📷 - goo.gl/images/5LX7dN
I had to choose between 12 weeks of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meetings and jail time.
Alcohol occupied the empty spaces in my system, especially the empty spaces in my heart that seemed to grow deeper and wider. I filled it all up with booze. When I’m high, there was no limit to what I can do; you may even mistake me for a superhero; but with the nature of things I do, I think “super villain” best describes it.
“Hi, my name is Ella, I’m an alcoholic and I can’t wait till these 12 weeks are over so I can continue from where I stopped” I wanted to say but I chose to stop at ‘and’ because first impression still matters even though I couldn’t care less.
“Hi, Ella” they chorused. They sounded drunk and void of all hope in a bid to trace their steps back to reality “Alcohol is reality for me, I’m not supposed to be here, this is a hopeless place” I thought to myself.
“And what?” a bold voice asked from behind me after the meeting. I chose to ignore.
“Ella right? I’m talking to you” he continued.
At this point I couldn’t ignore, I turned around to an Iroko tree, to find myself under the umbrella of his shadow. He was one hell of a huge, look gooding body builder with healthy beards; the kind of guy you won’t say no to when he asks to walk you home. Aside from the many other feelings, I felt safe as we walked home, like I used to feel when my Dad walked me back from school.
“Thanks for the walk”
“Anytime, I enjoyed our banter, I’m Dan but my friends call me Jupiter, I’m sure you can guess why”
“Because you’re huge? Oh wow, I’m Bobmanuella, Ella for short, but you can call me Pluto, I'm sure you can guess why too”
We chuckled and said our goodbyes.
“No! No! No!, Bad idea!, Very bad idea!, I’m a dumb btch!, I’m an alcoholic because of Men!, And here I am drooling over another man because he is 6’5” with see through abs and biceps as big as my thighs!, I’ll join another AA group!, I have to, I need time to heal!” These and many other thoughts crossed my mind but was of no use because he knew my house and had my contact, it was checkmate baby!
3 weeks later, Jupiter and Pluto became Romeo and Juliet, literally. Our Alcoholic behaviors chased away all our friends so we were all we had for each other, we would often stare at each other from across the room, all through the AA meetings to rescue ourselves from boredom. We were best friends, partners, and lovers. We followed each other everywhere, even to his gym, I watched him put so much work into making his body a masterpiece. His body was becoming a masterpiece but more than anything, he was the master of my peace and my recovery.
If there is anything I learnt from 12 weeks of AA meetings, it is that, to stop a bad habit, you have to replace it with a good one. For me, Jupiter replaced alcohol.
He occupied the empty space in my heart effortlessly. I didn't need booze for that anymore. We found love in a hopeless place at an awkward time and I loved him, even when I didn’t love myself.
Netflix and chill, a movie starring Timothy Chalamet, weather for two and Domino’s pizza were the major ingredients that made up our first night of intercourse. I immediately understood why he was named after the largest planet. One eternity later, we finally reached climax, I was weaker than I’ve ever been but he didn’t even look tired. In that moment of weakness, he spoke in my ears but the words are forever engraved in my heart, in his deep, soothing voice he whispered “Call me your strength and I’ll call you my weakness” Tears slid down my eyes when I gave it some thought that in my weakness he’s my strength and in his strength I’m his weakness. It was more than any kind of love I’ve ever been shown by a man.
And now, in present day, 10 years later, those tears have travelled through time, in front of 4 Professors ripping me apart with questions for my promotion to Senior Lecturer.
“Madam!” the manly voice that revived me from my trance echoed.
“I’d repeat the question for the purpose of clarity” he continued.
“Would you please state to the interview panel what your greatest strength is?”
I felt a frisson. I have been frozen for almost 7 minutes. I couldn't help but open my mouth and let the words sneak out.
I whispered as if talking to myself, with voice fluctuating, tears rolling down uncontrollably and my hanky holding back catarrh.
“Jupiter!... My husband, He is my strength, my greatest strength”
The Professors were perplexed by the outburst of drama and emotions. They could relate or not, I didn’t care. Jupiter helped me conquer myself, I won’t betray him now, I won’t betray him ever. 10 years ago, we started out as Alcohol addicts and now, we are still addicted, perhaps more addicted, but this time, to ourselves. ❤
PS. I got the promotion