I went to Lagos with him. We stayed together for the weekend. We went on a Friday and came back Sunday evening. The wedding was another grand wedding but this time it wasn’t a Muslim wedding but a court and then engagement. I enjoyed the ceremony and so did Fahdi. His family members were calling me “Iyawo wa”. I tried correcting them but they insisted. Wearing the aso ebi made matters worse. I was treated even better than the first time.
Later that night, at the hotel. I asked Fahdi what was going on. He told me nothing was going on, he excused himself to allow me take a bath and change. I did that. I sat on the bed when he returned. He went in to take a bath and then joined me on the bed.
“Why don’t you want to talk to me about this issue? I know we are dating but your family isn’t supposed to know until we are ready to make it public”
“What if I am ready? What if I want to take this to the next level and even more levels higher? I didn’t tell them anything but they can sense we are very close. I like the feeling. I like the fact you are accepted without making enquiries. It is no longer likeness, Esther, I am in love with you. I can spend every waking moment and every retiring moment with you. When I am not with you, I feel empty. Once I see you, I am happy. You make me happy.”
I was speechless. Was he serious? This was what I wanted to hear with this magnitude of sincerity for years but I was fooled. In a few months, I was hearing this. It sounded real. It sounded genuine. Tears flowed from my eyes. I couldn’t believe what I had been trusting God for was right under my nose.
“I swear to you Esther, on my father and mother’s lives, I will not disappoint you. I will love and respect you. I will take good care of you. I will never leave you. I never believed I will fall in love but I did. It wasn’t my intention but that is what has happened. Please stop crying”
He ki$$ed away my tears and from there we ki$$ed and then what we couldn’t control overcame us. We made love that night. It was amazing. It was beautiful. We continued the next morning. We behaved like s-x starved teenagers. It was the highlight of the weekend for me.
On our way back to Ijebu ode, I told Fahdi I didn’t want us to continue having s-x. I said this because I knew I had broken my promise to keep myself. He laughed. He told me we couldn’t stop now. I told him I had made a resolve not to have s-x until I was married and I wanted to stick to it. I explained to him why Bode was always angry with me was because I denied him s-x.
‘But we have started and we are good together”
“Let’s give it some time. When we come out as a couple, then we can have s-x”
“We are a couple. I respect the silence at work but I get uncomfortable when those patients make [email protected]$$es at you”
“You know me; I don’t have time for that. I will grant you your desire as long as we will continue once we are official. I want Emmanuel to leave before anything”
“Really? Nice. Do you think that is fair?”
“I don’t want him to know what we are up to. This was a weekend of lust. I have to stop coming to your home, it will be dangerous. I love you Fahdi, I really do. But, I think we are rushing things, especially your family. It is just three months of dating and drama has started. Handle your people. I will spend time with you but not in your home. Is that fair? Give me time to clear my head”
We agreed to move at a slower pace. We saw each other almost every day but we stopped activities that would that could stir up desires we would want to quench. We ki$$ed and smooched but didn’t go beyond that even though we yearned for it. Fahdi agreed. We were still getting to know each other.
At a time, I fell ill. I felt weak and couldn’t keep any food down. I took time off work to treat myself. Fahdi came around to check on me. He didn’t like the way I looked even with the medication. He took a sample of my blood and asked the lab to run routine tests on it. When he received the result, he was shocked.
He brought the result to me at home. He gave it to me. I saw for myself; I was pregnant. I couldn’t talk or move. How did this happen? We used protection. I asked Fahdi how come. He had no explanation.
“My father said I will have children with different men; that’s what is happening now. I tell young girls not to abort and here I am pregnant again. Who did this to me?”
Fahdi laughed and said, “I have to go. I will see you later tonight. Take care of yourself”
I couldn’t stop crying. How did I get pregnant using protection? I made a vow and broke it, this was my punishment. Fahdi’s silence was worrisome. He wasn’t even [email protected]$$uring. I cried some more.
Later that evening, I told grandma I was pregnant. “Who is the father?” she asked me.
“Fahdi. Dr Fahdi”
“Thank God it is for a responsible person this time. What did he say?”
“He is processing it. There is nothing to worry about. The boy loves you and I can see it.”
“Grandma, I am worried. I don’t want to have a second child without the father being a part of his life”
“Isn’t it the doctor? He will be”
I was itching to have a conversation with Fahdi about it but I had to stop myself not to present as desperate. I waited for him to come but he didn’t show up. He called me at almost 11pm and told me he had to deal with emergencies. There was an accident close to the hospital and he attended to them. He told me he would be spending the night in the hospital as there was a severe case that needed his attention.
I felt he was avoiding me. I felt he was dodging the discussion. I was almost in tears until I heard him ask,
“How are you feeling now?”
