“Do you think you have a problem?”
I stared blankly at the man in front of me, my attention caught by his thinning grey hair and his brown trench coat.
He had his digital tab in his hands and from time to time, his fingers deftly typed in it.
I knew there were marriage counselors and Doctors who tried to help with psychological issues in Nigeria but I had no clue there were professional Therapists like this one.
In fact, up until I was dragged into this Office, I did not know there were people like this man.
He held my gaze and after a while, I blinked and looked away.
It was almost midday and the noise and bustle that usually accompanied the mornings were fast retiring.
That was not me answering that was my cousin who had dragged me to see a Therapist and had refused to have the decency of leaving.
“She has a problem. She has a problem bigger than this building and our entire family tree.”
“Kofo you’re not even supposed to be here.” I said to her and she merely ignored me and continued
“Sir, this girl has a sexual problem.”
There was no point arguing with her.
Truth was, I did not have a “sexual problem”
People who had a problem with sex usually could not control themselves; neither did they possess the ability to say no.
But I was using it as a way to make money.
I did not have a problem with sex; I had a problem with making money without sex.
“So you do not think you have a problem?” It was the Therapist talking now.
“No.” I replied firmly. I did not have a problem.
When I left the Hospital the night before, I had gone to Kofo’s house, refused to say a word to her and had slept in her guest room.
But the next morning after soaking myself in the tub for an hour at least, scrubbing my body like I was trying to erase every single manly touch and commencing on a juice detox, I had realized I was maybe pushing it too far.
It was not supposed to be this bad; I was not supposed to literally be hopping from dick to dick just because I was trying to prove a point or to get revenge.
But somehow, I had gotten myself in this place where the solution to every problem always seemed to involve a man and sex.
All I had needed to tell Kofo was that I fucked a white Doctor a few doors away just because my Sugar Daddy was receiving head from his God knows what and she had dragged me to a Shrink.
“Why do you think sex is always the escape from a problem for you?”
I shrugged, “I have never tried anything else.”
“Why do you think so?”
I paused and thought about the question carefully; trying to genuinely understand the reason sex was my career, my job description, my stress reliever and my only method of getting revenge.
“Tell me about your childhood, Kelechi.”
“Tell him about the part where your father and mother loved you and gave you everything you asked for even though they didn’t have a lot.” Kofo chipped in
I rolled my eyes, “Please shut up” I said to her and then, returned my gaze to the Therapist.
“I was a happy child and that was basically because everyone tried to treat me the way they believed a last born should be treated. I had everything I wanted and that my parent could afford.” And then I quickly added, “I did not start having relationships with older men because I wanted money.”
“So why?” Kofo asked and I wanted to shove something in her mouth to keep her permanently quiet.
“I want the life they can guarantee me.” I said, telling myself it would be the last time I would reply her in the remaining time the appointment lasted.
“And that one is not money related abi?”
“Kofo, remember how you were stuck with that your boyfriend that was clearly not good for you and you couldn’t leave?”
She did not need to reply for me to know she’d remembered; the sudden flash of anger across her face and the shock that I mentioned it was enough response for me.
“That’s the way I am stuck here. I do believe this is the only way I can survive. I have refused to give anything else a chance.”
There was a long stretch of silence and it was accompanied by Kofo’s ringtone.
She excused herself while I finished with the Therapist.
“Do you think you live this life because you’re not strong enough to make some certain life decisions yourself?”
Basically, I believed I had some fear of being independent.
I did not want to be responsible for myself or my finances or the lifestyle I was accustomed to.
I also was scared to try love.
And even though I was not sure what words described all those things, I was certain that was my problem.
Kofo drove me to her house and told me she had to go attend to some business.
When she was gone, I sat alone in her sitting room watching old episodes of Wendy Williams and a question kept popping in my mind; what next?
Was I going to return to Chimezie, marry him and live as a certified Sugar Baby for the rest of my life? Or was I going to get a job and live life independently for the first time as a grown woman?
The latter almost sent shivers down my spine.
Maybe I could open a store and start my own line of makeup business like other Sugar Babies before me?
But who was I kidding; I did not have enough money for that in my bank account.
I had not said a prayer in a long time and I realized it was time to say one.
“God, please send me an answer. This is so fucked up.” Okay, there was no cussing allowed in prayers, “Sorry God. I didn’t mean to cuss…” I sighed, “It is just that sometimes things are just so bad and I am so fuck… okay, I’ll just stop.”
Wendy was throwing shade at Rihanna now and that made me pick my remote and change the channel.
I could not sit and watch her shade my queen.
My phone rang and my heart skipped a beat when I realized who was calling.
