The Congruence… Episode 26

The Congruence XXVI

Folahan left after that but I couldn’t go inside…I stayed outside for a while, clutching my bag. Tokunbo was inside and I didn’t want any dose of “frenemity’ to poison my loving thoughts that evening.

I was so happy that God brought me such a man. It didn’t matter if I got the job or not; Folahan had taught me vital life lessons, on that day, that would go a long way to form how I saw and carried myself. 

I had butterflies doing the merengue all over my tummy…I wish I had a girl-friend I could just talk to about how I felt. I had thought I loved Captain but there was something pure about this, that my relationship with Captain lacked. Sure, Folahan loved to give gifts as well…little but meaningful gifts. Most of them were inexpensive but I valued them so much. He was the person that introduced me to the gift of flowers…he would write sweet words on a note, attach it to the bouquet and leave it on my desk. All those “I saw this and it reminded me of you” gifts. I preferred them to the more expensive material things Captain provided.

It look about three days to get the news but I got the offer to be converted to a full-time employee…our manager had to write another recommendation highlighting my achievements during the service year. He threw in the fact that Folahan wasn’t staying. The Bank actually offered to keep both of us and have Folahan move to Lagos but he didn’t take the offer. 

 Auntie Felicia also called to congratulate me and kept saying “You are such a lucky girl…look how that worked out”

 My mum was ecstatic when I shared the news with her. She laughed, she sang, she danced, she cried, she even screamed…she reminded me of how I had always wanted to be a banker and how God made the seemingly impossible a reality. How God turned around the story of our family. She then told me Sister Grace was expecting and that her husband bought her a car. 

 “I will soon become a grandma, one of my daughters owns a car, and another one is now a banker.  Me? The poor and wretched me? The laughing stock me? 

Chei! This God is good o”

 Folahan’s Uncle was able to get the interview set up…but it meant being interviewed, in person, by the Deputy Managing Director of the Bank. The interview was in Lagos and as usual, Folahan dazzled the man. The interviewer was so impressed that he also offered Folahan a second level position and wanted him to start as soon as possible. Apparently, that bank was aware of the big check/account Folahan got from the Federal Ministry and wanted him to resume as the team lead of their Public Sector unit in Abuja. It was a day of celebration when he returned from the interview…I picked him up at the airport. That was the first time I slept in his house (a lovely self-contained apartment in a gated rich neighborhood in Wuse 2). It wasn’t planned but we were having so much fun and talking that time just flew by. We had some really deep conversations that day and we talked till almost 3a.m.We sat on the Sofa, holding hands…it was both romantic and deep. Folahan told me how he was not that into marriage in his early years because of the abuse he witnessed at home. How his dad was very abusive both verbally and physically. How he used to feel sorry for his mum but was helpless. 

“It was rough and toughThere was a day he broke my mum’s hand and didn’t even feel sorry

 It was such a traumatic childhood…although we had silver spoons but the comfort and luxury did not make up for it.

 The weird thing was that outsiders could not tell…they saw a perfect picture of a perfect couple raising a perfect family.

 My dad was all about his reputation…keeping up appearances and being seen as a responsible man  But God works in mysterious ways and sometimes has funny ways of dealing with issues…it took a life-threatening experience for my dad to change his abusive ways

 It was almost too late to salvage the marriage but thank God they were able to work it out.

 Those memories seared my heart and I daily pray to God to give me the strength to completely forgive my dad and wipe those memories.

 After all, I still learnt something from him…how not to treat my wife”

 I was feeling so close to Folahan that night; I laid my head on his left shoulder as I shared my own story of the abuse I witnessed as a child. 

“Wow, I guess abuse is not a function of class or societal standing.

 May God help us to do it right and make our children tell better stories about us in Jesus’ name”

I wasn’t sure whether to say Amen or not…that was the second time Folahan was hinting at marriage or at least, a future together.

 He looked at me intently and said “Or we are not planning to have children?”

I just smiled

That was the day I got to talk to Folahan’s siblings abroad, we didn’t feel like sleeping so he called them…he had talked to them about me and they couldn’t wait to talk to me. 

 My new job at the bank required that I also traveled to Lagos for a 3-week New Employee Orientation and Training. The bank provided accommodation and bought the flight ticket. It was my first time on a plane and Folahan had encouraged me because I was a little scared. I was going to miss him so much; I had gotten so used to seeing him every day. 

 “Don’t worry, I won’t be too far away…I could even surprise you with a visit” 

He dropped me off at the airport and waited for me to go through security. It was so hard to walk away from him I had intentionally asked not to be put on a window seat, I wasn’t planning to look down from way up there…not a fan of heights, landscapes or aerial views.

When I finally found my seat, guess who was sitting next to me…Deola.

Continues in episode 27
-Lanre Olagbaju

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