Category Archives: Soul Searching

A mirror into my life

The Price of Sacrifice

“Should I use the machete or my dagger? Last time my dagger didn’t cut clean through when I was skinning that goat. I want this to be as quick as possible. Do I even have time to sharpen it? But if I lose this one do I have enough energy to make another one? Maybe he’ll send another one. A brunette. One who can hunt and cook. Yeah, a brunette will be cool. But what will I tell the missus? He saw a bird and ran after it and I was too slow to catch up? 99 years of waiting and then boom! He’s gone because I sacrificed him yet I have plenty of fat goats. But of importance is life, bora uhai.”

I’m not saying this is what was going through Abraham’s head when he was going to sacrifice Isaac but intel from reliable sources confirm this is what actually happened. I cannot begin to imagine how confusing it must have been for a man to lose a son he had spent almost a century trying to make. Let me put this in context. You’ve saved to buy your dream car after ten years without a job then your ancestor tells you to give it away because he helped you get it. I would go on about this legendary story if I could but I have more relevant stories on sacrifice. In high school, there’s a guy that almost lost his life because of a plate of ugali and heavily moisturized sautéed kales served with a side of steamed meat.

The guy, who I’ll call Sam for his security, had a plate of food and half a loaf of bread on the other hand. As he gingerly, with the motion of a gracious stag, weaved through the traffic of sweat and drool drenched teenagers, he slipped on a banana peel. We weren’t even eating bananas so we don’t even know where it came from. What followed was the bravest sacrifice I have personally witnessed. Sam flew into the air, paused turned at us and let gravity take its course. But he was a determined man. He had a not so courteous interaction with the floor. The usually busy bickering boys went silent. Was he alive? But more importantly, what happened to his food? As the second of silence from the fallen soldier was met with all manners of laughter, he rose, bruised and battered but all the content last in his hand were safe. We were all tears but lauded his brevity. The sacrifice of a hungry boy had paid in kind.

In life, objectivity is a rare gem. Even when facing truth, which is undeniable, being objective is a luxury most do not afford. So I will be very subjective in my objective description of sacrifice. Not the dictionary definition. A breakdown of sacrifice. I’ll use it interchangeably with compromise. It’s my story. This is one of the few things you experience at a personal level. There is standard way to look at sacrifice. It’s as simple as giving time and as complex as giving your life. And sometimes it’s not life in the literal sense. Sacrifice is all about giving something of value. It can be ten minutes of your time and in those ten minutes you were probably going through the toughest time but you made time to make someone else comfortable. It can be years of your time.

The sacrifice a mother makes for her child or  a father makes for his family are all important but viewed differently. And can you blame people for using their lenses to see the world in a way they understand? Sometimes our roles are downplayed because people don’t know how much we give up to give. A mother struggling with self-esteem will feed her baby in public without stopping to think, “what will people think of my stretch marks?” A father wakes up to walk over 20km to earn less than $3 but will still find a way to make sure his kids are fed and educated. In certain scenarios, your sacrifice is your responsibility but it doesn’t take away that you are making a sacrifice.

Gratitude is not as natural as we assume it should be. Some people will never see your sacrifice sufficing. They will find a reason to make you feel like you haven’t done enough. Like you always need to dig deeper, take from yourself and give them till you have nothing left to give. People don’t realize a simple thank you at times is the best thing you can hear. It’s the simple things in life that have the greatest impact in our lives. I believe sacrifices are just like doing good. If you do it expecting something in return you may end up feeling used and abused. Whenever you feel you have a lot to lose you can always say no. It’s not the easiest thing to say especially when it’s to someone you have built a relationship with. But sometimes your greatest pain comes from the smallest sacrifices for the dearest people.

Sacrifice comes in different forms and people react to it differently. Some are strong enough to handle the results of it, others not so much. I have experienced sacrifice on both ends of the spectrum. As the one who offers the sacrifice and as the recipient. At times, it hurts when you sacrifice or compromise and someone takes advantage of that but there’s an equally fulfilling feeling that engulfs you when your sacrifice does some good. You’ll feel the need to give up and not give in given scenarios and that’s okay. You don’t always have to give. Sometimes you need to be selfish and just say, I’m taking the front seat this time. There comes a time when you have to sacrifice everyone else to save yourself, just as you may have to sacrifice yourself to save everyone else. Whatever the case, make your sacrifices worthwhile.

Time Over All

“How do you do it?” She asked as she stared into the distance as if to implore her ancestors to send a signal. At this point, she wasn’t even trying. She had thrown in the towel and bucket. It was depressing to see her in this state. I had many answers but would they really be helpful? Would I be adding any value to her situation or further distorting an already chaotic situation? Cindy and I had been friends for a while but we had never been in a situation where she was at rock bottom. We’d both had our lows but never to this point.

