Growing Up – Chapter 28

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I think in every group of guys, there is always that one guy that hardly ever has a girlfriend. They are normally the good, hardworking guys who know how to treat a woman and have great relationships with people around them but their romantic relationships don’t last mainly because they always get played. According to the little that Philani told me about Bonginkosi, he was that guy in their crew. Bonginkosi was not ugly, he was rich and God-fearing but, shame man, his relationships never lasted. All his girlfriends cheated on him and he always ended up heartbroken. He was just that guy who had everything going well for him, except his love life.

“Guys this is the woman in my life, she is rather shy so please don’t mind her” Bonginkosi said when the girlfriend was walking in.

Philani: “Finally ndoda, you have been riding solo for a long time now.”

Bonginkosi: “Riding solo worked out for me, God was preparing me for this beautiful, humble woman. I am certain that she is the one.”

Philani: “She has to be the one for you dude, plus she is beautiful. We only roll with the most beautiful in Gauteng.”

I noticed that all the guys in Philani’s crew were in their 30’s and all their girlfriends were in their 20’s. I wondered if they were with us because they loved us or because we made them feel young and were trophy girlfriend material.

Bonginkosi’s shy girlfriend was Thandiwe. Seeing Thandiwe acting shy was very funny, Thandiwe was anything but shy. Whether you have just met her or you’ve known her for a while, her extroverted personality is quite evident from the moment you meet her. Everyone greeted her and commended her “humble and conservative” spirit. She has never been and will never be a shy or conservative person, in this life and life after death. When we have all died and in heaven, Thandiwe will probably be the ring leader of the rebellious and talkative Angels. I was, however, happy to see her, because I was going to have someone to talk to, not these other boring girls.

Philani and Bonginkosi were happy when they found out that Thandiwe and I are friends from church. Bonginkosi said we are all meant to be, because for the first time in their friendship they are dating friends.

I asked Thandiwe to come and help me in the kitchen, because these other girls were behaving like madam’s and I didn’t want them in my kitchen.

“Bonginkosi’s shy, conservative, humble and beautiful girlfriend. Thandiwe when did you become shy sisi, I’ve known you for years, why have you deprived me of the opportunity to experience your shy and conservative side?” I asked her as soon as we were in the kitchen. Her behaviour made me very curious.

She laughed and said “Ey girl the struggle is real, finding a good man is hard. When I met this guy I knew I had to get my act together. So from now on, especially when I’m around him, I’m going to be the sweet shy girlfriend he knows.”

I was a bit shocked and I didn’t understand why she had to pretend to be someone she isn’t, so I asked her why she is doing this and how long was she going to keep it up. She told me that she had to behave like this because no real man would want to be in a relationship with a girl like her. So in order to keep Bonginkosi in her life, she had to change her behaviour and behave like a ‘real woman’.

Is it necessary for women to pretend to be something they are not just to please a man? Some women tend to change a lot when they enter new relationships. They change their lifestyles, the way they speak, handle themselves, how they dress e.t.c all of this is normally because they want to adjust their lives to suit the new boyfriend and they want to fit into society’s expectations of a woman. Society’s expectations of what a real woman is or should be are often unrealistic and not fair. I think a real woman is whatever the hell she wants to be. As long she is real to herself and people around her, she can dress, speak, and behave in whatever manner that she wants.

It was really sad to see a young vibrant woman like Thandiwe willing to let herself go just to keep a man happy. I wasn’t happy with her decision so I just kept quite to keep the peace. We were both silent until she blurted out,

“I am not educated and I don’t have anything going well for me. Chances are when my parents have passed away I will be poor and be a problem to Thando. I will probably have a low class job, and when I have children they will live on handouts from Thando, which is unfair for her. We were both given the same opportunities and our parents treated us both with love but I chose to mess up, while I saw Thando working hard. We will be turning 25 soon, the largest amount of money I’ve ever earned is R3 500 at my job in the shop, a job that I have managed to mess up.

