Random Thoughts 5

1.

There times am so scared of being myself. During those moments, I will doubt myself to total incapacity and wont dare attempt anything for fear of being condemned by I-don’t-know-who. That fear is crippling, and almost stops my breath. Then I have to shake myself back to reality, where I remember I am a Child of GOD and totally put my faith in Him. And then a few wise quotes come back to me like;

The-greatest-prison-people-live-in-is-the-fear-of-what-other-people-think.

Some of the times I set out to write, but I feel a discomfort; an insecurity of sorts that my thoughts/feelings expressed here will be turned against me. At the same time, I know I will choke on whatever I keep bottled in. Well, I write anyway and sometimes over edit later, while trying not to change the message. This fear is not unique to writing, and neither is it unique to me alone. We all have experiences to share or adventures to explore but hold back because we wonder how we will be judged or it may directly speak against a particular person or people and you fear for their reaction. I am a work in progress, still learning how to break this pattern of living in fear. I want to be free to express myself and have learned that I simply have to express myself, without worry. So here I am. In all other ventures, I vow to take action despite the fear, especially when the end result is so desired by me.

2.

When love comes to my mind, I think of Kenny Rogers’s lyrics. They pretty much up sum up the kinda support system I want in that man I will share forever with. And now learning that what people think of me don’t matter that much, here is him who will have my heart. See that dreams part? Very important;

I’ll be there for you
You don’t have to feel alone
Like a shadow by your side
I’ll be with you right or wrong

You stumble and you fall
But you can always lean on me
I’ll be there to see you through
I’ll be there for you

I’ll be there for you
When your dreams seem far away
Even in the darkest night
You can face the world unafraid

And if you close your eyes
You will feel me next to you
No matter what you’re going through
I’ll be there for you

Here today, here tomorrow
Through the joy, laughter and sorrow
You’re in my heart with candid souls
If you could read my mind
You’d know …

I’ll be there for you
The one who comes to your rescue
I’m the one you’ll never leave
I’ll be there for you
No matter what you going through
I’ll be there for you

3.

We all love an exceptional customer service experience, right? Especially when you least expect it. Well, am the type of Ugandan who uses a particular bodaboda cyclist whenever I am on the road. And from the three major stages I use around Kampala, I have my guys. It’s just three of them, not many. One in the city center, another at Jinja road; who by the way works the night shift, so no worries when I want to stay out late and the most important one is at the Home stage. This one has been a loyal partner for the last six years. I sometimes wonder what I would do without him.

Well, the Jinja road stage boda guy has been very observant since he started taking me home, and given he has small but pretty loud speakers attached to his motorcycle, he asked what music I am always listening to through my earphones. Being an addict to Country music, I tell him so. And he just said; Okay. I inquired to know why he asked, and he simply tells me to remove my earphones. And then just as we are taking off, my Gentle Giant, Don Williams’s voice comes blasting through the tiny loud speakers, followed by other famous Country songs from Kenny Rogers, Alan Jackson and Dolly Parton. You can imagine my surprise and the smile I carried on my face all the way home. In fact, that trip was even shorter than everyday. With that, he won my loyalty and I call him every other evening, no matter where I am. No one else is taking my money. Hahaha.

4.

Ever caught yourself doing the wrong thing at the wrong time? I know, that feeling of guilt and shame you get, I just felt it moments ago.

I am seated at my office desk on this Monday morning, with a line up of tasks to finish properly listed down in my notebook and spread out before me. But for some reason, my mind drifted to a place unknown. I honestly cannot tell you what was on my mind, because when I came to, I was playing a game of Mahjong on my phone. I shook my head and wondered how in the heavens I got to do that.

In case you did not know, that is a sign of boredom. And if you do not have tasks to complete on you, then you are very clearly idle. Bottom line, revisit your schedule, re-prioritize your tasks and or switch them up in a more exciting way to keep your brain awake and focused. But if, like me, you drifted off in the middle of a task, take a walk. You seriously need to re-energize your brain to focus on what’s in front of you and not drift off to things unimportant.

5.

Strange but true. I needed a vacation after my vacation. Okay, maybe the word vacation is overrated. I took a break from work, just three days, with a weekend in between. In other words, Friday and then Monday and Tuesday. Saturday and Sunday were a bonus. But when I reported back to work on Wednesday, I swear to God, I needed to rest some more. As in, I had just come from an upcountry trip. I literally dragged myself through Wednesday. And then I crossed the line and my boss wasn’t gonna have it. She let me know how unacceptable my conduct was after I didn’t show up to work on Thursday without an explanation. Honestly, I just needed to sleep some more.