“I don’t know what to say. Sometimes no words can really make a difference. I can say many things to try and make the situation better but sometimes all I can do is listen,” I calmly said as I passed her the joint. Cindy had lost her dad who was her world. The loss was harder than anything she had ever experienced in her life. She was an only child that was brought up by her dad after her mother died when she was a toddler. He had dedicated his life to making her comfortable and she never lacked when he was around. He was a beam of bliss to anyone that interacted with him. I had the privilege of having him as my boss and potential father-in-law.

He was involved in a grisly accident when a drunk driver rammed into him barely a kilometer to his home. I took a heavy hit of the blunt and as I let out the smoke, I walked over to the edge of the balcony and stood over Cindy. “I’m not sure what I’m about to tell you will have any bearing in your life but I’m just going to tell you anyway. I haven’t even thought it over but I’ll just wing it. When I lost my dad, I felt the loss but at the back of mind I kept on thinking, shouldn’t this happen? It is a part of life, isn’t it?

We live well only to leave, well, everything. I didn’t even shed a tear. Everyone else broke down and I just moved on like this was all part of a bigger picture. But as months, years went by, I kept wondering, did I really do the right thing?” Everytime something happened and my mum wasn’t there to support me, I kept on thinking, maybe things would have been different with my dad around. And maybe they could have been. He was a great guy. He would have shown me the way. Told me that the world didn’t stop at a barrier. He’d give me advise on how to approach a girl, deal with a heartbreak and be a better man. And just lead a better life, you know?

But it wasn’t going to happen and I had to deal with it. You know my mum has always had my back at any given point. She would stand against her god to defend me. But despite all this I felt there was something lacking. I got everything I needed and love more than anything else but was that really enough? Sometimes I wouldn’t even talk to my dad when he was here but knowing he was there gave me comfort. When I see you in this state, I wish there was something I could say that would make you smile. Just to get a glimpse of your dimples. And your beautiful eyes. But even in all your sadness, I’m happy to see you grieve. It’s the one thing I wish I did. I would probably have accepted it like my mum did. I wouldn’t find different ways to deal with pain I could easily have solved with tears.

So when I don’t tell you to stop crying, it’s not that I don’t care. I know how it feels to not let out the pain. You’re doing something people struggle with. Facing your pain and trying to find your feet. You may find the balance immediately I finish this weird monologue or you may take years because we all heal at our own pace but eventually with trial, most of us heal.” Cindy stood from her seat walked toward me, put her hands around my neck, looked up to me and asked, “But have you healed though?” In my life nobody had ever asked me such a simple complex question. “I…I don’t really know. You know me, have I?” I stammered trying to stop the tears from falling onto Cindy’s face. Suddenly, I was the one in need of the comfort I was trying to offer.

“I really can’t tell. I’m never sure whether I suppressed the pain or dealt with it over time. What I do know is I want to be with you as you navigate this path. It gets lonely and sometimes you don’t need anyone with you even in that loneliness but knowing there’s always someone who can listen and give you comfort is very important. You’ve probably heard me say I don’t need anyone at some point but that’s probably because nobody would understand what I’m going through at that point in time. But sometimes you don’t really need someone to understand you, you just need them to be there and listen. I know I’ve said a whole lot of nothing but at the end of the day I’m here for you. It’ll take time but that’s all we have when
dealing with a loss.”

Cindy smiled as she looked into my eyes and whispered, “I know,” tears flowing down her cheeks.

The Pain of Love

“Trust me…..I didn’t mean to…..” sobbed Angela as she desperately tried to hold on to Matt’s hand. It had all gone in the wind. What had happened? Three years! Three years of solid building had vanished in an instant. Angela couldn’t hold back her tears as Matt sadly walked out without a word and closed the door behind him. She had suddenly lost it all. Everything she worked so hard to build had crumbled right in front of her and she couldn’t do anything about it. On the rummaged living room, a pair of shoes lay next to the seat.


Angela and Matt had met while in university. They were all from well-off families and met at a function where their parents were guests. From the outside, Angela was a reserved lady that liked the simple things in life despite her lavish lifestyle. Matt on the other hand, was wild and always looking for trouble. “Hi, are you taking Commerce at NSU? Because, damn that ass!” Remarked Matt as he picked a glass of whisky from the counter. Angela was taken aback. “Excuse me?” She retorted as she took a step back. “ Hi, I’m Matt but I can be yours. I’ve seen you at NSU before. Just thought I’d say hi to a familiar figure who’s not my dad.” Angela smiled back at him and replied, “I’m Angela but you can call me Ange. And yes I’m at NSU. Not taking Commerce though.”


The two seemed to have some chemistry. Matt always had something sly to say and Angela’s smile melted the hearts of the people she interacted with. Over time they became close. As they grew closer, Matt learned of Angela’s insecurities that arose from her mother’s relationship with her dad. He was abusive and constantly made her and her mother feel like lesser people. She had struggled to get over it but she was struggling with esteem issues. She constantly needed him to reassure her of her beauty and worth. Matt didn’t mind this given that had grown up without a dad and his mother had taught him the significance of appreciating people for who they were and treating them with respect.

