Last words

See the source imageFear not, I am not dying, as interesting (read that as tough) as the year has been, we’ve still got air in our lungs, the mind box is still functional, (at least I think so, we will soon establish  that theory at the end of this post). And no this is not a new year resolution post, rather it’s a post to get off my chest something it has been brewing for a while now.

Through the course of the year I have been fortunate/unfortunate to read a lot of social media posts on marriage, relationships and the general emotional upheave that seems bent on denting the ideology that men and women can coexist peacefully under a contractual agreement. I have often been tempted to write an article, or comment in response to these posts. Something along the lines of ‘…..a good man would never treat ….., a good woman would always …..’, and every single time my mind reminds me of how subjective that thought or idea was. 

Reading  peoples comments often helps me see clearly, other times it enrages me, especially when they make references to bible passages, taking them out of context or simply imposing their thoughts on the scripture. A very good example is the Proverb 31 woman, who from people’s comment I deduce is a docile wife, but formidable business woman. A woman with a firm lid on her emotions in her husbands presence, (no anger, no disappointment, no tiredness, basically no negative emotions when he’s around). People assume her husbands delight in her stems from her ability to walk/work as his clone, someone who avails him of the opportunity to be in two different places at once, without being a UFO. 

Others refer to scriptures on the husband that point out his headship, but ignore other blatant truths in the same scripture. An example is the instruction for every leader to serve his followers, placing leaders at the bottom of the ladder. Another one places a demand on husbands, urging them to love their wifes’ in a deeply sacrificial way. However, this post is not about the husband or wife, it is about being a consistently good human. 

Every human should aim to be kind, good, peaceful, gentle, joyful, peaceful, tolerant,See the source image forbearance, loyal, and above self-controlled. This human can be a husband, wife, business owner, ruler, son, daughter, mother, father, neighbour. A human who places this standards as the minimal bases for human interaction, will be a good ….. (affix your own label). They will exhibit these traits at the very core of their interaction, every other behaviour will be subjective to the prevailing circumstances. And, because they are human, they will fall short sometimes, but they will right themselves again.

What makes you a good husband or wife is not in how expertly you respect (but secretly scorn) your partner, it’s not in how expertly you love (but secretly degrade) your partner. What makes you a good husband or wife, lies is how good you are as a person. How far you would go chasing perfection (refer to the above subjective interpretation of proverbs 31 and the husbands roles) at the expense of the real person wearing that ring you slipped on their fingers. How far would you go chasing your dreams at the expense of the other person who signed up to be your team mate, (meaning no ones dream gets abandoned intentionally or without acknowledgement at the starting whistle) and not just a cheerleader. An ambassador (both spouses should be representatives of the family but still individuals in their own rights) not just a clone.

In 2019 be a good person, be consistent.

 

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Aurora;my light.

“Dinachi! wake-up.”

“Stop joor. I can hear you and I wasn’t sleeping.”

Chuckling “You were not sleeping, just shielding your eyes from the piercing darkness abi?”

“I have had a hectic night shift, I don’t think my brain has the capacity for these your riddles yet.”

“You’re the one with all the riddles oh, lying there screaming at grandma in your sleep. It was really creep.”

“I wasn’t dreaming, just admit you woke me up for a cuddle.” with a grin he stretched to make room on the couch.

With the flick of a switch, she retreated to his heart.

 

 

 


Written for Friday fictioneers are writing group/challenge hosted by the lovely Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. It has been a while I have written a story and I loved writing this one hope you love it too. Please click on this link to read other stories and on this one to join the fun. (Have a go!)

Tandem or sociable?

I like the tandem bike.

Two people in synch, well hopefully in synch enjoying the view around them, taking in the fresh air, exercising their muscles.

People think it slows you down, others expect it should double your speed.

And me?

Well I just say what’s the point of getting to the finish line with a corpse over your shoulder or a zombie in front?

Learn to enjoy the journey, I say to my daughter, but she’s having none of it.

She prefers the sociable bike.

she says side by side is better, each one sees the same thing, each one sees the other. No room for deception, each one pedals. No room for any misconceptions.

Better than one in front and one behind.

I smile for the journey is far and fear makes the heart forget that better a single room with open doors than a palace with guarded courts.

If you can’t trust them out of sight, or pardon their shortcomings perhaps it is safer to cycle alone.


In response to the writing challenge flash fiction for aspiring writers hosted by Priceless Joy click on the link to visit the blog. The photograph is from the lovely Dorothy (interesting photo can’t wait to see all the stories it inspires) and the challenge is to write a 100 – 150 words (+/- 25 words) story inspired by it. Do click on the link for other stories.

 

Right partner … right me.

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“Is she currently employed?”

“How long has she been working?”

The above questions have been paraphrased, nonetheless those questions were posed at my husband before we got married. Safe to say that at the time I could not imagine what link there could be between my work experience and the sustenance of a happy marriage.