I did have have to check myself for what’s up, why I was feeling that way. I decided to blame my low energy levels on my poor physical exercise routine, low water in take and sleep deprivation. It’s true, I have been lax in those areas and I really have to step up my game. It’s on. I am up by 6:00am to workout and I am seriously considering signing up for swimming sessions in addition. Previously, it did wonders for me, my mood and my physic, it was great. Maybe that’s it!

I need an extra curricular activity. Away from work and home, a social but rewarding activity. Done! Thanks for helping me figure it out.

Let’s soar. #BreakingLymyts

 

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Flowers for Mum

“To describe my mother would be to write about a hurricane in its perfect power. Or the climbing, falling colors of a rainbow.” —Maya Angelou

Truth be told, we never really appreciate our parents until we have fully grown up. Through your younger years, it’s just about obedience to stay out of trouble and loads of feeling boxed in as a teenager. And as you grow and become a young adult, and start seeing what others have become, you then look back on your life and thank the heavens for who your parents have groomed you into. That you can start with your friends and be appreciated. And so is the story of my life. From wanting to grow up quickly so that I can leave home, I now have moments when I wish I could just go home and sit down with my mother and just talk. If my dad were still alive, it would probably be somewhat different but pretty much the same. I know, mixed feelings.

It’s been eleven years since my mother was widowed and I have not known a woman so strong, resilient, with an unshakable faith like her. I remember vividly her speech at her husband’s funeral. She stood tall and strong, and not once did she break down. I never saw her cry at all, even after. I should probably ask her if she did or maybe not. But she has been a stronger woman ever since, taking charge of affairs, the estate and all of us. I was still young, clueless about life and had just buried my promise for a great future with my dad. I was broken.

“I remember my mother’s prayers and they have always followed me. They have clung to me all my life.” —Abraham Lincoln

The woman I call mother prays. Presently, she is up by 4:00am to pray and goes to bed around 2:00am, after praying. Being Catholic, she has a special devotion to Our Lady, whom she carries with her everywhere. They do everything together. Her day time is a prayer in itself because everything she does, she is praying while at it. She prays for everyone, and I swear, I live on her prayers everyday, else I would be falling farther than I have in this life of mine. She will visit the sick, those in prison, the troubled she will comfort and when she is not meeting people or doing the Lord’s work, she will be in her garden digging away with the strength of 30 year old. She is 76 years old and it’s rare to find her her sitting.

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Meet Regina, my mother

 

The strongest aspect every single soul will remember about her always is her generosity. She is so welcoming and embracing of even the least persons. The helpless people know the way to our house, because they are sure there will be a plate of food for them. Even when we have close to nothing left for ourselves, mum will still share it with a stranger. Relatives come home for handouts and she never tires. She literally lives the message in the Gospel;

“Whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers, that you do unto me.”

Growing up, we most times did not understand why she had to open the door for everyone but overtime we have grown to learn about the great virtue of charity, which she lives her everyday life by. Love for thy neighbor is a rule in her life that she must obey and she has taught us the same, though I believe I personally still have a long way to go, to be as kindhearted as she is. I have still so much to learn from her. She is not shaken by anything in this world because she serves a living God, whom she trusts unconditionally and doesn’t allow her human weaknesses to get in the way.  Stevie Wonder and Lady Gaga say it best;

“Mama was my greatest teacher, a teacher of compassion, love and fearlessness. If love is sweet as a flower, then my mother is that sweet flower of love.” —Stevie Wonder

“Acceptance, tolerance, bravery, compassion. These are the things my mom taught me.” —Lady Gaga

Therefore, when I read a note somewhere on social media that said; “Better to give me flowers while am alive, instead of putting them on my grave”, I thought to myself that if I did not appreciate this woman now, I may never get the chance. I have known four women as her best friends, and they have been my mothers too. My favorite of them was called home by the Lord a year ago today, and exactly eleven months after her, my second favorite joined her, just as she had predicted while bidding farewell to their friend. Almost three months ago, we bid farewell to mum’s cousin, the only closest relative of hers that I knew. She was born an only child and her remaining friend can barely recognize us or do anything for herself. It only felt right that I gather the best flowers and give them to her. After all, the day we bid farewell to her friend whom we remember today, she refused to lay a wreath on her casket because they had agreed to exchange the flowers in their lifetime and only say a series of prayers for each other, whoever dies first. That was significant.

Girl on a mission in me then sent out notice to everyone, asking them to write a gratitude note for her 76th birthday, which I would bind together into a book and give her to read. The love for reading is one of the greatest gifts my mother has ever given me. The most important is herself, her unconditional love and constant support. So many gifts to count. The gift of work, for the hard-worker she is; the gift of friends, because of the great relations she has maintained and how she never forgets anyone; the gift of faith and love of the Lord, a faith so firm, grounded, unshakable; the gift of motherhood, for I know I will be a better mother having been raised by her.

