Today would make it a week since Benita and Chike did it. Today would make it the last Sunday and day of the month. Today, up till now, no period.
The church was thick with the sweat of guilt, chants of mercy, fervent cries, and shouts as members of All Grace International prayed to the Gracious. The atmosphere fueled the pregnancy thoughts in Benita’s mind.
Benita met Chike final year during her biometrics. They exchanged contacts and for a month exhausted data night plans calling and texting each other.
That day, he asked if she had ever been kissed. She said no. And he kissed her. His lips were so damn soft and inviting. She tried kissing back, but her attempt was a terrible mash of tongue sucking teeth and swapping spit. Chike was not disgusted. Rather, he smiled, told her to relax and follow his lead. Eventually, their kissing had rhythm.
His hands found their way under her blouse, unhooked her bra and began to tease her nipples. She moaned, feeling sweet and wanting more. Instinctively, she began to unbutton his shirt while he caressed her thighs reaching for her panties. She stiffened, grave fears boldly written in her eyes.
“Stop, ” she said.
Chike chuckled, ” Trust me, I know what I’m doing, ” then proceeded to pull down her pants.
“I don’t want to get pregnant”
“I’m not ready to be a father. So chill, this is not my first time”
The next thing she felt was a rush of indescribable pain that sent her screaming and Chike humping and heaving and trying to calm her down.
“I used the withdrawal method. So, you can’t get pregnant “
That was a week ago. She hoped her fear was just that; fear.
The following week was a living hell.
Monday saw her googling symptoms of the first week of pregnancy; a missed period, moodiness, tender and swollen breasts, fatigue. She experienced all.
Calm down. Chike used the withdrawal method. She repeated to herself.
And on Tuesday she was googling what the hell Chike meant by the withdrawal method. Then, she read how withdrawals can be ineffective because pre cum could get one pregnant.
In a frenzy, she searched how to get rid of a pregnancy and Google was kind enough to direct her to fourteen natural contraceptives.
Wednesday woke her feeling irritable with abdominal cramps and lower back pain. She fed on papaya and ginger tea supplementing with Vitamin C capsules twice that day.
Thursday was a rinse and repeat of Wednesday. Somehow, she did a pregnancy test of overnight urine and salt. The solution confirmed her pregnancy. Immediately, she went over to Chike’s place.
“Drink this solution. It’s what I used with my former girlfriend, he said.
“For days now, I’ve taken all manner of solutions and I’ve not seen it. Besides, this method is also ineffective.”
Chike hissed and dropped the cup on the table. “When is your safe period?”
“Don’t ask me that shit. I don’t keep track of my period. I know it comes every month. And I didn’t see it last month”
Chike ran his hand over his head and sat on the chair beside the table. “Are you sure I’m the only one?” he asked.
“That can be the only explanation. I know I didn’t use a condom. Fuck, I didn’t even get in. I made sure of that…”
Shock waves ran through Benita’s body as she watched Chike. He looked really fit, unlike her sleep-deprived self. He attended class, choosing when to pick her calls while she was crippled in her room in fear with no one to reach out to, drinking all manner of solutions, searching period cycles, fertile windows, pre-cum, cum and here he was asking if he was the only one.
He was naive too. It was a middle finger to her for entrusting her body and safety to a boy who repeated what he saw on sex videos or wherever he got his course material.
The sudden urge to vomit sent her racing to the toilet where she emptied the contents of the past days.
She speed dialed her mom. And while she waited for her mom to pick up, she tore out some tissue paper to check for the last time.
“Benita?” her mom said.
Her period gave her a red mischievous smile.