Tag Archives: truth

The Wait!

stock-photo-d-human-waiting-with-alarm-clock-111105164So you finally graduated and you are wondering why the job isn’t forth coming? Or you thought you had your life all planned out; graduated by 22,  got a job on the verge of 23 and 2 promotions later, you are ready to “settle” down at 26 but the partner is nowhere to be found. Better still, you got the job and have been working extra hard, more than anyone else in the office for that promotion you deserve but at last, it goes to someone else. What do you do? What do you do when all that you are praying and working for is eluding you and you seem to be in a hollow with everyone and everything else passing you by?

I call that hollow the Waiting Period and I have become all too acquainted with it recently. It seems the harder you try, the more your efforts fall by the wayside. You begin to feel resentful and frustrated. You get easily irritated and emotions that were so far removed from you, start sipping into your heart like jealousy and envy. You wonder why things are so rosy and easy for others yet, difficult and burdensome for you. (By the way, it is perfectly normal to feel that way, what is abnormal is how you react to those feelings).

By nature, I am a very impatient person (praying I get better). So you can only imagine how frustrating it has been experiencing this wait period. The pressure was getting to me and I found myself going through all the motions. So I went to the only place I know to seek relief and counsel. So on Saturday I visited the priest of my church and disclosing all that I was feeling, he reminded me of God’s love. That when things don’t work out, it could usually be one of three answer (not yet, no and yes). And being the Omnipresent God that He is and having better plans for us to prosper, He knows ultimately what is best for us. So when things don’t work out like we thought they should’ve, we need to pause and be thankful even in disappointment. He told me to be diligent in the wait, have faith, hope and continue praying.

The fact that these things haven’t happened yet doesn’t mean that they won’t. It’s only a matter of time before that one job is a yes, that God-ordained partner strolls into your life or that promotion drops in your laps. The most important thing is that you stay seeking and remain open to those new experiences that would be coming through. The vessel needs to be ready when God is ready to use it and that’s what we should all be doing while we wait.

Whatever you are believing and waiting on God for, be diligent, resilient and hopeful. Because it is in how diligent we are in the wait that God would be diligent in providing that which we wait for. No matter how frustrating the wait is, tell yourself, your better days are still ahead of you.God has got you and before you know it, it would be all history. Have an amazing day lovelies and as always, thank you for stopping by.

For The Shame of Living

22-happiness-w710-h473-2x

Have you found yourself wanting something so badly yet not going after it just because? Or you want to try something new but there’s that small voice asking you “what will people think?”. Better still, you find yourself shying away from the very things you love doing or things that make you happy for no reason? Well, it’s not just because or for no reason, you just might have not identified it yet but it’s called SHAME.

This dawned on me a few days ago. Like I have documented here severally, my weight has always been a sore spot long before I started sharing the struggles from behind a screen. I have tried, failed and continue trying to lose the weight (which I hope it’s a battle where I’d come out swinging) but it never really stopped me from living my life. Or so I thought.

I had never been the paparazzi-picture-loving-kinda-girl from a young age but I was never coy of them either. Until 2 years ago when I stopped taking pictures unwittingly, and when I did, I never posted them to any social site. I had consciously decided to work on losing weight but not on hiding myself through the process until a few weeks ago when I posted my first pictures in 2 years. Only to realize a few days later that shame played a role.

Subconsciously, a tiny voice decided that I was too big to share pictures of myself, what would my friends say when they saw me? what would my parents think? I had let everyone down, not myself but everyone else. This attitude had seeped into my writing sometimes because coming from the cultural background that I do, writers are lazy people and they are broke. I debated for a long time whether or not to share my articles on my social media handles. If I thought the topic was controversial for my followers who are mostly of the same cultural heritage like myself, I didn’t share it and vice versa.

Whether I intentionally thought these through or not, they were affecting my life. I stopped living and went on making any and every excuse possible, most times school was the culprit. Having graduated now, I can’t use that as an excuse anymore. In a few months I would be 30 years old and I want to get there living my life unashamedly.

