How Long does it take to fall in love? One day? One week? One month? One year? At first sight? I still do not know the answer to those question, but John Green perfectly described how I feel in his book The Fault In Our Stars. He wrote, “I fell in love like you fall asleep, slowly and then all at once.”
So I fell into a deep sleep, filled with dreams of wonderland that can never become reality. Then I had sleep apnea, my dreams became nightmares, I felt the doom caress my skin but I couldn’t move. I was swimming with my hands tied to a rock behind my back as I sank deeper in love.
Timi didn’t fit the model of my ideal man. There was no butterfly feeling in my stomach. I resented him and warned him to keep off! How we moved on to become friends I can’t tell, and how we became lovers remains a mystery.
You do not know the exact moment you fall asleep, you only know you want to sleep and then you are asleep.
It only dawned on me that I should wake up when I discovered I was an iPhone and Timi a Samsung charger, our specifications do not fit.
“You can never be with an Ijaw man,” father said.
“They left scars on me that time cannot heal. They attacked our town and left behind no one breathing, your mother and grand parents included. You expect me to forgive them because you are in love?”
I cried and argued Timi was different. I begged him not to take the easy route of stereotyping. I quoted Dr Martin Luther King, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” Besides the communal crises was long over and both sides have embraced peace. But Father would not flinch, he was one whose words was law.
He didn’t shed a tear when I threatened to leave the house late that night, he even helped me pack.
His words, “a lover of my enemy is my enemy.”
“Lock the door when you finally decide to leave”, He said as he left the house. And so I ceased being my Father’s daughter.
The moon left the sky while I left home that night. We were two homeless creatures, I looked up and the twinkling stars up above the world so high was nowhere, it was pitch black up there.
I didn’t cry, I wasn’t worried when Timi didn’t return my call. I took a cab to his apartment and with a smile on my face I knocked. Two minutes later and the door remained shut. I had an extra key so I let myself in.
I was famished but I needed a shower more, so I dragged my bags to the bedroom and stood still at the door post. Dazed at the sight before me;
“Weyimi!”they both called.
“Timi, you know her?”
“She is your daughter?”
My bags left my hands as I left the house. Timi came after me after he had forced on some clothes.
“Weyimi, I can explain. I didn’t know he was your father,” I didn’t cry, I couldn’t cry. I was heart broken, but couldn’t tell who did the heart breaking.
“How long does it take to fall out of love?” Was the only thought in my head as I became homeless for the second time that night.
I guess it’s the same with asking how long it takes to wake up when you are dead. Or maybe 500 grammes of sleeping pills mixed with alcohol would know the answer, and sure Timi and Daddy would be answering it with me.