It was one of those days, I wanted to be the neighbourhood girl. My braids were old, I was wearing a loose fitting gown with black pantyhose. I was standing eating ice cream as I waited for my movie ticket. Then I saw him, the former love of my life, as he walked towards me. I quickly dived into my bag to get my sunglasses. As I wore them and looked up, he was standing in front of me.
“You are as beautiful as you have always been”, he said.
My ice cream fell off my hands and he bent to try to retrieve the mess.
“I will have to get you another”. He smiled coyly, “I know your favourite flavour and toppings”.
Mide and I were childhood friends. He lived on my street and although we attended different primary schools, we got home around the same time and always greeted each other. When my mom was on leave one time, Mide offered for his driver to come to pick me up from school.
He was my first kiss. When I got admission into Queen’s college, I ran to his house to tell him and he pecked me on my lips before saying congratulations. I told him he had to marry me since he had done the unspeakable – kissing my lips.
After a term in the boarding house, I was shocked to discover he had moved to Sweden. His father, who is a half Swedish man took him there, so he could connect with his family. His parents got divorced shortly after he was born.
Mide’s leaving without a goodbye really hurt, I thought he was my husband especially after that kiss. I took an interest in Sweden and hated it so much for taking Mide.
As the years passed, I moved on, made new friends and my life revolved around: passing my exams, taking care of myself in the dorm and preparing for the university.
Shortly before I wrote my final exams, Mide’s mom dropped a letter for me from Mide. I was initially angry but curiosity won, so I read the letter. He apologised for not contacting me and decided to contact me, now he was coming back. He planned to do his B.sc here and we were going to the same university.
After being friends for the first year, we started dating in our second year. It was our first time dating but it was so wonderful. We went to the most amazing places, read together, ate together, we were inseparable. On our first Valentine’s day together, we had our first proper kiss. His lips were soft, and the feeling was electrifying.
I thought about that now as he stood in front of me. That day he bent to pick my cutlery and kissed me as he sat up. That was made me move back a little. However, he came closer.
“Are you running away from me?” He asked
“No! Hi.” I nervously reply.
“That is good because I miss you”. He moved closer, he smelt of lavender, with a hint of something citrus. “You are not saying anything. Do you miss me too?”
“No!” I blurted.
He smiled and offered me a place to sit but I declined since I wanted to be within earshot when to know when the movie starts. He purchased a ticket as well.
It was a romantic comedy, we laughed, and we were enjoying the movie together when I turned to kiss Mide. I thought about it seconds before I did, so it wasn’t totally impulsive and the movie had a weird effect on me. He tasted sweet and familiar.
As we were leaving the cinema after the movie, he said: “You missed me too. We should see more often, maybe we can start over”.
I thought about it, the time I just spent with him was nice, but why did we break up in the first place? He left like he did when we were little. I did not want that again. I did not to be with him if we didn’t address that.
“Why did you leave?”
“That was nothing. You know my dad remarried, I had to be in Sweden for a while”.
“You didn’t say anything. You could have told me”.
“It’s nothing really, it was just a two years break from everything. I really do miss you.”
“It is everything Mide”. I walked away as fast as I could. How do I explain I didn’t want to be that comfortable cushion? How do I convey my wants into words for Mide to understand? I wanted to open my soul so he can see that I no longer have the strength for another disappearance, another breakaway. When I can be the home.