Present society is froth with several dating websites, apps, meeting venues, matchmakers ranging from human to cyber promising to match your basic and eccentric needs with that of the right partner. Everyone in society including the man at the market stall has some sage advice on not only how to snag but also how to keep the right partner happy. 

If you’re single people think there’s something wrong either

a.)  with your mentality (you don’t think like a woman should)

b.) with your expectations (you live in fairytale land or in an ultra unrealistic cookoo land)

c.) with you physically (not pretty enough, not slim enough, not well spoken enough etc)

And if you’re married there is an unspoken level of sedation one is expected to operate in, a state between tired (but not weary) and content (but not excited). To exist on either extremes of this scale makes you come across as either cheesy or trapped in unpleasant matrimony.  Offering advice puts you in the later category, wishing others get married soon puts you in the former, thus my suggestion that one looms in the sedate region.

It is perhaps not surprising to note that the above opinions are all subjective interpretations of another’s personal circumstances. They are semi-permanent ideologies of another’s life based on time-bound circumstances. Going back to questions in the first paragraph, I can’t help wonder if, perhaps having some work experience helps one

a.) Have more realistic expectations from marriage: much like a job CV, our personalities are a mobile working CV. Dates can be considered a series of interviews and when they’ve lasted for years they become a form of apprenticeship or trial period. However the wedding is the final contract which states clearing the working terms and conditions between partners. Much like a job, we go into it excited, with a sense of euphoria which gradually plateaus into normalcy. Slowly things get added to the relationship, some unsaid, some unexpected. This makes me assume that perhaps the enquirer wanted to ascertain my level of commitment to a cause regardless of it’s mundaneness, regardless of my doubts about my colleagues abilities. Regardless of varying opinions.

b.) Have a deeper appreciation for a partner who shares or pays the bill: it is assumed that one never knows how much something cost or how to value said item unless one knows how to get it. Sometimes I wonder if this isn’t skewed by the givers idea of what appropriate appreciation amounts to. Having said that there is indeed a greater appreciation that comes with an understanding of personal cost not just monetary value.

c.) Have a better estimation of one’s ambitions and personal value: this is very important as your ability to hold down a career is a tribute to one’s mental and emotional strength. Holding down a job inadvertently shapes our moral compass, setting the target for our ambitions in life. It gives us a clearer picture of our personal worth, highlighting what we’re willingly to compromise on or settle for.

In simple terms one could say those questions were aimed to discover if I was the right partner for my spouse. This makes me ponder on what makes the right partner right; is it their ability to complement our likes and dislikes or the sharing of similar religious views and principles? These are essential qualities, one’s not to be tossed about or trivialized, however I can’t help wondering what sustains couples with mirrored personalities or very different religious backgrounds. Is there probably something to be said about sharing and valuing each others ambition? Having realistic expectations of each other and the adaptation to being in each others personal space? Ensuring to discover the right you (your career, your ambition, your plans for the future etc). I find that probably an understanding and not-so-critical spirit is of great importance, life throws very interesting things at us as individuals, as a family the storms only gets bigger. An understanding and not so critical spirit takes the edge off life’s incisor bites. 

The right partner today can morph into a hitch-hiker in that horror movie who takes you hostage in your own car. It’s a gamble, life as a whole is a gamble,  the only person who can guarantee a good end is God and your choices. After it’s all been said and done, ensure that you’re in the right place emotionally, physically, career and ambition wise to make a choice based on the soothing calm within and not the fretful sound caused by undefined expectations. This is important as going into marriage without it is to place a tall order on your partner who many crumble hopelessly under this weight thus compounding simple issues further.


This post was inspired by a friends post on facebook.

I do not write because I know, I write to distil the noisy thoughts within.

This book taught me …

First I must apologize to all my blogging friends who have published books, I promise to get to them slowly, but surely. Several reasons stand between me and that objective ( a major one being that I prefer paper print to electronic print when it comes to reading a book), regardless I will make good on my words. Now to the lesson(s) from the second book I have read this year (yes I know very poor for a self-acclaimed avid reader) but I don’t consider half read books or books read over months in this category.

Title: It’s not me, It’s you

Author: Mhairi MaFarlane.

Lesson 1: In every relationship, there will always be a party who in some light seems to want it more than their partner. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing and is often insignificant until something goes wrong, creating a chasm in a once ‘secure’ bond. Often the more devoted party isn’t necessarily desperate or dumb, rather they like a prospective investor have overestimated the returns from a venture. Like the main character in the book they sometimes ignore glaring problems or view them as necessary evils that accompany every process. They invest emotions by positive words and actions into building the relationship. The second party, however, is more complacent, more often than not they see no need for overt affection, their true personalities lie behind a mask and they underestimate/disrespect the other person’s feelings and value. This probably occurs as a certain degree of value is assumed when one is sort after.

