Love is beautiful. And we all fancy a beautiful love story, don’t we?
Boy meets girl. He falls in love. She falls even deeper. He can’t stay away from her. Society says he should. Girl’s parents say she should. She leaves her parent’s home to live with him. She is warned against seeing boy. She refuses to hear any of it. She loves boy. Boy loves her. Trials meet tribulations, mingled with interference from girl’s stuck-up parents, resulting in a stronger determination to stick together. To fight for their love. Obstinacy. Rebellion. But love never disappoints. It emerges to conquer all and to solemnly promise the much sought happily ever after.
A beautiful love story is told, of an Indian girl falling in love with an African Bukusu boy in Western Kenya. She is called Sarika Patel and him, Timothy Khamala. The two met when Khamala was working for Sarika’s wealthy father as a casual labourer. They both say that she pursued him to the point of stealing his number from a friend’s phone. They got to talking…became friends…became lovers. Her parents objected to the relationship. He is poor, she is from a wealthy family. He is African, she is Asian. Sarika does not see that. All she knows is that she loves this poor African boy.
Ah love, o love!
Love lives in the present. The now. All your parents care about is your future. What will it amount to? What will you become? Your education? A career? Who needs all that when you have love? You forget about your dreams and ambitions. What are those? You have your man! Your ultimate dream. All you know is that you love this handsome boy. Now.
Love is certain. You love him, it therefore follows that he loves you. You swear he loves you. You can almost bet your father’s entire business empire that his love for you will never change. Will never fade. You believe that he will always love you the same way he has loved you the four years you’ve known him.
Love makes you choose. Whoever is not FOR your love, is AGAINST you. You love your parents. But the fact that they will not accept your man, the fact that they will not see him the same way you do means that you have to choose. You will of course choose him. The man of your dreams.
Love is trusting. Even though you are presented with a complicated relationship where you are required to raise another woman’s son, breastfeed him even, you believe that you will never be that woman. You know for a fact that your child will never be breastfed by another woman. Which other woman? You are the only woman in your man’s life. He LOVES you. You and he will always be together. You will raise children together. You will grow old together. Love!
Love suffices. Though you are 24 years old today, you will not be a different woman in your thirties. You will not want different things then. Not once will you look back and wonder what you did with your life. Love makes you believe that it is all you need. It is all that you should think about. It is enough.
Love seeks freedom. You want to be together. To express the love you feel for each other openly. It cannot be contained. It threatens to explode and any resistance will be met with defiance. You will fight for your love by all mean.
Love is cute. You touch each other’s faces. He brushes your soft hair back. You hang onto his arm. He helps you do the laundry. You go shopping for tomatoes and onions together. You get yourself a hen as a pet. He smiles. Thinks it’s so cute that you consider a hen, his favorite meal, as a pet. Cute!
Through the eyes of love, Sarika only sees Timothy’s perfection. Not his skin colour. Not his humble background. Definitely not his unintelligence.
Love is indeed a beautiful feeling.
If only love did not fade.
If only love did not stop being cute at some point.
If only marriage was only about love!
This article was first published on the Storymoja Festival Blog