Bloom - Episode 1: The Ladies' Man
My beloved is to me a cluster of henna blooms in the vineyards of En Gedi
Dressed in a new mustard-yellow knee length dress with a matching belt by the waist, I check myself in the mirror again for the umpteenth time. I decided to let my lustre hair down for the first time in months – it’s full and shoulder length with a glow. I had permed it the day before; I didn’t need an attachment because my hair is long enough. Turning around in front of the mirror, with my dress twirling round me, I just want to be sure I look breath-taking enough for Dennis, my very handsome Dennis.
Dennis had invited me for their end of year party at the office and this time he won’t take a ‘no’ for an answer. Ever since we started our courtship 3 months ago, he had wanted to introduce me to his boss, who supposedly wanted to meet her best staff’s fiancée, but I just couldn’t go. I didn’t see the need to, or better still, I didn’t think I was ready to meet her. I wanted her to see me on our wedding day, looking all radiant (after all, all brides always look stunning on their wedding day).
One of my many flops is that I’m not fair, I’m very dark in complexion; and to top it off, I’m a 5:1’’; in other words, I’m very short. I think the only things I can boast of about my look are my long hair and dimpled-chin. My face is oval-shaped and I’m slightly fleshy. There’s nothing super-duper about me. To think that Dennis would look my way is really beyond me. I’m 33 and wasn’t so surprised that men weren’t coming my way, until Dennis.
He had been transferred to their Lagos branch from Port-Harcourt due to expansion, a year ago; he works with an oil and gas firm. He was transferred alongside his immediate boss and three other people to set-up their Lagos office. He joined our parish immediately he got to Lagos and was made minister in charge of choir department, since that was his office at his Port-Harcourt church. Coincidentally, I am the choir leader.
Before Dennis came, I had been trusting God for a life partner, but I kept hearing the word ‘wait!”. I was a bit worried because I didn’t think guys would be interested in a plain looking girl like me. But I learnt to trust God’s words. To the glory of God, I can clearly distinguish God’s voice. I hear Him and He shows me things to come. So, I kept waiting. However, the day Dennis first came into our church as a first-timer, the Word of God came clearly as soon as I saw Him: “this is he”. This is he ke? I would have doubted it if I didn’t know God’s voice. I just couldn’t believe he’d be the one. This is because this guy, Dennis, is not only super handsome, he’s tall, chocolatey-dark, and clean. He looks already made, if you get what I mean. Too good to be true. I questioned God:
This is not he God. This one won’t look at me twice; this one can never be interested in a nobody-somebody like me”.
I expected a response, but nothing came. God decided to be silent. Then I knew I’d overdone it. Then I stopped talking and started watching and waiting for things to unfold. I know God would never lie, even though I have my doubts.
Soon after he joined our church, we had become best of friends. He’s the minister and I’m the choir leader, so we get to work together most times. I found out so many things about him…that although he dresses well, speaks well, has clean cash, he has BIG love for God. I also found out he wasn’t dating anyone (that works for me, somehow), although he didn’t show me any sign of being interested in me either. We were just very good friends...we choose songs together, work on songs before we share it with the whole choir, share scriptures, and gist generally. That was it. And even though God had told me he was the one, I decided not to push him or show any sign of desperation. I just wanted to see what God would do.
One Sunday morning in September, immediately after our workers’ meeting, my parish pastor asked me to see him in his office immediately after service. I thought he was going to discuss an upcoming programme and wanted us (the choir) to prepare for it. So, after service I went to see Pastor, and here’s what he told me:
“Sister Lois, are you in a relationship presently? Seeing anyone in particular?”
“Ok. What I want to discuss is important. It concerns your marital life. I’m not one to impose anyone and I like getting a go-ahead from God before taking any step. As your spiritual father, I have prayed sincerely about this and God has given us the go-ahead.”
“What do you mean by us Sir and what are you saying in essence?”
“A brother spoke to me about you 6 months ago, I asked him to pray more and I also prayed along with him. Now, I am convinced that the man is he. And the man is Bro Dennis.”
Long story short, Dennis heard the same thing I heard the day he joined the church. I told pastor my version, he called us together, prayed for us, and asked us to go ahead with courtship and counselling….
Dennis had picked me up at home, looking dapper as usual. He was dressed in a bluish-grey suit with a plum tie. He looked oh so handsome. I had decked a high-heel, but still his height is way above mine.
As we entered the well decorated Civic Centre at Ozumba Mbadiwe, Victoria Island, I noticed so many glances at my Dennis, a lot of them from beautiful girls. I felt proud and anxious at the same time. Proud to be seen with a handsome dude; anxious they might steal him from me. Dennis greeted some of them courteously and then led me to our seat. As soon as we were seated, a young, tall, and fair lady in her late 20s walked up to us, she was dressed in the most gorgeous plum dress I’ve ever seen. As she got to our table, Dennis’ face lit up with a huge smile, soon she hugged Dennis tightly and then pecked him on both cheeks…ouch, I felt a sting of jealousy. All of a sudden, the room started spinning and I felt like fainting.
I started saying within me: ‘why would this kind of ladies’ man come my way; I can’t compete with the kinds of ladies I see around him’.
After about 3 minutes of exchanging pleasantries, Dennis finally remembered me and introduced the lady as Yinka, his boss and the CEO’s daughter. I managed to mutter some greetings and then quickly took my seat before I embarrassed myself. I felt out of place beside Yinka. She’s everything called sophisticated and classy.
Soon after, Yinka came to sit at our table and was being flirty with Dennis, who seemed not to notice her gestures or didn’t think she was being flirty. He tried being chatty with me, but Yinka wouldn’t let him. She had one thing or the other to say about the event, the work, the country and so on.
I decided I’d had enough after about 40 minutes of being ignored and went to the restroom. No I wasn’t going to take this anymore, so I met a concierge by the hallway to the restroom and asked him for another way out of the place. As soon as I got out, I flagged an available taxi…. “Maryland, please”. That was it. I left Dennis at the party without a goodbye.
For it was You who created my inward parts;
You knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I will praise You
because I have been remarkably and wonderfully made.
Your works are wonderful,
and I know this very well