“A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.” ―Washington Irving

Friends and family didn’t disappoint, the letters flooded in. The love and gratitude was overwhelming and accompanied by pictures to show her more love. Children, grandchildren, her friends’ children and many acquaintances all expressed their love for her. I delivered the gift, that bouquet of flowers, and her reaction was priceless. What some people wrote brought back floods of memories which she shared with us present. Beautiful moments. And above all, I really got to know her, to see the woman she is. To appreciate her struggles and efforts to give us the best.

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After printing.
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When it came to life at the workshop

“I realized when you look at your mother, you are looking at the purest love you will ever know.” —Mitch Albom

I hope to be the best version of the woman she wishes me to be. That I remember all she has taught me and practice it, so that others learn from my example. And I will leave you with a text from one of the letters written to her.

Kiki text
From one of her friend’s children

“If I have done anything in life worth attention, I feel sure that I inherited the disposition from my mother.” —Booker T. Washington

 

 

 

 

Insecurities

I recently chanced on an audio book on YouTube about Self Esteem. I was minding my own business, just looking for a particular book by George Orwell to listen to when this title The Six Pillars of Self Esteem by Nathaniel Branden caught my eye.  Self esteem, I must admit, is one of the most common issues we deal with in our everyday life, like it or not. I have had my fair share of ups and lows where this is concerned. But this book, read by author himself, has given me a new perspective on how I see myself, feel about myself ,think about myself and others at large. Therefore, when a friend of mine had a question to ask of me, I couldn’t help but notice the source of his discomfort. Somewhere within him, he feels insecure and found the perfect excuse to project this.

My friend wanted to know why I deactivated “Read Receipts” on Whatsapp. My answer of course was to avoid stress factors called “complaints” about not replying messages; whether because I delayed to or intentionally ignored the person and also when am ignored by someone who I was really hoping would answer and am left feeling so awful about myself. I would rather not know that you saw my message and ignored me, you know. Of course, self esteem comes into play here. We tend to tie how good or happy we feel on other people’s responses to us. Should they ignore or openly reject you, boy or boy, one is left crying a river, feeling the worst about themselves and more so, sinking deeper in the quicksand called self pity. Not a beautiful place to be in case you didn’t know.

Well, I had to ask why he was bothered by my choice to remove read receipts and he said, it is common of girls with multiple boyfriends and are never to be trusted. I argued of course, that was their reason, I had mine. We talked about it some more and he made it clear that he would require his lady to have read receipts or he would consider her unfaithful. I told him how I thought that kind of insecurity was baseless and tried to show him that all he had to do was build the right foundation for the relationship instead of relying on such a facade. Bottom line is, I know where that came from, I was there before. See, if you do not know exactly what you want in any given relationship, anything will be a threat to you. Even worse when you do not communicate. Earlier today, I came across this Portuguese idiom;

“He who doesn’t communicate, gets his fingers burnt.”

There are far more insecurities we deal with everyday that may go unnoticed by us because they come across as the natural way to feel or react to circumstances. I am sure you have skipped an activity you would so much have loved to be apart of, simply because you feel it is not for you, you wouldn’t fit in, right? Well, where is it written if I may ask? Who decided it is not for people like you? What would happen if you went for it anyway? These kinds of awkward feelings make us act insignificant and guess what, the universe responds to what you offer it and don’t be surprised if every time you feel less of yourself, everybody else treats you so.

I recently learned the hard fact about money. If you look for it, you won’t find it. It knows how to hide and play hard to get. If you define what you stand for and work toward fulfilling that particular purpose, regardless of whether you have the money or not, somehow the resources avail themselves. You will all of a sudden get insights on how to raise the funds. I have practiced this for the past two years and I have not been disappointed. Make it all about the money, and nothing will get done, decide on your end goal and get started regardless and the money will show up without you sweating so much. I am sharing this lesson with my friends, one person at a time. See, some things aren’t bought if you sell them to a group. One bad mouth will always kill the buzz for everyone else. Take it easy.

The insecurity of inferiority got a friend of mine in trouble last week. She had a toothache and I suggested a clinic for her to visit. But in her heart she thought she would never afford it and went to another lesser clinic somewhere and the results did not disappoint. She is in immeasurable pain right now because the guy did a bad job, broke her tooth and now she has a surgical case on her hands. This procedure is going to cost her way more than she would have spent, had she visited the right clinic as advised. Do not judge yourself from the lesser point of view at any one time in your life. Whether you have millions of money to your name or not, you deserve royal treatment and you shouldn’t settle for less because you think you can’t afford it. Many great men have left us warnings and signs and one of them reads;

“What your mind can conceive, you can achieve.”

