A DECADE AWAY

“Whoever said that loss gets easier with time was a liar. Here’s what really happens: The spaces between the times you miss them grow longer. Then, when you do remember to miss them again, it’s still with a stabbing pain to the heart. And you have guilt. Guilt because it’s been too long since you missed them last.”

“I was tired of well-meaning folks, telling me it was time I got over being heartbroken. When somebody tells you that, a little bell ought to ding in your mind. Some people don’t know grief from garlic grits. There are some things a body ain’t meant to get over. No, I’m not suggesting you wallow in sorrow, or let it drag on; no I am just saying it never really goes away. A death in the family is like having a pile of rocks dumped in your front yard. Every day you walk out and see those rocks. They’re sharp and ugly and heavy. You just learn to live around them the best way you can. Some people plant moss or ivy; some leave it be. Some folks take the rocks one by one, and build a wall.”

87,655 hours. That’s how long it has been since I saw my dad alive.

3652 days. That’s how many days I relive the horrors of that night, something I probably will until I stop breathing.

23/08/2005. That’s the day I changed. For better or worse? I have no idea. I can’t even remember who I was before then. It all seems like a dream. When I try to remember the pre-2005 years, I have a hard time picturing how I really was. It all seems like I’m seeing someone else’s memories.

Back to that night, how to describe it. I have never told anybody what really happened that night. The official story was He died of cardiac arrest, but that’s just what it is – Official. To understand how horrible that night was for me, one would need to know how close I was to him. And how much I looked up to him, I used to think my dad would live forever. Okay, maybe I didn’t think it like that but I just didn’t believe death would come knocking soon, I thought he would live into his 90s, maybe 100s but I got a reality blow that night – Things end and death represents the finality of all ends.

Crazy thing is, I couldn’t really cry. I was too numb and unable to think. I walked up to the car where he sat limp and lifeless in the front passenger seat held only by my elder brother who sat in the back seat. I kept thinking he would wake up and play an April fool’s joke on us but this was August and I was the only fool. I had never felt such despair and hopelessness before, I just wanted to wake up and discover it had all been a bad dream. And I slept and woke up but it wasn’t a dream, daddy wasn’t at home and he wouldn’t be coming back ever again. How was I supposed to move on? I had no idea. Even writing this, I see that I can’t ever move on. You can’t ever move on when there is finality to the loss of a loved one. You just find a way to live around the loss.

So what changed in me? I learnt to deflect attention from me, I couldn’t let anyone see how badly I was suffering, I got wittier, withdrew, learnt to put a smile on my face even when there a class-5 storm inside of me, I learnt to pretend that everything was alright. Sometimes, I failed and the pain leaks out but for the past 10 years, I have been doing a pretty good job, I plan to. I just don’t want to be saved. It’s like the pain has become my own identity, it’s the only way I know I can still feel. Every emotion or feeling I have had since then has been built on that pain. Hate, Joy, love, sadness, happiness, anger. The pain became the very foundation of which I am, add the other pains I have accumulated over the years and deep inside me, something only I can see is a big ball of pain which makes up the core of who I am. So saving me form the pain will feel like who I am is being erased and re-written at a core level. Who wants that?

I couldn’t sleep last night; I went to bed by 10pm, woke up around midnight and lay in bed with my eyes open for till the sky cleared. The following week after the 23rd of August, for the past 5 years has been my week of pain, it is the only time in the year where I let go and allow the pain consume me. I become a total mess, I stay in bed all day, lazy to get up and eat or do anything, I cry and think and cry and think and repeat until I feel drained. I never wake up with a dry pillow. I’ve come to embrace and dread it at the same time. And this year may be worse; I’ve never been in a relationship during these periods until now. And it has been the happiest I have ever been in 10 years, I smile for real but before I could tell my girlfriend about it, she hit me with the “She needs space (In her words; lots and lots of space)”, I have no idea where that came from and the only meaning I gave to it was that I was choking her and being overbearing. So I don’t think she will be there for me and listen to me when I feel like rambling, I don’t even know if I want to tell her anymore (I eventually may), but in the meantime, my hurt is double and I don’t know if I will come out of this with my mind in one piece. So I am, or am not, looking forward to going through hell alone.

