The Line Has Been Drawn

I grinned from ear to ear. The pictures in my imagination were so beautiful. Mildred just got engaged. Her love story was something I desired. We all thought it was a mere sibling’s relationship in the Faith, not knowing there was more to what we believed to be true. Although, from the start, they related as a brother and a sister would. How it came to the point where they publicly announced their status was still shocking to some of us.

Mildred told me that she was not in a relationship a year ago. Even six months ago, when I brought up the subject for discussion. She acted uninterested and felt uncomfortable with my ceaseless concern. She was never bothered about relationships or marriage. Besides, she was older than I am. I always shared my fantasies of an ideal proposal and a perfect venue for a wedding reception with her. It never caught her fancy one bit. All she was concerned about was ministry.

She was always happy and too jovial for an unmarried lady at her age. I expected her to pause at some times and think about her state. Perhaps consider her age and wonder why she is not where her mates are. But she kept disappointing my expectations. She seemed not to give a damn. Day after day, I worried about her worries in addition to mine. I became restless and vulnerable too. Every conversation I had with the other gender was processed differently from my end. While they were on the first page, I was already at the conclusion. I got hurt each time I found out that I was all alone in my conclusion.

My desperation grew as the years rolled by. I was overwhelmed with so many worries. My biological clock kept ticking. I sought ways to help myself then I came up with the idea that I thought to be ridiculous. Of course, I didn't want to take much time to think it through or weigh its bright sides against the dark sides. I wanted everything to happen in my time at all costs. So, I launched out.

David was a well-behaved and disciplined brother I had admired from afar. He had a demeanor that drew the attention of people to him. He was every sister's ideal life partner. Of course, I have not left out myself. I was a Spec as well. I had amazing qualities too. I was successful in my career. I had lots of landed properties littered all over the city of Lagos. I had the latest ride in town. I was a tongue-talking prayer band leader known for ascending into strange realms with an unending barrage of tongues. You would agree with me that I am irresistible. I was the perfect portrait of a virtuous woman.

On one of the Sundays, I reached out to David after service. We exchanged pleasantries. We got talking randomly. One thing led to the other, and then we got to the subject I had wanted to speak to him about. He spoke about marriage with so much excitement. His excitement was contagious. He made salient points that I wished I had a note to capture. David and I have been good friends. He saw me as a sister, and I didn't have issues being placed in that zone. He took a long trying to drive all his points home. As though they were caught up in Lagos traffic.

Minutes had passed, and it was getting to an hour. He noticed the look on my face and knew I had something to say. He paused and asked me to bring it on. At this point, all the ginger in me had left for the market to be sold to women who had plans to make a sumptuous meal for the weekend. The liver in me had grown pale. I opened my mouth and closed it without saying anything meaningful. I didn't want to puncture the excitement in the atmosphere. I continued for a while in this manner. David was lost in curiosity. He told me to relax my mind and calmly let the cat out.

I knew I was going to make a fool out of myself in this attempt. I just diverted the conversation by saying things differently from what I had originally planned. He was surprised to learn that something as trivial as what I had said was difficult for me to breathe out at first. If only he knew that I suspended what I had wanted to say, he wouldn't have drawn such a conclusion. I got home that day, took a shower, and went to my pot to dish out food for myself. I devoured the food as if I had been on a 40-day fast. No doubt I was angry. I was depressed at the same time, and I was trying to drown my sorrows.

When I had emptied my plate I took to social media and saw Mildred'sMildred's picture littered all over the place. But Victor always saw her as a sister like David sees me. I couldn't link the dots. I recalled how calm Mildred had always been on this matter. Now she has a kind of relationship that I look forward to having. Weeks passed, and months passed, and I tactically avoided David. I realized I needed to take a break from all the tension and unrealistic expectations I had set for myself. I realized I didn't have to be attached to what I expected; I would be severely hurt when they were not met. During the time for announcements, a brother's wedding was announced. The whole atmosphere was drowned in excitement. The shouts and everything distracted my attention, so I didn't pick the name.

Meanwhile, I was aimed for the door and waited for the benediction. No sooner had the grace been shared than I dashed out into the streets towards my apartment. I had freshened up and eaten before I picked up my phone to Facebook and WhatsApp messages and feeds. I was greeted with great shock. It was David'sDavid's pre-wedding picture. I had thought I was that kind of sister to him, but now the line has been drawn.

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