I did not want to pick this but I knew I had to.
The second time I was hearing those words in a week and I was certain I was hearing it from the wrong person.
“Marry me, Kaycee. I swear I would make you happy”
I smiled, he could try but I doubt he really could make me happy.
My happiness was fast becoming an illusion; I could only imagine it being there but I couldn’t feel it.
It probably did not even exist.
“No AKT. You deserve better than me”
“No I don’t” He argued and then held my hands in his. “I love you, Kaycee. You know that.”
I did but I also knew I was not the woman he deserved.
I was the woman who really did not deserve anybody.
“I know you love me but have you considered if I love you? If I would not get bored one morning and abandon you?”
“I am making enough money to keep you happy”
It was not about the money, it was about me being happy with him.
AKT had been the only person I knew had been in love with me for as long as he was but he was also the one person I doubted I wanted to be with.
My heart broke at how badly he wanted us to be a couple.
And my heart broke to see his heart break.
I could not do this to him anymore. I could not continue to hurt him.
“I have to tell you something AKT” I said, wanting to reveal the times I had slept with his cousin to him.
His eyes were on me and a smile slowly widened his lips, “What can you possibly want to tell me that is more serious than anything I have seen you do?”
Ha you’re not going to see this one coming.
“This is serious” I began to say to him and he chuckled; he obviously did not think it could be worse than anything else I had done in the past.
I looked around me, trying to distract myself with the young couple on the next table and the seemingly unhappy couple on yet another table.
This was going to be hard no matter how I laid it down.
“Kaycee” His brows had creased into a frown now, the smile long gone.
He was finally realizing that it might actually be serious.
“Kaycee, what is it?”
I wanted to say it, I wanted to just say it but it was hard. Very hard.
I made a mental note not to abuse anyone in a movie that found a secret hard to let out again.
This was truly hard.
But if I thought that was my moment to let it all out, then I was very wrong.
Steve walked to our table that very moment and muttered something to his cousin.
“Hey” He said to me and I simply shrugged in response.
I did not feel like saying anything to him.
Actually, his presence in the restaurant made me realize how mad at him I actually was.
AKT stood, “Excuse me, Kaycee. I have to see someone outside.”
I actually wanted to stand and leave with him but then, what would I have said was wrong with me?
“So that’s it? We’re done saying hi to each other?” Steve asked, taking the seat AKT vacated.
“I’m not even sure I should be answering that” I responded, my concentration fully on the cocktail in front of me.
“You didn’t respond to my messages”
“I have no words for you”
“Not even an ‘Hi I am fine’ or a ‘Fuck off already’ ehn?”
I ignored him and stirred the cocktail with my straw. His hand grabbed mine and held it firmly.
“What” I snapped and tried to wrestle my hand free.
“You cannot refuse to talk to me”
“Watch me” I said and snatched my hand from him. The nerve though.
This idiot fucked me senseless different times, told me we couldn’t be anything and then thought it was okay for us to send each other messages from time to time.
Hian, men could be downright stupid sometimes.
“Are you angry because I said we can’t be together. Kaycee, my cousin wants to marry you. He is absolutely in love with you. You have been the only woman he has felt this strongly about his entire life and he needs you.”
I was not sure what it was that made me see it but I realized that the more he said those words, the more it looked like he was trying to convince himself not me.
“Lade and I had stuff while her and AKT were together.” He began to say and then quickly added, “I did not know they were still together. I thought they were done. It was what she told me and what I stupidly believed. And I don’t want that to happen again, I don’t want us having issues over the same woman again.”
“So you just decided to screw me senseless instead and thought, ‘I can send her once in a while messages too and act like nothing is wrong she’s kuku a ho’ abi?”
“Kaycee, that’s not true.”
AKT was returning now.
“Stay the fuck away.” I said as AKT joined us at the table.
“Sorry Kaycee, had to hand my car over to my mechanic. Steve is going to drop me off at work now.” He said and I nodded, reaching for my bag and trying to stand at the same time.
“Can we see later tonight? You can tell me what you wanted to say then.” He planted a kiss on my forehead.
“Always remember that I love you, Kelechi Mbah. And nothing will ever change that”
The guilt was threatening to drown me but I still managed a smile.
“See you later, AKT” I said as I left the table.
Walking towards the entrance, I realized I hadn’t dreaded my meeting with anyone this much in my life.
I was going to see AKT that night and I was going to tell him about his cousin and I.
And maybe I was going to die too.
Because only God could say what the guy would do to me when I was done.
As I stepped out of the restaurant into the warm afternoon, I mentally began to write my Will.