REALITY STEPS IN – OUR FIRST BIG TEST AS A COUPLE
I woke up with a start and rushed to the bathroom to throw up. Atembe followed to make sure all was well. This had been going on for a while and I was having a fever every now and then.
“I think you need to see the Doctor.”
Yes sure. I will go on Monday.”
Nine months had passed since that famous day at André’s café. I noticed some changes on my body. The weekend went by without a fuss and on Monday I went to visit the doctor for a check-up.
“Congratulations Miss Eware, you are pregnant,” said doctor Achiri with a smile, pulling out my lab test results and handing them over to me. I was speechless. I stared in disbelieve. After a few minutes of shock, I pulled myself together, took the results, thanked him and walked out of his office. Immediately I stepped out of his office, I dialed Atembe’s number. After three rings he picked up the phone:
‘Hello Angel, how are you doing?”
“Hey baby, doing fine and you?”
“Doing OK. You don’t sound too well, did you see the doctor?”
“Yes, I’m just stepping out of his office…”
“Anything wrong with you? You’ve been rather pale lately.”
“Yes. I mean, No. Not wrong…”
“What do you mean? What is going on? What did the doctor say? You are getting me worried baby.”
“Doc says I am pregnant.”
“Aaaahhh.” he breathed in relief, “You got me worried for a while there. That’s good news baby, or is it not?” he went on in an uncertain voice.
“I guess it is. I was just worried about how you were going to take the news.”
“Honey, I am thrilled you are expecting our baby. I can’t wait to get home and hold you tight in my arms darling. I hope you don’t mind having the baby, do you?”
“No. Not at all. I am presently the happiest woman on earth, just hearing you say it’s ok. I love you baby.”
“I love you right back honey. Can’t wait to be home to my angel.”
We talked for a little while before we hung up and I went home. That was all the confirmation I needed although it was not planned. Every other person was against us having the baby and thought it was too early. We were going to keep the baby, so we moved in together.
A few months later I found out I was pregnant with twins after my routine check at the hospital. The joy of having twins was soon to be tinted by some sad news. Only 13 weeks into my pregnancy I lost a first embryo but the second one stayed on. The doctor recommended some bed rest and I moved in with Atembe’s parents. Atembe’s parents were lovely with me, but whenever Atembe came back home he treated me like a princess and always attended to my every request. Everything was great, love was still so deep and the passion was nowhere near dwindling.
15 weeks later, Saturday night, I felt a strange piercing pain at my lower back. After a while the second pain came, and then the third, and the fourth… and they kept getting even more painful. I started to get out of the bed, but the pain was too much, all I could do was scream. Atembe came rushing to my side.
“Baby, what?” I stifled the screams and grunts that were coming up due to the pain I was feeling.
“I think it’s coming…aaawwwwww, it hurts like…aaahhhh”
“Yes, what’s wrong,” she yelled walking into the room.
“We need to get Erica to the hospital like yesterday!” Atembe sounded panicked.
“Dear God! I’ll get the car, you and your father carry her out” and she was gone with a flash.
I was rushed to the hospital urgently but was programmed for an emergency cesarean section because our unborn daughter was not well. I don’t know what happened thereafter but I remember waking up to gloomy faces. Essieme was born brain damaged, so we took the decision to let go and on 3 July in the morning she died – only three days after her birth. This was the first big test of our couple. Little did I know there was still more to come.
After the traumatizing loss of our daughter we returned to our apartment but nothing was the same. We were broken and we couldn’t stop yelling at each other. Three months after the death of our daughter we were still fighting every other day.
Conversation was tense, weekends were even more so. We couldn’t say two words without a fight. After so many weeks spent yelling at each other, throwing angry words and endless fights, I convinced Atembe to go back to long distance truck driving. As a matter of fact, he had found a local job and was no longer hitting the road. We needed time apart to heal, accept the loss and find ourselves again. He agreed. We only got to see each other during the weekends like before.
Before long, the long love emails started coming in again, the love words, text messages and more. The love came pouring back as on the first day – as if nothing had happened. The kisses, hugs and love-making hit the sky once again.
For a while, we lived the passion and love of a loving couple. As would be expected, we had a few issues but it was never anything big. We soon moved to another city, his hometown. We were still going strong, so I decided to go back to school for my 30th birthday. Atembe was more than thrilled with the idea and I went back to school in September with some financial aid.