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She had Dr Ansah to thank for all these new insights. Daily she was adding to her jewel box of wisdom. Growing up, she didn’t have anyone in particular in her life to teach her about self-worth and the need for self-love.

Her parents were present in her life alright; they took care of her needs like feeding, shelter, clothing and education. In turn, they expected her to keep decent behaviour and be studious which she did. But they never built in her confidence or taught her self-love — basic things she was learning all children needed as part of their development.

Quite unfortunately, it had taken her going through some pretty awful things to start learning such life lessons. She had, therefore, vowed to be a loving encouraging parent so her children wouldn’t grapple with such issues.

****

On Saturday, the moon fully out and not a single cloud in the sky, she stepped out with Korkor. Korkor turned heads everywhere she went but never cared much about it. She was a down-to-earth character who enjoyed the simple and real things of life. That evening they found themselves at Blues Pub, sitting at a table and catching up, “You only keep looking better,” Korkor complimented. They were both having glasses of wine.

“I feel great,” Lisa said, “I can achieve anything now”

“Well, I don’t doubt,” Just then a waiter approached their table with a bottle of wine; the kind they were sipping. He bowed lightly and told them the two gentlemen at the bar wanted them to have it. They turned and their eyes found the men. The men smiled. Lisa and Korkor smiled back and waved lightly, “What do we do now?” Lisa whispered.

“I don’t know. I hope they are not expecting us to join their table”

“They look good though,” Lisa said, “Maybe we should go and say thank you,” but Korkor frowned lightly at the idea, “You don’t think it’s a good idea?”

“No,” Korkor said, “If they want to talk they should come over. We won’t abandon our table for theirs”

“What is wrong with reciprocating their gesture…?”

“Then you can go do that and come back. I think some of these things are just distractions,”

“What does that even mean?”

“I mean you don’t need to go there. We smiled back, didn’t we? It’s thank you enough”

*****

Lisa stared at Korkor for some seconds, “Korkor, are you trying to tell me something you’re not saying?”

“I think you’re doing a good job right now, focusing on yourself and all. Don’t let things come in and destruct your focus…, some things like that!” she said, referring the men who were still at the bar and swigging their beers, looking intermittently in the direction of the ladies, “Isn’t that how it starts? The next minute, you are in a new relationship and it’s all about whichever one you settle on”

“I don’t do that,” Lisa challenged.

“That’s what you do” Korkor insisted, “You meet a guy, and the next thing I know you’re dating him. When you break up, you cry over him until the next one comes along and then you jump into a new relationship. Let’s just enjoy the evening and go back home”

For a while Lisa sat still, saying nothing. Not because she was upset. She knew Korkor was right. Suddenly it was clear to her; that was how she handled her breakups— until Korkor convinced her to start seeing a professional.

She was speechless but glad her friend had mustered the courage to tell her. That was exactly what friends were for; to help each other make wise decisions. When the men weren’t watching, they gulped down their glasses of wine and slipped out of the pub with their free bottle.

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