THE GENOTYPE DISEASE

“…the beauty goes, the money spent, and everything else fades away, you are my constant…”

That’s Ruth Anne’s “The Vow” playing in the background as I write this.

I know you’re surprised to see the word disease beside the word Genotype. Yes, it feels surreal to me too but lately it has dawned on me that it is what it is.

A genotype is a blood condition that somehow affects the person you get married to and if it doesn’t, well, it might affect the child you both share. Actually, it may also not affect anything and that’s for people with regular genotypes and do not have the disease. For people whose blood are conditioned normally.

Wikipedia will plainly tell you that A disease is a particular abnormal condition that negatively affects the structure or function of all or part of an organism, and that is not immediately due to any external injury. Key-Word “Abnormal”

So I ask a question, if I’m normal, why can’t I fall in love like a normal human being with another human being, we say I do at the altar and if we decide to consummate our marriage with a child, on God’s blessings, we go ahead. Why do I have to meet someone and the first thing I’m asking myself is “I hope he doesn’t share the same genotype with me…?”

I’ve always known my genotype as AS and it has never really been a thing of concern until 2 years ago. The things I saw in the movies from Africa Magic became my reality. I had to let go of one of the most amazing men in my life and I couldn’t quite get it. I was confused, I had questions, a lot!

What did I do wrong?

How can’t our blood work?

But the colour of both our blood is red?

What is inside our blood that says we can’t be together?

How did I end up with this blood?

But this isn’t my fault, why do I have to pay for it?

I was born this way…

It felt irrational coming from a sane person like me because I’ve learnt this in school all my life but I was right at this point where everything was happening in real time.

I felt like a shadow of myself.

I went to 5 different hospitals.

No, this blood has to change.

He didn’t do anything wrong to me.

I want to be with him…

I was a shadow of myself at some point.

Days passed, weeks, months, and well, it’s almost 2 years. Yes, you may have suspected, I meet someone with the same genotype as me again, my PTSD is triggered and that’s when I say to myself, this is a disease. It has got to be a disease.

Growing up, I never really understood why when we go to church some healing prayers go thus “Blood conditions are changing, AS to AA, SS to AA” but now I guess I do.

So as an intentional Christian, I’m thinking, where is this in my bible?

Where did men go to marry women in the bible and they said they couldn’t because of their genotypes?

Was Adam AA and Eve AS or AC?

Where did all these genetic variants come from that has multiplied itself globally, serving as hindrances to the love lives of people.

Some nights I lay up in my bed thinking about the life cycle especially as an African. Go to school, get a degree, get married, have children, train them and it’s rinse and repeat for them but I’ve travelled, I read stories and I know that as amplified as the genotype disease is in the family unit. Different things still destroy the home: infidelity, love misunderstood, lack of time, no children, financial upheavals but I guess the difference is that you choose these things one way or another but you don’t choose the blood you’re born with.

So I felt angry, I got angry. For the first time in my 20 something plus years on earth, I felt limited. You mean to tell me if I truly fall in love with someone with my genotype, get married and risk giving birth, I may give birth to children with Sickle Cell Disease? No, I honestly don’t want to hear “these are your options”. Why is this complicated? Why should I have options, birthing options, probability percentages, why can’t things be normal? Why can’t I have the best of both worlds, the man I love and the healthy babies we decide to make.

Why does one have to go for another, why can’t they exist, why do I have to let go of beautiful love? and amazing people?…

Sadly, you don’t have the answer for me. Hmmmmm

All men generically were created in the image of God and in a world where people don’t understand love, lack depth, intentionality and even common sense; Never again will I have someone in my corner that indulges me, stares at my soul when he’s looking at me, laughs loud with me like we’re the only ones existing and I’ll let them go because of a disease we didn’t create or understand. I know two things and that’s enough to start this life time journey; The first being that this disease is curable. The second being that life will not cheat me out of an amazing love again. Oh, a third one will be that I’ll have the best of both worlds eventually. It may take time but I won’t leave a life of options. I’ll figure this out.

“…I’d climb every mountain and swim every ocean just to be with you and fix what I’ve broken…Oh, ’cause I need you to see that you are the reason…” That’s Calum Scott expressing my goodbye thoughts till I come back with a solution.

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