This story was inspired by a colleague. We had a discussion and she imagined that it would make a good story. This two-part story is dedicated to her.
Adetutu walked out of Energy Communications with her employment letter. She smiled and heaved a sigh of relief. Who would have thought at her age and little experience, she would be considered for employment as a Human Resources Officer? She walked to the car park and eased into the owner’s corner of her car.
“Where are we going ma?” Monday, her driver asked.
She wanted to share the good news with Chief face to face. She believed that a phone call will not suffice. She knew he would be proud of her; even though he had initially kicked against her search for employment.
Adetutu had a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and was serving as a Youth Corp member in a law firm when she met Chief Olatunde Ara. He had come to see her boss who was a partner in the law firm. It was love at first sight for Chief as he spotted her manning the reception desk. He wasted no time in making his intentions known after three visits to her office. Adetutu had initially turned down Chief’s advances until the day she was summoned by her boss into his office.
“Tutu, I will go straight to the point and not mince words. I understand if you want to keep things very professional but Chief has asked me to help him talk to you. Sincerely, since Chief lost his wife three years ago, I have never seen his face light up at the sight of another woman. I think you should reconsider your stance and give him a chance.”
Adetutu took a deep breath.
“You don’t have to give me an answer. This is Chief’s card.” Her boss said handing over a complimentary card to her. “Give him a call once you make up your mind. I only hope your response will be favourable for Chief’s sake.”
Adetutu thanked her boss and left his office. She pondered over their discussion for the rest of the day. She reckoned Chief would be in his forties while she was just twenty-two. Was she ready to have a relationship with a man old enough to be her father?
Two days later, Adetutu called Chief and agreed to his proposition but with a condition that she did not want to be rushed. She wanted them to take the relationship at her own pace. Chief had been so excited. The next day, Adetutu met a bouquet of red roses and a box of chocolates on her desk.
Chief sent his driver daily to pick her up for lunch dates with him. She however, made sure she was back in the office before her lunch break was over as she did not want to take her boss or her job for granted. Chief told her about his late wife and how she had died after an ectopic pregnancy. It had been the first time she had been pregnant in their seven years of marriage; she had therefore refused to see a doctor even though she kept having pains. Both mother and child were lost.
Less than two years later, Adetutu became Chief’s wife. Exactly nine months after, Omowunmi was born. Less than eighteen months after, Adetutu gave birth to a set of twin boys. Chief convinced Adetutu that there was no point going back to work. She had her hands full already with three young kids and after much persuasion, Adetutu agreed. Chief opened a boutique for his wife and also paid her a monthly salary.
One evening, as Adetutu retired to bed in her husband’s arms, she propped herself up and looked at him. “Chief, I want to go back to school.”
Chief looked at her and laughed.
“I’m serious Chief.”
Chief’s countenance changed as he looked at his wife of seventeen years. “What do you need the certificate for?”
“I want to go back to work.”
“Ahn…ahn, go back to work ke? At what age?”
“I am not yet forty-five. I can still get a job.”
Chief sat up straight. “What exactly do you need the job for?”
Adetutu smiled as she scooted closer to her husband. “The kids are grown and in the University already. I want to do something for myself. I feel unfulfilled.”
“I don’t understand. Your boutique is doing well. You have even expanded your business and have a spa and a salon, so what other fulfillment could you be looking for?” Chief asked in confusion.
“Please Chief, I just need your approval.”
Chief sighed as he nodded his head.
The next day, Adetutu registered as a professional student with a Human Resource Institute and began taking lectures almost immediately. In two years, she passed the exams in all the stages and Chief was proud of her as he stood beside her like a rock of Gibraltar during her induction. Adetutu went ahead to register as a professional student of a Management Institute and Chief thought she had lost it.
“You just finished one and you are starting another, Tutu.” Chief looked at her with unbelief.
Adetutu smiled. “Well Chief, I have the time. I can as well make the best use of it.”
“Does your daughter know you are doing all these courses?”
Adetutu shrugged. “Omowunmi is living her life, mummy too can live hers.” She responded.
In less than two years, she was done and inducted into the Institute. Omowunmi, who had just graduated from the university, attended her mother’s induction. Both father and daughter beamed with smiles at Adetutu’s achievements.
Adetutu, immediately began her search for a job. She looked up job websites and purchased the daily newspapers looking out for vacancies. She knew it was not going to be a walk in the park considering her age but she kept her hopes high.
Her prayers were eventually answered with Energy Communications. As the driver took her home, she threw her head back and smiled. She heard the familiar ring tone she used for her daughter and rummaged her bag for her phone.
“Mummy.” Omowunmi spoke on the other end.
“Yes darling. How was your interview?”
“What is the problem dear?”
“I wasn’t given the position I wanted. I was told someone else was better qualified.” Omowunmi hissed.
“Oh my! I’m so sorry darling, but you were offered another position?” Adetutu asked.
“Yes, mummy. I was offered the position of a customer relations officer.”
“I think you should take it.”
“But mummy that is not what I applied for?”
“What position did you apply for?” Adetutu asked as she adjusted herself.
“I applied for the position of a human resources officer. That is what I studied in school, mum. Why should I be given the position of a customer relations officer? I refused to accept the offer. They asked me to get back to them if I decided to change my mind but sincerely mum, I doubt I would.”
“Hmm…” Adetutu hummed. “Which organization is this?”
“What?” Adetutu screamed.
“Mum, are you okay?” Omowunmi panicked.
“Erm…erm…I’m fine. Are you on your way home?”
“Mum? What is wrong?”
“Nothing….nothing. Are you on your way home?” Adetutu stammered.
“Yes, I am just about driving out of the company premises.”
“Okay. Come home, we would talk about it when you get home.”
“Mummy, what is wrong?” Omowunmi asked; unconvinced with her mother’s responses.
“Just come home.” Adetutu said with a tone of finality.
….To be continued.
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