From The Cradle To The Grave – Episode 3 – Free From the Past (Pt 2)

From The Cradle To The Grave – Episode 3 – Free From the Past (Pt 2)

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  1. INTRODUCTION – SIMISOLA OBE

  2. INTRODUCTION – BELEMA OPREH

  3. INTRODUCTION – AMANDA OBIWURU

  4. INTRODUCTION – RAHMAT ABUBAKAR

  5. EPISODE 1 – TIED TO THE PAST

  6. EPISODE 2 – FREE FROM THE PAST (PART 1)

 

 

 

 

 

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I had ‘fallen in love’ with Uncle Wale, every inch of me knew it wasn’t right, I was dying on the inside of guilt. Simi and her mum, most especially her mum did not deserve this from me. I struggled. Every morning, while I prayed, I’d vow to end the affair, but it never happened. The moment I saw him, my resolve would disappear. He became everything to me and he was such a kind lover, understanding, patient, gentle, generous, funny, a sound board for all my crazy ideas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I resigned from Shoe Garden in my final year, when the relationship with Uncle Wale had become full blown and gotten deeper, with the excuse of wanting to focus on my project and final exams. But the truth was I needed to distance myself from Aunt Alero. I communicated less frequently with Simi too. Our affair continued right into my NYSC year. He spoiled me with everything, I lacked for nothing in finances, attention and affection. I was posted to Enugu where I worked at the bank as an Investment Officer. That was when I decided on my career path.

 

 

 

 

 

 

As much as I loved fashion and the retail business, I also wanted to build a career in Investment banking. This didn’t surprise me much as that was Wale’s line of work, I loved to hear him talk about closing deals for big shots and taking risks on investment choices. He was a major influence and he was willing and available to put me through.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I did very well at my Place of Primary Assignment in Enugu at the bank I worked and they wanted desperately to retain me but I wanted to go back to Lagos. Getting a job was a breeze, I was even spoiled for choice, I started off with a very good salary. I got an apartment in Maryland, Ikeja close to my place of work and settled into life as it were. I was able to set my mum up in food business and moved her to a more decent house. My brother at the time had gained admission into the University and life was just fine, except for my illicit affair with Wale.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He picked up at the 3rd ring, “Hey Bel, how are you?”, he said.

 

 

 

“Good evening Uncle Wale, are you free tonight?, I’d like to see you” I said, almost in a whisper.

 

 

 

“Yea, sure, I can make out time, are you okay?, he answered.

 

 

 

“Yes I am, where do I meet you?” I asked.

 

 

 

“I’d text you with the details in the next hour, is that okay? he replied.

 

 

 

“Yes, it is, I’d be waiting. Thank you”, I said and hung up.

 

 

 

 

 

The time had come for me to end the affair. I knew it was time, the burden was too heavy on me. I felt even worse having to do it now that everything was working out for me. I didn’t want him to feel like I had been using him to get what I wanted. I sincerely had strong feelings for him. He never for one day made me feel like he was doing me a favor. He was a friend and confidant and if not because we were having sex, It would have been a perfect father and daughter relationship.

 

 

 

 

 

It was really hard to let go but after the sermon in church earlier that day, if I didn’t do it now, I knew it would blow up in my face. God sent the pastor to me that day with his message. It was too clear and I’d have been very foolish not to take heed. Our relationship was really discreet, Uncle Wale covered our tracks well enough. I mean, how would we face the parties involved if they ever got to find out. Based on their history, I think Aunt Alero had also given up on him and wasn’t really looking out to ‘catch him’ , but all the same he made sure to protect us in all ways. Thinking about it alone made me break out in goose flesh and I was even more determined to end it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

At the last minute, he sent me a message that he’d meet me at my apartment. I took a few shots of vodka in case my voice decided to fail me. My first instinct was to run into his arms as soon as he walked in. He always had that effect on me, but my mind was made up. I gave him a hug and he kissed me on the forehead before he sat on the sofa just opposite the TV. I think he may have sensed there was something. I offered him a drink, which he declined.

 

 

 

 

 

“So what’s up Bel, I’m here now”, he said as he relaxed and crossed one leg over his knee.

 

 

 

I quavered on the inside as I looked at him, he was such a handsome man, I couldn’t believe I was about to let him go, but I had to, he belonged to someone else. I cleared my throat.

 

 

 

 

“Oooooook, I don’t know how to say this”, I paused, he was looking straight into my eyes, my mouth went dry. I got up to get a bottle of water for both of us even though he didn’t ask. “We need to end this, I want us to end this” I heaved a sigh of relief ,as I blurted it out.

 

 

 

 

 

He held my gaze a while longer and said, “Come here”, he said sitting up straight and stretching out his hand to me. I took his hand and sat beside him. He looked at me, still holding my hand.

 

 

 

 

“I knew this day would come Belema, I thought it would have come sooner. I’m proud of you and everything you have turned out to be. You’re a really good girl and Belema I am sorry, I am so sorry I took advantage of you. I didn’t have to be sexually involved with you but I just couldn’t resist you. I’ve struggled all this while with guilt – Cheating on my wife with my daughter’s friend, trust me I have had my fair share of guilt, but it felt so right with you even though it doesn’t sound right. He stopped for a few seconds and continued.

