When I was 16 years old, I was full of dreams and good intentions. I was certain of the kind of woman I wanted to be. I was convinced that I would be the woman I wanted to be. I was idealistic. I was hopeful. I was severely underestimating life and its detours.
You see, I had it all planned out. I would finish high school and get an A,be the top in my class and get a full paid scholarship to go study Law in the UK.I was going to be that brilliant girl in class who knew all the answers, I mean, how hard could it be? You just had to put your mind to it and it would happen, right? While I studied in the UK, either in London or Edinburgh, I would finish my undergraduate and my master’s degree in four years. By then, I would be 21 and I’d come back to Nairobi as posh as a Beverly Hills, Rodeo Drive poodle and everyone would be super psyched to have me back. At this point, I would enroll for my post-graduate diploma at the Kenya School of Law just in time to begin in February of 2018. Yes, the timing was perfect. By 2020, I would have been admitted into the honourable profession and offered a job in a prestigious corporate firm. I would be living in a cute one bedroom apartment with a closet filled with nice shoes, driving an Audi A3 and working out every morning to keep my gorgeous self in shape.
I also had plans for my personal life back then, back when I wasn’t battling to suppress the sometimes overwhelming urge to stab/strangle/slap the male members of the human species who think it’s commendable to refer to themselves as and behave like hyenas.These fell into my academic/career plans perfectly. You see, I was meant to meet the love of my life, hereinafter referred to as Baby, this year.(Yes, I was planning on calling him ‘baby’, I figured it would sound cool with my posh manner of speaking that I had acquired in Europe) He would come into my life just before or when I turn 22. It had to be this year because he and I were to be married in 2020, after dating for two and a half years and being engaged for six months before our wedding on May 10th, 2020. Yes, I had a date. I was meant to get married on my 25th birthday. At the time, I thought it was such a genius idea, not to mention philanthropic. I mean, I made our anniversary coincide with my birthday. I figured I was saving Baby money, time and energy.
In my plans, Baby was an architect/doctor/lawyer type person who loved the Lord and had uncanny musical prowess. He would play the piano as I sang. We would do a duet at our wedding. Baby was also a fabulous dancer and had a killer smile. He was tall, dark and handsome, with a full head of hair and a gorgeous beard. (My hair obsession began early.) Baby was a man with beautiful hands and beautiful feet. (Another obsession of mine.) Mostly though, Baby was crazy about me. He laughed at my jokes. He loved my cooking. He adored my laugh. Basically, he thought I was the potato, because as we all know, potatoes are the epitome of what’s good, right and comforting in this life.
After two years of marital bliss,Baby and I got our first child…A boy. Then two years later, we had twins. Boys as well. A year later, this one was an unplanned but pleasant occurrence, we welcomed our fourth son into this world. We had three years before we welcomed our second set of twins into this world. Boys again. Oh, I may have forgotten to mention, Baby is an identical twin, as was his father, and his father’s father. Also, all his siblings are brothers. That would explain why we would keep having twins and keep having sons.( Yes, I planned my husband’s DNA.) Anyway, we would be great parents to our six boys, who all had amazing names. I would list those names here, however, I do not want to incriminate myself as some of them are named after some very handsome guys I had crushes on and as some of my readers may know these men and may even be related to them, my sons’ names will be kept under wraps.
Four years later, I decide I miss having a baby around the house. I talk to Baby about it. He’s game. We make said baby and my little girl, Ebony is born when I’m 39 years young and still looking fabulous. At this point Baby decides to get a vasectomy because he’s satisfied with seven kids. I cry, because it would be unfair to leave things at an odd number. I mean, who would Ebony play with? She needed a partner in crime. Baby gives in on the condition that we get it done as soon as possible. So, at 41, we have Maria, who I name after my mum.
All of the above takes place while we live on a sprawling ranch, drive fabulous cars, and take time to go on amazing, memorable family holidays. Sigh. I had dreams back then.
Here’s the reality. I did get an A, sort of. I almost went to study in the UK, gave it up for a boy. Stupid, I know. I dropped out of law school the first time around. I’m meant to be done by the end of this year but the lecturers chose this time to fight for their rights. There are people who are a lot more brilliant at law school than I am, which is okay. I’m hoping I’ll be able to go study abroad for my master’s degree in a few years, but who knows, maybe a certain orange president with an over active Twitter account would have started World War 3 and I’ll be living in a cave in Mt.Elgon. Alas, here I am, a mere two months away from 22 and I’ve come to accept that Baby may be stuck in a tree or rather he climbed the tree and does not want to come down because the thought of having 8 children scares him.To be honest,I’m not even sure I’ll ever meet him and as you all know,I’m not holding my breath. My 25th birthday, also known as my wedding day, will probably be spent at my favourite Indian restaurant having bhajia and chilli garlic fries with my best friend. I might never get to use the six names I borrowed from the various objects of my infatuation and I may never get to name my last baby girl after my mama. I might never be the woman I intended to be when I was 16 and I’m beginning to realise that it’s okay.
It’s okay that I’m the woman who’s been through enough heartbreak that she would rather choke on a glass of sand that has poisonous scorpions before she sings to or with a man that she is involved with romantically. Made that foolish mistake once, I will not be starring in the sequel to that folly. It is what it is. I’m also the woman who is actively cultivating a suspicious nature because there are less and less people worthy of trust these days. It’s okay that I’m perfectly at peace with the idea of being 35 and a spinster, though everybody tells me it will change, who knows maybe I’ll light on fire if I’m not married by then, we’ll have to wait and see. It’s okay that I’ve let go of the pipe dream because I now have time to form and create new dreams, have more mature intentions.
I can still travel the world on epic holidays, it will just be a lone traveller experience. I also have to accept that I might probably finish law school a lot closer to thirty than expected, which I really can’t control. I will probably be a bridesmaid ten times over before I am a bridesmaid another ten times, then they’ll start making me the matron at weddings. I also fully intend to adopt puppies. Eight of them, to be exact. Yes, I will be getting them as replacement babies. I would get IVF but I don’t know how to explain that to my dad. I can just imagine that conversation:
Ebby: So, Dad… I’m having a baby.
Dad: Who is that?
Ebby: It’s not a who, Dad. It’s a what. In-vitro fertilisation… Artificial insemination…? Sound familiar…
Dad: Insemination… You mean like what they do for cows…?
Ebby: Yes, Dad. What they do for cows…(insert sarcastic tone and eye roll here)
Dad: Are you a cow?
So, I’m picking the puppies.
The thing is, life is not going as I planned. Not even a bit. I am definitely not the woman I intended to be. It frustrates me to the point of tears sometimes and I feel like I’m doing nothing with my life. However, I’m not disappointed. I’ve realised there is a lot more for me to be beyond my 16 year old pipe dreams and I’m a lot more interested in reality and what it has to offer, despite the hardships and challenges to overcome. I have also accepted the fact that life is not on my schedule, not to mention it has zero regard for my deadlines and most days you just have to live it as it comes.
I will not lie and say I’m excited to get to where I’m going but I am definitely curious. I’m no longer making plans for the future woman I’ll be, I’m simply taking in and appreciating the experiences I’m having as I wait to meet her. I’m hoping that’s enough for now.