A few months after knowing each other, they became intimate. They were inseparable. She was the six to his nine. They were taking different units so as they progressed in their respective courses, they spent more and more time away from each other. They, however, still found ways of staying in each others’ lives. In his final year of university, Matt’s mother was diagnosed with a chronic illness. It greatly affected him and he started becoming reclusive. The thought of living without his mother drove him crazy. Over time, it started to affect his relationship with Angela. At first, she tried her best to accommodate his mood swings but it took a toll on her as well. Things however, took a turn for the better when Matt’s mum improved and even resumed her business. He revived his relationship with Ange and they were once again the couple that everyone on campus envied.

Matt had fallen a year back in his studies which meant he had to graduate one year after Angela did. By the time he was finishing school, Angela was already working. Matt soon got a job and moved out of his mother’s house. Their relationship was steady and they moved in together. A couple of months after moving in together, Ange got a promotion which meant she had to take up more responsibilities. Matt supported her in every way he could. The dark cloud that was Matt’s mum’s condition rose its ugly head again and in a few weeks, she passed away. Matt couldn’t get over it and fell into depression. Everything seemed good on the outside but he was dead inside. He wasn’t the same person. He immersed himself in his work to fill the void left by the loss of his mum.

Angela was struggling between balancing her job and trying to get Matt to open up. He had, however, confided in his best friend about the impact the death of his mother had on his social life. Brian, Matt’s best friend was a close friend of the couple. He always tried to explain to Ange that all Matt needed was time to mourn and he would be back to his old self. In between trying to cheer up Matt and being the link between the couple, he developed an affection for Ange. It wasn’t weird that they would spend time together give that they had become friends and worked in the same field. They would meet up after work and link up with Matt. As time moved though, they would sometimes meet up without Matt. “Hey. Where are you? I thought we had movie night today?” Matt asked after Ange hadn’t shown up despite them agreeing on meeting. “Sorry, got caught up with work I forgot to tell you.” Matt had noticed that Ange was not as close to him but he assumed it was because of his depression.

Their sex life also wasn’t the same. Ange was barely ever in the mood and when she was Matt had a difficult time rising to the occasion. Matt got a big project that required him to travel. He was going to be away for one month. When on the trip, he tried as much as possible to keep in touch with Ange. He would call and text whenever he got the opportunity. At times, she would not answer his calls only to text back a while later stating that she was busy. One of the projects Matt is was working on got delayed and he had to go back home earlier than scheduled.

He called to inform Ange of the change in arrangements but she was not available. This didn’t bother him as he considered this an opportunity to surprise her and try to rekindle the burning love they once had. When he got to the country, he purchased some flowers and chocolate which he knew Ange liked. He took a cab home and to his surprise the door wasn’t locked. He thought she might have just got home so he removed his shoes and walked up the flight of stairs that led to their bedroom. He opened the door and was met with the rudest shock of his life. Brian’s sweaty body was cuddled up next to Ange’s in his bed. The two were asleep and didn’t notice Matt’s distraught figure standing over the bed. He walked over to his bedside drawer, took out a gun, dragged a seat next to Brian and gently tapped him on the shoulder.

“It’s…..it’s, it’s not what you thi……” stammered Brian as he tried to grab whatever he could find to cover himself. Ange could barely utter a single word. “I knew you had my back bro, but my wife’s as well?” Asked Matt as he brought the gun’s butt closer to Brian’s face. The two friends had seen each other in all scenarios, but this was the first time, one’s face presented death. “Can you make it out in seven seconds? Because that’s all you have before I end this fairy tale!” Said Matt as he calmly rose from his seat. Brian bolted from the bed but as he was trying to collect his clothes, he heard the gun cock. He scampered for safety rushing down the stairs. On his way out, fumbled over furniture.

Brian walked back up to his room. Ange was still cowered up in bed. Without a word, he pulled out a suit case, packed a few clothes, his gun and walked out. “Wait! Please, let’s talk about this! I’m sorry! Matt!” Shouted Ange as she pulled a gown from the floor and chased after Matt. She grabbed on to him but her pleas fell on deaf ears. He was broken and no amount of sorries would suffice. He gave her one last glance as she held on to his hand, shook his head, released himself and walked out. It was all gone.

A new start; a happy start

I make a point to find something I want to achieve every year. Unfortunately, my year starts in five months so until then, I will procrastinate last year’s goal to then. However, 2017 was a very significant year for me and I had to jot something down to appreciate the good, bad and ugly.

It was a year that taught me hope isn’t just a beautiful girl sleeping with the choir master after practice. It’s the difference between reaching and falling short. I barely talk about my emotions but one lady I’ve been very close with was my grandma. Losing her was probably the lowest point for me.

One thing I learned from her is hope. Never lose that little glimmer that you have in life. Things may be going south faster than draws on a pressed crotch but there’s always a light at the end of the tunnel. She always had something smart to say even at 100. Just like any soap opera, I’d have liked to say a few words to her before she passed on but I didn’t get the chance.

