February 26, 2011

What is she thinking?

I stole a glance at the round face of my wrist watch before resuming feigned attention at the owner of the baritone voice i had been listening to. His eyes caught me off guard just then and i held my breath. I still hadn’t gotten used to his piercing gaze and doubted i ever would. “He fine”, i said to myself in the American accent for emphasis. Lowering my gaze for fear that he could read my thoughts, i pretended to listen again while i resolved the fate of our friendship in my mind.

There was a certain hardness about him. Hardness he’d need a desperate emotion like loneliness or loss to thaw. I could tell by practised intuition that he had ice blocks where more tender emotions used to be. He wasn’t ready. Presently, his question woke me out of my thoughts.

Yes let’s go” i answered managing a small smile.

I had my answer.

The expectation in his eyes pinched me and i quickly remembered to add that we should do this again sometime.

Saidu was handsome and wise beyond his year and peers but i couldn’t shake off my woman instincts. They had never failed me before. Someone once said a woman can take one look at a man and tell many things about him, i wondered if i had the gift. I could be very intuitive and whenever i met someone my emotions worked like a scanner, reading the upbeats and tempo of the other heart, trying to sense or pick any signals of who they were and could be. I had seldom been wrong and now considered myself a good judge of character. And then there’s always the tell tale sign to rely on...

The tell tale sign says that people very often tell you the truth about themselves when you meet them the first time. Like someone may say “i get annoyed easily” and you gloss over that thinking they mean they are human and can get upset but then they manifest a really touchy personality, expect perfection or are drastic in their response when angered and you suddenly begin to wonder where that came from, but hey they told you that before! Or someone says “ i am impatient” and something about the angle that the light catches their eyes leaves you thinking “oh, he is so sincere!” meanwhile the guy is really telling you where his horns are and little wonder when two months down the road, you come late for a date and he’s gone.

Another person tells you he is principled, you think he means that he is disciplined and focused but he is really saying “i am not flexible”, “i want things done my way” or “it’s either my way or nothing”! Another says giving a woman gifts spoils her, you seat there dreamy eyed thinking this guy wants to do the right things at the right time, but three months later you are still negotiating with him to consider dropping you at the airport, buying you that extension you oh so wanted but couldn’t afford, or taking you out for ice cream! Saidu had said something about being better on his own. Hmmmmm.... that worried me!

When i looked at Saidu i couldn’t explain what i saw but it was there. It was there when he ordered that elderly gateman in a rude voice to open the gate for him! Alarm bells chimed lightly in my head as i remembered something someone had said to me before “ if he cannot be nice to the waiter but is nice to you, he is not nice”. It showed when he walked into my office and wouldn’t speak to anyone in more than a few words until i was there. It showed up in a smirk on his face whenever i was socialising with people of lesser rank.

But could i tell Saidu the truth? When people say “I am not ready for this right now”, don’t they really mean “ i hope you take the hint and leave me alone?” And while the option to lie that i already had a relationship was tempting, i preferred the safe but patronising and over- used “let’s just be friends”. I simply couldn’t tell him i was scared he would break my heart because he came across as emotionally aloof- that type of human who can detach from you in a heartbeat and without a second thought. No, that would require a painful process of explanations. Besides i would be bruising his ego and risking his resentment of me or i might even be instigating him to try harder. Both options i wanted to avoid.

Should i call Saidu, not to tell him i think he can be a cold fish sometimes but to tell him i really don’t think anything can happen between us and just want us to stay friends?

My ringtone breaks through my thoughts, it takes only a minute to see who the caller is...


It’s Saidu...


The events and characters purported to appear in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real or imagined persons met and unmet is purely ingenious on my part! Wink wink! Lol!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

February 17, 2011

The Phantom of Valentine

This past valentines day was spent sorrounded by all of my favorite things. The day actually started at dusk and there i was in a little dress and sparkling silver shoes complete with a tomboy haircut, thoroughly enjoying every minute! This year, i dedicate my valentine’s piece not to the market segment that febraury 14th has become branded and commercialized for, but to the lovers it ignores. Those who this season reminds of a love lost or wasted. Those who remember a love they never had or ever owned but one that tasted, tested, and had them.

This valentines my heart goes out to lovers who got stuck on the way and unable to figure it out, gave up and parted ways. My heart goes out to the hearts stuck in reverse praying a lost love back home. To the newcomer, finding himself, indeed herself, in a virgin place of vulnerablility; to the fearful afraid to take the plunge; to the unprepared shocked that so hard a thing could be demanded of them; and to the one who has been there and done that, and has now taken form in a cold heart banging the door firmly and finally on love.

