DEAR FUTURE HUSBAND.

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Dear future husband,

It’s a few minutes past midnight wherever i am now.It’s raining heavily outside.On a normal day i’d be dead asleep by now or probably staying awake creating fantasies about you.I had a long day today.School is hectic.It’s not always this heavy,it’s just today.The semester is at its peak,there’s so much to do and that’s probably the only reason am still awake.I’m trying to read for us,not trying really,am working my ass off for us.I hope you’re doing so too wherever you are.You better be doing something with your life,whatever it is,i hope you’re doing it for us.

Dear future husband,you have no idea how I’ve waited all my life to see you,i keep reflecting on how i haven’t met you yet.I don’t know who you are and whoever you are so in love with right now.I don’t know what keeps you awake.Your dreams,your ambitions.I don’t know what drives to wake up every morning.I don’t know how good or ugly life has been to you.Basically,i know nothing about you and that doesn’t bother me at all.Regardless,i pray every day that you are a good man because that’s all i ever wanted.A good man.

But what is good man? What even defines a good man? Future husband,help me answer these questions.Take me back to the 60s when love was nothing but love.When love come with no expectations,no conditions.Nothing but pure attractions and strange connections.Take me back to the 90s when gentlemen were nothing but gentlemen.Take me back to the days when men respected women enough to never raise their hands to beat them up.So future husband,i want you to know that your future wife does not understand the art of battering a woman to show love.That she’ll walk away the day you’ll raise your hand threatening to beat her up.(Honestly,i don’t understand men who beat up women.Like,be a man.)Future husband,i promise to get irrational and petty sometimes.I promise to get to your nerve a couple of times.I’ll question you about a woman staring at the mall and make a big deal out of it.But never,never get too comfortable to raise your voice while talking to me.My mum tells me men don’t shout,they let you shout,i hope you do that too.

Dear future husband,i hope you fall so deeply in love with me that you’ll never be able to look away.Hold my hand,not so the world can see but because you love the feeling of my palm on yours.Whisper sweet compliments to me every morning and kiss me on my forehead every night before we fall asleep.Show me off to your friends,family and of course to every girl showing the slightest interest in you.Be proud of me,every woman wants that.Protect me from everything that would harm me,be my guardian angel here on earth.Push me to greater heights,trust me that won’t be a problem.Never be intimidated by my success,be the proud man behind my prosperity.

Dear future husband,i promise to love you unconditionally.Love you the way i know best.I hope we grow old together as best friends,and let everyone who’s lost hope in love witness just how beautiful a thing love could be.

Future husband,at the end of the day i want you to understand that neither you and i will ever be in control of what the future holds.Maybe one day we’ll go apart for whatever reason.I dread this day.it will hurt so bad.I want to hurt so bad,so then we’ll realize it was real.But even then,respect me enough to walk away in peace.Don’t discard everything..Keep your cool.Give me reasons to always keep you close to my heart even in your absence.

Dear future husband,am just as excited about you as you are.I hope one day we read this together at the corners of our house.I hope am able to look at you then and say,”you’re all i ever wanted” because that’s all i crave,a love so deep the oceans would be jealous.

Dear future husband,am a queen.Just earn it,and I’ll forever be your queen.

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CHIMAMANDA WELLESLEY SPEECH.

Every so often, somebody comes along and says something so honest, so inspiring, so mind-explodingly wise, that there’s nothing left to do except stare at them unblinkingly.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is totally that person.

 

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She’s Beyonce’s favourite feminist (her wise words were even featured on the “Flawless”  backing track). Now best-selling  “Americanah” author gave this amazing grand opening speech at a recent Wellesley’s graduation ceremony.Her words in the speech “What it means to be a woman” are so brilliant,i had to share.You could get her speech directly from you tube,though i’ll highlight here the bit i loved.

 

ON BEING LIKEABLE.
“All over the world, girls are raised to be make themselves likeable, to twist themselves into shapes that suit other people.Please do not twist yourself into shapes to please. Don’t do it. If someone likes that version of you, that version of you that is false and holds back, then they actually just like that twisted shape, and not you. And the world is such a gloriously multifaceted, diverse place that there are people in the world who will like you, the real you, as you are”.