Save yourself the trouble darling and go for the best. There is always a way, always. Therefore, don’t shy away from the best hotels in town, or the best boutiques, or the best vacations. You can always find a way to have it all. Simply decide what it is you want and a plan will come to you to make it all happen.

Define your standards and set clear boundaries for yourself and others in your life. This is one sure way I have managed to overcome my insecurities. By knowing exactly what I want and eventually how to get it, so many stereotypes have vanished from my life. Someone has done it before, find out about them and see how they did it. There is always someone out there who knows a thing or two about what you want that you don’t, ask them about it. Just like you, everyone has a past, tastes and preferences and so many other unique things about them, embrace it all. Learnt about them and what they like, see how to harmonize with them and learn from, as well as teach them something. It is better than hating on them for no justifiable reason but your insecurities.

#BreakingLymyts

Letters: Anonymous

Dear friend,

Life deals us cards that we each interpret as we choose, and whatever the choice, there are consequences. For some, it’s an enviably jolly or seemingly smooth life and for others, it is a rough ride. I believe it is no one’s place to judge another because our experiences, and our interpretations, vary.

I have observed for a while now, that a lot is going on in your life, so much that you choose to keep to yourself, which is okay, except that it is visibly killing you not to share your life with us. The way you scream at your child says you are unhappy and partly blame the little one for your misery. Your spouse was the friendliest person we’d ever met, but now he won’t so much as say hello to a neighbor, because you got in the way of that. And the only times you have come to us, was only when situations had blown over and not much could be done to help. This has left you feeling unloved and neglected.

He complained about your attitude, and how much it is taking it’s toll on him. You check his phone and scream at whatever feminine content you see, regardless of what he has to say. You don’t care for your child as well as you ought to. Leaving him dirty and wandering around with no basic training like what to do when he wants to ease himself. People are naturally drawn to toddlers but they avoid yours because of that. We can see that it annoys you, but why should anyone do what you ought to do yourself?

You’re caught up in your own perfection that you miss the errors of your choices. The negative effects it is having on your family. You have made it hard for new people to approach you, who would make great friends and advisers. It may look cool from where you stand, feeling better than most and striving to be like the socialites most young women admire, but where you are now requires that you be more. As a woman, a mother, a wife. You have to aim for bigger, more fulfilling and rewarding goals, with which you will bless those around you. Especially your household.

Life is what we make it, for a fact. If you want the life you envision, the life with moments you envy about the other neighbors, you have to let people in and embrace them even more. No one will share pie with your son, if they know you do not like him playing with their kids. No one will come to your rescue at the break of a domestic fight, because the one battering you, you didn’t like him associating with others. Sort of you are getting what you asked for. But maybe the social aspect of himself would have kept him happier in your home too.

Open your heart to life. Life is people. People have drama. Drama makes moments. Moments become memories to treasure.

We each have the power to build the life that we will look back on and smile with pride. You can build friendships that will keep your life bright and smiling even at the worst moments in life. With these people, you can share experiences that you will tell your children and grandchildren in yonder years. You can contribute to a social life that will set your child up for life. You have heard the saying that; Your network is your net worth.

Your beautiful, full of life, with a great sense of humor, pretty stylish, with loads of potential. You’re a Phenomenal woman. Share it with others and they will enrich your life too. One Kenyan TV personality, Caroline Mutoko said that parenthood is a choice. She emphasized the decisions women ought to be aware of if they are to be the best mothers they can be. You can watch it here https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=1670176906327042&id=100000042459228

Yours,

PS: Here’s a beautiful poem by Maya Angelou that blesses me every time I read it. For you; Phenomenal Woman

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies. 

I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size   

But when I start to tell them, 

They think I’m telling lies. 

I say, 

It’s in the reach of my arms, 

The span of my hips,   

The stride of my step,   

The curl of my lips.   

I’m a woman 

Phenomenally. 

Phenomenal woman,   

That’s me. 

I walk into a room 

Just as cool as you please,   

And to a man, 

The fellows stand or 

Fall down on their knees.   

Then they swarm around me, 

A hive of honey bees.   

I say, 

It’s the fire in my eyes,   

And the flash of my teeth,   

The swing in my waist,   

And the joy in my feet.   

I’m a woman 

Phenomenally. 

Phenomenal woman, 

That’s me. 

Men themselves have wondered   

What they see in me. 

