Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: In and Out (04/30/09)
TITLE: My Best Kept Secret Ever.
By Ifeoma Dennis
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When you enter college and make your friends, you make choices as well.
If they’re in, you’re either in or you’re out.
So I made a choice.
We all made that choice.
I made a choice that would break my parents’ heart if they found out, but they were never going to find out.
It was going to be my best kept secret. Ever.
I got straffed, laid or whatever by my boyfriend, Ola.
To be fair on him, he did not pressurize me into doing anything. I was the one who called him up one day and told him that I wanted to do it.
“Are you sure it’s what you want?” he asked.
“I’m positive!” I gushed.
So we did it. End of story…. Except it wasn’t end of story.
I got pregnant.
It was so perplexing. I was from a Christian family. I should not have done it. Even if I had done it as I did, I should not have got pregnant and brought shame to my family.
What I was hiding finally came to light. So much for best kept secrets. Ever.
It nearly broke my family apart, but thank God we’re surviving it.
At a point, I wanted to keep the baby. I loved Ola and I believed he’d be the best father ever.
I was eighteen, in a Christian college that did not tolerate pregnant students and I had my whole life ahead of me. Having the baby was not an option for me, my mother told me.
Having the baby was not an option for me, Ola begged me in tears.
I was not on anesthesia as my nine week old fetus was drained out of me. I wanted to feel the pain of my sin, the sting of my guilt.
My clearance for the first semester exams were coming up and blood tests were a prerequisite. I cried to my mother. I was scared the tests would give me away and I’d be expelled.
My mother told one of my best friends, Oreva the truth of what I did and asked her to comfort me and allay my fears.
The blood tests did not give me away but Oreva spilled my secrets inn a shout-out loud quarrel one afternoon in the Girls’ Hostel.
In a college where everyone lives in campus, the story spread like wildfire.
So much for best kept secrets. Ever.
Thank God I survived it because I do not know for the life of me how I survived that brutal knife that nearly tore my life to tiny shreds.
[ Sighs ] So much for best kept secrets. Ever.
Here I am at barely twenty wondering if the whole business of cliques and either being in or out is worth it.
I doubt it’s worth it.
I want out.
I’m weighed down by my past.
Secrets God knows.
Secrets everyone knows anyway.
I go to church, but I know I don’t fool God.
I just wonder if He’d forgive me with my magnitude of sins.
[ Sighs ]
I close my eyes and I think I fall into a trance.
I hear a voice in the unseeing distance calling me, “ Tara, come to me and I’d make you whole. Come to me and rest.”
I stretch out my hands towards the empty horizon, accepting, confessing, submitting, knowing that somehow He is there.
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