My husband Munya and I first met in 1991. We were 17 and in 6th form. New to the school, I walked into the English Literature class on the first day, fifteen minutes late and sporting a shocking head of flame ginger, permed hair (neither the perm nor the electric orange colour were permitted in the school at the time). Munya approached me immediately afterwards, to introduce himself to the strange new girl, and we became inseparable friends.
After 6th form, we attended the same Further Education (FE) College, and our relationship transitioned fairly seamlessly from platonic to romantic. We both had the foresight to recognise the false binary often imposed between the platonic and the romantic, and thus avoided the risk of ‘friend-zoning’ each other’s true love while we stood before each other!
We have been together since – across various phases of our relationship – spanning 31 years, and across two continents.
In 1998, after seven years together and having completed our FE studies, we decided to migrate to Sheffield from Zimbabwe for postgraduate studies. By the time I started my Masters, I was six months pregnant with our first child.