My first love. Someone who is supposed to make you realise that love exists and not makes you hate and question its very existence.
My first love was quite memorable, for all the wrong reasons. Filled with love, laughter, excitement and an equal, if not, much much more amount of tears.
I thought I had been in love before with a slight stint when I was 14 (I started pretty young as I had to prove to the world that tomboys could also be loved).
Then the next handsome fella swept me off my feet at 17. Let me tell you Maina, dating your best friend’s cousin is the jachien itself - you cannot hurt him yet you will. Definitely!!
So my first love, let’s call him *Simon (like the damn disciple). How we met? Hilarious! I am a few months out of high school chilling with my then boyfriend, the cousin to the best friend, at his parent’s house on the veranda. Pure bliss. Romantic movie-esque, I could have sworn then.
We were beating stories about what I was going to do in campus (I think I was planning to take Criminology and become part of the force, or something thereabouts). He was a bit lukewarm on the education front so he was eyeing Saudi Arabia for a job his brother was helping him secure.
We were planning the number of children we would have once we are happily married. It was always 3 or 4, here we were in consensus that having a single child could never be us.
Then after making money for two years we were to do a big church wedding. None of us would convert our religion because we respected each other’s beliefs. We had everything well planned out to the last full stop. He was THE ONE!
In the midst of playing our future planning bliss in my dreamy mind, a car comes out of nowhere playing very loud bongo music (cue eye roll) then screeches to a halt right at our feet.
That is where it begins, he (Simon – the disciple) gets out of the car and demands I get into the car and I am like excuse you. Stranger danger I have seen you but not like that. Besides I am with my boyfriend because …love.
Luo men can be disrespectful I tell you. Simon tells my boyfriend that he has come to rescue me from poverty and puppy love. We are all dumbstruck.
No time to react or even speak… he carries all of my 55kg of falling in love at first sight into the machine– to my amazement, I offered the bare minimum of resistance!
If it was out of shock or intrigue, I guess, we will never know.
At least he loved safety because he belted me up before he closed my door. Anyone who knows me knows that even in my late twenties, I adore being buckled into my seat and my door opened and shut for me. Ujaluo will murder me. But I digress, He throws money at my then boyfriend, love of my life, prince charming, osiep chunya, then we speed off. Replete with movie effects.
There was no fight, the telenovelas lied to us too plenty. We just…. left!
On that day, I got my first brand new mobile phone, an LG, and a new Safaricom line. All those who knew me that time henceforth, still have my 0720 number.
I was dropped home with the express instructions that I now belong to him and that I should figure out what to tell my mother about my new phone since everyone knew “Simba” and her legendary tempers and anger.
Beloveds, I had to wait two long days before Simon called me and at that time I was torn between enthusiasm and fright. Did he sweep me off my feet from the love of my life bila ruhusa?
Was this what I wanted? Was this how I wanted it? What was love anyway? Did I say yes or no? Did I have a choice in this matter?
So many things were playing out at that very moment. One thing for sure was that I was happy he called. Hence my puppy love began. Just like that I sent the love of my life to oblivion.
Dates, romance, expensive gifts, homemade meals, my siblings and friends always being bribed was the nature of our relationship. The new normal.
But three incidences stand out before all hell broke loose. First, he had a baby mama who threatened me all the time but I was in love and she was the jealous ex with the baby who did not want to be left. Many years later and they are married with 3 more kid. Awuoro.
Incident number two; we had gone for an outing with his friends and their significant others. After I was asked how much I needed for the salon, beloved home girl said Sh100 (the chest pains I still feel for how naïve and honest I was back then.
Simon kneeled over with laughter. The Luopese in him could not believe that any sane girl would ask him for just Sh100, so he took me to my first expensive salon experience at Pambo in Kisumu City and gave me an allowance to go home. His damn laughter still melts my brain cells.
Incident number three; for my birthday number 19, a whole club was hired for me. I tell you citizens of the world, this my kuomoka story. It was a surprise too.
All my friends were invited, even those who I had not seen or spoken to for a hot minute.
On the day of the birthday, since I was struggling with my identity of being a tomboy as I tried to be feminine for my boyfriend, I wore a green with white leaves sleeveless dress with black tights underneath and a pair of silver sandals. Cinderella had gone all out. I felt like the prettiest woman in the entire world. A feeling I rarely felt at that point in my life.
The party was to-die-for exquisite and at the same time broke my heart to minute little pieces since my boyfriend flirted with each and every girl he could find at the party.
The girls entertained him because, well, he was loaded and he hit on them because he was himself, a disciple to the people who should give himself to his faithful at will.
That was my first taste of defeat and being demeaned in a relationship. But home girl stayed on long after.
The highlight of the ‘special’ day was the cake cutting which turned out disastrous. My boyfriend refused to cut the cake with me. The nerve!
I also had another guy take the cake from my mouth. This ‘little’ incident led to me being accused of kissing another man to embarrass the new ‘love of my life’.
The result of the eventful day was him throwing my birthday gift in the water and a very big determinant of the next steps of our special from-the-movies relationship.
What happened next is Hollywood material. Oh this love life of mine. I will next week let you in on the next phase that still replays in my mind, soundtrack, sound effects and all. See you, I guess.