If you find yourself in the same spot as me, then just like me, you should know it is never too late and get ready to start living your best life. I am an advocate of “live and let live” and I pride myself a pretty open-minded gal for an African, precisely Cameroonian. And at almost 30, I have better things to worry about than what people think of me especially when their opinions are insignificant. My happiness is important and part of it is doing what I love regardless of acceptance, of differing opinions or dissenting views.

We are all clay in the Potter’s hands, that means we are still being molded. I hear it all the time but it never clicked for me until last month – to leave intentionally. For me it means not just coasting along anymore, stop going through the motions and think through all my actions. Part of that is living my truth; while I work on my weight, the reality is this is me right now. This is who is in-front of me and I have to love her before anybody else would, show her off and treat her to moments that make her feel cherished, loved and appreciated. This body too is the temple of God, it is a work in progress and I have no idea when the maker would be done with it.

Stop the shame of living your truth, of being in the way of your own happiness and caring so much what people would say. Live intentionally in the moment and trust the master sculptor to perfect what is good and right in your life. As I wait for Him to finish this master piece, I would be enjoying every moment given me – intentionally. Have a wonderful weekend Lovelies.

Christians Need Therapy Too!

pink-sky-wallpaper

A few months back, I shared my experience about visiting a counselor and how it almost didn’t happen. Two reasons why it almost didn’t happen: my cultural background (Cameroonian/African) and my faith. In that post, I shared why many Africans look down on counseling/therapy because our culture doesn’t support sharing your worries or concerns with ‘strangers’ and so do Christians.

Christians believe that anyone who calls themselves Christ’s-follower, should not have need for a counselor or therapist because Christ is all you need. As a Christian, I agree that Christ is all you need to get you through life in good and bad times. But there are times when the soul is so bogged down that it needs a place of release.

I know some would argue that there are christian counseling centers, which I agree but how well are they being used. The idea of counseling is still somewhat new in Christian circles and although these counseling services exist, how many churches actually encourage their members to use them? Some churches would actually make the individual feel guilt about their intent to use counseling because to them, you should speak to one person only who is Jesus.

The teaching of seeking God’s face and going to him in prayers no matter the season in your life is a very good one that all Christians should practice. But there are times when you want to speak to another person who would provide some kind of feedback and  that’s where counseling comes in. James 5:6 says “Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working”.

For those who are not catholic and do not believe in confessing to a priest, what then is the best alternative of speaking to someone with a better understanding and even a calling to guide you as you navigate Christianity? I would think that would be counselor, but in this case let’s make it a Christian counselor. I think maybe that’s one of the meanings of that verse, to seek out a Christian counselor who would guide you.

I think at some points in our lives, we all find the need to have that one person we can confide in; that one person who would listen to us unequivocally, provide sound advice or feedback, and wouldn’t judge us for the things we share with them and who can assure discreetness with the information shared. Some are fortunate to have friends who play this role and some not very much. Sometimes, even with the presence of friends who we can trust, you just need a stranger who is completely neutral.

Counseling does not take away from your time with God or does not negate your relationship with Him. If anything, it should strengthen it because after speaking with a counselor, they often times advice, motivate and encourage the ‘counselee’. In the case that it is a Christian counselor, they seek out Christian methods to help you deal with that situation. It might just be recommending biblical passages that were unknown to you, or a biblical based group where you get support from each other or better still, provide ways to better live as a Christian with regards to that particular concern.

Our families and friends each have roles they play in our lives; some are fortunate to have those they can turn to when seeking for counsel and guidance, others not so much. For those ones I suggest trying counseling or therapy. Seek out a Christian-focused counselor or therapist who is credible and who has testimonials. Because sometimes, we need physical interaction, communication, reassurance that no matter the turmoil that is brewing within, God would calm it all down. So don’t be afraid to see one or seek one and feel no guilt for doing so. The important thing is that you get the help you need before it is too late.  Sometimes, it takes a counselor to reassure us of that TRUTH.

 

Why I HATE Facebook

I logged onto to Facebook to wind time and catch up on what my friends who are distant from me in terms of location have been up to. It was an innocent gesture as always just as it should be, only this time, I noticed was I getting infuriated as I scrolled down to check statuses and see who had a new wardrobe to showcase.