“As expected. Have you been able to eat? You know I can’t treat you as I am a party to situation (he laughed) so I booked an appointment for Dr Radesh to see you”
“Isn’t it too early for that? And we haven’t discussed and agreed on what we are going to do”
“There is actually nothing to discuss. We are paying for the wild night and morning we had. I want you to see him, I am worried about not keeping food down, you might have to be admitted and infused”
“There is a lot to be discussed. One is if you want this baby”
“It is not a matter of if I want it; it is here and we have to accept it. What’s the problem?”
“You didn’t ask what I want. You just concluded. You said you would come here for us to discuss and you didn’t. Now you have concluded for me; Fahdi, I am not a child. I do not like the way I feel about you right now. I have to go, good night” and I ended the call. I was sad and bitter.
At almost midnight, I heard a knock on my door. I opened the door and there was Fahdi.
“What are you doing here?”
“You were upset and I came to see you. I’m sorry, I should have asked you. I saw how nervous and frightened you were when you saw the result. I didn’t think we would forge ahead with a pregnancy after just one encounter. But it is here. It doesn’t change how I feel about you. I would have preferred if we got married and waited a few years to have children but then this one didn’t want to wait. I’ve told my father. He is aware and surprisingly very happy about it. He also thought I was [email protected] I won’t tell my mother yet until you are strong enough to withstand the stress she will put you through”
“What are you saying Fahdi? I don’t get”
“I’m sorry. What do you want?”
“I don’t know. I feel so trapped right now.”
“Do you want to abort the pregnancy?”
“And commit sin number two? A mortal sin? I’ll never do that again ever”
“I see. You’ve done it before.”
“I have, when I was a naive and stupid. I did it twice for Emmanuel before I even clocked 20. I can never do it again. Even if you are not interested in being in our lives, I will accept our fate and move on”
“You want the pregnancy. I want the pregnancy and you. So, what is the issue?”
“I don’t know”
“Lie down. I have told them to send an ambulance to pick me from here if there is an emergency. I’m sure you haven’t slept all day. Lie down, let’s sleep unless you have a better idea” he said laughing.
“How can you even have an er-ction in this situation? Are you taking this serious at all?”
“I was just joking. Come and lie down”
The next morning, he left for his house. Emmanuel drove him home. Apparently, the ambulance brought him to my house the night before.
I felt better. I was stronger although I was still vomiting. I didn’t experience all these during my son’s time. Knowing what the problem was made me stronger. I called my mother and told her everything. She wasn’t very happy about it but she said if he has accepted the pregnancy and responsibility, there was no problem. She felt I was mature enough to make the right decision.
I resumed work and was greeted with stares and side comments. I wondered what was going on. Fahdi and I were just cordial to each other at work but met after work like we used to. I had seen Dr Radesh and I was placed on pre-natal drugs. Fahdi asked me to ignore the stares and gossips.
I always got lunch delivered to me in the office whether at General hospital or Emperor hospital. Fahdi was particular about what I eat regardless of my cravings. He told me to eat healthy so there will be minimal chances of complications. He also didn’t want me to become overweight; he emphasized on that.
I was at work at the General hospital when I was called for a visitor. I came out to meet Fahdi’s mother. I couldn’t believe it. She didn’t look happy one bit.
“What am I hearing?” she asked me.
“I’m sorry ma, I don’t understand”
“I heard you are pregnant for my son”
“I don’t know who told you that”
“Are you or are you not?”
“I will have to leave you now ma, you are [email protected]$$ing me. I work here and my staff don’t need to know my personal business. Whatever issues you have, trash it out with your son. I don’t need all this” I went away.
I called Fahdi and told him. He asked how she found out and I told him I didn’t know. He believed someone was snitching on us. I didn’t know who it was and I really didn’t care. She [email protected]$$ed me. She made it sound like I was trying to trap her son. I felt terrible.
When I closed from work, I came outside to head to Emperor hospital. I saw Fahdi’s mother sitting in her car. Immediately she saw me, she came to meet me. “Stop. Maybe my manner of approach was wrong. I was hurt. I know you are pregnant for Fahdi. Why he didn’t tell me, I don’t know. I felt bad. I asked you if you were in a relationship with him and you denied it flat. I was surprised when I was told you were pregnant. Fahdi will never tell me. Are you just going to carry the pregnancy? What are your plans?”
“I understand ma. We don’t know for now because it is still a surprise to us. I would prefer you discuss with your son and not me”
“My son is shy. He is very shy. You are the first lady he would ever be close to. We watched how he took care of you twice. The second time it was obvious there was something going on. When he refused to stay in our hotel, I knew it was because of you. He was respecting you. Now the pregnancy is here, why not get married and give this child legitimacy”
“I would prefer he makes this suggestion and let him tell you about my past”
“That you have a son? We already know that one. What else is new?”
“How did you know?”
“Fahdi told me. He said we are very much alike. He talked to me about you a lot. I knew he was in love. I knew the times you came to his place. I know everything. I prefer he tells me.”
“So, who told you about the pregnancy?”
“His father did. He was so excited that he mentioned it. He asked me to start the wedding plans. He is coming in to meet you”
“This is moving too fast. Fahdi and I haven’t talked about marriage”
“He wouldn’t, that’s why I am here”
I referred her to my grandmother as I had to be at work. When I got to the hospital, I could feel there was something up. I wasn’t very friendly with anyone so I kept my distance.
