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Let's Part Ways

I am getting a divorce. It is a shame because I thought my wife and I were going to die in old age – together – holding hands. Or in an eternal kiss. Naturally, I should blame myself for getting into this trap.

But I choose to blame the pastor who nudged me before my family and friends to say ‘for better for worse’. I hated those words. Because I suspected that I might, well, renege.

I met my wife in college. We met in a way I regret. It was back in college.

In my estimation, she wasn’t beautiful or attractive to me. She had snake-hips, the type that fall flat. You have to see my wife naked to see where the hips start. Or come to an end.

I did not like her face because she had pimples that she’d tried to suffocate. But instead of them going away, they dried into tiny black – and ugly – scars. I did not like her nails and I think her eyebrows are not in one line.

But I was young and starved of sex. My last sex venture was three years before with a girl who left me for, well, I don’t know. I suspect she liked the guy peddling weed and selling condoms in wing three.

My wife had her own thirst, I suppose. So we started with no strings attached. We had sex a few times. Had many more good sex weekends. Then one day we did it in my dad’s car without a condom.

That’s how strings began to entangle us. She caught blood. Or became pregnant. And we found ourselves staring at a situation. Strings attached.

We met at Arboretum. I remember we sat on green the grass. I was angry. She was, in my estimation, just pregnant.

You have to remove it, I said calmly. But I was angry for banging her in my dad’s car without a condom. In Luo Culture, you don’t smash a gal in your father’s house. Or a car. It’s a curse.

In my mind I thought…this is a curse. She has to kill the bastard.

She shook her head. Let’s have the baby.

No we cannot. We have no future together, I thought. I was sure.

It is okay, she said at the end of the day. I will keep the child. You may not bother about them when they are born.

I walked away. I was walking away. I promised myself not to call her or text her. We were graduating that December. A typical Kenyan graduation is like a fish market. Our paths did not cross.

Life took an interesting turn after graduation. A blue-chip company gave me a job. I was in the job for four months when one evening I received a Whatsapp message.

“Congratulations!”

“Yeah. Thanks.” I thought it was about the new job.

“So when are you going to see him?”

That is how it hit me – like a Luo stone. I was a father. Something stirred inside me. I had erased her number from my phone. But I wasn’t able to erase it from my head.

I called.

James! She said. Calmly. No excitement.

Brenda, I muttered.

And then I had nothing else to say. For a fleeting moment, we listened to the connection line whirr away.

How is he? I managed.

OK. He is ok. That is all she said. Calmly. No excitement.

That’s good. Good. What’s his name?

James!

Yes! I said. And then the line went mum again.

Yes, what’s his name?

James. James is his name.

You named him after me?

No. I named him James.

Ok. That’s good.

Yeah. She said

Every Saturday afternoon, I drove to see my James. I would call her while preening at the Supermarket shelves checking on the diaper sizes. James started calling me ‘papa’. Papa!

Meanwhile we started having a connection with Brenda. We kissed one evening. And then we kissed again the following Saturday. And then the following Tuesday evening, I spent the night over at Brenda’s.

I did not spend the night there because I was falling in love with her. No. I was starved of sex. I suspect she was too.

Brenda and I are pretty similar. I don’t venture out. I don’t go after women. I find it easier to masturbate and then watch Netflix. Than, you know, go after gals.

Or fantasize over women I see in the office. I suspect Brenda is that kind of woman too. I have caught her a few times having a good time with her dildo.

I spent the night. She cooked mashed potato and minced meat that night. She served me wine. And then we fucked like we had never done. A good beautiful fuck.

Brenda is good at sex positions. She smashed me like she had done the potatoes. She left me minced. And I loved it.

They say women take control while on top. Brenda is the master of it. Brenda has a way of finding her spot on top; and then she would lean backwards. She would tell me, she told me that night, inhale baby, exhale baby. That night, she sang that song and danced on my pelvic bones.

Why shouldn’t I marry her? Marry Brenda. I said to myself.

I did. But I never loved her.

We got married in a small ceremony at the Don Bosco Catholic Church in Upper Hill, Nairobi.

I remember everyone was so happy. My parents were so happy. My sisters giggled. And folks from the office were all over the place. Even as I said my vows, I knew that I was not going to see them (vows) through.

But things change. Isn’t that what they say? I thought I would grow in love. Love Brenda. 

We have been living with Brenda at a nice great place in Westlands. My father gave it to us as our wedding gift. James is a six-year-old lad now. Jumpy. My mother says I was just like that when I was a kid.

So last year…

Last Christmas, I met another woman. I fell in love with her. I took her out to Java for dinner. We went for more dates. Many more dates. One day, when I dropped her at her place, I told her that I loved her.

I like you a lot. I said.

She smiled.

Gosh. I said. I like how you smile.

We hugged. She held me close and then she whispered.

I enjoyed the date. I like you. But when are you gonna tell me you’re married? Because I keep asking: why is he bullshitting me. Why are you bullshitting me!

I wanted this to be an affair. Steal Brenda’s time and spend it with her. I was not ready to explain myself.

Can we talk about this indoors? I asked her

I stepped into her apartment. High ceilings. White. Fragrant. And the couch was inviting when I sank into it. I told her the truth, part of which she already knew.

I’m married. I’m not happy. I feel like I am in it because of my son.

What do you want, James? She asked me.

I want you. I want to be happy and you make me happy, Jasmine.

Based on mutual understanding, we ratified that affair with some intense session. It was the greatest sex. But I liked the scent of her skin. And her breath meant so much.

That is why I decided to leave Brenda. I think of myself as a good man.

So…

I told Brenda that I wanted to speak with her over dinner.

She listened to me while saying all that I needed to say. And in the end, she said nothing except nod along.

You’re not going to say a word?‌ I asked her.

No. She said.

Come ooon…Brenda! Say something.

It has been seven good years, James.

Can we talk about how we are going to share Jame’s custody?

She shook her head. Let me take care of James. She said.

Why? I asked.

James is not your son, James.

I leaned back on my seat for a moment.

Are you serious?

Brenda stood up and leaned over the table. Then she said: Please don’t come home tonight. Tell Jasmine that it went smoothly. James and I will move out tomorrow.

Goodbye, James.

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Written by Odour Jagero (0)

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