Did she know how much I loved her? Would it have made any difference if I was at her side when she took her last breath? I’ll never know but I hope I will never have to ask myself these questions again. I choose to speak my mind and say how I feel. Sometimes we don’t get reciprocated emotions but it kills you more to keep your feelings bottled up.

I know this first hand. I don’t regret a day in my life when I say something I mean. It hasn’t always gone well for me, but it’s lifted a burden off my back. Take risks. Live like today was your birthday and tomorrow is a holiday. Risk isn’t necessarily careless. It’s taking that leap of faith to find the little happiness you can achieve when you’re alive.

Fall in love. Walk out of toxic relationships. Make friends. Lose some. It’s all a part of growing up. Very often you’re caught up in historical cycles that have no impact on your present life. Every once in a while, be your greatest critic but give yourself a break as well. Don’t just make mistakes. Do them well. In everything you do, do the utmost best. There’s no rehearsal. Even if you believe in the afterlife, you won’t live it on earth.

Find a vent. Let things out. Bottled emotions are noxious. Don’t deny yourself happiness because of fear. Fear of the unknown. Your mind is a strong organ. Talk, sing, write, draw, take a walk. Just do something other than suffering in silence. Talk to your friends. Find out how they are doing every once in a while. It’ll take a minute but it can save a life. Everyone suffers. You may know how to deal with your demons but the next person doesn’t.

I never make outright resolutions because I learn and adopt as I live. I have goals just like you do but I believe living is also important. Discover. Travel. Open your horizons and have a holistic approach to life. The world has different kinds of people and each one brings something unique to the table. You don’t have to fit in. Be yourself but also be mindful of other people.

At times, take a break and hang out with yourself. You can live and be the life of the party but you’re not alive. Take a breather and evaluate yourself. Appreciate yourself a bit. Reward yourself and take your path. There’s no right path. You just need a reason to believe in the path you choose to follow.

Be nice. You don’t need to change the world to make a difference. Make a difference to one person. That can be your world. And if you can be the world to one person, take it with both hands. Make your year positive. Don’t focus too much on the negative and forget the only place you don’t want to test positive is in a lab.

At times you’ll feel like giving back the energy you get. And you’re warranted to feel that way on any given day. But you’ll need to have more negative energy to match negative vibes. The better option is to bounce off bad vibes with good vibes. It’s much more relaxing to spread joy and happiness. That is what your year should be like. Be happy and spread the happiness. The world needs it.

Dreams

A dream is a defined as a series of thoughts, images and sensations occurring in a person’s mind during sleep. But what happens when you experience your dream? It gives you a sense of satisfaction in most cases not achievable. You dwell in your own world knowing you’re pulling the strings and calling the shots. You can cut when you please and roll one scene multiple times.

Sometimes, however, our dreams turn into nightmares. The source of so much joy and pleasure threatens to be the same thing that shatters your world into the ugly face of reality. I feel like I’m waking up from a dream I never thought would end. Not one of those majestic swan-like mornings you see in music videos. This is the ‘I’m drowning and don’t know how to swim’ waking up.

The kind of dream where you wake up gasping for air. It’s not a pretty sight. There are very many things you can rationalize but one thing I have struggled to put logic behind is emotion. Why do people love? Why do people hate? What brings about sadness? Some scientist somewhere may provide some chemical equations with hormones but I would rather stick to a basic approach.

Love is a beautiful thing. It shakes the very core of your existence. It’s a feeling that has no uniform description. It’s a pure feeling. One that comes free of selfish interests. It takes away power and gives you freedom. You get to feel and see life in another person’s eyes. The beautiful thing about love is that it doesn’t necessarily have to be mirrored. Love is about how you feel, not how you respond to the way another person feels about you. It’s not Newton’s Third Law.

It’s a beautiful feeling, but sometimes a draining one. Love may take away from you more than it gives. It may be the reason you suffer. Love may be the primary reason for your pain but that doesn’t make it any less of a beautiful feeling. Sometimes love becomes toxic and the only option to let go.

Letting go is not a sign of weakness. At times you fight for something that will kill you. It’s not in your best interest. Live knowing that the world is vast and experiences are all that await. You can lose today and find another reason to fight tomorrow. The aim is not to win. It’s to live happily. Enjoy the years you spend on this planet and make the most of it.

Losing someone you love is like waking up from a bad dream. You struggle to get things together at first but in time gather the courage to fall asleep again. It’s okay to break down and gather your pieces slowly. We’ve been conditioned to believe loss is a good thing. It’s not a good thing. There’s no better place to be than with those that love you.

Just like waking up from a bad dream, find the inner peace and courage to close your eyes and rediscover a reason to live. The will to live after loss is greater than any other feeling. Make your life your best dream. Share love and don’t expect much in return. Don’t kill yourself trying to spread love but don’t live miserably denying yourself the feeling either. Live to experience and learn.

We only have one lifetime to do what we can. Don’t live miserably because no one makes it out alive.

Life, all you’ve got

One of the scariest moments has to be feeling your pockets and can’t seem to find your phone. Your heart skipping a beat is an understatement. It will leap over walls and crash into your knees. More often than not you find your phone and enjoy those 15 seconds of your heart calibrating back to normalcy.

