As I sit here in the studio, trying to figure what story I would go with tonight, I realised that I once had an encounter with this sweet girl during my senior year in primary school and I reckon it’s worth a story to tell.
I was in class 8, and was in an empty classroom that was supposed to be filled by my mates but they had gone out for P.E. It was of course, P.E period but for some reason I didn’t feel like going. I remember feeling a bit lethargic and couldn’t even bother with having fun with my friends (which is quite weird because I like having fun). So there I was, updating my notes and reading Enid Blyton’s, ‘The Magic Faraway Tree’, on the side. Her books took me to a whole other dimension and I loved every single part of my imagination. Which is why I couldn’t do anything without reading a phrase from that book.
Now as a 13 year old, who didn’t think I would have a crush on someone but had always imagined liking one, I would hide in a corner or steer clear of this particular person. Let’s just call him Lemeki for now. (I honestly forgot his name, forgive me 😂). Lemeki was this good-looking young boy who was very nice to the teachers and kind to his classmates. I guess he didn’t go for P.E that day because we were alone in a big, empty classroom with only the sound of our pens scribbling and pages of my Enid Blyton book flipping.
I stood up to go sharpen my pencil at the bin. As soon as I did, I felt something moist dripping down my leg. I immediately felt a sharp pain in my abdomen and I thought something was wrong with me. Sure enough, it was that time of the month for me and was my first too.
I looked outside to see who I could call for help but the only person who was near me was Lemeki. Ofcourse I’d be embarrassed to call Lemeki for help. I didn’t even know how to help myself, so obviously I was too madua. But I couldn’t stay like that for long. I knew I couldn’t. I was getting a bit uncomfortable and the sharp pain was getting painful by the minute.
This girl that was a year younger than me passed by and noticed how much of a discomfort I was in. I signaled to her to come inside and help me out and she looked at the bottom back of my dress. For a second I thought, “Wailei….I don’t even know if she knows what’s going on. She’s younger than me.” because she immediately turned around and left.
Honestly, I was cussing under my breath cos she left just like that. But a minute later, she returned with something that was wrapped in newspaper. She knocked on the door, told Lemeki she was there to see me, and walked towards where I was standing. She gave me her hoodie to tie around my waist and told me to wear whatever that was in the newspaper, once I reach the girls washroom.
Her name is Salaseini. And she had gotten her menstruation cycle at 12 years old. She knew exactly what was happening with me and knew what to do. She didn’t embarrass me in front of Lemeki that day, she made sure I walked out of the classroom unnoticed.
Whenever it’s that time of the month for me, I think of Salaseini and her kind act. I hope there are a lot of other Salaseini’s out there, so if you are one, thank you for being a sister’s keeper. And to Salaseini, I hope you are safe and healthy wherever you are.