They try so much 

But they can’t touch 

My inner mystery. 

When I try to show them,   

They say they still can’t see.   

I say, 

It’s in the arch of my back,   

The sun of my smile, 

The ride of my breasts, 

The grace of my style. 

I’m a woman 

Phenomenally. 

Phenomenal woman, 

That’s me. 

Now you understand 

Just why my head’s not bowed.   

I don’t shout or jump about 

Or have to talk real loud.   

When you see me passing, 

It ought to make you proud. 

I say, 

It’s in the click of my heels,   

The bend of my hair,   

the palm of my hand,   

The need for my care.   

’Cause I’m a woman 

Phenomenally. 

Phenomenal woman, 

That’s me.

Disclaimer:

This letter is to no one in particular but should it touch you, then you have something to adjust about yourself. It is a combination of errors I see young women like me making where they should know better. We learn from each others mistakes and I have made a fair share of mine. Some inspired this article.

#BreakingLymyts #LetsSoar

Is Karma Always a Bitch?

If 2017 was a person, I would hug her so tight, kiss her cheeks every five minutes and tell her how grateful I am for her. But it will never be human nor ever materialize. Nevertheless, I am grateful for this year. For in it, I have found my footing, been healed beyond my expectations, grown and blossomed and even more importantly, learnt to let go of a past that had, for so long, held me back.

2016 was rough, I reaped what I sowed and it tasted bitter. I regretted so many choices I made, paid with physical and emotional pain, felt my life snatched out of my hands and I thought there was no coming back for me. But in this year, I met angels. They lifted me up and reminded me of the greatness lying within me. Showed me how to look within and draw from my strength and face the world.

I am still a student of my own self and while this journey continues, I have severally met my own advice, re-echoed to me by people it has worked for. Just moments ago, while thinking about about a topic to share about here, I was deep in conversation with my niece and nephew about role playing in a relationship and this boy re-echoes something I said to him, which he has lived since the moment he made sense of the advice. That was the third time he was shoving my own advice right in my face, because I was walking against it. Talk about Karma!

Once upon a time, a young man came my way and asked me to help him grow as a person and be a better man. This included listing at least five things a better man ought to embody in his everyday life plus continuous counsel and reprimand as need arises. I accepted and we have shared about so much. But one outstanding point I made, was for him to cut off all the negative energy and focus on his strengths, even the least of them, as long it lifted up his spirit when applied. This meant cutting off dad and mum for a while because they were his weakest point. He told them to cut him some slack as he gets his game straight. Well being a boy, sometimes he just disappeared for a while. It worked wonders for him. He gained peace of mind, some weight and is my personal accountability partner, we don’t let each other off just for just.

Fast forward, I found myself stuck in a family feud and seriously letting it take over my being. He sat me down and asked me a question. And I quote; “What did you tell me about negative energy?” I looked angaz. I honestly couldn’t place a finger on what exactly I had said to him, well  partly because I am overly bubbly if you’re accommodating of it. I’m learning to listen more. But well, he re-played the message for me, as accurately as he could that I could clearly envision exactly where we were when I told him so. I smiled and quit whining and fixed the problem, cutting off whoever seemed hell bent on blocking my progress. I wrote it down somewhere.

In another conversation today, more like an argument, we talked about ladies wanting a man that can cook and do the chores but have forgotten that we ought to assist. Two ladies against one guy, we complained about today’s men who expect you to be an excellent homemaker when they do not even know the basics of homemaking, like taking care of themselves, insisting that you can’t demand what you can’t measure. Again, he picks on me and reminds me that I made him the great guy we were admiring this morning. He fixed us breakfast and ironed what we were going to wear today. You can imagine the warmth to our hearts. Until he reminded me that I told him, he had to be what he wanted in a woman. If he wants a great cook, he ought to know what great food tastes like by learning how to cook it. Trust me, I can’t cook as well as he does now. I go home happy because I know I won’t find clothes on the floor or dirty dishes. He cleans up good. I don’t know if I will find a man as great as him and he happily told me to be the great woman a man like him will choose. Jeez karma!

On another occasion, I gave relationship advice to a friend. I forgot about it. I told her to break up with her then boyfriend, citing that he didn’t love her. Why? He always put everyone and everything else ahead of her. It took a while but she acted on my advise and ended the relationship. It was tempting to give in to his pleas but what I had told her to look out for as signs of sincerity didn’t manifest and she left him completely. Last year I was in the same situation. In too deep by the time I opened up to her and she re-echoed the same advise. I took my time letting go and paid a heavy price. Glad she didn’t say I told you so. Sweet soul!