Daniella is dressed in a leopard print dress with matching heels and accessories to die for, the look is completed with a pout that makes her look constipated and she is standing in what I believe is the new model pose with a hand on her right hip in front of The Saks Fifth Avenue.

Robert just updated his status, thanking God for continuous blessings in his life and announcing to the world his new acquisition in form of a house. He says it is in a swanky neighborhood, he can’t believe it’s his and how far he has come. Indeed, God takes care of his own. But he forgets to upload a picture to go along with this new marvelous blessing

Kingsley shares a picture of him leaning against a brand new BMW, hands and legs crossed, head flanking to the side  and his facial expression giving vibes of  “what’s up? look at me, started at the bottom and now i am here” kind of impression. He is wearing jeans and a jacket with sneakers, a look reminiscent of those new breakout hip-hop artists. Yeah, he has made it. Only he is standing by the car and not siting inside or driving.

Charisse just bestowed upon the Facebook world what beautiful marriage she has with her husband with a new album she uploaded.In one of the pictures, they are looking into each others eyes and seem to be lost in the action, in the other, they seem to be whispering to each other words only they can tell and yet in another, they are standing in a pose so intricate you would only see in the movies, yet we get it from the pictures, they are so in love and marriage is just very blissful.

Keira just commented on Sarah’s picture, stating how fat Sarah has become. Berating her about her weight and ordering her to lose weight because she looks ugly now. No man would desire her or even talk to her. It is the beginning of the end of her life as she knows it if she doesn’t jump into action.

These are the different personae and things  I come across on Facebook daily, albeit the fact that I know these people on a personal level. I started wondering why people I know very well and whom I am well aware as they are themselves of their statuses in life found the need to lie on Facebook, and others “kill” with their words.

Who are they trying to impress and who are they keeping up with?. These are the pressures that so many people are facing every day. The need to update a status to let the world know how interesting your life is even when it is not, the burden to upload scores upon scores of albums to show the world what marvelous lives we have, and the shear malice to comment on a photo which you are otherwise not obliged to.

I have been so close to calling these people out on Facebook but then decided against it, really, you never know what it takes for any of us to stay sane without crossing that line. So whatever floats their boat. But it leaves me wondering though, this must be some serious level of low self-esteem. For anyone person to make up things that are far from their truths just to impress people who LITERALLY do not care. Sure, people would look at the pictures, like them and even comment( topic for another day, the lies people tell on FB in the name of comments behooves me every single time) but then what?

It is the unsuspecting folks, those who have no idea what your life is really like, who are totally oblivious  to your reality who fall prey to such traps. They start examining their lives; the cars, the jewelries, the clothes and vacations are nowhere near their radars, yet they work very hard and because of that they start feeling inadequate. They start feeling the urge to show off something in their lives too, anything. And a new monster is born and the cycle continues.

The pressures from FB has turned some people into overnight thieves, others have become professional liars and yet, some have resolved to duplicity altogether; living double lives. The Downings start keeping up with the Roberts who are keeping up with the Joneses who are keeping up with who knows. An unending cycle of silent torture which some are completely unaware they have fallen prey to while some have blatantly refused to pay it any mind.

It is everyone’s prerogative how they choose to live their lives but I think as decent humans that we were made to be, we ought to be courteous to others with the truths of our existence. Our very daily lives. Some people are very fickle and so tend to get caught up in pressures like these which result to saddening events like suicides when they cannot catch up.

So again, I ask, what is the purpose of all that? I know what you are thinking reading this. Well, if it bugs you so much how about you quit Fb? And you are right, which I have done. But what about those who are not strong enough to quit, who have become addicted and cannot seem to stay away from it, what about them?

I like to think that as humans, and being Christian, one of the reason we are here is to look after each other. I certainly cannot tell anyone how to live their lives (where would I begin with the exorbitant numbers on FB) but I do hope that anyone who stumbles on this article takes a moment and ask if their FB profile is helping or hurting. If we stop and think before we update those statuses and upload those pictures or before we hit enter on a derogatory comment, surely the world would be so much better. At least FB would be.

