So When Are You Getting Married?

by Vera Ezimora

It seems like just yesterday January fourteenth rolled around the corner and I had to turn plus one, but now we are almost at the end of September. In four months time, I will be confronted with turning plus one again. God does not give me the option of getting older without turning plus one. I want to get older; I want to be more mature; I want to be wiser; I want to get the experience one only gets by spending more time on earth, but I do not necessarily want my age to go higher – at least not at the rate that it goes. Perhaps, I will feel better if it took eighteen months to turn plus one instead of twelve months.

I am not a child, and I do not wish to go back to my childhood; however, I am really just a kid at heart. The thought of being married excites me; the thought of having a man to call my own fascinates me; the thought of having children that come out of me thrills me, but even more than all that, the thought of leaving my parents terrifies me. Yes, I want to start a family of my own, but I still want to live with my mommy. Who will rub my back when I am feeling down? Who will rub my feet? Who will play with my hair? The probability that my husband will do all these is not very high – unless my husband happens to not be Nigerian which is highly unlikely. I am tempted to get into all the reasons why my mother might be a more romantic husband, but I will save that for another day.

The older I become, the more often I hear that question that no girl ever wants to hear (especially if she does not know the answer to it), “so when are you getting married?” My best friend is getting married in a month’s time, and I have stopped telling people about it because it always leads them to ask me the question I do not want to hear. I do not know when I will be getting married. I do not know how I will be proposed to. I do not know where or when I will be proposed to. But most importantly, I do not know to whom I will be getting married. But no one asks me who I will be getting married to; everyone is concerned about when.

Things have gotten so bad that my own father gave my number to his friend who has a son. My father told me all the supposed good things about his friend’s son – he is in the military (is that supposed to be a good thing? I hear the military guys are all whores); he flies planes for the military (Oh great! In addition to possibly being hit by a stray bullet, he also runs the risk of dying in a plane crash); he is Igbo (so what? I hear they do not make them like they used to anymore. But then again, were they ever really that good?); he is in med school (how nice! I can look forward to my potential husband spending all his time in the hospital. And let us not forget the student loans), but my father failed to tell me if his friend’s son was single and looking. I guess all that mattered was the relationship between my father and his father.

I concluded that the guy would have to be really desperate to actually call me. I mean, what would he say when he calls me? “Hi, my name is —, and I got your number from my father who got it from your father who said we should mingle and see where this might lead to.” Yeah, there goes the introduction I have been waiting for all my life. I did not expect him to call; he never did call, and my mind forgot the issue. But then months later, my father asked me if he had called, and that was when I remembered him. I am ashamed to admit this, but a part of me was sad. Why did he not call?? He should have at least called to hear my voice. He should have at least considered the possibility of God working in mysterious ways. Yes, indeed, I am pathetic, I know. So that was how my relationship with the flying military man in med school ended before it got a chance to start.

Like I stated earlier, my best friend is getting married in a month’s time; another close friend of mine is getting married this Saturday (September 29th 2007), and yet another friend is getting married in November. Everyone has been asking the same question, and I am sick and tired of saying I do not know. Besides, saying I do not know only prompts the one asking to ask another unanswerable question, “Why now?” What the heck?! I can go ahead and explain to anyone who cares to hear that I have an idea of what I want my wedding gown to look like; I know the exact engagement and wedding ring I want; I know where I want to do my traditional marriage; I know what I want the ceremony to be like; I know what I want the white wedding to look like; I know what kind of marriage I want to share with my husband, and I even have an idea of the songs we will play that day, the names of our children, and how many I want to look like me (I want at least one boy and one girl to look like me)!

In fact, I also know that I want five children (including a set of twins). I am so sure of my twins that I have secretly started calling myself Mama Ejima or Mama Ibeji. Yes, I have claimed it already. All I need now is the ‘who’, but no one is asking me that. I guess all that matters is that I know when I will be getting married. Finding the ‘who’ should not be too difficult seeing as I have thousands of men knocking my door down and asking my parents for permission to pluck the ripe flower in their garden. Yeah, right!

My friend Uche (who will probably kill me when she sees her name in this article) has been single for the longest time. She has been so single that I have started wondering if she has died and just does not know it. Perhaps, she is a ghost and I am the only one who can see her. Why else would able-bodied men keep passing her by and not asking her if she is at least in the market. But that all recently changed. Uche went on a date on Friday (September 21st), and he was an able-bodied young man. Not only did Uche go on a date, but she also has another guy begging for her attention. Uche is still single to my knowledge, but the difference is that she now has potential boyfriends. Suddenly, Uche’s new wave of ‘manfullness’ has given her the confidence to have pity on me. She said she will help me out of my predicament. I did not even know I had a predicament!

How am I supposed to tell people when I will be getting married if I do not even have a man to propose? Or am I supposed to propose to myself and marry myself? That would actually not be such a terrible idea since I consider myself the best partner anyone can ever dream of, but I cannot afford the ring I want. Besides, I kind of need a man to have the five children that I plan on having, and going to a sperm bank is out of the question. Another perk of getting married is the tax breaks that married couples get. Who does not want or need a tax break? I know I do. Oh well, I guess I would just have to wait for my darling to show up. I have to say it is taking him a mighty long time to get here, but with all the humidity and global warming occurring, transportation must have slowed down. That is my story, and I am sticking to it.