 

ON GENDER EQUALITY.
“Write television shows in which female strength is not depicted as remarkable but merely normal. Teach your students to see that vulnerability is a human rather than a female trait.Commission magazine articles that teach men How To Keep A Woman Happy. Because there are already too many articles that tell women how to keep a man happy. And in media interviews make sure fathers are asked how they balance family and work. In this age of ‘parenting as guilt,’ please spread the guilt equally. Make fathers feel as bad as mothers. Make fathers share in the glory of guilt Hire more women where there are few. But remember that a woman you hire doesn’t have to be exceptionally good. Like a majority of the men who get hired, she just needs to be good enough.”

 

ON MAKE UP.
“I wasn’t very interested in makeup until I was in my twenties, which is when I began to wear makeup. Because of a man. A loud, unpleasant man. He was one of the guests at a friend’s dinner party. I was also a guest. I was about 23, but people often told me I looked 12…I argued that it would be better if that honor were based on achievement rather than gender, and he looked at me and said, dismissively, “You don’t know what you are talking about, you’re a small girl”.I wanted him to disagree with the substance of my argument, but by looking at me, young and female, it was easy for him to dismiss what I said. So I decided to try to look older. I thought lipstick might help. And eyeliner as well.And I am grateful to that man because I have since come to love makeup, and its wonderful possibilities for temporary transformation.So, I have not told you this anecdote as a way to illustrate my discovery of gender injustice. If anything, it’s really just an ode to makeup.”

 

ON MAKING EFFORT.
“After one year of medical school I fled. I realized I would be a very unhappy doctor and I really did not want to be responsible for the inadvertent death of my patients. Leaving medical school was a very unusual decision, especially in Nigeria where it is very difficult to get into medical school.Later, people told me that it had been very courageous of me, but I did not feel courageous at all.I could either stay and study something that was not right for me. Or I could try and do something different. I decided to try.Now it might not have worked out. My writing might not have ended up being successful. But the point is that I tried.We can not always bend the world into the shapes we want but we can try, we can make a concerted and real and true effort. Always just try. Because you never know.”
ON LOVE.
‘Now girls are often raised to see love only as giving. Women are praised for their love when that love is an act of giving. But to love is to give and to take.Please love by giving and by taking. Give and be given. If you are only giving and not taking, you’ll know. You’ll know from that small and true voice inside you that we females are so often socialized to silence”

 

 

JUST BAD ENOUGH TO ATTRACT A GIRL.

Am told it’s Father’s day today.Do it big for your old man.Celebrate him in the best way possible.Take him out for lunch or dinner.Buy him a nice shirt,not a cheap one please,he will know.Even better,buy him a bottle of wine or if he sips a bit,a bottle of scotch whiskey wouldn’t be so bad.Do it your way,as long as you make him feel special,because they really are.Happy Father’s Day to all the father’s out there.We celebrate you,today and everyday.

See Father’s day made me recall so many years ago,I’d just turned 12 when my father took me out for lunch at his favorite restaurant to celebrate my birthday,just the two of us.We talked about literally everything in the world and at some point he asked me what I’d want to be when i grow up.”A doctor!” i said.He responded so fast,”why so?” I told him I had a passion in medicine and that is where my heart was.My father, as mean as he was,always, replied amidst laughter “if that’s why you want to be a doctor,you’ll never be” Look at me today.My father was right.

Months later he asked me what kind of man I’d love to have when a grew up.I told him i didn’t like men much but one day,when i grow up i would love to have a gentleman.”Leave those ones alone,those ones are weak men” Gentlemen,he meant.In the eyes of my father,gentlemen were weak me.i didn’t understand how a gentleman was a weak man until 6 years later, turns out my father was right.

