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CANCER IN LOVE (A pink October rendition)

By October 29, 2018No Comments

We have been friends for very long. It seemed normal to call often, chat every day and think about him like food (at least 3 times a day). It passed for a ‘good friendship’ and nothing more (I mean it). Until one day faithful to only itself, he spilled oil over the troubled waters. ‘‘I LOVE YOU’’ he said. I felt like vomiting. What? Who? How? When? Where? Why? I would have pretended I misunderstood but in all our playfulness and openness as friends, he has never used these three words in such order and in such short sentence, no preface, no epilogue. My mind was bursting with rhetorics that needed answers so they become authentic questions. ‘I only like you as a friend, can’t you see I can date everyone except you?’ Michael’s countenance changed into twilight. I could no longer see the happy face that hugged me about 30 minutes ago when we arrived at this eatery. The joy eloped, the sun stood still for the next 10 minutes before I stood up like a robot, face above his head so I watched the chubby black American walking in with his daughter of about 3 years old. I took my bag and asked to leave (like I needed his permission). I had never seen Michael with such sadness. It took me to a line in Chimamanda Adichie’s novel, Americanah, “there were people who were born with an inability to be tangled up in dark emotions, in complications, and Iloba was one of them’. In my case, I replace Iloba with Michael.
For weeks I wondered what gave Michael the courage to express himself. I was angry with him and with me too. But I couldn’t understand, was I upset because it came from Michael, a young, ambitious, diligent, God-fearing and loving soul or was it because I already knew Michael for a long time? I knew the answer was the latter. As humans, we always want to seek for what is outside, something we have not experienced. After frequent breakups, here is the most genuine guy of my life before me and I was upset that I have known him for a long time.
When I needed a friend, it was Mike, so also it was when I needed a brother, a lawyer, a chess-mate, a scrabble partner, a critic, a driver and a prayer partner. ‘Kelly, remember you owe me a box of chocolate this Friday’ he slipped into our fading debate on the relationship between music, church and the Holy Spirit. I never met a lover of chocolates like him. Michael will virtually eat anything as long as you can convince him it was made of chocolate. I made him a chocolate cake on his 27th year birthday in Lesotho. And the way he calls my name, reflecting over it I am seeing love even in the tone of his voice. ‘Kelly, between chocolates and me, who loves chocolate?’, ‘Call me Chocolaty sweety!’ he would tease when I’m persuaded to throw my fleshy brown-complexioned tiny fingers over his huge shoulders for beating me in my scrabble game.
Whilst I would rather stay in South Africa for Christmas with family, Michael will persuade me on a trip to Belgium and then to the Netherlands. Here I am, two days after arriving Netherlands, being proposed love. The question I am afraid to ask ‘‘the love, when did it all start?’’
Love is like cancer, you can easily think ‘it just popped up’. Love at first sight, it does not happen as you express it. The truth is love takes time to build, it’s a decision. Like an iceberg, there is so much under the water but looking above it you think it’s little, you think it started just 2 seconds ago. You started loving that person a long time ago, it just took that minute to realize like Cancer, it’s out of its hiding place. We can love people without yet knowing them. Especially with divinely placed people/partners, we can perceive them when we meet them through the Holy Spirit’s wisdom and omniscience.
I hate to say this but it is pink October, a month dedicated to creation of awareness of breast cancer. Love like cancer can hide around the corner, for 13 years like Michael. Don’t be blind, be aware because the earlier is better.
Your heart, body and soul, all stay blessed (AMEN!). Share with a friend and let’s pink this October with love. Have a lovely week!
‘The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.’ Jer. 31:3 (NIV)

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