“Hi Chika. I know we’ve just been waving at each other but now I really want to get to know you. Can I have your number?”. He asked expectantly. While I just smiled looking at my phone.
“Oh! What’s your Genotype?”. I asked and a weird look appeared on his face.
“What?” He exclaimed in shock probably wondering what his genotype has to do with his feelings. “I’m AS”. He responded finally.
” Oh Sorry. Then you don’t need my number. Goodbye”. I shook my head, hid a smile and left him puzzled.
“Chika baby. You’re a really nice girl. I’d really love to go out with you this weekend. Just to hang out”. He asked shyly.
“First of all, what’s your genotype?” I asked without raising my face to look at him or I would have noticed the strange look on his face.
“Are you seriously asking me that? He asked slightly upset”.
” Yes I am. And I’m waiting for your answer”. I replied nonchalantly.
“I’m AA”. He replied.
“Okay. Cool. I’ll see you then”.
This is the story of my life. I’m Chika Jonah and I’d like to take you back to the reason for all this.
After two years of remarkable friendship and relationship. We were both happy, growing and dreaming. Our days were filled with lots of conversations, dreams and working our ass off to achieve those dreams.
And in one of our conversations, we were talking about injections, blood and then we went on to blood groups and genotypes that was when he randomly said ” I’m AS”.
I instantly froze.
“Wh…a…t did you just say?”. I stammered, hoping I had heard wrong.
“That I’m AS. Is anything wrong with that?” He asked confused at the shock he heard in my voice. I just couldn’t say anything. All of a sudden I was sweating profusely.
“Yes. Everything is wrong with that. Everything”. I sobbed into the phone.
“What’s the problem? You’re scaring me. Just tell me”. He pleaded worriedly.
” I’m AS too”. The bomb dropped with my response and everywhere became quiet instantly. It was too big a pill to swallow.
“Are you sure?” He asked with every emotion in him and I nodded. “Then do the test again”. He added sternly. I didn’t want to argue with him I I agreed.
I did the test again and again even when I knew it was going to be the same result. And each time my resolve weakened and I cried all over again.
I was happy with someone I was never going to spend the rest of my life with.
He begged, we cried but somehow he knew I was going to do it. Faith had no chance.
I broke it off as quickly and painful as I felt.
It was over. All because of a two-letter word so small yet so powerful.
My story is not to make you feel sympathetic towards me but to help you understand this fact;
Don’t be ignorant
It saddens me that even adults in their twenties and thirties don’t know what their genotype is. They walk around, go from one relationship to another without knowing how much of their future they put at risk. Walk to the hospital, give them your
blood samples and wait for your results. If you’re still not satisfied with the result go over to 2 more hospitals and do it all over again. One result may lie, but three results can’t lie.
Don’t be careless or you may end up investing everything in a relationship that should never be in the first place
Don’t say it doesn’t concern you because you’re AA.
Stop that thought. That’s selfishness. You are not in this for yourself but for the other person. For the relationship, you want to build. For your peace of mind and for your future. Notice that every time I asked “What’s your genotype?” I didn’t give mine first instead I waited to hear from the other person. That’s how it should be.
Don’t Stay. End it.
I’m sorry but I’m not going to tell you to stay even if you’ve been dating for six years. Not that I doubt your faith but because your faith isn’t practical. Ask yourself this question; Can you watch your child go through the pains and agony that comes with sickle cell? Can you watch your child constantly face death each time? Can you leave with the guilt of putting them through that? Is your faith strong enough to carry you through this ordeal?
I’m sure you know the answer already. A broken heart is better than a broken future.
One more thing – I’m probably going to sing my national anthem “What’s your genotype” till I find my man (laughs) so guys bear with my question *winks. And if you are having a crush on me, now you know the next thing…
Be proud of yourself whether you’re SS, AS, AA, AC, SC, CC
I’d love to hear from you. Your concerns, your question and your story. Drop a comment or email me. Don’t forget to share this with every young male and female. Educate your family and friends. Love xoxo