See am not in any way trying to insinuate that gentlemen are weak men,but i wouldn’t say they’re strong either.For the longest time,literally all my life,the gentleman has been my type of man,Somehow though,i don’t even know why,am least attracted to these kind of men.You get the drift? The gentleman is my kind of man,but am least attracted to the gentleman.I want a man who’ll open the  door for me before he enters the car,but the last time a man did that,just two days ago imagine,i asked him bluntly. “Are you even serious?” Or maybe am just not accustomed to this life.May be.

Truth be told gentlemen are amazing people.The male friends i have,just a handful,the ones am really close to are all gentleman.The ones i go to cry to when a boy screws me over and we’ll talk and they’ll even wipe my tears and be there for me all through.They’re so sweet and nice,they call me often to check up on me.They genuinely care about me,but regardless they can never be more than friends because that’s what gentlemen are for,caged in the friend zone,just shoulders to lean on.

On the other side am attracted to men who have entirely no interest in me.Boys that in a million years to come will still have no interest in me,Am attracted to boys with huge egos.The type that would go a month without replying my texts and when they text a month later,i reply with excitement like nothing ever happened.Am attracted to these boys with zero gentleman aspects.Sometimes arrogance is attractive.

I still want a gentleman though,but when he comes a long,he builds a  strong foundation in the friend zone.Am least attracted to overly nice people,and this is just what gentlemen are.So may be that’s what my father meant when he said gentlemen are weak men.May be gentlemen will one day be attractive when they stop being extremely nice.Be bad,not so bad,just bad enough to attract a girl.I know gentlemen often feel the need to call a couple of times to check up on you and all,but i think he will be attractive when he stops calling ten times a day.See sometimes the excitement is not even in the game,it’s in chasing.

6000 MILES AWAY,ALWAYS MY PERSON!

A couple of days ago,the world celebrated World Best Friends Day! See,i didn’t realize such days really did exist until my best friend sent me this long ass message that left me in tears for hours.I am a bit dramatic sometimes.So truth be told,i didn’t really cry,but that one text was simply the highlight of my day.Thing is we don’t realize how precious our friends are until we go down the memory line,see the things you’ve been through together and everything then makes much more sense.I celebrate her everyday,but today,in a kidogo special way.

Dear Best friend,

The past couple of months have been filled with so much joy,genuine happiness and laughter,thanks to you.Together we have made memories that will forever be engraved in our minds  and embedded in our hearts.Together,we have cried and cried some more,but amidst our tears you still gave me reasons to laugh and there and then,our tears turned to joy.We have a whole lot of things we want to achieve;our dreams,dreams that scare everything within us,we will achieve them one day,i hope.No.Am certain.

It’s hard to understand how one person will walk into your life and bring a whole new glow of hope,you did this for me,still do everyday and i know for sure,i can never thank you enough. We have had our own share of “bad” days,times we go two days without talking,times we disagree on issues and have a bit of friction,but then again,what is friendship without these ups and downs?

Today love,i want to thank you for being the family i got to choose,you know you’re my soul sister right? For loving me through all the stupid mistakes I’ve made in my life.For being there when boys screwed me over time and time again.For making me laugh so hard i cried,even peed sometimes.For being my temporary lesbian partner when ugly boys hit on me.For having drunken adventures with me.For still being there even when we have a bazillion of miles between us.For being the true definition of a best friend,i can never thank you enough.

Life really is unpredictable,and we don’t know what the future holds.Regardless,i know even when all things in life lose meaning,you’ll be right by my side,to restore a little hope to keep me going.Forever.

I love you.

Love,

Verah.

NOBODY KNOWS TOMORROW.

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The uncertainty of life,nothing scares me more.

Exactly two years ago,a day exactly like today;30/4/12,i walked out of Agakhan University Hospital a broken child.A man i had left in completely good shape as i left for school earlier on that year was on the verge of death.If you’ve been to the ICU before,you know how breaking it is to see someone fighting to live,their life totally supported by the life support machines  and the only way food could get into their body is through tubes.Can you imagine a life where food gets into your body without you getting to enjoy the taste? Honestly,like chicken now:D So anyway,i watched this man struggle to live.And to cut the long story short,he kept fighting,he fought this battle for another 5 months before he finally came to the end of the road. Let’s be honest,we all know we’ll pass away one day,it’s a road we all have to pass, but we are never ready,we can never be ready.No one knows when,but everyone knows,someday.