Does this mean the main character was wrong to go after a guy she ‘fancied’, I don’t think so? However, it’s important to always evaluate your relationships every now and then, by yourself and with your partner. It all boils down to owning your choices and accepting that other are responsible for theirs. Understanding that you both owe it to each other especially in a relationship, to be honest, and respectful to yourselves as individuals and partners at all times.

Every object in a market stall has an inherent value.

The one who buys it’s no more a fool for the purchase

as the object is a demi-god for it’s appeal to the buyer.

Lesson 2: how an individual views your imperfection plays a key role in how they treat and view you.It determines where you stand with them as equals or not quite on the same level. The main character had a ‘flaw’ of being wide-eyed and perhaps timid, this character trait evoked different responses. It struck a protective cord in one of the male characters, and in another, it encouraged an exploitation of her nature for selfish benefits.

Choose the one you

respect their strengths,

are willing to nurture through their weakness,

and love through the waves.

Choose the one who feels likewise about you.

Lesson 3: a woman’s waistline will forever be linked to the wandering legs of her partner. A man’s waistline might stay the same, thus the diminishing state of his ’emotional and considerate’ waistline long before the growth of her waistline is overlooked. There are no books or chronicles documenting the aforementioned strange phenomenon and it links a sudden attack of ‘waywarditis’ in men.

Last words: a good read picked solely because of its title, I enjoyed reading it and I needed a laugh. Not a fan of the swear words, though.

its-not-me-its-you

its-not-me-its-you

I love you.

I’m going to love you, more for the reasons you don’t expect and less for the reasons you expect.

I’m going to love you, because I promised to give my heart away just once. To fall, grow, stretch and blossom in love just once.

I’m going to love once, not because love can’t happen again but because I hope this once stretches to eternity.

I’m going to love you, ‘cos love is a choice. And on days when that choices makes me giddy, I know it’s simply a dividend of loving you through grouchy days.

I’m going to love you, ‘cos I chose to. And if a day comes when I stop loving you, make no mistake, I choose to stop loving you.

Love is … a choice

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Thrown away

I threw it away …

Going by my grades in the University one could classify me as one of the good students in my class. I was earmarked by my peers, lecturers and myself to get at least one distinction, but somewhere along the lines of my final year, I lost sight of that vision. I became content with ‘almost’, that sense of knowing that I could get those grades became enough for me. I got satisfied with the idea of the reward and not the substance of it. Perhaps I also became lethargic; the incentive lost its appeals.

I was chatting with my neighbor the other day, the conversation swiftly took a turn on the most plied street of human conversation; relationships: initiating them, maintaining them, ending them. As we talked I couldn’t help but observe how shortsighted and over sensitive the periscope through which we view relationships has become over the years. Much like the situation in my university days we have become too familiar with the idea of a happy relationship and grown lethargic to the fine tuning of one.

We’re a throwaway generation.

It breaks my heart to write this but I have thrown away dreams, jobs, and ambitions when the going got gruel some. It’s not an intentional action, it’s not a conscious choice, and more often than not it comes across as a wise and learned decision at the time. We weigh the odds and find them not in our favor.

We become this way when we learn to run but don’t learn to walk. This becomes a problem when circumstances insist we stroll across the pastures of life, to drink up the scenes around us, to learn the details of our journey. I imagine it would be like asking Usain Bolt to walk from the starters’ blocks to the end of the tracks, it’s not hard to do but at some point, he might itch to run through it. Most times we can’t control that itch and we bolt through the process, sadly life unlike the tracks isn’t very forgiving, those lessons come back to haunt us. Thus when the slow process starts we give up not because we lack the right skills or resources, but because we are geared up to go a certain route and pace.

We have been sold a fable; if it’s your life path it will be manageable. Note that I didn’t say easy, we have gone past expecting it to be easy; we are prepared to handle whatever comes but we often not prepared for the tenacity of the problem or how swift time is to make an exit as we try to wrestle the problem to a corner. I find these situations similar to ironing an over dried rich linen/wool/cotton outfit on low heat, without water, spray starch or a good ironing surface on a Monday morning. You take a shower, cream your body, and set out to iron said outfit under given circumstances above. Soon you start to sweat, you panic as time runs faster and the outfit stays unresponsive to your best efforts. The image of a perfect you in that perfect outfit slowly start to lose its appeal, the knowledge of you as the perfect person who makes the outfit shine becomes emboldened. And in a flash, the outfit is tossed aside and another chosen.

Note the outfit isn’t abandoned or destroyed; it’s just not the one for today. The impetus to do more is gone; slowly it’s relegated to the shadows. In that same vain we throw marriages away, dreams, friendships, jobs, beliefs, etc. because they wouldn’t fit the way we wanted, and we tell ourselves the show must go on.

