“Grace have you tried falling in love again, with someone?” that was the question Brenda, my best friend of several years, had asked me one evening after I confided in her about my lack of romantic relationships.
The honest truth is that I was scared of falling in love. Ever since my ex-boyfriend, who happened to be my first, told me ‘I was ugly’ and that no man would ever ‘love’ me, I had withdrawn into my shell; scared of falling in love, of being used and insulted, as my ex-boyfriend had done.
“Grace, you need to open your eyes, Daniel has been in love with you since 200L. We’re in final year now,” Brenda told me. My breath hitched. The word, ‘surprise’, can’t explain the way I truly felt, as I tried to recover from Grace’s revelation.
Daniel is a friend and my coursemate; wealthy and handsome. I used to sometimes wonder why he always hung out with me; either to study or just to share in my crazy and boring moments.
“But seriously, Brenda, what are you talking about? Daniel?”
“Why do you think he really hangs out with you?” She replied. Brows up. “Grace,” she continued, “you really need to try falling in love with Daniel. He loves you, and it hurts him that you don’t seem to see that.”
Now I was a full bowl of mixed feelings; happy, sad, doubtful, confused. I have had butterfly feelings in the past for Daniel, but I wasn’t so sure he felt the same way, and even if he did, I wasn’t sure it was the right thing to do. I really wanted to break out of my self-esteem issues, thanks to my ex. I needed to feel loved; to feel beautiful.
However, with this new revelation, and my willingness to have a relationship, I wasn’t so sure when I, out of excitement, blurted out to Brenda, “teach me how to love.”
Sure. My words must have amused her. She laughed, pulled me into her ready embrace and whispered in my ears. “I will.”
First on the list of Brenda’s crash course, ‘learning to fall in love,’ was learning to love me. Unfortunately, this was something I had some difficulty with because of my low self-esteem. Apart from my ex’s humiliating words, part of the reason for this was the fact that my look was nothing compared to that of other slay queens on campus. I never worried so much about it though, until his words caused me to.
I felt I wasn’t beautiful or fashionable enough. But all that changed with Brenda helping me buy the right set of clothes for my almost slim figure. She got me a good body cream and makeup for my caramel skin and brownish eye.
She also made nice and simple hairstyles that fitted my oval face. By the end of the week, I had lost count of people who complimented me on my looks or hair. It was a great boost in building up my confidence and self-esteem.
When Brenda brought up the idea of dating Daniel again, I became skeptical; wondering why I wanted to fall in love, or what I thought I needed it so badly. A few blog posts from Google search pointed out that falling in love or dating because one is lonely or unhappy, are the wrong reasons to fall in love.
An opportunity presented itself again one afternoon. I was sitting with Daniel at the school cafeteria, eating lunch. I no longer just saw him as the regular guy hanging out with me, but the guy who was in love with me, and one I was starting to think about, a lot.
Sure, he made a lot of compliments about my new look, and from the questions that followed, he seemed to think there was a new boyfriend in my life who was taking care of me. Damn! This was Brenda’s hand work. Not anybody else’s and I set the record straight on that.
From the rest of our discussions, I was able to pick out some things I would say I want in a guy. Daniel isn’t the shy type. He is outspoken, has a good sense of humor, kind, selfless, caring and very confident. I knew I would need his kind of confidence to help give mine an extra boost from time to time. I was definitely going to say yes to this guy. And the thought of a hug or kiss with him started to bring back those butterfly feelings.
But, I have read a lot about delay tactics. Love him, but tell him nothing. Keep playing hard to get. So I said nothing and instead went on to loving myself some more, doing everything to keep my boosted confidence and also mingle more.
I started becoming friendly with people, I started being open to those I meet, and it was a wonderful experience until I saw what nearly broke my heart. In all of these, I still thought so much about Daniel. But my hard to get game was still on.
I was returning from my Saturday morning workout when I saw Daniel talking and laughing with a fair skin lady. It was so unfortunate they were approaching my direction. I looked on in disgust at how she touched his arm every now and then, giggling like a crazy woman. I wanted to yell at her. I wanted to yell at Daniel for allowing her to touch him I wanted to hit both their heads together.
But to avoid drama, I quickly took a turn and walked on. Daniel must have noticed me then, He called out to me, but I pretended not to hear. I was angry at Daniel for talking to that girl and allowing her to touch him like she owned him.
When I got home that morning, I wasted no time relating the incident to Brenda. She laughed and said,
“It seems to me you’ve actually fallen in love with this guy. And believe me, playing hard to get isn’t always a good game. You’ll need to put it aside and come clean with Daniel. I my opinion, he has waited long enough. Any more delays from you, and someone else will step in.”
I wasn’t happy with her choice of words. But I had no choice. Seeing Daniel and opening up to him was the only way I was going to get the man that had taken over my thoughts and dreams.
The next day, after church service, I summoned the courage to go to Daniel’s house, so as to apologize for my behavior the Saturday before. Imagine my shock when I saw that same girl laughing away and going through some DVD collections in Daniel’s sitting room.
Now, this was the height of it. I turned and raced out of his house with tears pouring down my cheeks. Daniel ran after me, calling out my name, asking me to stop. My heart kept beating rapidly, as I suddenly wished that I hadn’t fallen in love with him.
Daniel did catch up with me, and without a word, he pulled me into a tight embrace, whispering into my ears,
“It’s not what you think. You’re the one I love. Please. It’s not what you think. Brenda called me about an hour before you came. She told me everything, my darling. Please. You’re the one I love.” He pulled back briefly to look into her eyes, “please tell me you believe me.”
He looked nervous, and I could just tell he was speaking the truth. “Yes,” I nodded, “I believe you.”
“Oh God! Thank you,” he lifted me off the floor, before spinning me around.
He looked truly happy. I was so much happy too. And I knew, this was just the beginning of may good things to come.
Thanks for reading. Please don’t forget to share this story with your friends, and I really look forward to your feedback. Thanks so, so much for following till the end. I pray that you enjoy the love the weekend brings. Happy Friday.
About The Writer
Funmi Akintade is a Freelance writer and reviewer for Pelleura, and a host of other blogs. She attended FGGC, Bwari, Abuja. and presently lives there. She loves reading writing, music and anything art.