 

You know what am trying to say?

Live.Start living.

Life is too short.And there’s nothing worse than a life that has not been lived to the fullest.Make mistakes,be free to make mistakes and gladly learn from them.I think my most miserable days,are the days i strived to live a perfect life.The days i dreaded making mistakes.The days i lived of the acceptance from others.Start living.Just let loose,don’t hold yourself down.Speak whatever you feel without having too many “what ifs” you never know,they may be your last words.Make peace with everyone before the sun sets because again,nobody knows.Love without expecting the same in return,as long as your intentions are pure and sincere.Just do what’s right and the rest will fall into place.

Today you have your whole life ahead of you.Tomorrow,nobody knows.

LIVE!

-Anjichi-

 

 

 

 

MY FAIRYTALE DAD

*Featuring amazing stories on “WOMEN AND THEIR FATHERS”

There are fathers we only see in fairytales and western movies.The dads who would give an arm and leg for their children..the dads that doesn’t seem to exist in real life.

Well,for me this dad does exist… a fairytale dad,even better because he’s real.
Being my father’s daughter has been a wonderful experience and journey. I have experienced love in its purest form, love from an unending source.
Growing up, my dad was my playmate ,confidant, my mom as well as my dad. Everyday he would ensure that he had tied my hair into a neat ponytail, tied my shoelaces firmly and pinned a handkerchief onto my dress…that was when I was in kindergarten.
I grew up, like all of us eventually do, haha..and got into primary school.
I joined all the clubs and sports I could, till I found my real interests…
I settled on swimming and tennis…and to my dad, i was the best swimmer and tennis player there ever was. Oh, you should have heard him brag. Never did he miss a tournament or swim meeting if it was possible. He would cheer with all his might and show all the other parents who his little girl was. My little heart would swell with joy and pride…my dad was proud of me.
I’ve come a long way, but most of the things I have learnt are from my dad. How to be respectful, how to speak up for myself, how to be confident, how to be proud of who I am, and most importantly…how to love deeply and completely.
All my father has ever wanted for my siblings( yes, i do have siblings and we’re all treated the same ) and I is true happiness ,true love, true joy and inner peace.
Now that I’m almost all grown,my father doesn’t feature as much in my everyday day life as he used to, I am trying to pave my own path. But for the solid foundation he set while I grew up, I will forever be thankful.
I know what real love is meant to be, because I was shown real love by my dad.
I know what it is to be protected, because my dad has protected me in all ways.
I can be proud of who I am, because I know he is proud of me.
This does not mean he has no flaws, he does…but to me he is imperfectly perfect.
He is my father,my dad,my first love.

-Anonymous

I HATE YOU

*Featuring amazing stories on “WOMEN AND THEIR FATHERS” Email your story to anjichi96@gmail.com

Most of my nights, I lay there thinking, What if it could be different? What if everything went on normally?

Isn’t it funny how, at one moment of your life someone means the world to you , then few years later, the sound of their names disgusts you? .. Honestly, it scares me!
Am referring to a man i used to call my father in this context … I never actually speak about this human being nor has anyone ever asked me about him … (Just the few who take advantage when am drunk .. Haha) .. But its a chapter of my life I try to forget and act like it doesn’t exist …
I can’t remember any happy moment about my childhood .. All I remember were the fights, the passing of food through a window so that my mother doesn’t sleep hungry at night, nights where I had to push tables & wardrobes against the door so that my abusive father doesn’t take advantage of me when drunk. I remember not wanting to go home .. Because yet again, I would see the face of a monster who I called my father then.
The most painful of all these memories was the night, If it wasn’t for my tiny feet running across the room, my mother would be dead!
I remember both of them being on a heated argument…. And he held a knife, and while he was driving it towards my mother , I ran , and stood in front of her. It was at that moment, the little bit of hope, hope that maybe this man would change, collapsed! I cried … And cried .. And my mother, despite of all the drama that was going on, lifted me up and said “Don’t Worry! Everything is going to be okay” I kept calm while  that piece of meat , just walked away!
Can you even blame me? Sixteen years later , for thinking men are monsters? He ruined my life!
Not to even mention, he went on and married the maid .. The maid who I thought was just cleaning the house & washing our clothes .. Sigh!
What a turn of events huh?
I hate you….
-Anonymous

A LETTER TO MY FATHER.