Of course, if I could have a meeting with God, I would suggest He creates a Custom-Made Spouse program – a program in which people – men and women alike – can create their partner just as they want him or her. But I know this is merely a fantasy that will never come to pass. But if for any reason God decides to create such a program, I will not mind being the first to utilize it. Heaven knows I am in dire need of it. Until then however, I will just have to wait for my darling like every other woman out there.

So when am I getting married? Beats me. But if you find out, do let me know, please.

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Sharron Miller May 25, 2010 - 8:35 pm

I loved this piece. I am an AA woman and I can fully understand all the pressure of getting married. I think it should be left too the persons who want to marry. As for Wonttell you had been rolling under the desk.

Joey April 7, 2009 - 5:32 pm

Simply astute! Good piece as usual. You cracked me up. LOL.

chinway October 12, 2008 - 9:46 pm

i think i have found him. I just turned 25 and it just dawned on me that he has been there all along. I just happened to not realize this because i was focusing on other things. Yes he is African but he is not Nigerian.

chinway June 30, 2008 - 6:55 am

So what is the average age Educated and working Nigerian women get married here in America? i am at my peak in Nigerian Terms but unfortunately i do not live in a Nigerian community making it impossible to find a Nigerian for marriae purposes. i have dated all different cultures but i find that cultural similarities are missing. i would still like to end up with a Nigerian for those purposes and just to make my mother happy. are those good reasons to want to be with a Nigerian?

Wonttell May 9, 2008 - 2:05 pm

Girl I love your pieces. I swear you've hit the mark. I thought I was the only one in your predicament, so I hurried into something I just wasn't ready for. If only you'd heard the "woe is me" stories my aunts, mom, dad, older cousins told of how all my mates were happily married with children, and here I am , a pretty girl shaming them and disgracing myself by walking around single at my age. Its truly awful the kind of pressure and psychological damage Older Nigerians put on young women these days. Sadly, thats how I got blind sided with the twit I married. One day, I got a phone call from an MD with a very sexy voice, and what I thought was a great disposition. Only to discover this bush neandrathal was no better than the animals I'd avoid when I attended Nigerian social events or weddings. You know the type. The group of guys that huddle together laughing loudly, drinking their couvassier and being completely obnoxious to every attractive woman within a 5 foot radius. Oh may I remind those of you who've been in the dilemma of being introduced about the humiliation of being treated as though these guys are doing you a favor until you meet them and realize they look like flavor flav on a bad day and smells like what shabba ranks looks like. Then when you try to politely distance yourself, or express your disinterest ,you suddenly become enemy #1 and receive nasty phone calls from the people that tried to introduce you in the first place. To this day I regret ever being introduced to my husband. By the way, you realize the pressures and mental abuse doesn't stop because you get married…OH NOOOOOO, then they constantly remind you of the number of kids you need to have, and of course even though science deems the man responsible for the sex of the baby its always the woman's fault if you have a girl. I just don't get it. Ok this is off topic, but can someone explain to me why Nigerian culture hold having male heirs in such high esteem, but they make these men pay a dowery for the female? I mean if he's worth so much, why in the hell do you charge him 3 goats, 150,000N , and 3 bottles of palm wine if he's so called more valued than I? By the way, Nigerian men aren't subtle nor sensitive to your feelings. My idiot husband told me I'm lucky I'm preggers now, he said as women get older the quality of their eggs deminishes. WTF!!!!! keep in mind this bafoon is 13 years my senior. So, what does that say about the quality of his sperm? (lord forgive me, I know my baby will be brillant too bad his daddy is a f**king idiot) Oh by the way the fact that these as*h*les attend medical school doesn't not make them a well rounded human being. No no no, its another means of adding a god complex to whatever pre-existing complex the as*h*le already has. I have a friend who is yet to be married at 36, and she's an MD, makes a 6 figure salary, and maintained her chastity. She's brillant, Harvard grad and all, but she makes the same complaint you are making, the quality of Nigerian men are minimal, the ones within her age bracket are fixed in their ways, and are hard to talk to in general. Like my previous response to your post. Take your time and find the right guy, and worst case scenario hell date a white guy. They are notorious for treating black women well. I didn't say marry unless you can handle the scrutiny but at least date other men, fool around, hell I wish I had. damn I hate this Ni**a. He makes me sick, and I know its not the pregnancy hormones talking.

MissJay December 29, 2007 - 5:17 am

I love this piece!!

Just like u..I believe my enchanted Love is searching for me,but for some reason we havent met.But i’ll keep waiting for him,Cause i know his almost here!

uNcOvErLuv December 26, 2007 - 12:20 pm

Over all the years I’ve been turning “plus one”, it only hit me this year that I was getting mighty old! When I look back on all the years gone by, I haven’t accomplished as much as I’d aspired to 10yrs ago. So it’s time to kick it in high gear before the next “plus one” rolls around.

Laudate October 29, 2007 - 12:38 pm

Lovely article. It expresses all that I ever wanted to say. Well done, girl!

osu akande September 29, 2007 - 12:45 pm

i am married already i would have whisk or is it drive you of your feet immeditely. As for your mum rubbing your back you better stop it men dont like anything to play on their turf and that goes for your mum too, ask your wise old man he would agree with me.Furthermore do not strerotype Nigerian men we may not be as romantic as our western brothers but we are trying to "blend", come to think of it we do not need to loose all our identity in other to become "westernized" (there are some negative tendencies that come with been over-romantic) enough on that and back to your case.Just be yourself and an original man will come along bye for now

Maame Efua September 28, 2007 - 6:26 am

I love this piece,its one of a kind.


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