Serving students and faculty since 1971

Feb. 14, 20xx,

“I love you”,

…but of pride or just a potent possibility of words never provoked by me, I never said those words before I met you. I cleft to my restraint not to speak the words, like those words carried some sacredness, like the catholic communion that my sinful state should not touch. Yet, I shyly broke my personal commandment for you– uttering those words in a voice-note – as though I were defiling the sacrosanct meal of the godly in the name of human love. I hope you will find meaning in these words even in these testing times– “I love you” – like I have found again. These words resound in me like a haunting echo because of a truth bound by the competence in knowledge, integrity of character and commitment to obligations, I love you my dear, now and forever. And my love for you is my religion just as in the manner of John Donne – read “Canonization.”

However, Beloved, not to tell a story, not to mention the details of how we happened is to deny we ever existed. A (love) story untold is a slave to silence and silence is for the dead. We would not be silent. We would speak for this love is real and to silence, it will be no prisoner.

“Do I…Do we look like a story to you?” You always asked me when I poured words into my diary. You wondered if you were merely one of my characters. You asked the question without expecting an answer from me.

I think rhetorical questions birth reasoning with unspoken answers and of what good is that? I think we all live and an attempt to capture the moments of our devotion and commitment, beauty and “cracks”, insufficiency and abundance, our love- in pictures, words, laughter, tears, shouts- are all stories. These stories are what we live for. They are the times Cleopatra met Caesar. They are the kindness and wisdom of David and Abigail. They are the tenderness in all Songs of Solomon. They are the touches of Mother Theresa on the many children of Calcutta. They are the fights of Winnie and Madiba for Africa. Indeed, stories are the only ways we can find meaning (all forms of interpretation) in this colossal drab called life. Stories are all we live for. Beloved, you are not a character in my story. Stories were my way of keeping our moments for eternity.

The irony is that my story would be what stopped our love from lasting a life time.

ou see why I must tell the story of our love. It is the only way we can find where we missed it. Great Achebe once referred to an Igbo proverb: if we cannot tell where the rain beat us, we cannot tell where our bodies dried up. This story is the only thing that will make sense as I struggle to stay sane now that you are gone forever in a manner of spoken words.

By the way, the girls are saying “hi”…

Now, here is our story: It was a February 14, when all things but love happens, and I had just entered the moment of daughter’s birth into my diary…