My heart does not ignore the lover who is folded in a nurturing embrace where she has found her heart’s resting place, for i completely understand her. I know her joy, i muse at her abandon, i understand her smile and i recognise her rich laughter, no i don’t ignore her, not at all! She is standing in a rich place and standing tall, she is holding in her heart the very stuff that this world is made of. Loved by her prince whose heart and kingdom is laid to her claim, she can’t be ignored. Yes, i see her and the world sees her.

But what about the girl , the woman, the woman- girl who hides what lies beneath, what must not be known , what must not be seen? The one who scolds her desire like it’s a bastard child, turning her face adamantly away from it as though she was raped by love and now she hates it’s child- this bundle of weakening emotions that remind her of hungry thrusts that took and took and took.

I am writing for the disappointed who thought that love will be the missing link that makes life complete. I am writing for the true lover who came to love on a level ground and gave it 100% but found something else. Although it was called love, it manifested itself as selfish and one- sided. I am writing for the soul like a bruised reed bent in the wind, praying her broken heart wont break.

To the one who found herself ravaged like a house without gates. The one attacked by enemy forces banging against her walls of defense. With one last heave they reach her deepest, and all she hears is the eerie harmony of voices; his pitch with stolen pleasure, hers only cry, tears a last defense.

But God doesn’t sleep...

This season, i write for women on both sides of the valentine dream. For the woman experiencing the phantom and the woman experiencing the phantasy of valentine. For the woman ensconced and the woman scorned. For the woman fallen in love and the woman fallen out of love.

At the end of the day, it is not about how we have been loved but about how we have loved – wrongly or rightly; poorly or richly; sparingly or generously.

Happy Valentine.

February 08, 2011

The enemy of intimacy.

A distinguishing mark of christians is a deep, intimate and personal relationship with God that a child of God continually and daily tends. It is the distinguishing trademark of mature and obedient christians. The fruits and results of that fellowship manifest in other loving relationships, in courtesy and respect toward others, in behaivour that is admirable, in decisions that are wise, in actions that are not self- centered but of benefit to all, in habits/ideas/choices that attract and multiply success e.t.c.

In personal relationship with God, we become transformed by assocciation and come into possession of many desirable virtues characteristic of God himself. We begin to exude the brand presence of God’s people. The good news is this is the way God transforms us into his likeness. The bad news is this is the area the enemy will attack the most. One of the ways he attacks our identity as christians is by getting us to replace our time of intimacy with God with other “stuff”. He will tempt us with getting so busy with other things that cultivating closeness with God through prayer and bible study will suffer. Being too busy is an enemy of intimacy.

Over the last couple of months and maybe even most of last year, my schedule was crammed with a lot of things and in between catching up with this and balancing the other, i had an underlying discouragement about the little time i had to do God and me. Even when i settled down to it, there were other voices in my mind screaming for attention, reminding me i had to do something or i was behind with something else. Anyway, one day on an uneventfull road trip, i stared out of the window of a beat – up commercial vehicle transporting my even more beat- up body and finally had the desire to pray. I prayed quietly but deeply as the car meandered from city to city and i felt my heart soften in release. As if God had been waiting for an opening to get through to me, the thought of the parable of the sower dropped in my thoughts and i quickly opened the bible i had stuffed into my hand luggage to find the story. As i searched, i came to the verse about the seeds that fell on the soil where weeds came and chooked them up;

“... Some fell in the weeds; as it came up, it was strangled among the weeds and nothing came of it...”

I continued to the explanation and realised that that was the exact state of my heart. See:

“ The seed cast in the weeds represents the ones who hear the kingdom news but are overwhelmed with worries about all the things they have to do and all the things they want to get. The stress strangles what they heard and nothing comes of it.” (Mark 4: 3-20)

“How apt” i thought.

I certainly dont think God doesnt want us to strive to our highest potential, but i definately know he wants us to make room for him and for his words in our lives and in our hearts and he wants to produce in our lives results beyond our wildest dreams through his workings in us and through us. Every time i come across a verse i had discovered and highlighted in my bible years before, now forgotten, i wish for the good old days when i consumed the bible hungrily, and with nostalgia i pray desire finds fire in me to burn again.

Even as i write this there is still a lot of movement and motion in my heart but i am getting back into the steadfast word of God and making room for it in my time and in my heart. In Jesus’s time, do you know the thing that plagued the people who didnt embrace him? The word of God didn’t find entrance in their hearts even when they heard it. We shouldn’t let that happen to us. I came across a scripture in Ezra that captures and fortifies my hope in this area this year:

Ezra had committed himself to studying the Revelation of God , to living it, and to teaching Isreal to live it’s truth and ways.” Ezra 7: 10, MSG

Hookayyyyy! Time to get ready for work, i hope you were blessed reading. Later!
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