MXit is closing down. This bums me out, even though I haven’t used it in years. In light of this sad news, it gives me the chance to tell a story that no one has heard in its entirety before.
It was early May 2006. I was preparing for my Matric June exams, and seeing as I was long finished studying (seriously, Matric was easier than I thought it would be), I was hanging out in various chatrooms on MXit.
I had been a MXit user for about 2 years by that point, but chatrooms were relatively new. In particular, they had launched a “mall” type system, consisting of different sections named after parts of a mall.
On this particular day, I was hanging out in The Yum Centre. I was in a phase where I would get people’s details in the mall (why did people just hand out their details like that?!), invite them, chat for about two weeks and then delete them. I was a teenager, whatever.
Of course, if my parents had known I was in chatrooms they would have lost their minds. Never mind that I had a blocked profile, didn’t share pics, and only ever added people (never gave my details to them). A select few garnered my IRL details, but those didn’t end up lasting long either.
I think by that point I had gone through about 2 MXit relationships, and 3 other WAP (ha!) relationships. So when I sent yet another invite to someone I briefly chatted to in The Yum Centre, (ASLR 18/M/PTA/I), it was just another green dot in my contact list.
Over the next few weeks, he would greet me every morning. He’d ask how my day at school went, how did the exam go etc. It was only after my exams were done in late June that I realised he had lasted longer on my list than any of these other randos I chatted to. By this point, he had my real number, and we would miscall each other to log in to MXit so that we could chat.
Sometime in July, he brought up the topic of asking me to be his girlfriend. My first thought was “ugh, not another MXit relationship” so I deflected for a bit. We went through the drama of “we like each other so much, but we are at opposite ends of the country” blah blah. I was getting ready for mocks at this point, and seriously, if my parents knew what was going on they would have smashed my phone in front of me and then set it on fire.
I agreed on 9 August 2006 to be his girlfriend, knowing that logically it made no sense, and would probably just kind of peter out by the time I went to university the next year. By September he was saying he loved me, and by the end of the year he was declaring that one day he would marry me. I just rolled my eyes and rolled with what was happening.
I guess I can tell this story again next year, at our wedding.
The way our relationship began was merely a small sample of the drama which lay ahead. It’s been a long road to get to this point, and it still hasn’t sunk in 100% yet that this is happening for real. I suppose it will hit me properly when he actually proposes, and I wear the ring permanently as opposed to just taking it out for a photoshoot.
Someday I’ll write up the full story on here. Without MXit, I would never have met the person who is similar enough to me to make things easy, and different enough to me to keep things interesting. RIP.