But sometimes, that’s not the case. You do your best to locate your phone and can’t seem to find it. It takes a while to accept and move on but you eventually do. Your phone is one of your most prized possessions. Not because of its value or aesthetics but simply because of the secrets and moments you’ve shared.

That’s why it almost always with you. Has a password. A wallpaper that speaks to you. Apps customized to your liking. It’s personal and nobody will ever get what the two of you share. Sometimes your phone is someone. A person you have grown fond of. Someone you love, cherish and want nothing but the best for.

Sadly, life follows the same path. You sometimes do things without thinking you may hurt or lose the person you cherish. That temporary loss can be anything from a break-up with someone you are in a relationship with to doing something strains the relationship you have with a loved one. It’s not permanent. There’s still an opportunity for you to make amends and straighten things out.

At other times, it’s the lost phone and you can’t salvage anything. You can cuss, cry, vent but it’ll never find its way back into your pocket. People are the most valuable assets beside time that we misuse. They say you never miss what you’ve got till it’s gone. That statement couldn’t be any more true.

A cycle technically means going back to where it started. Life starts and ends. You can see death coming from a mile away but nobody will ever prepare you for its impact when it hits. Death is a good and bad thing. It takes away suffering from one person and shifts it to another. The bright side is that you have time to get over loss. There’s no specified duration.

The reality is that grief is a personal experience. No matter how many people used your phone, they may never understand how it feels to lose it. You are never alone but you’re on your own. There’ll be those that will you see you through it all. Those that will walk you through it. But none that will feel the drag of getting through it.

It may seem like the world has suddenly forgotten but don’t take it to heart. The world has its own problems, it can only do so much. Take heart in the fact that tomorrow may be a better day. If not, the next day and the sequence continues. Always remember you hold your destiny in your hands, others can only help you achieve it.

You grieve in your own way and dictate the terms when it comes to getting over it. The most important thing is to appreciate the people around you. In time, all that will be left are memories and if you can’t get the best then you lost value for your time.

For anyone that has experienced loss, time is all you have. Time to accept. Time to heal. Time to pick up the pieces. Time to appreciate. Time to remember. Time to love. Time is all we’ve got.
RIP Herina ‘Nyarkodongo’ Oyugi

When Tides Meet 1of 2

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­“How long is this going to take? I need to be somewhere in the afternoon,” remarked Jaden as the meeting wore on longer than earlier stated. He was meeting a group of investors looking to pump some money into a joint venture but his mind was elsewhere. He was scheduled to meet Kristen at some point in the afternoon

“We’re almost done. I just need to confirm we’re all on the same page before anything kicks off,” replied the chairman as he perused through the last pages of the proposal. Jaden and Kristen had known each other for years. Kristen had been out of the country for a while and even when she came back, would be in a completely different city.

Jaden and Kristen had unnatural chemistry. Despite the distance, they always had a reason to keep in touch. This was the first time in almost a decade they were meeting more than once within two months. The two were set to go for a meet-up at one of Jaden’s friends’ place. This was regular for him but it was something Kristen would not normally do, but chose to. She was a very reserved person.

She was beautiful

Her beauty had levels. You’d see one thing today and the next time you see her; you’d notice something else to intrigue you. She was intelligent and genuine in all her actions. Her smile and composed were very calming to whoever she spoke to. Jaden on the other hand, was nothing close to this. When put on a scale, she would tip the scale in her favour. It was like beauty and the beast, only that beast didn’t own a mansion in this case. But they individually had reasons to keep in contact.

By the time Jaden had confirmed what time he was to meet up with Kristen, there was a football game on. He was an ardent football fan and Kristen, though not a sports fan herself, was supportive of this. All the time he was watching the game, he still wasn’t sure inviting her was the best decision because his friends were nothing remotely close to what she was used to.

They were the complete opposite. Loud, lived life on the edge and always had something silly to say about someone. He wasn’t so worried as to what they’d say but how she would perceive it. Things were going on the football front so he was calming down as time wore on. His friend picked him up in the late evening and they headed to where Kristen was staying.

“Hey, I’m outside,” said Jaden as soon as he got to her place. “Already? Ok, I’ll be out shortly,” she replied. After what seemed like a mini eternity, she emerged. “I hope this is ok. And I won’t be making someone at the venue angry, will I? A lady perhaps?” Jaden as always, was underwhelming in his dressing with jeans, a sweater and sandals. She on the other hand, looked like a gem. A black dress that was slightly above her knee, stockings and to cap it off, a Barcelona jacket, just in case it got cold or the team won.

The drive to their destination wasn’t long and on arrival, Kristen was almost taking for the hills but she barely knew her bearings from there.  They made their way into the house after a quick round of introductions. Kristen and Jaden got comfortable in one part of the living room area and got lost in their own conversation. The two had a lot to say to each other but didn’t know how to express it. They would easily talk about anything, but barely scratched the surface about their feelings for each other.