Sorry about such a lengthy post this week( didn’t even say all I intended, but this should do) and thank you for taking the time to read. I appreciate everyone who stops by here. Do share, how are you feeling today?

 

The Racist In Us All.

Disclaimer: I do not claim to have the facts, neither am I an insider. These are just my opinions and views.

Last Sunday, the world watched in awe how the rich fraternize, banter and enjoy each other in an exquisite environment much to the delight of the rest of us. We even watched them eat pizza in attempt to show that though surrounded by all the glitz and glamor, they are very much like us.

The beautiful gowns were on display, eye-catching jewelry with dapper and elegant suits, all of them, the envy of us all…the onlookers. I loved Ellen as the host, not that my opinion matters after-effects. It wasn’t just the designers who scored big that night, Lupita’s lip-gloss maker apparently did too. The lip-gloss she gave Ellen during the show in place of change for pizza, went flying off the shelves the next day. It was unfortunate that pizza guy’s pizza was a perishable item, if not, it would have been out of supply too. On the bright side, that pizza chain must be getting mad business (didn’t see the name) just for getting featured on such a huge platform.

Most of us must have gotten lost in that make-believe world with all its allure and enchantment, forgetting that even though the atmosphere looked very relaxed and laissez-faire, it is hard work that got each and every one of those stars in that room. This year as had been reported was one of the hardest to predict at the Oscars and it was because every one nominated performed exceptionally well and were deserving of their nomination.

But in the weeks leading up to the Oscars, Lupita Nyong’o had been all the buzz and even post-Oscars. If you were not watching her make an appearance on a TV show, then you were either seeing her grace the covers of numerous magazines or reading her up on countless blogs. She became quite the rave of the moment and deservedly so.

I am very very happy for her, that all her training at Yale School of Drama and her hard work is finally paying off; but it seems to me like the world is more focused on her skin complexion than her amazing talent. There has been more talk about her dark complexion than about the brilliant and heart-wrenching performance she delivered in 12 Years A Slave.

Hollywood seems to have found its new muse while the black community, especially ,Africans seem to have found a new face to represent them. It appears to me that she is being celebrated for the wrong reasons.

We live in America.Land of the free, where equality and liberty is for all and where opportunities abound for every body irrespective of skin color.And I like to believe that it is because of this that the casting director cast Lupita in the movie after seeing how talented she was. But I can’t help thinking that all the hype surrounding her has been mainly because and around her skin.

Lupita’s skin is flawless no doubt. Silky, smooth and spotless. It is very enticing and rich and a great part of me thinks Hollywood took so much to her because of it, because it is black gold which they can milk and mint money out of. No wonder the countless magazine covers and blog features. They are fully aware of this and are using her as a marketing tool to market their countless products.

I pray that is not the case but since it seems so, what does it say of Hollywood? We are not really done with slavery then are we? If the main reason why Hollywood espoused Lupita is because of her skin, then they have completely sold her short and her success has been built on a fallacy. Many people auditioned for that role, but you imagine what it would mean if or what is says if Lupita only got the role because she was the darkest of them all and not because she carried the weight that the part demanded?. That would mean, even though not in chains and depicting the story of a woman enduring pain from the hands of  her captor, Lupita has been indirectly dealt the same fate of the studios choosing her because she was dark enough.

And the designers and magazines? Same thing. I am sure they chose her because they feel their designs and clothes would stand out on a complexion like hers. You would see Lupita, but really, what you are focused on are the clothes. They are mining the gold that is her body to their benefits, much to the delusion of those who look to her as inspiration for success.

Blacks now feel a certain sense of credibility and pride because of her. They are in a silent war with who knows, trying as much as possible to claim her as their own and not “theirs”. They are the first to tell you that if she was as light as Beyonce or as brown as Gabrielle Union, she wouldn’t have gotten the role of her lifetime. The role that would catapult her to heights she might have never even dreamed of. She needed to have dark-skin to have been cast, thereby implying that her complexion might have been the only thing that worked in her favor, not her talent and hard work.

