They say if you go looking for trouble on a man’s phone, you’ll find it. I wasn’t looking for trouble, but it somehow wound up at my doorstep. It was one of those relationships where you meet someone, and you start to think to yourself that he could be ‘the one’. I learned he wasn’t the one, but not before I got embarrassed publically.
I met Sam at his grandmother’s burial. It’s not as weird as that sounds, I promise. He was my friend’s cousin. I had accompanied my friend to offer my support. My friend adored their grandmother. She had been like a second mother to him since his mother got him while he was young. My friend had spent several years with his grandmother as his mother tried to figure out her life. My friend had mentioned his cousins would be around.
Sam was tall, eloquent, and elegant. He quickly commanded attention. He was sharply dressed in a black suit and shades. Later during the programme, he read a tribute. After the funeral, my friend introduced us. We left my friend and his family but decided to go to a restaurant in the nearby town. My friend and some of his family members later joined us. Sam was part of the group that came.
He was the centre of attention. You could tell he was respected. It helped that he was well-spoken, knowledgeable and had a sense of humour. I don’t remember how we started talking, but I recall sitting on the balcony with him, away from the rest of the group. It was a beautiful night with a full moon. I was slightly inebriated, and it made me more talkative, but I remember him staring at me.
“Pretty sure staring is considered rude. Why are you giving me that look?” I asked him.
“I like seeing the glow in your eyes when you talk about the moon. I’ve never heard someone have so many things to say about the matter. Are you into astronomy?” Sam asked.
“Selenophile is the word you’re looking for. It’s the term for someone who loves the moon,” I told him.
“You don’t say! Colour me impressed,” Sam responded.
I knew I was in trouble. The conversation flowed, and by the night’s end, we had talked about many things. Before we knew it, we were dating.
I loved that Sam was open with me. He often told me uncomfortable truths. I appreciated the honesty because it helped me manage my expectations. It also made me trust him. Even when he said he wasn’t available to meet over the weekends, I had no reason to doubt him. After all, I, too, had commitments on weekends, so the same applied to him.
“What commitments are these that he can’t include you in?” My friend often asked me.
“But I also don’t include him in all my plans. We still need our autonomy even if we’re dating,” I often defended him.
“That man must have a family or something,” my friend often suggested.
I even asked the friend who was his cousin about it and swore that Sam had no family. We went on like that for weeks. I could meet him on some weekends while he went about his business without me on some weekends. On one Saturday, I went to his place. I started experiencing menstrual cramps, and it got bad enough to warrant looking for painkillers. Sam offered to get me the medication as I tried to nap.
I was sleeping in bed when I heard someone at the door. The door wasn’t locked with the key because Sam had not intended on taking long at the pharmacy. So I heard someone come in. I thought Sam had come back. After a few minutes, I saw the bedroom door open. We both looked like we had seen ghosts.
“Who are you and what are you doing in my man’s bed?” The lady asked me.
“Your man? I’m on my man’s bed, I don’t know who your man is.” I responded arrogantly.
“You’re on Sam’s bed and he is my boyfriend,” the woman insisted.
Sam came in to find us and was surprised to see the other woman. He took out his phone as though to confirm something. He was looking at his calendar. He confirmed that he had asked the other woman to go but had forgotten to cancel the plans when my schedule cleared up. I had been unsure of my availability.
“Sam, why is she in your bed?” The lady asked him.
“She’s my girlfriend,” Sam responded after hesitating. He had taken almost five minutes looking for ways out of it.
“If she’s your girlfriend, then what am I?” The lady asked.
“Trish, can we talk about this later?” Sam asked the girl.
In addition to the pain in my abdomen, the situation was also giving me a headache. I winced and reached for the glass of water on the side table.
“Sam, why are you acting like you didn’t invite me over?” Trish asked Sam.
Sam struggled to answer our questions. Mostly, he looked disappointed in himself for getting caught.
Eventually, the other woman left. I had just taken the painkillers, so I needed to wait for it to take effect.
“Babe, are you feeling better?” Sam asked.
“Leave me alone, Sam!” I told him.
“You know Trish means nothing to me,” Sam tried saying.
“If that’s true why had you invited her over?” I asked him.
He tried convincing me that he wasn’t serious about Trish and wanted to take care of me as I was unwell, but I didn’t need any other occurrence to show me that he was a cheater. My friend reminded me that she still thought he was with other women on the weekends when we were not together. I didn’t want any confirmation, and the Trish drama was too much as it was.
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