Life! With Habika… ~Ep. 2

 

EPISODE TWO

Five days passed.

Five days of absolute silence from Nathan’s apartment, and frantic scurrying from mine.

You guessed it. Nathan abandoned the little darling with magnanimous me and locked himself in, not for once coming out to find out if the baby (or me) was still alive.

You can trust that I banged on his door several times a day, but…nothing.

The only assurance I had was that whenever I pressed my ears to the door, I’d hear the soft sounds of music, and his car was still parked in the driveway. I would’ve have thought he’d run away for good.

“I hope he gets fired! Irritating man that he is” These exact words flashed through my mind one hundred times a day.

By day four though, I was slowly finding a rhythm with Nathan Junior, NJ for short (seeing as his father refused to speak to me, I named him myself).

My first night with him was horrible!

He wouldn’t stop crying. All my supposed expertise with children seemed to pale in comparison to being solely in charge of a real child.

I wore a path in the rug in my living room, singing nonsensical lullabies in a vain attempt to calm him down, all the while casting glances at the front door hoping Nathan would show up.

At first, NJ would quieten after approximately thirty minutes of rocking. But the moment I stopped moving or singing, he’d begin wailing again.

And so I sang and sang till my voice went hoarse.

Then finally, by five in the morning when I couldn’t take it anymore, i heard a still small Voice telling me what to do. Immediately, I bundled myself and the baby (still wearing my PJ’s and with rollers in my hair) into my car and drove to the teaching hospital with a renowned Emergency Pediatric unit several miles away.

I’m pretty sure the first thought the nurse on duty had was that I was a mad woman who had stolen a baby.

Thankfully, my friend from College, Dr. Mrs Bukola, was the paediatrician on duty that morning. As I stumbled into her office, NJ still whimpering against my shoulder, she took one look at me and shook her head in dismay

“What trouble are you in this time Habika?”

“Don’t be snotty Bukkie, don’t I look miserable enough to you?” I wailed, finally giving in to the tears I had been holding back all night.

“Okay okay, I’m sorry. Sit down and hand over that child before you keel over” she ordered, pulling out a chair for me.

I gratefully handed over the baby and sank down into the chair, wiping my eyes on the sleeves of my pyjamas.

“I’m pretty sure I saw you two months ago, and you definitely didn’t look pregnant or look like a nursing mother. So, is this one of the little ones you babysit?” She asked

As she spoke, she stuck a little rubber toy in NJ’s mouth. His crying immediately subsided, though he still let out a mewling cry occasionally.

I felt so betrayed.

“Habika?!”

“What? Oh!” I shook my head to clear off the drowsiness I felt.

“Erm, I’m not even sure how to answer that question”.

Then I began to narrate all that had transpired the previous evening. Bukola just stared at me in wonder as I spoke.

“You sure have a way of attracting drama don’t you?”

I snorted. “Trust me, I didn’t ask for this. Especially not from Nathan of all people” (Yes she knew Nathan. I think I might have complained about him to her once before. Okay, maybe more than once…).

“First things first! This child is famished. Do you have any money on you?” This was Bukola, the Chief paediatrician speaking, not Bukola the friend. She placed the baby on her examining table and began undressing him.

“No, but I’ve got my MasterCard with me. Why?”

“Good, you’ll use the POS then. Rush down now to the nurse on duty, ask her for directions to the baby shop across the road” She scribbled something on a piece of paper and handed it to me (Honestly, doctors and their handwriting! I couldn’t read a word she wrote down).

“Buy this baby formula there and rush back with it. Also buy a feeding bottle, a bottle warmer, some diapers and baby wipes. This little man needs urgent attention”.

I just stood there staring at the note.

“Habika, move!”

Her command spurred me on. I purchased the items (the store attendant was clearly used to Bukola’s illegible scribbles) and hurried back to her office.

Thirty minutes later, NJ was completely calm, wearing fresh diapers and sucking sleepily from his new bottle as I rocked him slowly in my arms. I spent one more hour there, learning that NJ was five months old, give or take a few days, receiving instructions on how to prepare his formula and generally how to become a mother (talk about exhausting!).

As I gathered up my things to leave, Bukkie placed a hand on my shoulder, forcing me to look into her eyes;

“Are you sure you want to do this Habika? You could just as well leave the child on his doorstep, Nathan will eventually come out to attend to him”

“No!” I replied firmly, unconsciously tucking NJ closer.

“Nathan just might leave him out there to starve. I can’t risk it. But if he thinks he’s completely free of any responsibility towards his child, he’s got another think coming. I’ll make his life miserable!”

Bukola smiled widely, nodding her head proudly. “That’s the Habika I know and love. I almost wish you’d be the one to raise this little man. He’s in good hands”.

“Thank you Bukkie” I replied, deeply pleased by her compliment.

Before driving home, I stopped at the supermarket (determinedly telling myself I wore a T-shirt and jeans, not in fact my pyjamas) and stocked up on the list of things Bukkie had indicated would be needed by NJ.

I bought the most expensive ones too, muttering “Take that! And that!” as I placed each item in the cart. Yes, I fully intended that Nathan would pay me back for every single item. With interest!

At the check out line, the cashier who probably recognized me from previous visits, widened her eyes in shock at the sleeping baby I held and the sheer volume of my purchase. I could see she was itching to start a conversation, so I plastered my phone to my ear and engaged in an imaginary conversation with my Mom until we were done.

