‘Why would God put a desire for someone in your heart, watch it grow and then squelch it? Why would He make you fall in love with someone and then tells you that you can’t have her? It’s just so unfair. Why does He do that? Because He can. It doesn’t matter that you are hurting or that you are in so much pain.’
‘It is for character building. Learning to resist the attraction and choosing right helps you have a strong character that prepares you for greater challenges where strength of will and self-discipline are needed for success.’
Bola sighed, as these thoughts swirled around in his mind and the voices argued back and forth. He was seated on the sofa with his legs folded underneath him and staring at the screen of his blackberry. The blackberry messenger window was open and he stared at a particular name.
He was lonely and he needed someone to talk to.
‘Falling in love was not part of the plan’.
‘Which plan? Who sets these so called plans? Aren’t we supposed to be in control? Isn’t there something called freewill?’
A line from Adjustment Bureau, a Hollywood movie he had recently watched flashed across his mind. “Freewill is an illusion….mankind is not capable of handling his own destiny”
He sighed again. He really was lonely but not because of the absence of people around or that he was alone.
It was the absence of her.
He thought of the possible reasons he couldn’t have her, why having her would be bad for him. He could not think of any. She acted childish most times and whines when she doesn’t get what she wants but she has a warm personality and he had never felt more alive than when he was with her.
‘Maybe it is because with her, you are content just to be. You do things together and allow her to dictate the things that you do and it doesn’t matter that you abandon your passions and your dreams. She is enough for you. Maybe you are meant for something bigger, better and greater? Something bigger than you, something that will change the lives of many and she wouldn’t allow you to achieve this’
‘But what is wrong in her being enough? At least there will be happiness and bliss!’
‘Your life is not to be lived for yourself alone or the things that bring you happiness alone. Your life’s purpose is bigger than you’
‘And this pain is also part of the plan? This pain is the bigger-than you life’s purpose? It is not possible to have what you want and still achieve great things? Must you lose your most prized treasure in trying to achieve greatness? When you achieve the great feat, who will be there to celebrate it with you? Would it all make meaning at the end? Will it not be empty without the person you so much wanted to share it with?’
He longed for her, more now. He needed her. Only she could make the ache in his heart go away, the ache that he thought would go with the passage of time but which had remained a dull aching pain, which had periods of exacerbation where it was almost unbearable to breathe. Like now.
It had been easier to bear when she had stayed away and was aloof. Now, she had begun to warm up to him again and to come around often, asking after his welfare and just being generally friendly. He couldn’t bear it. It was too much to handle.
He wanted her and yet he didn’t. It was a peculiar situation, a dilemma, a quagmire of desire and the demands of duty and what is right, a quicksand into which he was fast sinking.
‘If there was ever hell, this is it’. He thought despondently.
“I miss you” he whispered, eyes glued to the name displayed on the phone screen. “I am stuck, I can’t move on, I need you”
‘Then tell her. Call her right now and tell her.’
He looked through their earlier chats and sighed. He had been cold when she had been all warm and fuzzy, he hadn’t been able to handle the warmth. He knew he had hurt her and felt the faint stirring of guilt.
‘It was necessary’, he argued, trying to quench the guilt. ‘She caused it; she was the one that—‘
‘Quit whining! What is done is done, you need to move on with your life.’
‘What if you could have her back? What if you tell her how you really feel? You know she likes you right? You two can make things right and make it work’
‘You can’t be serious! It can never work, it is too complicated. It is a rope tied up in many knots that you can figure where to start untying it’
All week, he had been reliving memories of their time together. Stolen moments that nurtured their forbidden love and fanned the flame of passion. Those times when all that mattered was being with each other and shutting out the world, moments that held promise of something that would last forever, of their love being able to overcome all obstacles in their way. Flickering moments that was snuffed out when she decided that it was too hard fighting for them to be together.
‘If only she hadn’t made that choice’ he thought ruefully, ‘things would have been different’
‘Good different or bad different?’
His phone vibrated distracting him from his thoughts. It was a broadcast about the efficacy of salt water in preventing Ebola virus epidemic. He could not believe that people could be so gullible enough as to believe such a ridiculous claim.
‘Do people not read anymore?’ he wondered. All that was needed was an internet access and they could get all the facts about the disease and its prevention. They would rather believe hearsays than find the truth for themselves. It was pathetic. All that was needed to contain the spread was good hand washing practice with soap and water, avoid eating primate meat, and contact with anyone with the suspected disease.
‘Pathetic. That word describes you, you know? Pining after a woman while engaged to another! Who would have thought that the high and mighty Bola would find himself in such murky waters?’
‘Name calling won’t do you any good, neither will beating yourself up. You have to find a way to deal with this.’
“How” he asked aloud. How does one deal with this? Loving someone so deeply that it hurts every second you are without her and feeling so much warmth by just seeing her, wanting her so much that nothing else matters?
‘you simply breath and put one foot in front of the other, taking each moment as it comes, one day at a time, learning to accept that it wasn’t meant to be and gradually letting go, one bit at a time’
His phone beeped and he looked at the screen. It was a BBM message
“Hey Baby” it was from his fiancée
He was about to reply when another BBM message entered.
“Hi dearie, how have you been?” it was from her.