Of Queer Habits | My Engineer #1

Nnwa,

Over the years I have picked up many queer habits. Or maybe I should start by telling you I have managed to piss off my engineer today. I did not pick up his call because I was in the middle of something. Not something –  a belated surprise birthday treat that…I digress. That is for another day. So I made him mad enough to send a mad text because he was mad. I did not pick up his call, I did not call back immediately. Queer habit number one.

My engineer and I are not friends. We had no time for that. So he would not know that I do this sometimes, maybe many times. This postponing of talking. If we were friends, perhaps he would know that it is not just with him or that it means something apart from ‘Please, I will call you later’ or ‘Can’t talk now’ or ‘Had a day from hell, need to breathe’. But he does not know, so he thinks it is something that it is not and that is okay, because he does not know and I did not tell him.

Because of this queer habit, sometimes I do not call back for a day or two; or even until you call back and then I realise that was supposed to be something I did. It varies because it depends on the why. There are days that are longer than others and I cannot find my voice at the end. Then there are those that cover you with too many thoughts that you cannot even find yourself. Sometimes I just fell asleep too early – there are many things. Sometimes it is just because this queer habit has caused my mind to believe that you will know it is not a you-thing.  But sometimes later is not soon enough. Sometimes, they do not understand this thing that my mind does when it needs to breathe. I do not have many friends.

Those that understand this queer habit have somehow become those that I talk to very often. I don’t know, maybe it is because with their understanding they have made friends with my mind. Because when it gets back afloat it remembers who reached out. Only that sometimes they have moved on and can no longer be found.

I hope I find a way to break this habit soon. I do not want to cross my engineer’s path this way again. I do not want you to learn this from me. I don’t want you to pick it because not everyone will be your friend, not everyone will understand how it works – this queerness. This world moves fast Nnwa, too fast. Sometimes the moments you lose you do not get back. Do not have queer habits. Pick up your phone. Because you will have your Engineer, perhaps you will be friends but if you won’t be, he will not understand. So I will need you to pick your phone and I will start to learn how not to make this queerness make people mad because in my head, I did not mean to.

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