Our first break-up happened when our relationship was only four months old. I’ve forgotten what really happened but I remember I was very angry when talking to him on the phone. When it’s his fault, he’ll keep quiet and listen to me while I rant. When it’s my fault, he’ll fight back like an angry dog. I know now it was his fault because he was quiet throughout the conversation. I could hear him breathe on the phone without saying a word. The sound of his breath got me so angry I told him, “If all you’ll do in this relationship is to breathe, then it’s not worth it. I’m going to walk away silently and not bother you again. It’s over between us. What kind of a man are you?”
I cut the call and started counting from one to ten. I said, “If by the count of ten he hasn’t called back, this relationship is indeed over. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5…then his call came through. I sighed and watched the phone rung until it ended. He called again and again but I didn’t pick up. I told myself, “If I woke up the next morning and do not see a message from him, it’s over. He doesn’t deserve me. What sort of man is that?” I woke up the next morning to see a long message from him. He said he was sorry. He said it wasn’t going to happen again. At the tail end of the message he wrote, “We shouldn’t let something as this little to break us up. I love you too much to see you go because of this. Just forgive. One more chance won’t hurt.”
This time it was my heart that sighed. I’d forgiven him long ago but I wanted to stretch him a little. I didn’t respond to the message. I told myself, “If he doesn’t come here after work today, then he doesn’t mean it. If he really loves me, he’ll run to me after work today. He shouldn’t breathe fine when I hadn’t responded to his calls and text messages.” Around 7pm I heard a knock on my door. I knew it was him even before I stepped out. There he stood looking miserable and sorry as though I took his breath away. We hugged, I pulled him in and said, “Don’t get me this angry again. I love you too much to allow another woman between us.” Yes! I remember. It was about a woman. Our first breakup was about a nurse he was working with. I felt the lady was encroaching but he always brushed it aside until that night, the lady called and I asked him to put it on a loudspeaker.
He couldn’t. I left his house angrily and wished him well in his relationship with that nurse. That was the reason for our first breakup when the relationship was only four months old. After that, we were happy. Happier actually. George knows how to turn on my triggers. When I’m down, he knows how to lift me up. When I’m going through a patch, he sees it before anyone does. He’ll be like, “What can I do to make you feel better?” I’ll say, “I don’t know but I’ll be fine.” He won’t rest until he sees me smile again. In return, I always try to be there for him through thick and thin. His thin was always about money. He was working but had a lot of responsibilities. He had a sick dad to take care of. A needy mom who doesn’t work but always wants something. He was taking care of his junior siblings. His salary will come today and tomorrow it was gone.
I was there for him, giving his mom something every now and then, buying drugs for his dad and giving him a stipend whenever he needed it. I was being helpful. I was being the woman who understands the need of her man but I felt George was being too comfortable. He was taking my kindness for granted as though it was my responsibility to do all that for him. When one day I told him I didn’t have money to buy drugs for his father, he got angry. He thought I had it and didn’t want to give it to him. He called me inconsiderate. I fought back and it got heated. I told him, “If you think I’m that inconsiderate then why are you with me? Leave today and see if you’ll get another woman like me.” He responded, “That’s your problem. You always think you’re the best out there. You think without you I won’t survive. OK, leave. Just go away.”
We broke up again. That was our third breakup or so. I swore I won’t go back to him again. I called him ungrateful. He called me pompous. I called him petty. He called me pettier. We went our separate ways for over a week without talking to each other. I was missing him so when I called and he didn’t pick up. I sent him a message; “So you want this small thing to kill the love we have for each other? Did you love me at all?” He sent a reply back, “That’s all you do. You leave and the next minute you’re finding a way to crawl back. Why are you calling me? Why are you texting me?”
In the end, I apologized to him and he also apologized to me for the name-calling. We came back together again. Coming back again meant I had to resume my responsibilities as a caring girlfriend. Even when I didn’t have enough money on me, I had to provide money for him to buy his father’s drugs. One thing I noticed after we came back was that George was always distant. I was doing my best. I was giving him full attention but even when I was with him, he found a way to be distant. When I complained he told me, “My dad’s situation keeps getting worse and it’s getting to me. How much should I spend before he gets better?”
I understood him but I also realized that it was only when he was with me that he was like that. He stopped touching me. He stopped visiting me. He stopped calling like he used to. He stopped caring. So one day, I decided not to call and see when he would call me. Guess what, we went for four days without talking to each other. I knew the love was dead but he was not telling me so I walked to him and said, “Tell me the truth. You don’t love me anymore, right? You’re tired of me but can’t say it, right?” He answered, “I need space to think this whole thing over; my dad, this relationship, my life and everything.” I answered, “Don’t worry, I’m leaving and this time is for good. Get all the time you want to think things over. I’m gone.”
We broke up again. One month later, his father died.
I broke down. That man was a good man. He didn’t deserve his sickness and he didn’t deserve the years of suffering before dying. I called George that day. He was on the phone crying. He was struggling to speak. The tears got him choked. I went to see him in the house. He saw me and started crying. I broke down and cried too. I consoled him. I told him I still loved him and would be there for him in that thin hour. “Call me when you need me. I’m sorry I left you to suffer this all alone. I still love you.” He nodded and I gave him a hug. “We are back together,” I told myself.
He was mourning his father but he had time for me. Whenever I was with him, shuperu happened. When he needed money for the funeral, he came asking for a loan. I didn’t have what he wanted so I took money from my dad and added to what I had and gave it to him. I was by his side through it all. A week or so before the funeral, I went to his house and saw that nurse there with him. I thought maybe she had come to mourn with him so immediately I entered the room, I headed toward the bedroom to make myself comfortable. He stopped me midway and introduced me to the nurse as a friend.
He asked me to sit down. I told him I needed to make myself comfortable in the bedroom. He said, “No, you can’t go there.” The nurse got up and entered the bedroom, leaving the two of us there to sort things out. I asked, “What’s happening here? Why can she go there but I can’t go there? What’s happening between you two?” He answered, “I thought we were friends. When we broke up, it was final. When you called, I thought you wanted to be friends.” I was dumbfounded; “Wow, what are you telling me? I’m a friend all this while when shuperu was happening up and down? George, what are you trying to tell me?” All he said was, “Go, we’ll talk about this later” He held me by the hand and started leading me to the door.
I accepted my lot and left his place. I couldn’t even blame him for what happened. It was me who threw herself on him when his father died thinking he needed love and care to stay afloat. When I told him I loved him, he didn’t say anything. Again, my fault was assuming that he had accepted to come back into the relationship. It was my loss so I accepted and stayed in my corner. Right after the funeral, I gave him a call asking him to pay what he came for. “My dad is asking for his money. I also need mine to do some projects. Can I have my money today?” He answered, “We just finish the funeral. The family has to sit and account for everything first. When that is done, I will call and pay the money.
It’s been two months after the funeral and this man hasn’t paid a penny of my money. I’ve sworn to get it no matter what so I’ve been giving him pressure here and there. I’ve gone to his office to display there. I’ve gone to his house to display while that nurse was there. At some point, he was not picking up my calls so I had to find him and tell him my mind. Recently, he came to my house. I thought he was bringing my money. He came to apologize and ask for a comeback. I laughed. “George you think yourself a god that I can’t do without to be thinking I will come back to this after everything. All I want now is my money.”
He’s been playing hide and seek with me since that day. The last time I saw him he said, “I know you’re doing all this because we are no longer together but be patient. If we were together, would you have done all this to me? I will pay. Just consider certain things and give me time.”
A month from now, if he doesn’t pay me in full, I’m making it a court case and I’ve told him that.