Continued from last week….
There should be a limit to everything, for existence to maintain its balance. There should be a limit to how much one can feel for, and care for another, a limit to how much someone can hurt another and to how long someone can suffer, after they have been heartbroken. Looking at the girl seated before me, I realised that I was still suffering all these years later, at the betrayal I had been put through. I had tried to move on, and I thought I had succeeded but seeing her brought everything back in a torrent of pain.
She told me: “... it was last week when he told me they were having a baby. I was still processing the shock when today morning, he suddenly told me he was leaving me, to go be with her. He did not even want to discuss it, I suppose there was nothing to discuss anymore, for him. He was going to be a father. But he did not know that just yesterday, I had found out I was pregnant too, I had only found out that morning. I have not yet told him, I do not even know if I should tell him now. I want him back, but it is complicated....”
She was referring to my brother, the man she had left me for more than five years ago, without warning, without any reason, leaving me to grapple with endless ‘whys’ and an overwhelming sense of falling through empty space to an abyss. Five years later, I had managed to contain it. I thought I had gotten over it, but apparently, one does not get over something like this easily, if ever.
And now, here she was, telling me he had left her. “Why me’ was the uppermost question on my mind.
But in her state, she was too lost in her sea of confusion to comprehend the absurdity of the situation.
So I put it off until a time when she was more in control of herself. She cried silently for more than five minutes, wiped her eyes with a napkin, took another sip of her juice and finally said, “I know you must be wondering why, of all people, it is you I have run to. The last person I should be telling, the last person who would want anything to do with me.”
Angrily, I sipped my coffee in silence, looking at her coldly. She smiled sadly and said, “because you are the only man I ever loved, Sam.
You are the only one who ever understood me. And I am sure even with what we have been through, you will still find the heart to help me, even though you possibly won’t ever forgive me. That is why I called you. So, what should I do? What can I do?” She was right. My mind was already racing with questions on how she could handle her situation. I asked her to give me a week.
One week later, after talking to my brother, I made a decision that I might possibly regret the rest of my life; I asked her to marry me.
I would adopt the child and raise it as my own. My brother was aware of this decision, and he was okay with it. To him, it was just another child, he did not even love the girl anymore. To me, it was my child in almost every aspect. I was ready to live with the decision. I told her about it. She asked me for two days to think it over, then she gave me a yes, only on one condition; that if i ever felt like punishing someone for what she had put me through, I would punish her, but never the innocent child. The child who had two fathers but was also fatherless!
So, that is the brief story of my life. Right now, the boy is about three years old. He looks like his father, but his father is my brother who looks like me, so he is my son. For now, all is still well.