Today, I commented on a friend’s post about guys who want intelligent ladies for wives. I said;

Intelligent attracts intelligent.

By the time you are looking for the intelligence, you lack it yourself.

So first work on you and she will come along.

Don’t look for her, attract her by being what you want in her.

And vice versa.

So am documenting it here in case I need to refer to it again soon. To remind myself that I am the intelligent woman, heaven sent for my knight in shining armor. Yes, he doesn’t have to be the fairy tale kind of guy, I wouldn’t buy it, but he will sweep me off my feet. You will tell me about it, I know. Hahaha. I will leave you with this small piece by a one @iambrillyant;

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PS: Karma is not always a bitch. Sometimes it comes back around to bless you.

A moment of Thought

I want to believe that am I am justified to say that I have experienced quite a bit in my short life. To some people, I look unscratched by a bad thing in this life and have also been told, I seem to come from a very privileged place compared to others. While I appreciate my background and agree that, indeed compared to some out there, I have had a fair share of life, just like everyone out there, I have also registered a fair share of scars. From playing the wrong games, to being outright attacked by other beings in this world.

I am the kind of person you will throw punches at and I won’t retaliate. Mainly because in that moment, I won’t know how, since fighting back has always been a taboo and a sign of disrespect especially if the person involved was in any way superior to me. And so, I tend to take life somewhat softly, a fact that has clearly worked against me. I have learned to speak up and not be pressed down, but applying this is still a hustle. So while I may get comfortable in certain circles, the more dominant characters still get me shaking in my own skin.

This kind of demeanor landed me in the arms of one very handsome young man, who despite having such a charming character and a presence that commands respect, chose to do the most despicable thing a lover can do to another. I was left torn, my will broken and for a decent while, bedridden. Unapologetically, he took my life in his own hands and walked away like I did not matter. This whole experience left me crippled physically for a while but more especially crippled mentally and emotionally. And without the emotional state to face everyday life, my little empire which was carefully growing, was left unattended to and collapsed right before my eyes.

Left with nothing but self-doubt and regret, no one would get me out of the house. In my mind it was all over, I was finished and had no hope of ever rising again. I gave in to my loss, blaming myself for all that happened. After all, if I am as smart as people say, I should have seen it all coming. And thus, I vowed to never talk about it. Along the way, a great friend and true brother decided he won’t let me sink further. He saw in me more strength than I believed I had. And so, one day at a time, he pulled me out of my depression. I love to read, so what better way to get to my core, right? A short video today, and a book tomorrow, he steadily got me to believe in life again.

Ever since then, I have picked inspiration from all over the place and have come a long way on my recovery journey. And along this journey, I have learned a number of facts and truths and also come to my own conclusions which I am sure will get me to where I want to be. And that’s at the TOP! One of these conclusions is that; WRITING IS THERAPY! While dancing around my pain, I have also slowly offloaded a number of other frustrations, read quite a bit more about abnormal situations witnessed and now I desire to break through the major frustrations I have had to deal with. One manageable chunk at a time, for I wouldn’t want to find myself swimming in a sea of emotions I can’t tame.

When you’re in love, it shows. – Andy Rooney

I stand by my belief that love in itself, is everything good. What hurts about love is the people who abuse it and more especially, the expectations we attach to the idea of love. It has become so plastic that many women are innocently losing a whole chunk of themselves to selfish men. I read a heart wrenching story on Facebook recently by a woman who had recently lost a child. She said;

I have suffered labor pains. I did not hold my baby alive. I was told to abort by the person responsible. I stood strong all through it. I paid my hospital bill single-handedly. I made shopping for my child alone, what worse thing do I have in store? I slept on the same bed with the body of my dead child because I did not have mortuary fees after he refused to pick up the body. What is worse than that?

I do not know if I would recover from that. There are worse stories I have encountered and I have one question for the men who abandon a woman they have impregnated. You had the balls to lay her, what gives you the authority to just walk away, leaving her stranded with your child? So many questions run through my mind that I sometimes think I do not want to hear the answers to them. The pain of being wounded by the one person you wholeheartedly gave yourself to is immeasurable.

As women, what are we not told about relating with a man? Why is it that many women find themselves in the hands of irresponsible, violent, disrespectful and immature men? What do we need to know, what do we have to do, what should we learn to be better people and attract better men?

