Being a side chick is shameful, most people will say. But I don’t care. I was not born with a silver spoon, if anything I had grass in my mouth because I ate dirt. Well, it’s not every day you meet someone that offers you everything you’ve ever dreamed of on a platter of gold. Did I stall or did I take it with both hands?
Being a side chick… The way to your heart
I sat on the pavement behind the counter to take a breather. My legs were hurting, I had been standing for a while. I sighted another customer coming into the restaurant, stood up and put up my best smile.
The man is average-looking in a simple polo shirt and jeans
“Good afternoon Sir, how do you do Sir? I greeted with my best smile.
He smiled and returned my greetings, “how do you do too?
“Fine sir, what would you love to have? I asked.
He looked up from his phone and ordered rice and chicken.
While dishing out his food, he struck up a conversation with me. He asked if I enjoyed working as a waiter and I told him yes. I dished his food to the appropriate size and told him to come around next time because our restaurant sells a fair quantity. He asked me how I knew and I told him other customers say the same.
He smiled and promised to come around, then carried his food to the table to eat.
Being a side chick… Something to fear
To my side, I saw one of my fellow waiters coming to me.
“Blessing, do you know the man who you just talked to? She asked as she came abreast of me.
“No, I don’t know him. Do you know him?
“Yes, that is the owner of our restaurant”
I instinctively raised my hand to cover my mouth while she smiled at me and walked away.
I was scared I might have done something wrong but I consoled myself as I reminisced about our short conversation. At least I was friendly, I said to myself. I met the man within two months of working there and by then, I had lots of customers who wanted me to dish their food.
I saw the man walk into our manager’s office, he stayed a while. When he was walking out, I was afraid to meet his eyes so I kept my gaze diverted.
We were rounding up for the day when my manager called me into his office.
Being a side chick… What did you do
I walked into his office, “good evening sir, you sent for me”.
“Good evening Blessing. Yes, I sent for you. Do you know the man who was on jeans and a polo shirt that asked you to give him rice and chicken”
I didn’t have to guess to know who he was talking about. “Yes sir, I know the man. Ope told me he is the owner of the restaurant.
He bobbed his head in approval, “good, what did you do?
I was puzzled and bit scared at that question, “I did not do anything sir, why do you ask sir?
“Nothing, he just came in here and asked about you.
I was relieved, maybe I did not do anything. The manager bade me farewell and I left.
Being a side chick… Trouble on greener pastures
The next week, my manager informed me the Boss had ordered for me to be transferred to the main office in the heart of town.
I was relieved because it meant I would have to spend less on transportation. I enjoyed serving the customers at the main office but I didn’t like the fact that other workers were not nice to me. Most of the workers there are ladies and they look at me like I have some dirt on my head. The girls at the branch restaurant are much different from the girls at the main office. The girls at the main office are constantly competing with each other for male attention.
I am not like that, I can’t even attempt to. My father is a deadbeat, he ran away and left four children in the care of one woman. I decided to forgo school and work so I could contribute to the home. I am 24 but you would think I am 34 with kids; so overweight and shapeless. My face is filled with acne. I did not have enough money to make my hair and that is why I had to cut it. The little I make, I take out money for transportation and give the rest to my mum. I just try to apply white powder from time to time so I can look presentable to our customers.
I can’t do this anymore
So the idea of me trying to compete with them was something I could not even think of doing. They felt I was not as chic as they are but I was less concerned.
Their bullying increased when they found out the Boss, the owner of our restaurant favoured me constantly. They would intentionally shout at me, brush me off rudely, and ignore me. When I noticed this, I endured till the end of the month before running back to the branch office.
My manager wanted to know why I came back, so he put a call through my Boss who said he did not send me back. He ordered my manager to send me back to the main office. I begged my manager to keep me in the branch office but he refused. I continued begging him until I broke down and started crying. My manager was concerned and asked why I was crying. I told him the girls at the main office bullied me a lot and I could not handle it anymore. He sympathized with me and advised me to turn a blind eye to them.
I took his advice and went back but I could not handle the bullying. I went back again with a lie; the director had agreed I should come back after I explained my situation to him. My manager allowed me to stay until he got a call a few days later from the boss who ordered me to return to the main office. My manager begged me to stop coming, he made me understand the boss could wrongly assume I was having a relationship with him and thus, fire him. He explained the boss might want to promote me and that could be why the boss wants me at the main office.
The idea of a promotion sounded good to me so I decided to go back and man it this time around, maybe I will get that promotion. I made sure I worked hard.
Being a side chick… Crazy things
One day, the Boss called me into his office and asked me to wait behind after I close from work. I waited and he took me in his car and drove me to a hotel. He booked a room and we went into the room, where we chatted and ate.
A few hours later, he made sexual advances and I responded. He found out he was my first and asked why. I told him life had been hard and I didn’t have the luxury of time to date. My boss was worried but I asked him not to worry about it. He asked me to tell him about myself and I did. He also told me about himself in which I found out he is old enough to be my father and he has a wife.
Being a sidechick… It’s called about turn
Over the next few months, my life turned around.
First, he ordered me to stop working and take entrance exams for university. I refused because I had lost all hope of going to the university. He started a business for me but prevailed on me to take a course at the university which I did.
He gave mom some money to start a business and enrolled my siblings in good schools. This man got us a better apartment in my name.
I was touched that a man would do all of these for me. I did not escape the turnaround. My baby, as I usually call him was the one who got me a better soap and cream that cleared my acne away. He registered me in a gym and I lost weight and looked beautiful. I loved him and wanted him to be impressed so I worked on my body and got in shape. I guess that is what attracts males to me, and makes me get a lot of male attention but I am not carried away because I love this man.
I would never betray him by taking another man because if not for him, I would still be struggling with life. He changed my story and changed the trajectory of my life. He is everything to me, my confidante, my business coach, my life coach. Many things I know today are because of him.
It’s been four years, I don’t think I am going anywhere. I can’t even think of dating another man because I don’t think I can ever love another man the way I love my boss-turned-lover. Many people would ask about me getting married. Honestly, I don’t care because he is worth it and I am willing to give up that much for him.
This is my life and I am content with it.
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