What does this say about us a people, as a human race?, who claim to have seen the light and are being fair to grant every body the opportunity to prove themselves and celebrate people for their tough grind. Isn’t it the racists in Hollywood then, the designers and magazines that chose Lupita not because of her ability but appearance? And isn’t it the racists in the blacks that rejoices and associates with her because they feel she is the real definition of ‘black’.

Since she came into the spotlight, there has been more debate and talk about what beauty really is, especially for the black community. It seems as though Lupita has set the new terms of beauty: dark skin. There are a myriad of skin complexions in the world and you would find more shades of that in the black race than any other race. The whites are just white. Plain and simple. White. That is it. Even those whom you can clearly see and recognize as tanners, are simply white. But when we see a black person, he is either fair/light, chocolate/brown, or dark/black and black people, often times are always the first to make the distinction. Sure there are bleachers too and just like the tanners, it is completely bad for you and could lead to cancer.

But what about those who don’t bleach? Those who are naturally light skin or brown? Where does the new definition of beauty that is Lupita-skin leave them? Aren’t they just as beautiful? Women have been attacking women and blacks have been attacking blacks for not being dark enough like Lupita and accusing the innocent ones of trying to deviate from Lupita-like-skin. Aren’t we all beautiful in our own way? Do we now define beauty in terms of what other people say it is?

We all have the racist bug in us every time we identify with someone else more for their skin color than their brains, when we offer people opportunities not because we believe in their true abilities but what their skin has to offer, when we revere and revel in someone’s success not because their unending toil finally paid off but because we feel their skin got them there, we are racist. We all are.

If we are going to continue to praise Lupita, let it be because her talent and work got her to that position and not because of her skin. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with inspiring a few girls who might need it if they are not confident in themselves. But let us not use her as a standard for beauty, because beauty comes in all shapes, sizes and colors. It doesn’t matter if you are brown, orange or black as long as you were born that way. You have to love yourself and accept yourself first before the rest of the world will, which she clearly seems to have.

To borrow Lupita’s mother’s words, you can’t eat beauty. You cannot reap the rewards of beauty but you will reap the rewards of hard work. She said a beautiful speech when she received her award and I end with her words, “no matter where you are from, your dreams are valid”. Your dreams are valid regardless of your skin color as long as you do the work.

The Racist In Us All.

Disclaimer: I do not claim to have the facts, neither am I an insider. These are just my opinions and views.

Last Sunday, the world watched in awe how the rich fraternize, banter and enjoy each other in an exquisite environment much to the delight of the rest of us. We even watched them eat pizza in attempt to show that though surrounded by all the glitz and glamor, they are very much like us.

The beautiful gowns were on display, eye-catching jewelry with dapper and elegant suits, all of them, the envy of us all…the onlookers. I loved Ellen as the host, not that my opinion matters after-effects. It wasn’t just the designers who scored big that night, Lupita’s lip-gloss maker apparently did too. The lip-gloss she gave Ellen during the show in place of change for pizza, went flying off the shelves the next day. It was unfortunate that pizza guy’s pizza was a perishable item, if not, it would have been out of supply too. On the bright side, that pizza chain must be getting mad business (didn’t see the name) just for getting featured on such a huge platform.

Most of us must have gotten lost in that make-believe world with all its allure and enchantment, forgetting that even though the atmosphere looked very relaxed and laissez-faire, it is hard work that got each and every one of those stars in that room. This year as had been reported was one of the hardest to predict at the Oscars and it was because every one nominated performed exceptionally well and were deserving of their nomination.

But in the weeks leading up to the Oscars, Lupita Nyong’o had been all the buzz and even post-Oscars. If you were not watching her make an appearance on a TV show, then you were either seeing her grace the covers of numerous magazines or reading her up on countless blogs. She became quite the rave of the moment and deservedly so.

I am very very happy for her, that all her training at Yale School of Drama and her hard work is finally paying off; but it seems to me like the world is more focused on her skin complexion than her amazing talent. There has been more talk about her dark complexion than about the brilliant and heart-wrenching performance she delivered in 12 Years A Slave.

Hollywood seems to have found its new muse while the black community, especially ,Africans seem to have found a new face to represent them. It appears to me that she is being celebrated for the wrong reasons.