So my nights are going to be the worst, and my days are going to be lifeless. Imagine having someone in your life and not being able to tell them what you are going through because they seem to not want to care. If you can imagine it, well, you have my support too.

But Life goes on. And we just have to keep putting one foot in front of the other, even though we have no idea where the dark road leads.

Beauty – WHO IS JUDGE?

“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”.

-People+often+say+that+beauty+i

So the very popular saying goes. And yes, it is correct; beauty is contingent on a subjective point of view. There is no universally accepted standard by which the word “beauty” should be used to describe someone, so I will only be giving my subjective point of view after which I will be dropping a few quotes from people all with their own subjective point of view.

First, let me get something out of the way; while inner beauty is good and all, let us not deceive ourselves and say it is what actually attracted us to a person in the first place. That being said, I believe beauty should not be used only in the context of a person’s physical features, others things like the way they act and the way they talk or laugh or in what they o can and should be described using the world beautiful.

Apart from a person’s physical features, I find the following attributes as beautiful; intelligence, sense of humor, smile, way of seeing things (perspective), and many more that I cannot readily say now.

QUOTES

“Sometimes people are beautiful.
Not in looks.
Not in what they say.
Just in what they are.”
Markus Zusak

“That’s always seemed so ridiculous to me,
that people want to be around someone because they’re pretty.
It’s like picking your breakfeast cereals based on color instead of taste.”
John Green

“What you do, the way you think, makes you beautiful.”
Scott Westerfeld

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat,
known suffering, known struggle, known loss,
and have found their way out of the depths.
These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity,
and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness,
and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.”
Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

“Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.”
Confucius

“The best part of beauty is that which no picture can express.”
P.C. Cast

“Do I love you because you’re beautiful,
or are you beautiful because I love you?”
Richard Rodgers

“But even though she was attractive,
there was something else about her that caught his eye.
She was intelligent, he could sense that right away, and confident, too,
as if she were able to move through life on her own terms.
To him, these were the things that really mattered.
Without them, beauty was nothing.”
Nicholas Sparks

“Beauty is about being comfortable in your own skin.
It’s about knowing and accepting who you are.”
Ellen DeGeneres

“The appearance of things changes according to the emotions;
and thus we see magic and beauty in them,
while the magic and beauty are really in ourselves.”
Khalil Gibran

RESPECT: Earned Or Demanded?

Note: This post is not an attempt to justify or condemn the behavior of both age groups. But rather I am aiming to look at this issue as objectively as possible. (Though I may fail at that)

Respect is earned, not given or demanded” or so my elders always say when I was growing up. Now that I am grown up to an extent, I can see the double standards or hypocrisy in that saying. They tell us that in order for us to be respected, we have to do something worthy of respect (the earning) but they expect us to respect them just because they are older (the demand).

Now don’t get me wrong, I am not disrespectful neither am I strictly respectful, I do not demand respect just because I may be older than you. I only ask that you treat me as your equal but that you, please, do not do anything to disrespect me. The notion that I have to show you respect just because you are older is dumb. You could be an alcoholic, a wife-beater, maybe abuse your kids, cheat on your wife and such, but I am supposed to respect you because you are older than me. Or that I should greet every elder I see on my way because “you are older and therefore should be given respect”.

“Respect yourself and others will respect you.”
 Confucius

“If you want to be respected by others,
the great thing is to respect yourself.
Only by that, only by self-respect will you compel others to respect you.”
Fyodor Dostoyevsky,

I don’t need you to respect me before I respect you, I just need you to respect yourself because I can’t, won’t and shall not respect a man who doesn’t respect himself.

