever, to never die and never age, he wanted it to be timeless and if a family was what it took, he was prepared to take that step.