I strapped NJ into his new and very expensive car seat, and just sat back staring at him.

He is a beautiful child, I thought, an unexpected surge of love welling up in my heart for him in that moment.

I picked up my phone and called the office. I was already appallingly late for work, so I decided instead to call in sick and ask for the week off to take care of a family emergency (but it’s technically true. Besides, my boss is a nice woman, and I’d never missed a day of work in the two years I’d worked there).

I finally arrived home, and being too tired to confront Nathan, I simply made up a bed for NJ, lay him down and collapsed beside him, asleep in seconds.

That was day one.

Day two and three weren’t exactly free of NJ’s screams and tears, but at least I was better fortified to handle it.

By day four, we had a schedule going on:

12 midnight – earsplitting screams that could wake the dead. NJ’s way of telling me “Feed me NOW!”

4am-ish – a more subtle cry for food.

6.30am – wake and formula

For the rest of the day, I could end up feeding him about five to six times, before we begin the night time routine again.

On the evening of day five, I snapped.

I had just finished feeding NJ and was softly patting his back so he’d burp, when I saw a movement through the kitchen window of Nathan’s apartment. That was the first sign of life I had observed in four days.

I saw red!

I immediately dressed NJ in warmer clothing, put him into his baby carrier, strapped him on and marched out of the house. I went out the main gate and picked the most dangerous looking rock I could find. I marched back in and banged on Nathan’s front door. When he didn’t answer after five minutes, I stomped to his kitchen window and hauled the rock at it with all the strength I could muster.

The sound of breaking glass was music to my ears.

Few minutes later, the front door was shoved open and I was greeted by a hairy giant in a faded T-shirt and faded jeans. He obviously hadn’t shaved since the last time we spoke.

“You almost killed me!”

His first words to me after hiding away for days.

“You selfish, selfish man!” I yelled back at him.

He didn’t respond, just stared at me with tired-looking eyes.

“If I had a gun, I think I would shoot you first and ask questions later” I continued, getting into his face and jabbing a finger at his chest. I knew our neighbours were probably listening in avidly, but I didn’t care a jot at that moment.

“Do you have any idea what I’ve been through? What NJ has been through? What sort of man abandons his baby with a woman he barely knows and acts like it doesn’t exist? Thank the God you serve that I didn’t report you to the police for child abuse, because that’s exactly what this is, you stupid man!”

Nathan still said nothing, just stood there taking in my abuse calmly.
That served only to further aggravate me.

“Nothing to say huh? Alright then”

I pushed past him and walked into his living room (a part of me noted with surprise that everywhere was clean and neat, I considered it odd since he looked like a mess. Then again, Nathan Okeke is a very precise man).

I unstrapped NJ, who had surprisingly slept through my tirade, and placed him on Nathan’s pristine white sofa.

“I’m done” I said to Nathan, who still stood by the open door, watching me in silence. “I’ve been good enough to blindly care for your son without any explanation from you. Not anymore”

I placed throw pillows around NJ, so he wouldn’t roll off the sofa in his sleep. He tends to do that. It hurt in some deep part of me to let him go, but I knew I had to do something drastic now that I had Nathan’s attention.

“And Nathan, if I hear him cry for more than ten minutes at a time, I’ll rip your hair out. It’s a promise” (And I was going to do it too!)

As I made to march back out the door, Nathan placed a restraining hand on my arm. I stopped and glared at him.

His next words floored me;
“He’s not mine”

“I beg your pardon?” I asked, sure I hadn’t heard right.

Nathan removed his hand from my arm and ran it over his face in exhaustion.

“The child is not mine”.

I snorted contemptuously.
“You must really think I was born yesterday or something. That child could be you when you were five months old, or my other name is Stupid and I didn’t know it”

Nathan just looked towards the sleeping boy on his sofa, a pained look on his face.

“Nathan, stop wasting my time. I actually feel like hitting you upside the head right now, and it’s getting harder to restrain myself”.

As I made to leave again, he muttered;

“He looks like me because he is my sister’s son”

Sixty seconds of silence passed as I tried to process this new information.

“Then why did you say the lawyers told you he is yours?” I asked, truly perplexed.

Again, that pained look on his face.
“Because my sister is dead, along with her husband and her in-laws. They were involved in a car crash three weeks ago.”

Silence. Then;

“And apparently, she thought it’d be wise to play a joke on me and name me the legal guardian of her child just before she died in the hospital”.

I blinked hard and rubbed my hands against my eyes.

All the spicy scenarios I had imagined; Nathan’s high school sweetheart returning their secret love child; Nathan’s one night stand, before he repented, coming back to haunt him...poof! 

Debunked just like that!

Life with Habika couldn’t get anymore complicated, could it?

Photo credit: Black Art @Pinterest

#OLD #babies #LifeWithHabika #unexpecteddad #ourlittledarlingss #Momforhire #LOL

This is Episode 2 of

Life! With Habika…

{I excitedly await your comments, likes and shares.}

Advertisements

22 thoughts on “Life! With Habika… ~Ep. 2

  1. Awww! Its funny how we get to feel when we realise we’ve been judging wrongly. I was pissed with Nathan until now; Ehya!
    Lovely twist. This is beautiful. Please this can’t be the end, you should have made this a lil’ longer. Episode 3 come forth quickly please, PLLEEAASSEE!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. He asked for it, abandoning poor NJ. But still, I understand why you’d feel for him. Thanks again for dropping a comment. So encouraging. Ep 3 cooking

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s