I had a flashback to my first period, it was on a Saturday morning, I was thirteen and getting ready for choir practice at eleven. Mama was going over to MaDoris to see her vegetable garden and see if she can get any spinach or carrots. I suddenly felt stomach cramps that drove me mad, I don’t know what is going. I went to Mama’s room and cried about pain.
“When did it start?”
“About an hour ago, it started off slow but now Nkari kea duka”
“Drink water and take a Panado then go to bed, I’ll tell Nosihle you can’t go to choir.”
“Mama do you know what’s going on?”
“I don’t know my baby unless you ate something that doesn’t agree with you.”
I tried to eat a sandwich but didn’t muscle it all down, took the pills and went to bed. I felt a gush release from my flower, I thought I might have peed in the bed but once I opened the covers I saw drops of blood on my legs. Oh my God I’m so scared and confused right now am I dying? What is going on? I got up and went to the bathroom took a bath, changed my bedding and went to pray because I don’t want God to punish me I know I haven’t done anything wrong, but the pain continued. Mme won’t be back for until after four, so I’ll just brave this through. I took two more panados and headed back to sleep. I woke up to the sound of pots, I immediately screamed for Mme and she came rushing.
“Mme, blood came out from there and the cramps are still there”
“Oh.” She then smiles.
“Why are you smiling Mme?”
“Congratulations, you started your journey of womanhood” I’m still puzzled by what she is saying.
“It’s your first period.” I was shocked.
And now years later my own daughter is experiencing her first period. I didn’t know how to address this but I trust Kgotlelelo.
“So, do you want to lead this or should I lead.”
“I think you should lead, you wiser.”
“And older. So, what do want to know.”
“is it always going to be this painful?”
“Yes, but giving birth is more painful”
“Am I going to be moody all the time?”
“Not always. And I can’t be a judge of character, we all vary my child, some days you are okay others you can be annoyed with every living and non-living organism however it wouldn’t give you an opportunity to disrespect me after-all I’m your mother.”
I opened my arms and hugged her, I can’t believe it my Kgotlelelo, time flies, I can remember when I found out that I was going to be a mother. It was the seventh month dating Shaun, his political career was slowly building up, so we had to keep our affair hidden, I would only see him when he was traveling to different provinces, his assistant Selena would book our accommodation at the same hotel but different names and rooms. I was two months already but not showing so I was planning to spend the night as a dirty mistress the following day announce it to him.
It was Friday night and I was stuck at the Dawsons Game & Trout Lodge waiting for him to come back from a conference it seemed he was going to be late. I went to the pharmacy because I wanted to get a pregnancy test for evidence. I got the test and it was still positive, I was pleased. I tried waiting up for, but I fell asleep. In the morning when I woke up I find Sean not looking pleased.
“Morning, how far ini?” he shows the pregnancy test, oh shit.
“How long have you known?”
“3 weeks so far because of morning sickness”
“Why are you careless Lerato, I mean you know very well we can’t have a kid, I’m with Angelique.”
“Excuse me, I am careless but you the one talking about skin to skin”
“Yes, but you on morning pills, so it means either you stopped, or they don’t work”
“Wow Sean you so unbelievable”
“I assume you keeping it since you need my money”
“Your money? Your money who are talking to?”
“I fly you all over where I go, I funded your catering business, I got you, clients, I paid off your loans, it’s me your provider I’m talking, and you thought you could trap me with a kid.” I slapped him during my anger, he thinks he owns me.
“If you choose to keep the baby, know the following by the time you start showing we are done, number two I’ll be sending R3K every month for the baby only, you will not communicate with me if you need anything.”
“So that’s it, Sean, I was just a sex toy” His assistant knocked on the door to remind him he has less than an hour before leaving.
“Now come to the shower and get me cleaned before I have to spend a day with older men and their egos”
I felt dirty when he left, I felt empty and soulless there a passage I read by Efuru Kayiise where she mentions “The sunflowers her favourite flower wasn’t bright and did not fill her with happiness and hope” I believed he was my hero, he took me from a dark place in my life where I thought nothing good could happen and opened doors but now I feel like I was taken on a joyride and it’s over. I never thought of myself as just a side chick, I really thought we had something special, but he just proved me.
I decided to call my mother because I needed her.
“Mama, ubatla grong’tlala”
“Remember when I used to play as we lay ya Kelly Price during Sundays after Jerry leaves”
“Yes, I do, you used to play the volume loud and sing over it.”
“Jerry was a married man who had me has his girlfriend but that I knew that he’ll never be mine, but he is mine for night and during that time he makes me happy.”
God will not give you another woman’s husband.