Thando on the other hand makes almost 10 times more than me. Thando being the person that she is wants to open a small business and she wants me to manage it, I think she feels guilty because she is doing well and I’m not. I didn’t agree to be part of her business because I know I’m going to mess up and destroy it, because messing up is the only thing I’m good at.”

She paused for a while to drink water and then she continued, “I know I’m still young and I can go back to school but I’ve wasted more than enough of my parents’ money. I’ve failed, dropped out, changed courses, and lied so many times, I don’t think it’s fair that they should take me back to school, while I know for sure that I am going to waste their money again and prove to myself, once again, that I’m a failure.”

I quickly interjected, attempting to make her feel better, “Thandiwe you aren’t a failure sweetheart. You can still get on the right path and fix your life and prepare for your future.”

She chuckled and responded “I know I am a failure you don’t to try to make me feel better. Being with Bonginkosi is me preparing for my future. I know I am able to keep a man happy, and I can adjust my life so that I can7\ be the perfect girlfriend for Bonginkosi. If I keep him happy I know he will marry me and I will be set for life.”

I asked her how sure she is that marrying him will set her for life.

“Bonginkosi is loaded girl, he is not relying on a single income. He has many other things that make him money, so there is no way that he will ever be broke. I want my future children to have a great life, but I don’t want Thando to be the one who sponsors that life. So Bonginkosi is the best option, I love him so changing a bit won’t be too hard for me. Hlengiwe this is the only shot I have at getting married and scoring a good hardworking man, who will give me the life I want, all at the same time. Being with him will ensure that I won’t be a failure as a parent.”

I have never in my life thought that a talkative and outgoing person like Thandiwe felt like this, maybe her family didn’t even know that she had already given up on life. The problem with Thandiwe is that she had a very tough exterior, and her easy going attitude and approach to life made it seem as though she doesn’t hurt. I know it’s stupid to think that a person doesn’t hurt, but the problem is that she walked around and acted like she is a strong woman, while she was broken. A lot of people, me included, wear a mask around people in order to hide their emotions, which is not a good thing. We should be able to expose our true emotions, especially to our loved ones.

Well the braai went well and after everyone was done eating, Thandiwe and I washed the dishes. The other ladies didn’t bother to help, but this is what I also did whenever one of their men were hosting braai’s.

Thandiwe asked me why I didn’t ask the other girls to help us because they had been on their butts the entire time. I explained to her that those girls don’t like me and I didn’t like them either, she just laughed and said she is my friend so she picks my side. It was very nice to have someone on my side, maybe now I was going to consider going on double dates because I would have my friend with me.

When we were done with dishes everyone left, except Thandiwe and Bonginkosi, Thandiwe helped me clean the house, I was not going to leave my man’s house dirty.

Philani tried to convince me to sleep at his house, but I was really tired and I knew he would want us to have sex, so I didn’t agree. I took some left-over meat for Sihle and Tsiamo, especially for Tsiamo because she had an out of the world appetite since she became pregnant. When I arrived I found them watching movies, I gave them the meat and Tsiamo immediately ate the meat.

The next day was a Holiday so we planned to go out to the mall to do some shopping for Tsiamo because she needed more maternity clothing.

We woke up, cleaned the house and got ready for the mall. We planned to spend the entire day at the mall, so when we arrived we first went to have brunch. Tsiamo ate her own food and helped us finish our own food, after that we went to watch a movie. The movie was okay, it was those predictable romantic chick flicks.

After the movie we went to different shops to look for the proper look for Tsiamo. As we were walking into one of the shops, from a distance I saw Thando and Mlu with their baby walking towards us. They looked very happy and I was happy for them but….

This was going to be a problem because they weren’t aware of the fact that she is pregnant with Mlu’s baby, and she hadn’t seen them since the day he proposed.

Tsiamo was doing so well now, this was going to cause a set-back in her emotional stability and we couldn’t risk that because she is suicidal.

19 thoughts on “Growing Up – Chapter 28

  1. Started reading from Chapter 1 this morning. Very good story telling. Can’t believe I’ll have to wait until next Sunday to read the next chapter. This is good. This is very good

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