While writing this, I took a break and another story was narrated to me by a close friend about a young girl who, having been orphaned at a young age, had no where to go after completing her university course. With a final project to complete and submit, she didn’t have the option of going back home in Northern Uganda. She tried a few relatives she knew but they would not take her in. One friend did. A male friend with whom they had grown close while at university. She is just about 20 years old and while he was accommodating and hadn’t forced her into a sexual relationship, they lived together like a couple, sharing most of everything until he beat her. An innocent game, a fun moment when she least suspected anything to anger him, he threatens her. “Naah! I have lived with him a while, she thought, he wouldn’t raise his hand against me. He is my best friend”  She came to it covered in bruises. To this day she cannot understand what happened. She left him and wondered around a bit and was lucky to find help, then was settled into an apartment of her own. She still feels insecure and looks over her shoulder all the time. She didn’t deserve to be treated that way.

In this moment, I let my mind wander, prodding the quality of the relationships of today and what they really mean. As a young woman, so many fears arise when it comes to my relationship goals. But while all is as it is, there are great men out there. I see them treat their ladies well, so many wedding meetings in town. Surely, those can’t be irresponsible men proposing to amazing women. I guess the puzzle is on when my own responsible, loving, mature, visionary and respectful man will come along. And in this moment, I am reminded to leave it to God and simply be the best version of me that I can be.

There is no rush. Just relax. If you’re like me, keep in mind that in God’s time, it will happen for you too. Trust in the Lord. Believe in yourself.

#BreakingLymyts

 

 

My Obsessions: Country Music

You don’t know a thing about love songs until you have listened to Don Williams. Described as gigantic in physical appearance, his voice is equally strong and imposing to the ear. Deep, gentle and yet sure, every sound of it tugs at your heart, leaving you feeling things you shouldn’t be feeling in the first place, thinking about people you shouldn’t be thinking about; if they exist, yet you cannot resist it’s effect. I love his lyrics, his sound. I love Country music. Leave alone reading about it in books, listening to Country songs was my first real experience of love.

LOVE…. that emotion that has been associated with so much good and bad, so much joy and sorrow and all other kinds of emotions, given various definitions and represents something different to every single person in this world. We don’t even understand how much God loves us. We read it in the Bible but we do not live up to that measure of love. And when it comes to the romantic kind of love, I personally cannot begin to describe the joy and pain I have experienced. But if you were to ask me to reference some love songs, I would quickly list a number of song titles from the genre of Country.

From Islands in the Stream by Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton, to Living on Love by Alan Jackson, to fresh relationship advise from the gentle giant himself, Don Williams. He will tell you that Flowers won’t Grow in gardens of Stone, the ground must be tended, reminding us that we must put in the work for the love to grow and stand the test of time. He sings about falling love, enjoying the bliss of being in love, struggling in love and being heartbroken. God gifted him with a voice that moves your heart within your chest as you listen to him sing.

This gentle giant left this world on the 8th day of September, 2017, leaving a huge feeling of longing in my heart. He recorded some of the best love songs of all time, I never understand why they are rarely played at weddings in this country.  Ooh at mine, they will be heard in plenty. I have also found comfort and reassurance in lyrics like these;

I can see your heart is achin’
He hurt you more than he knew
But should you ever want to love again
I’ll be faithful to you.

You’ve been crying like a willow
When the night bird sings so blue
Trust was broken but hearts will heal
And I’ll be faithful to you.

In this world of pain and sorrow
Where a promise won’t hold true
Here’s a vow you can be sure of
I’ll be faithful to you.

So let me dry away your lonesome tears
Like the sun melts morning dew
And I will wrap you up in true, true love
And I’ll be faithful to you.

In this world of pain and sorrow
Where a promise won’t hold true
Here’s a vow you can be sure of
I’ll be faithful to you.

I’ll be faithful to you…

We all want that kind of commitment in our relationships. But again he is realistic, and sang that Some broken hearts never mend,  and re-echoes this pain in another song, It Only Rains on Me in which he says;

Broken dreams and drowned parades,
Lovers who just slip away
Guess I learn to live that way,
It only rains on me.

The gentle giant agrees that while you’re in love, you sometimes cannot express how you feel but can;

Listen to the radio

“The words I’d say
Don’t seem to sound as real
The songs they play
That’s how I really feel, so.”

You’re falling in love with these songs already, huh? There over two hundred songs he left us with. And you cannot miss his humor in some of the lyrics like I believe in You;

…………………

I dont believe virginity
Is as common as it used be
In workin’ days and sleepin’ nights
That black is black and white is white
That Superman and Robinhood
Are still alive in Hollywood
That gasoline’s in short supply
The risin’ cost of gettin’ by

But I believe in love
I believe in old folks
I believe in childrenhttps://wordpress.com/post/breakinglymyts.wordpress.com/2555
I believe in you.

I believe in love
I believe in babies
I believe in mom and dad
And I believe in you.