I was in the bus going home sometime back, and the conductor who normally collects the fare from passengers was emphasizing that he didn’t have change. So there was a man behind me (how old? I don’t know but maybe 15 years older than me) who had change so I asked him to give me his money since I didn’t have change. So he gives me his money, with his right hand, and I stretch to collect it, with my left hand (I should point out that in my country, Nigeria, our elders view giving or collecting anything with your left hand is a sign of respect, their view and not mine) even though I was not even aware due to the sitting conditions in the bus and my right hand was at an uncomfortable angle and I couldn’t make use of it. The man withdrew his hand and went on to try to embarrass me that I was not trained well. Well, I did the only obvious thing; I hissed in my seat very loudly and said “If it was Wizkid or Davido who gave you a million naira check with his left hand, will you even say anything?”. The other passengers bust out laughing and so began a war of words between the youth and elders in the bus. This went on for about 10 minutes while I kept quiet. When they showed no sign of slowing down, I said the only sensible thing left to say since it was I who caused it anyway. I said “You elders are the reason this country is the way it is today, do not expect me to respect you when you sat by and did nothing while the country was being looted.” And that quieted them down a bit though I still got the evil eye now and then till I got down from the bus.

I am not saying what I did was right, but I am not going to say it was wrong. I did what I had to do because some dude felt I was doing something wrong and decided to embarrass me.

So my question is this; do you just respect someone because they are older than you, even though that person doesn’t respect himself? Or is respect actually earned by everybody of all ages?

I refuse to be a part of that double standard and if that pisses you off, well, the problem is yours and not mine.

 

Colour Me Baffled

I’LL NEVER UNDERSTAND . . . . . .

I decided to put this out here. The list is very exhaustive but these ones aret at the top. I don”t claim to be an expert so  any opinion shown here is personal. More to come soon………..

I generally like to classify life in four ways;

–  Things I do and I understand why I do them.

–  Things I do even though I will never understand them.

–  Things I will never do even though I understand them.

–  Things I will never do and will never understand them.

In this post I will be talking about the second on the list, things I do and will never understand. Yes, I am guilty of doing things that I don’t understand, even you are too. I’m not saying those things are bad, it just that since I’ve always been a logical person, I’ve never found the logical reason behind my doing of such things.

So without much talk, here are the top 4 off the top of my head;

  1. ADVICE

Now this is a personal for me and doesn’t reflect on the world at large.

What am I saying? Yes, it does. Or do you doubt me? Then answer this;

  • How many of you ask for advice or direction when you already know what you would do regardless of the person says?
  • How many of you people waste your time offering words of advice to someone knowing that they won’t even take to heart?

Seriously, why bother asking when your mind is set or why bother telling when you know it won’t be heeded?

A few advice do get through, but that’s just it. A few.

I think it’s pretty simple. It’s either you do this or you do that. And when you do this, such and such will happen. And when you do that, such and such and such will happen. And when you fully understand the results or consequences of your actions, why bother asking someone else.

Now for a little truth;

NOBODY NEEDS YOUR ADVICE

ALL THEY NEED IS YOUR SUPPORT

It’s brutal to lay it like that but it is the truth. Or even if they at the rarest moments need that advice, they’ll never tell you the main motivation for needing that advice because then you would see them for who they really are and that would leave them vulnerable.

I got into an argument with a girlfriend over this train of thought and she laid out good points, I was never really convinced.

  1. CHRISTIANS

Don’t attempt to confuse it with Christianity. Christianity, in my own words, is a way of life, a philosophy and the people who practice it are known as Christians. If I am to make a top list, Christianity will be ranked above technology as one of the best things to ever happen to humanity.

It’s the people who practice it over the years that make me angry because they have now 1­) made it into a matter of convenience (a practice it whenever I feel like or suits me thing) and 2) integrated logic into it.

I’m a very logical person but I do not for what so ever reason make the two go together.  There are a lot of laws of Christianity that’s not logical but it is not to be disputed or disregarded if you want to practice it.