We throw things away because we have become trained in the act of perseverance, persevering to the next high, not to the end of the present one.

We throw away things because ‘I’ isn’t used to seeing ‘U’ ahead in the queue.

We throw away things because our brainbox is now automated and like the voice on the other end of the phone it only repeats what it’s been programmed to say.

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Shopping list.

Across the length and breath of the Lagos municipal, a more selfless person could not be found. From running thankless errands for relatives during her lunch break to making lovely meals for friends who moaned of hunger. 

‘How lucky is the man who finds you.’ he cried, licking his plate.

‘How blessed are the children whose cry bestows motherhood on you.’ he smiled taking the loan.

And so the praises rang until she clocked two scores and more.

They shopped her aisle but filled their carts with alternate brands. 

Time like a flood pushed her deeper into storage.

copyright -Janet Webb
Copyright Janet Webb

Written for Friday fictioneers a writing challenge hosted by Rochelle. The picture was provided by Janet Webb, the task is to write a 100 words story inspired by it. Thanks Rochelle for hosting the challenge. Thank you for stopping by… do click on the link to read other stories.

Surviving the generations

From his rib she was formed: an advanced edition some may say

A help-meet she was called: fashioned to function in a unique way.

suited for him: like a round peg in a round hole.

Designed to procreate the generation, they  set out together.

From his rib she was formed side by side they stood: hoping to work hand-in-hand but

then came a rattling, an inner turmoil: she fell beneath and he crouched above

fear was born,hearts were split: she reached for him, he strected to her

They survived, but the peg was undone and the hole was fragmented.

From his rib she was formed: together they illuminated the world

a thing of beauty to behold: alone they  brightened a room

Potentials buried by warring shadows: the growing darkness suffocating within and without.

Designed to sustain the generations, they live to survive each other.


In respnse to the daily prompt survival and generation.

This is written as a cleave poem (click to read another one of my cleave poems) left poem, right poem and a complte poem.

Let me know you think.

 

 

 

 

Patient cuts

The paper-knife slices through pages

like the cutting edge of new intimacy

revealing secrets, patiently unveiling treasures.

Viacar of Wakefield with illustrations by Hugh Thomson

Written for TJ Paris Haiku challenge, Paper-knife.


For my last A to Z challenge I have chosen to write on write on two words; Zippy and Zaftig.

Zippy:

  • very fast

  • appealingly stylish

  • having a spicy flavor

Zaftig: (of a woman) having a full, rounded figure; plump.

The initiation and sustenance of intimate relationships remain a topical issue spanning several generations and decades. My generation seems to be the most confused with regards the rule of play; on one hand we willing refute the dogma of our ancestors and on the other, we stare perplexed at the fiery tango dance displayed by love and her equally intense partner hate. And as is commonly said ‘when we do not understand (and if I might add respect) the purpose or use of an object/institution the abuse of said object is certain to occur. Sadly we seem to be recording high levels of relationship abuse, rather than success.

The situation is further complicated by the zippy pace of our times; we want everything now!, we want it trendy (if trendy is rich and famous or prayerful and wise, skinny and smart, then order it up) and we want it lively and upbeat. The hotter, the better. For some weird reason (geez I wonder why) people never seem to come in that order and even when they do life shakes things up, turning them inside out.

0fa5ef4650eb12547caa9b7cbc88d051“Thanks life but this isn’t what I ordered.”

“Oh, but it is, only I left some bits raw, I like my guests to take part in the cooking process.”

“Ain’t nobody got time for that.I want a ready meal.”

“Well if you insist, here it is.”

“Thank you very much.” Takes a few spoonfuls.

“Can I have some salt and pepper please.”

“No, that has been perfectly seasoned, it’s an insult to the dish to make such demands.”

Feels a bit miffed, but decides to carry on eating.

“Can you pass me the salad dressing please?”

“No, everything has been served in perfect portions. Please do not insult the chef.”

“Why can’t I have anything I ask for?”b590a0dc1de2b4d336873a50de27445e3bb338c7898282c2a11f40051541ccf4

“Because you ordered a ready meal cooked specially for you by Chef La fantasia himself, a five-star Michelin chef widely known for his instability. Do you hate the dish?”

“Of course, I don’t, I just want some more seasoning and dressing. What’s wrong with that?”

“Nothing really, except you can’t really alter a meal once it’s been served, whatever you do when it’s on the plate is merely applying garnish, subject to personal taste. We encourage you to cook your own meal, to tweak it as you please, to stop and start over if necessary, to savor the process, before sitting down to eat. We offer you side dishes (friends, suitors, careers, difficulties, happy days etc) not for you to pillage, but to sustain you, enhance your taste buds, awaken your senses as you create that ultimate dish of a lifetime.

 A zaftig dish … a robust dish.

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Source: Daily mail UK