 

 

 

 

 

“You’re a really smart girl, beautiful, intelligent with a bright future. I’m sorry life happened to you the way it did. I’m even more sorry if I have poisoned your mind about men. I have my weaknesses and being with you, strange as it sounds has helped to set me straight. I know I am not going into another affair outside my marriage after this. I’d also wish you don’t allow anyone else take advantage of you in this way. And for the record, I really did feel something for you beyond the sex, you’re special”.

 

 

 

 

At this time, the tears were flowing freely, my face was wet. He pulled me into a hug and held me while he kept saying how sorry he was. My heart broke into a million tiny pieces, I loved this man. After what seemed like almost 30 mins, I pulled away. He got up and I got up with him.

 

 

 

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“Thank you for everything, Uncle Wale, thank you. I don’t blame you for anything, I didn’t have to go with it and I really don’t know where I’d be now if I wasn’t involved with you, you have been a positive influence to me. I’d really miss you”. I said facing him

 

 

 

 

“Don’t thank me, you deserve everything and I’d always be here for you when you need me. Don’t hesitate to call me for anything at all, I’d always always be here for you. I pray you find love and a good man that’d take really good care of you.”

 

 

 

 

He kissed me on the forehead one last time and left. I cried so hard, out of relief, out of fear, out of so many conflicting emotions but I was glad it was finally over. I got up to lock the door when my phone beeped. I had just received a credit alert for 5 Million Naira from him, within a few seconds was a text message, “Invest that wisely”.

 

 

 

 

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Fate had managed to bring these 4 ladies together again at the peak of their lives. Life they say starts at 40 and a fool at 40 is a fool forever. All 4 of them were at the clock of 40 and ready to take control of their future.

 

 

 

 

Simisola, soon to be 40 has everything going for her, a great marriage, beautiful kids, a happy and well established career and her social life with her friends.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Amanda, 40 already, is doing a lot better since she went into therapy with Mrs Alero Obe, Simi’s mum. She was eventually free from the burden of her past and working to start her life again. She’s made progress, has become more social with the girls and was infusing a bit of color in her wardrobe, which was a very good thing. She was also more in tune with God and had started to go to church. Open to love but not actively searching, she wasn’t quite sure she wanted kids.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Belema, who also just turned 40 had reached the peak of her banking career and was planning to retire in the next 5 years to go fully into her fashion retail business which she set up after she ended her affair with Mr Obe. Time had set the distance between them and they only communicated once in a long while. Their secret was however very well kept so far.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

She had a son from a marriage she got into years after the affair. A year into the marriage, things went awry, he became violent and hit her on 2 occasions, she didn’t wait to try to work it out, she walked away. The boy, Jason is 6 years old and the best thing that ever happened to her. Her mum passed on 3 years ago from High Blood Pressure related complications. Belema had decided to remain a single mum.

 

 

 

 

They had all met up for lunch to finalize their plans for Rahmat’s birthday.

 

 

 

“Hey ladies, sorry I’m late, I had to wait for my brother to pick up Jason”, Belema said as she sat down and took off her sunglasses.

 

 

 

“How’s he doing?, it’s been a while I saw him, he should come for a sleep over”, Simi said as she made room for Belema to sit.

 

 

 

 

“We should have a family dinner sometime this week, my children are arriving tonight for the party”, Rahmat said.

 

 

 

 

“That’d be lovely, It would be nice to have everyone and their offspring in the same space, I can’t believe it’s been 30 years since QC”, Amanda said, picking up the cocktail menu. “It seems just like yesterday.”

 

 

 

 

 

“And so many waters have passed under the bridge, so many waters”, Belema said reflectively.

 

 

“Look at us now, all grown and raising another generation, Simi said, she paused and then continued, “Speaking of which, Amanda, you’re still not looking to have kids?”

 

 

 

 

“Don’t you think it’d be unfair to the child if i did?, I’m not sure I have anything to give, at least not yet, I’m still trying to figure my life out”. Amanda replied.

 

 

 

 

 

“I’m getting a divorce, I’m leaving Abubakar and I’m getting married to the love of my life.” Rahmat said very quietly, looking down at her glass. “I have been having an affair for 2 years now, it’s the best thing that has happened to me and I’m ready to do this”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Simi choked on her drink, Belema knocked her glass over and as the content spilled on the table, Amanda burst into laughter.

 

 

 

Life indeed begins at 40.

 

 

 

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Please remember to use the comment section, click on a smiley and let me know what you think about this episode. I promise you won’t have to wait this long for the next episode.

 

 

 

(P.S : Shout out to the amazing Peniel Enchill for the cover Illustration. You can check her out on Instagram @Peniel_enchill.)

 

 

 

Your Favorite Shoe Lover,

 

Jay.

10 Comments

  • Didi
    January 28, 2019

    I love you, I’m sure you know this already! Such a beautiful piece *inserts unspoken words*. When will the book be published by the way?

  • Fky
    January 29, 2019

    Beautifully written as usual…

  • Fky
    January 29, 2019

    Had to add…those vinyl mules are to die for…will def get them soon, I hope.

  • Abimbola Sotomi
    January 29, 2019

    My dear u r too much! I couldn’t put my 📱 down as l was exercisin.👍

    • Jay
      January 30, 2019

      Haha haha. Tolz. Unspoken words heard loud and clear . Book loading. Bucket list things

      • Jay
        January 30, 2019

        😉. Next episode loading. ….

  • AT
    February 10, 2019

    Wow! The plot thickens! Well done Jay!

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