We have lived in the Shelter of Your Eyes, loving you Desperately, and believe in Falling in Love Again because there is Just Enough Love, we should be Running out of Reasons to Run, and we are now sure that when all is failing, you gave us a Shot full of Love, to last us Till All the Rivers Run Dry, and all the prayer to say is Lord, I Hope this Day is Good.

There is so much more to write about Don Williams’s music, It Must be Love, but I won’t pretend I know it all. Besides, he is not the only one I am obsessed with when it comes to this genre. The uniqueness of this music introduced me to a whole world of love, pain, and lyrics that are so true, I cannot think of a topic without a Country song to match it. From matters of the heart, to raising a family, to working on a job, to being a soldier, drinking beer, being a man, being a woman, remembering the faithful departed, etc. This music genre explores everyday life, to a point of writing, recording and releasing a song about a particular event just a couple months after it happened. Alan Jackson’s Where Were You (When the world stopped turning) relates with the events of 9/11, when the twin towers in USA were bombed by terrorists in 2001, killing so many people and wounding countless others.

Where were you when the world stopped turning on that September day?
Were you in the yard with your wife and children
Or working on some stage in L.A.?
Did you stand there in shock at the sight of that black smoke
Risin’ against that blue sky?
Did you shout out in anger, in fear for your neighbor
Or did you just sit down and cry?

Did you weep for the children who lost their dear loved ones
And pray for the ones who don’t know?
Did you rejoice for the people who walked from the rubble
And sob for the ones left below?
Did you burst out with pride for the red, white and blue
And the heroes who died just doin’ what they do?
Did you look up to heaven for some kind of answer
And look at yourself and what really matters?

[Chorus:]
I’m just a singer of simple songs
I’m not a real political man
I watch CNN but I’m not sure I can tell
You the difference in Iraq and Iran
But I know Jesus and I talk to God
And I remember this from when I was young
Faith, hope and love are some good things He gave us
And the greatest is love

…………………………………………………………..

[Chorus x2]

And the greatest is love.
And the greatest is love.

Where were you when the world stopped turning on that September day?

May the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. They left a world full of disgruntled souls. Dolly Parton complained about working 9 to 5. And true, some of these employers are a total thorn in your foot. She said;

Workin’ 9 to 5,
What a way to make a livin’
Barely gettin’ by
It’s all takin’ and no givin’
They just use your mind
And they never give you credit
It’s enough to drive you crazy
If you let it
9 to 5, for service and devotion
You would think that I
Would deserve a fat promotion
Want to move ahead
But the boss won’t seem to let me
I swear sometimes that man is out to get me

The hustle is real. Other artists have shared their opinion on the same like Kacey Musgraves in Blowin’ Smoke, painting the grim side  of being employed and sitting on your dreams. Some of the songs are so inspiring, my personal favorite is Lee Ann Womack’s I Hope You Dance and I cant help but share the lyrics;

I hope you never lose your sense of wonder,
You get your fill to eat but always keep that hunger,
May you never take one single breath for granted,
GOD forbid love ever leave you empty handed,
I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean,
Whenever one door closes I hope one more opens,
Promise me that you’ll give faith a fighting chance,
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.

I hope you dance….I hope you dance.

I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance,
Never settle for the path of least resistance
Livin’ might mean takin’ chances but they’re worth takin’,
Lovin’ might be a mistake but it’s worth makin’,
Don’t let some hell bent heart leave you bitter,
When you come close to sellin’ out reconsider,
Give the heavens above more than just a passing glance,
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.

I hope you dance….I hope you dance.

I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean,
Whenever one door closes I hope one more opens,
Promise me that you’ll give faith a fighting chance,
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.

As if love, inspiration and our daily hustle aren’t enough, we pay tribute to those we have lost. Songs like I Drive your truck by Lee Brice, a tribute to a deceased brother, Midnight in Montgomery by Alan Jackson to mention but a few. And more to appreciate about Country music, the Lord is worshiped very passionately. From countless covers of  The Old Rugged Cross, Amazing Grace and What a Friend we have in Jesus, to special dedications like Jesus, Take the Wheel by Carrie Underwood, and reminders that “….some of God’s greatest gifts, is UNANSWERED PRAYERS” by Garth Brooks. You just gotta love it, or you already do but like many out there, do not know it’s actually Country Music.

We could go on and on but this post is meant to be a tribute to one of my all time favorites in the Country music industry, now the late Don Williams.

Oooo Gentle Giant, you may be gone, but

You placed gold on my finger
You brought love like I’ve never known

And with your music;

You’re my anchor in life’s ocean
But most of all you’re my best friend.

Rest in peace Cowboy.