Jaden was confused

“So, what are you thinking?” Asked Kristen. “About what exactly?” Responded Jaden. “You know what I mean. You’re a smart guy and don’t need me to spell everything out for you.” She said with a smile on her face. They had for long, harboured their feelings from each other because of the fear of the unknown. What of it didn’t work? What if they became too comfortable and started looking outside for happiness? It was a myriad of questions that had no definite answers.

“I don’t know. I…I…I think I just want to be with you and that’s it.” Jaden muttered. This was a topic none of them were prepared to talk about but they decided to. “You don’t have to though. I don’t want you to hate me. Sometimes when you get something you’ve wanted for so long, you lose interest in it. You can be with someone else, no pressure at all.” She amid chatters from Jaden’s friend’s outside the house.

“I’d rather take the risk I guess,” Jaden replied before she pulled him closer and plated a light kiss on his cheek. At this point he wasn’t sure of what to do. He simply held her tight and lingered in the moment thinking of what could be. “Go now. Your friends are probably waiting for you.” She whispered with her bright smile.

He hesitated for a few minutes and went out but was back on the couch with her shortly afterwards. It was as if any minute lost that could be spent with her would never be recovered. Technically that was true because her time in the country was limited and they had to make it count. It was very late into the night and with everybody still up, they cosied up on the couch waiting on one or the other to fall asleep.

“Ey, the room upstairs is ready. You guys can go sleep,” blurted out Viola as she gestured to her room. She was the host and would do the most to make us comfortable. They gathered everything they had, which was Kristen’s purse and phone. They got to the room and lay on the bed facing each other.

“I came here with answers and now I’m even more confused.” Said Kristen. Jaden ran his hands across her face and replied, “Emotion has no logic.”

Catching up

They say the best things in life are free, but so are the worst. I’ve been offline for a while and I’ve seen darker days but not being able to write because I wasn’t motivated was one of the hardest things for me. I love writing and it may not be the best or interesting but it’s one of the ways I self-regulate.

In this period I’ve gone through changes and not just physically. The biggest adjustment other than starting a new job (Yeah, I move around) is that I’m pregnant. I know, it was a roller coaster of emotions for me when I found out as well, but just like Mary and other virgins before us, I accept this great responsibility. Well, I’m not like pregnant pregnant, my stomach has just outgrown my body. I look like a broken condom, free on the upper part, tight on the lower end.

Starting a new job just like any other new experience had its ups and downs. When I joined the organization (It’s a professional place), I had this serious feel around me. I had carried my Samuel L. Jackson to this place. I only smiled when hot tea was served and burned someone’s tongue or got outside the gate. But all that has changed now and I’ve met some really nice fellows, some nicer than others of course. And I’m on a diet as well.

In this period I’ve also realized fear can be a good thing or a bad thing. In my case, it’s an almost bad thing. One of the hardest things in life is being unable to achieve anything because of the fear of what if? The whole world can believe in you but if you don’t, it doesn’t count for anything. It simply means you lost a fight you were refereeing.

I can comfortably write about this because on more than one occasion, I’ve missed out on something big because of fear. Not that I was afraid of my capabilities. The fear stemmed from the fear of rejection. Fear of failure. How do I get back from failing? Do I just forget that someone said no when in all honesty I was the best?

The answer is yes! You get back up and move on. You can’t be afraid to achieve because of an obstacle. If Eve didn’t put the fear of the unknown to the side and take a bite of that apple, you wouldn’t have all these great experiences. In an ideal world where Eve said no, like all girls should to free drinks from strangers at the club, we would all be happy an overpopulated the earth.

But whether you believe in religion or not, is not the discussion here. It is about living in the moment and appreciating every experience you have. The bad ones are not supposed to be looked at as lessons only. You’re free to sulk and be down because something went south. Emotion has no logical explanation and you don’t need to justify it to anyone.

Enjoy the great moments. Don’t dwell to long on either of these situations though and forget to live. Your primary goal in life is to live. How you live it is up to you. Find something that you love to do, even if it’s a person and do that. Have you ever heard of the phrase life is too short? Well, it is very short. One minute you’re being given boobs for free, the next you need to convince someone why you’re the right person to show it to.

And that is life. An opportunity lost is not the end of things. I’d like to use people like Lincoln as examples but you don’t want to exercise power over people in the free world do you? You probably just want to sit back in some exotic location, spend time travelling, learning new things and creating memories. And that’s what you should do. We live too cautiously only to die. And for what? To enjoy retirement? I am guilty of working and forgetting the little pleasures in life. I still run out of money at the end or close to the end of the month and I have no stories to tell. That’s not how I should live.

I don’t want to regret. Think of what could’ve been. I want to ask a girl out on a date. Something out of the normal. Drink ourselves silly and uber home because I’m responsible and still don’t own a car. Life is an adventure and you are the Zach Galifianakis of it. Nobody has rehearsed for anything life has up it’s dirty, rugged sleeves. Feel free to try out new things and if they don’t work out, try something else.

