So you are sitting there staring at your phone. Scrolling through all the contacts. Pausing whenever a familiar name comes up. Your phonebook is a graveyard of dead relationships. You are 38 and still single. Not even a girlfriend to speak of.
Every time you attend a relative’s wedding your aunties come up to you and say “You are next!” this always rubs you the wrong way. They only stopped when you started saying the same thing to them at funerals. You got too irritable.
Rocket science seems quite easy compared to navigating the complex terrain of modern romance. Ghosting, blue ticks and good old radio silence are the order of the day.
Our parents and their parents before them had it easy. You saw a girl you liked down at the river. You told your parents about it or an uncle. A little background search was done: you know to check for a history of witchcraft and of course to make sure you don't marry your cousin - you were happy being innocently basic.
Then your people and her people sat down to talk logistics. Sometimes, she wasn't even consulted in the whole matter. I know it was mean and unfair but the system worked. She would start out hating you but 4 years and 4 children later all those were a distant memory.
You were getting all the right signals from this Linda you met at the local supermarket. The tiny thing is more of a corner shop really. That rainy evening you were in the tomato sauce aisle you both reached out for the last bottle at the same time. You were not going to let anyone get between you and your favorite brand. You both just stood there, daring the other to back down.
When that didn't work, you resorted to negotiation. “I really need this bottle” you muttered to break the silence. “I’m sure your cooking is not as bad as mine. You don't need this stuff.”
This comment was received with a smile. A smile that stirred something in the deepest corners of your soul. That day you missed out on that precious commodity but gained something more. A chance at a relationship. Gentleman, they say?
Your situation wasn’t always this dire. You can recall (vaguely) a time when your problem was settling on one woman from the endless stream of admirers that begged for your attention.
Then you met your ex. A month into the relationship and you both realised you were not right for each other. Your break-up was as bad as the fallout. About 3 months after moving to the next guy, she got really ill. With what? You had no idea. Rumours spread like wildfire about the current state of your Ex.
You didn't care so much about it until you realised that all your dates vanished without explanation. Things are going great with Linda and you won't let her slip through your fingers. If only there was a way to settle all this.
You have thought about visiting the local clinic with all your candidates but that would only fuel the story. Then you remember about all these conversations about #ChukuaSelfie or Radio, TV, YouTube, your favorite websites etc. HIV self-testing would solve both your problems. The privacy of knowing your results is undeniably alluring. You rush to the local chemist and get two #OraQuick kits. You call her on your way back.
“You would do that for me?” she asks barely hiding her joy. You agree that she visits your place for the tests.
You are tense but determined to do it right. You both follow the instructions in the manual carefully. When it is done, you both sit back and wait. You look at her and she reassuringly presses your palm. Then 20 minutes later you are good to check out the results.
‘Two-lines means POSITIVE...ONE LINE means Negative’ you remind her…. Two, Three One! You both reveal your results to each other simultaneously.
You stare at the results, then at each other. And finally back at the manual to be sure. Without another word, you both collapse on the bed.
NOW THINK ABOUT IT...
This could really be you. And you are wondering, where can I #ChukuaSelfie? Well, never worry, apart from the self-test kits being available at your local chemist, you can avoid all the scrutiny from nosey over-the-counter customers, the attendants and neighbours by ordering online and get it delivered discreetly to your house.
What If your results turn out positive on the #ChukuaSelfie? Usipanic! Relax, and visit a professional testing centre for a confirmatory tests because it is possible to have a false-positive result. You can also call 1190 to speak to a counsellor discreetly.
If the results turn out negative, you still have to continue practicing safe sex and self-testing yourself and your partner(s) regularly.
Wacha stress. #ChukuaSelfie - enjoy life.
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