One very good example is a verse in Deuteronomy that says MEN SHOULD NOT PUT ON THAT WHICH IS MEANT FOR WOMEN AND WOMEN SHOULD NOT PUT ON WHAT IS MEANT FOR MEN. Feel free to delve into this but I will not be joining you.

Another example is that very popular scripture that says LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOU LOVE YOURSELF. Your neighbor is not just the dude or gal next door; it’s any and everybody alive. But history shows time and again that Christians are the most discriminating people around. That kind of love that was asked of Christians just doesn’t exist anymore.

  1. STUPID PEOPLE

Only two things are infinite,

The universe and stupid people,

I’m not so sure about the universe”

ALBERT EINSTEIN

Please feel free to use to also use words such as idiots and fools and whatever word you can find. Personally, I prefer stupid. In the Oxford Dictionary, stupid is defined as unintelligent or foolish.

Anybody can be stupid as I stick to the 5-minute rule that says everybody exhibits a given level of stupidity for five minutes in a 24 hour period. But when that extends beyond five minutes, then that is just the real deal. Stupid people are the most amusing mental classification around, in that they exhibit tendencies of stupidity so often that it becomes who they are and they never realize just how stupid they are.

I would to talk further on this but I can’t do so without sounding stupid and I don’t want that.

  1. LOVE

You will always fall in love,

And it will always be like having your throat cut,

Just that fast”

CATHERYNNE M. VALENTE

DEATHLESS

Yup, just that fast. I’ve never really been in love until now and it’s something I which I want to know the logic.

How do you fall in love? Do you choose who you fall in love with? Is it a gradual process of instantaneous?

If I were to answer these questions, my answers would be;

I don’t know. No. it’s never the same for everybody.

I don’t claim to understand love I believe I will never understand it. I don’t even want to try to understand it because it’s different for everybody. It sucks, it hurts, it’s painful yet it’s the purest most wonderful feeling in the world and no matter how many times we hurt, we always want to fall in love again.

While people choose to hate, be stupid or do other things, I’ve never heard of someone who chose to fall in love with some particular person for some particular reason. Most times, you can’t convincingly explain why you love someone. We just do.

Personally, I would want the world to fall in love often, no matter how many times it hurts. Get yourself up and go fall in love again and again and again until you can no longer feel hurt.

“When you love so much that it hurts,

There’ll be no more hurt, only love”

MOTHER THERESA

“Love isn’t about finding someone worth living for,

It’s about finding someone worth dying for”

ANONYMOUS

So let me know how you feel and if you really do understand.

This Life is just one big Program ………Or it used to be

RiSk It AlL

Risk It All

You are born.

You learn to sit, learn to crawl, then walk.

When you reach a certain age, you get put in school, you learn. From there, it’s high school, College/University and you graduate. (In my country, you do one year of National Service). Then you get a job and for the next 35 years, you wake up at 5am every weekday to get ready for work, you don’t come back till at least 8pm at which point you are too tired to do anything except fall asleep. For 35 years., Monday to Friday. On weekends, you spend Saturday getting ready for the next week and then Sunday is spent gathering Strength. 35 years.

You spend Four years in the University reading subjects you will never use in the real world. Only when you graduate do you realize you were taught nothing of value.

And then it’s another 35years slaving you butt off for someone else’s company.

And then when you retire and are old and weak sitting in that chair staring off into the sunset, you ask yourself; AT WHAT POINT DID I LIVE MY LIFE LIKE I REALLY WANTED TO?

Taking a break from this pre-programmed living and actually doing what you wanted may seem like a big risk. Until you realize that at its most basic level, that’s all life really is, A RISK. Even living in itself is a big risk.

Thank God for the few people out of billions who are taking that big risks and are living their lives and not someone else’s. They may not be richer but they are definitely happier. And I knw all 7billion of earth’s population can’t do the same thing. As cruel as it sounds, it’s the way the world is, balanced.

I just know that I’m definitely going to live my life in my own way.