Live without hating and spewing negative energy. You are not a dragon or a cat. Live and love. And it’s okay not to love as well, but hating people takes too much energy away from you. It’s however, allowed to hate the fact that Liverpool fans laugh at Arsenal, yet they don’t know how it feels like to see a Merseyside club lift the Premier League trophy. And kindly note, the current Premier League system started in 1992.

So as you welcome a new month and plan what you’re going to do next year at the same time, do something today as well. It won’t hurt. And get yourself something to drink.

 

One man can make a difference

In life every experience is a lesson and I’m a good student, you can ask anyone that shared a class with me in University. I’m those students that have five different types of pens and divide my notes according to the lecturer and their mood. My notes got people A’s. Of course they can’t step up and say, “You my G are the real MVP.” They’d rather take that shine, but I’m good, I’m beaming.

So, in the past month or two I’ve been really quiet and haven’t really posted anything. I’d blame writer’s block but honestly, I lacked inspiration. I didn’t have anything that made me want to sit down in my cotton-white white boxers, with a glass of red wine and just jot down my thoughts. Every time I got myself in a position to write, I would jot down two lines and that was it.

My front desk mate at work kept on pressuring me to write and even went to the extent of calling me to write when I was on holiday. She’s got a lot of nerve but she also triggered a lot of thought in me. I’ve seen a lot happen over the days. Just today in the morning, a friend lost his daughter. You try your best to find something appropriate to say but what can you say?

“I’m sorry, she’s in a better place? That was God’s plan?” I haven’t talked to him and doubt I’ll be saying anything any time soon but I feel his pain. And that is partly what made me want to write. I remember this one post I wrote in 2013 and I was at a very low point in my life. I wrote it as a diary, not necessarily target to lift anyone or anything along those lines.

One lady called me after that and we talked at length about what I was experiencing. She was going through a hard time and my post spoke directly to her. I have the ‘Scopare il mondo. Salvare la tua anima’ mentality. However, when you can help one person have a good day, isn’t that good thing? So I decided I’ll write today. I don’t know what my subject is but I’m just going with the flow, the words will come as I go on.

I’ve been brought up around a close knit family so I value friendship, loyalty and respect. In the recent past I’ve been in situations where I’ve done things that I had no responsibility doing but did them anyway. What I’ve come to understand is that we’re not all the same. Some people will show you gratitude for what you offer while others will not.

But does that mean I should change and stop helping people because a few people couldn’t show gratitude? I would but I wouldn’t live in comfort knowing I could’ve done something but chose to do nothing. Over time you may realize, it’s the small things that matter. You can have money but you will barely ever have the most money.

Happiness is innate. You derive your joy from within and that’s what most of us have failed to grasp. We rely on other people to give you joy. When was the last time you enjoyed your own company? Just sat by yourself and did something you love for your own satisfaction? If I said one more time that I’m not in a relationship, you’d think I’m advertising my singlehood. Well, I am but that’s beside the point.

I see people suffer and sacrifice more than they need to for relationships to work. The word doesn’t even have real in it so most people do it just for the cameras and likes. Companionship needs more than love and posting your significant other as an MCM or WCW. It needs you to know there’s an equal distribution good as bad with anyone.

I don’t picture perfection in any situation but I have visions of ideal situations. A situation where you treat other people with the respect they deserve and not manipulate or take advantage of them. It may not work in a capitalistic world where everyone is interested in their own wellbeing even if it comes at the expense of other people.

What’s really sad is that most people would rather play the victim nowadays. You’d rather shift blame to someone else to avoid taking responsibility. It’s always some else’s fault which begs the question, what is your responsibility?

The sooner you learn you are not just on the world but of the world the better. Play your part in building a better society and spreading a smile to different faces across the globe. You just like the next person are good at something. It may not be raking in any money bit it can make a difference.

Try cutting your pinky off and see how efficient your hand will be. I bet you’re not so willing to take the risk but you know you’ll lose almost half of your hand’s functionality. So what makes you think that even without being the most outspoken figure, you can’t make a difference?

Don’t give anyone the power to determine your happiness. People will disappoint you and make excuses for their own failures. But there are people who will also uplift you and show you the good side of humanity we barely get to see.

It’s a matter of perspective and you choose what you want to see. If something bad happens, take your time, deal with it in your own way and find a way to get past it. Time is the only true healer. I’ve ranted a lot but I think I needed to just note down what was in my head and put it out there.

I also don’t think Hillary lost because she’s a woman like everyone is trying to portray it. Trump may not have been your favourite but he was elected in a legally due process and the least you can do is give him time to succeed or fail. The power lies in your hands, you just need to show how badly you want it.

 

Convenience is all about perspective

“I take you, to be my lawfully wedded wife. In sickness and in health, in riches and in poverty, till death do us part.” I’m not sure that’s how the vows go but it’s along that line. I’ve not been to many weddings in my life. Partly because the people I know barely get married and the ones that do, share their wedding invitations when I have other commitments, like learning how to swim or have a dance-off with my god daughter.

