‘Omoby, my wedding date has been fixed now!’ Tani came jumping to me announcing her wedding date. She brimed with somuch joy and I couldn’t wish for anything better as this for her. Marriage has always been her top priority. Now her dreams have come true. I was happy for her.
‘You know who he is, now?’ She jocked. Obviously she was pulling my legs.
‘Lol. Why wouldn’t I know who he was? Charles!! Charles who chased Tani for 3 years before she decided to give him a yes. Charles who went extramiles to get Tani’s attention. Mehn, if I were a guy, I doubt I’d be this patient and when she eventually did say ‘yes’ to him, it was like she couldn’t let him go. She was all over him. Monitoring his movements, checking his phone chats etc…I would always ‘lol’ at her asking what exactly she was looking for. I also remember telling tani to consider him because he was very generous and he was a man I knew had a genuine heart for God. Although he was 4 years older than both of us, He had a great sense of humour. He loved Tani deeply, I knew it.
I knew Tani would get married before me. Charles was ready, wasn’t he? And Tani had always wanted to get married early. Tani had an older sister who wasnt married yet. Fortunately, her parents weren’t those who cared whether the youngest one married before the other…and all her sisters, were the most supportive of her relationship and her wedding plans. Not many people were such fortunate. Indeed Tani has been a woman of great favor! I was truly and deeply happy for her.
I brimmed with excitements as Tani relayed to me everything that would happen on her day. She talked of her dress, shoes, invitation cards and especially her wedding dress. I always offered my ears to listen. I think there was this thing about brides who always liked to share details of their wedding events with everyone.
******three weeks later******
Something was missing. Tani hadn’t yet told me about her bridemaids nor who would be her Chief. I was a bit puzzled but I waved it aside. What she would want them to wear? I knew every bride’s dream is to have ladies in lovely dresses that would had colour and glamour to her day. I didn’t even know what colour they were wearing. But I could guess. Orange was tani’s best colour. What could match Orange if she’d choose that? Lemon? Peach?
So I decided to ask her.
‘I know I am gonna be your chief bride’s maid right?! Wow! What am I gonna wear? Let’s see. We could check out magazines and see what would be befitting for me. What do you think?’
Tani gave me a blank look. If I were more sensitive, I should have noticed something…and as I picked up my phone to check Nigerian websites of all bridesmaids dresses, Tani said…
‘You know what Omoby, I have to quickly pick up something. I’d call you later’
‘But we were just about going through what I’d wear now?’ I inquired, a bit confused.
‘Oh, don’t worry about that. I’d sort it out for you. Trust me now, I know exactly what you want and how you want it. You’ve always been a size 6’, she smiled.
She was right. Tani knew everything about me. She knew what could possibly best fit me. She knew somuch about me. We’ve been roommates since our 2nd year in Uni. In our 3year, Charles got her a new flat and so she moved out. Occasionally, I spent few nights with her only when she requested I come.
What of the price and all? How would I know how much I am supposed to pay? I reasoned she didn’t want to bother me.
Tani also knew about my relationship with Bode even though she had always asked me when we both gonna get married. She had expressed fears about our 8years relationship. She said she couldn’t possibly wait for a guy forever. Well, that’s why we are both different. I believe in Bode. I know he’s true and hardworking. He may not have been as fortunate as her Charles, but I know someday ‘luck’ would smile on him.
********** few days later *********
‘Heyyy sis! You know what? Omoby now said she wants to be my Chief! Imagine! Huh?’ She gave the disgust smiley’
‘You kidding me right? Did you ask her yourself?’
‘You know I wouldn’t have asked her. I mean, couldn’t she have been so sensitive to know that I discussed everything except that. She hissed.
‘Lol. She’s only been a friend. Anyway what did you tell her?’
‘What could I have done? I obliged her now but I’d feel so bad to have her be behind me. I don’t want to see her face at all on my wedding day. I sound ridiculous but that’s how I feel!’
‘Oh yeah! You are ridiculous! You don’t seem to like her as much as she does, right? But hey, you said she has her exams now. Is she gonna skip them for your wedding or what? Who does that?’
‘I don’t know honestly. But looks like she’s willing too. Who skips exams for someone else’s wedding. Not for someone who doesn’t want you anyway…’
‘You should have told her you have already picked your chief now’
‘ What was I supposed to say?’ ‘Oh no Moby, sorry…you can’t be my Chief. If she has been sensitive, she should know I didn’t want her. Honestly sis, I just don’t want her desperate face on my wedding day. She’d really just disgust me.
‘It must be that bad I must say. Then you’ve got to find something to do about it. Have you told Tolu and Tola yet?’ Tolu and Tola were older sisters of Tani.
‘No not yet. But I can predict their answers. Omoby is just very desperate. I am sure she never thought I could get married before her. I mean, she’s been courting her ‘church rat boyfriend’ for the past 8 years and the guy hasn’t proposed yet. I don’t want her ill-luck to rub off on my day’ she scorned. I think she just never thought I could get married to Charles.
‘Lol. You’re funny Tani. Don’t be this mean. Anyway, let’s chat later. I’d give you a call then we could find a way around this’
‘Okay sis, thanks for listening. I’d expect your call. Love always.
What??? Were my eyes seeing clearly? Was I dreaming? Was this tani? My very own Tani? Tani whom I shared a bed with? Tani whom I made excuses for?
Hot tears rolled down my eyes as I read the conversation chats with Tani and her sister. I was too shocked to utter a single word. I cried like I had never cried before. Wiping the tears with the back of my palms…I sat and thought again…’So Tani thought she ill about me? She referred to Bode as church-rat? Things would get better for Bode oooo. I thought I was been a friend when I asked if I could be her chief bride’s maid. I thought I showed genuine interest in been part of your day? This decision was greatest mistake of my life. Tani? You dare mean that my face would disgust you on your day? Your day I thought was mine as well? You dare think I am jealous of you? Who talks of getting married before 26? Who says it doesn’t matter to get your hands doing something before Marriage? Who prays of Marriage like its a do or die? And when Charles came along? Who was there for you, listening and praying when you couldn’t make a choice? Have I ever made it appear to you that I am sad/jealous about you or your relationship? When you told me Charles got a new job, wasn’t I genuinely happy for you both? What of when you told me he just did his house warming, didn’t we both go together for the ceremony? Even when he got you a flat in town, who skipped lectures to help you wash your apartment?
And so…that’s how I found out.
Tani was a friend. I loved her with all my heart. Yorubas say ‘we know those we love but we don’t know those who love us’ I could vouch for Tani anywhere and with anyone. I loved her genuinely. I called her a ‘best friend’ I called her a sister I never had. Her conversations with her sister shook the marrow out of me.
Her wedding is next weekend and I am seriously considering if I should attend. Oh lest I forget, I eventually opted out from been her Chief Bride’s Maid. I told her since I had paid for my exams, I wouldn’t want to resist for it next year. I wasn’t read to make sacrifices for someone who thought so evil of me.
Hard and bitter, I learnt my lessons.
“Omoby, don’t go asking anyone if you wanna be on their train or if you wanna be the Chief. Not anyone!!”
Photo Credits: Google.
All rights reserved, Omoby 2016