We live in America.Land of the free, where equality and liberty is for all and where opportunities abound for every body irrespective of skin color.And I like to believe that it is because of this that the casting director cast Lupita in the movie after seeing how talented she was. But I can’t help thinking that all the hype surrounding her has been mainly because and around her skin.

Lupita’s skin is flawless no doubt. Silky, smooth and spotless. It is very enticing and rich and a great part of me thinks Hollywood took so much to her because of it, because it is black gold which they can milk and mint money out of. No wonder the countless magazine covers and blog features. They are fully aware of this and are using her as a marketing tool to market their countless products.

I pray that is not the case but since it seems so, what does it say of Hollywood? We are not really done with slavery then are we? If the main reason why Hollywood espoused Lupita is because of her skin, then they have completely sold her short and her success has been built on a fallacy. Many people auditioned for that role, but you imagine what it would mean if or what is says if Lupita only got the role because she was the darkest of them all and not because she carried the weight that the part demanded?. That would mean, even though not in chains and depicting the story of a woman enduring pain from the hands of  her captor, Lupita has been indirectly dealt the same fate of the studios choosing her because she was dark enough.

And the designers and magazines? Same thing. I am sure they chose her because they feel their designs and clothes would stand out on a complexion like hers. You would see Lupita, but really, what you are focused on are the clothes. They are mining the gold that is her body to their benefits, much to the delusion of those who look to her as inspiration for success.

Blacks now feel a certain sense of credibility and pride because of her. They are in a silent war with who knows, trying as much as possible to claim her as their own and not “theirs”. They are the first to tell you that if she was as light as Beyonce or as brown as Gabrielle Union, she wouldn’t have gotten the role of her lifetime. The role that would catapult her to heights she might have never even dreamed of. She needed to have dark-skin to have been cast, thereby implying that her complexion might have been the only thing that worked in her favor, not her talent and hard work.

What does this say about us a people, as a human race?, who claim to have seen the light and are being fair to grant every body the opportunity to prove themselves and celebrate people for their tough grind. Isn’t it the racists in Hollywood then, the designers and magazines that chose Lupita not because of her ability but appearance? And isn’t it the racists in the blacks that rejoices and associates with her because they feel she is the real definition of ‘black’.

Since she came into the spotlight, there has been more debate and talk about what beauty really is, especially for the black community. It seems as though Lupita has set the new terms of beauty: dark skin. There are a myriad of skin complexions in the world and you would find more shades of that in the black race than any other race. The whites are just white. Plain and simple. White. That is it. Even those whom you can clearly see and recognize as tanners, are simply white. But when we see a black person, he is either fair/light, chocolate/brown, or dark/black and black people, often times are always the first to make the distinction. Sure there are bleachers too and just like the tanners, it is completely bad for you and could lead to cancer.

But what about those who don’t bleach? Those who are naturally light skin or brown? Where does the new definition of beauty that is Lupita-skin leave them? Aren’t they just as beautiful? Women have been attacking women and blacks have been attacking blacks for not being dark enough like Lupita and accusing the innocent ones of trying to deviate from Lupita-like-skin. Aren’t we all beautiful in our own way? Do we now define beauty in terms of what other people say it is?

We all have the racist bug in us every time we identify with someone else more for their skin color than their brains, when we offer people opportunities not because we believe in their true abilities but what their skin has to offer, when we revere and revel in someone’s success not because their unending toil finally paid off but because we feel their skin got them there, we are racist. We all are.

If we are going to continue to praise Lupita, let it be because her talent and work got her to that position and not because of her skin. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with inspiring a few girls who might need it if they are not confident in themselves. But let us not use her as a standard for beauty, because beauty comes in all shapes, sizes and colors. It doesn’t matter if you are brown, orange or black as long as you were born that way. You have to love yourself and accept yourself first before the rest of the world will, which she clearly seems to have.

To borrow Lupita’s mother’s words, you can’t eat beauty. You cannot reap the rewards of beauty but you will reap the rewards of hard work. She said a beautiful speech when she received her award and I end with her words, “no matter where you are from, your dreams are valid”. Your dreams are valid regardless of your skin color as long as you do the work.