I’m not big on Western weddings for a number of reasons, the major one being the cost implication against posterity. However, that’s not an issue I want to discuss because I may end up ruining my chances of being invited for future weddings. My issue is with the vows and understanding your roles. Do you understand the implication of the words you utter or is it just a phase to you?

The divorce rate in Kenya isn’t as high as Western countries because of the mere fact that court processes drag on for years and most people don’t have the finances to see their cases through; so they end up separating amicably. The number of separated homes in Kenya is soaring by the day from generations born in the 60s and earlier to those born in the 80s. The sad thing is that most of these people recited those vows.

This year alone I’ve seen videos of domestic abuse on Facebook more than enough times. One time is enough and I’ve seen those videos more than once. I’ve learnt something from interacting with people older than me and that is called, separation of issues. I’m not a Psychology major and having done one or two units in the said field doesn’t make me an expert in analyzing behaviours and all that Dexter stuff.

I however, know plenty about human interaction from experience. Have you ever wondered what goes through a persons mind when they take up a knife or rod and attack someone they vowed to love through thick and thin? Does it happen overnight? Is there any form of justification? Isn’t there an easier way out of the situation than violence? What led love to this?

I rarely involve myself in marital or intimate relationship discussion. This is because my uncle once told me, “Two people that sleep together know how to sort their issues out. If you get involved, you’ll be the only loser in the end.” At first, I never took his words seriously but as years go by, I can clearly see his words coming to pass. I’m not a violent person and always believe there’s always a multitude of options before violence.

Why are domestic cases a common scenario? What are communities, societies and relevant authorities doing about it? Is it time for stern action to be considered? I’ve seen a number of videos and there’s one thing I cannot fail to mention; double standards. A video of a man being beaten by a group of women using wooden rods was doing rounds on the internet. Going through the comment section made me question humanity.

For decades now, people have been fighting for affirmative action. Different groups have been clamouring for equality among both sexes in various aspects. That is until you see how issues among both sexes are treated. When the video of the man was doing rounds, most of the comments were, “He deserves it for cheating on the girl.” “What kind of man is this?” “These are the type of men we have today!” Nobody stopped for a minute to think these are the type of men society has brought up and continues to bring up.

If the same video was of a group of men hitting a woman for cheating on the husband, the reaction would have been totally different. “Why can’t he just leave?” “What kind of men gang up on a woman?” “Men are animals?” Why the double standards? Are we not fighting for equality? Or does equality only come into play when it’s about education and money? I don’t support violence of any kind unless it’s your profession.

This is the kind of frustration that makes its way into marriage. You look at yourself as the provider and want to run your family like an absolute monarch. You presume you have dominion over whoever has the lower pay. When did it get to this? Is respect all about who brings more to the table? Shouldn’t equity be what is being preached? Equity is giving your daughter who is 3 years older than your son more pocket money because her needs tend to be more demanding. Equality is giving them the same amount because they are both your children.

You see where I’m going with this? Marriage as an institution is losing its value because it’s no longer about equity but equality. My wife is close with her male boss so I’ll cheat on her with her friend. What gives? It’s not always about give and take. Sometimes you give expecting nothing in return. When you say till death do us part, does it mean you go through suffering, abuse and torment to your death? Or are you just saying it because it’s a norm?

How many times will you take a cheating partner back for the sake of your kids? How many times will you wear make-up to conceal the black eye you always have on Monday mornings? How many times will you avoid going for swimming with your friends because your back looks like a skid mark? These are the type of questions marriage vows never tackle. A donkey breaks its back at one point and what good is a donkey if it can’t work?

The sad truth is that conformity has blinded us to what is really true in our lives. We want to do because that’s the way it’s always been done. That doesn’t necessarily make it right. I cannot say today’s men are weak compared to their fathers because that is what society has taught them. I can also not say today’s women are not humble like their mothers because they’ve been exposed to different standards and world views. When you say you’re independent, do you understand the gravity of the word you’re using?

I have no children yet and do not foresee any in the near future. However, if and when I have my own, I will teach them about equity. I want them to know they are not and will never be equal. I want to teach them about justice and make them understand that they should not conform for the sake of fitting in. I want to teach them about diversity and make them understand we all have different roles to play and none should be looked down upon.

You’re not any less of a woman because you are able to balance your career and family. You’re not any less of a man either because your wife earns more than you do or you pull your weight behind her in the household. Society has fought so hard to get rid of stereotypes only to impute others. Just like every relationship is different, so is marriage. Find a partner that improves you and make vows you know you can keep. Marriage is a partnership that only works when both parties put in collective effort.

You may find yourself floating against the tide when you stand up for what you believe in but if you’re the same person that says, “I’m not doing this for anyone,” you won’t mind being different but comfortable in your truth. People will ask you to be unique but expect you to do what has always been done. Approach your relationships and marriage like an essay. No two essays can be the same even if they have the same ending or beginning. Be the difference in your life. Say no to discrimination and gender based violence. Pain knows no sex.