The matron came to me and said, “Nurse Esther, I didn’t know you were a pretender. You had eyes for Dr Fahdi and you pretended as though you didn’t even know him”
“What are you talking about?”
“We have found out about your affair with Dr Fahdi. He gave his phone to a nurse to transfer a movie. She went into his gallery and saw pictures of both of you. You can’t deny it. There were many pictures and videos; it was obvious what was happening. Now I hear he booked for you to see Dr Radesh. I know you are pregnant. You have landed yourself a big fish. He is a rich kid. You quickly got pregnant for him to tie him down. I never liked you and you have helped me see the reason why”
“Matron, whatever I do in my personal life is none of your business. I am not answerable to you in that regard. How does it concern you that I dated Dr Fahdi or if I am pregnant for him? How does it affect the job? Please bring only official matters to me. Stay out of my business. And all of you (referring to those who stood nearby to listen to our exchange) who don’t have anything better to do than to gossip about my relationship and throw yourselves at the doctor in the name of collecting movie, we are not in the same category. Avoid me. It is between Fahdi and I. No business of yours”
“He will not marry you, he is just using you. Do you know how many nurses he has had? You quickly got pregnant to trap him; you think you are smart? It is none of our business; it is our business. You are a pretender.”
“You are pained. I can feel it. Why are you so angry? Is it your pregnancy? Did the man tell you I was trapping him? How is it any business of yours?”
“You had a son with another man who didn’t marry you….”
Fahdi held me by the hand and said, “let’s go. Don’t say anything more. Please, just ignore them as you have been doing. Come with me”. I went with him from their presence. I was upset.
The matron received a query from the management. I went to back to work but with a heavy heart. Why would my fellow nurses turn against me? They know nothing about my relationship with Fahdi so how did they come up with the gold digger theory? I didn’t see the gold I was going to dig. Fahdi lived a very simple life.
A nurse came to meet me and said, “Matron is jealous of you. She said you carried yourself so proudly and presented like a saint but alas, you were not different. Some of the other nurses supported her especially those that had tried to sleep with Dr Fahdi. But others had suspected your relationship and Dr Fahdi had refused to admit or deny but rather claimed it was noone’s business. What is surprising to them is the fact that both of you never shared rom-ntic overtures in the hospital; you were both very professional”
“So, how come some nurses suspected?”
“He had a soft spot for you. The things he says about you when you are not around is very commendable. And, the ambulance driver told us he took Dr Fahdi to your house a night before and saw your son drop him off the next morning. That was how the matron knew too. Then they wanted to confirm it by the phone thing and that was how they got the confirmation. Booking you to see Dr Radesh by Dr Fahdi made us realise he was responsible for your pregnancy. I hope I have explained it all. You got the best man here. Dr Fahdi doesn’t take advantage of nurses. He has never been in a relationship with any of us. They are jealous and pained that he chose you”
Fahdi waited for me to finish my shift and then took me home.
“There is no need hiding it anymore. I goofed, please accept my apology”
“It’s nothing. They are just jealous.”
“Do you want some time off with pay?”
“No, I am fine. I can handle everyb©dythere. I owe them no explanation. Even if we don’t work out, I will still cater for my child. I don’t care what they say”
“Don’t say that; we will definitely work. I got a mail, I might have to be away for three months on a course. I have been expecting this invitation before this happened.”
“You are going away? For three months? Can’t you defer?”
“You are just ten weeks gone, I will be back before your delivery”
“What of before then? When are you leaving?”
“In a week.”
“You couldn’t have just gotten the mail then. You hid this from me. Is this a ploy to run away from the drama our actions have caused?”
“Esther, you should know me better than that. Why would I want to run away? I wasn’t shortlisted initially and so I sent a query about it. They just responded and I have a week to meet them in Bangladesh. See, I will be back before you know it”
“What about your mother?”
“I will handle her. My father will come to see you when I get back. I’ve told him”
“I am not liking this. I feel you are sl-ipping away from me. I feel you want to leave me”
“Why would I want to do that? This course is very important to me. I will write an examination immediately after it. Understand me. Nothing has changed; nothing will change”
Fahdi told Emmanuel Junior I was pregnant for him and he asked Emmanuel to take care of me until he gets back. They talked in private about our relationship and his plans. Emmanuel refused to disclose to me what they discussed except to congratulate me on my pregnancy with a smile. “I pray it’s a girl” he said. I knew Fahdi was influencing him.
Fahdi spent the night before his trip at my place. We made love that night. He begged me for it saying he wanted a sweet memory of me while he was away. I cried after the act while he held me. I was scared he wouldn’t come back.
The matron and nurses tried to taunt me after Dr Fahdi went away. At a point it was getting messy. Terrible words were hurled at me in the presence of a patient. She reported to management and the erring staff were suspended without pay. That set an example.