*Featuring amazing stories on “WOMEN AND THEIR FATHERS” Email your story to anjichi96@gmail.com

Dear dad,

Today feels like one of those days so many years ago,the days i’d go playing with my mates,fall done while playing then hurt my knee.It would start bleeding profusely and i’d come home crying;wailing and just then i’d meet you at the gate.You’d carry me ,kiss me on my forehead,wipe my tears and tell me not to cry because all would be well.Soon enough i’d go quiet,and under your arms i’d sob silently to sleep.Then mama would come home,she’d wipe my wound with a warm wet clothing and the bleeding would stop.A layer of scab would grow and once again i’d be fine.But in case anyone pricked me,the healing wound would start bleeding allover again and this would continue for a while until it finally healed.But you know, it would still never quite really heal because again when pricked it would bleed.But every single time,the pain would be lesser than the latter.

And today dad,i feel like a healing wound has been pricked and it’s bleeding allover again.But today,unlike when i was your little child,you’re not here to hug me and say all would be well.But instead i have this piece of paper,writing here makes me feel like am talking to you directly ,and through it i want to let the world to know,that there’s no greater pain than losing a father.You were the first man in my life,and by that you became the love of my life.I want you to know just how much miss and how much better everything would be if you were not gone.So wherever you are,in whatever form you’re in,i hope you’re able to read this piece i have written to you.

September will forever be the month.The day years ago my world totally crushed and everything seemed to be coming to an end.The day.The day i received the shocking news of your sudden though not so sudden death.It’s like i saw it coming,i sensed it the moment i saw you struggling to live at the Intensive Care Unit.Because the man lying on that hospital bed was not the man i had known for fifteen years.Visiting you at the morgue has to be the most torturing thing i ever did to my poor self.But on the day i received the news of you’re death,someone held my hand and said “Do not cry too much,celebrate a life well lived.You’ll be fine with time.Time heals everything.” These words really sunk,as much it was hard to believe them,i did,because then,that’s all i needed to hear.Today i know whoever said these words lied to me.Because really,the situation never gets better.And even as i write this piece i already can feel tears building up,i can feel balancing tears.But i have to write this to you daddy,so I’ll keep at it.

There are so many things i wish i had done differently.I feel like the pain of unspoken words  would not be an issue right now.I wish i told you enough times just how much i loved you and how much you meant the world to me.Many are the times we go without speaking how we feel and assume people know we love them even before we say we do.So,today dad,i want you to know, that regardless of your flaws,i never even at one point wished for a better dad.I want you to know that i was proud of the man you were;your successes,your failures,your humor,your wit,your sarcasm.I simple loved the person you were,and sometimes i felt like you were too good for me,because well,you were just too good.

Every time i walk around,i feel like the streets have been painted with pictures of you,i feel your presence and your spirit hovering around and i know you’re watching over me.Our very intelligent conversations keep replaying in my head and a part of you is who i have grown up to be.I hope you’re proud of the girl i am,because all you’re good traits are portrayed in me everyday.Remember the days we would talk about death and you’d hold my hand and tell me not to worry because you would live to see me grow and that you would grow old enough to see your grandchildren.But you know daddy,life is full of surprises.None of these came to pass.The cruel hand of death,always has a way.

Your absence left a large void within my heart.A void that nobody would ever be able to fill.

I loved you then. I love you now.I will always love you.

R.I.P:(

Yours sincerely,

-Anonymous

WHAT IS THIS FATHER EVERYONE TALKS ABOUT?

*Featuring amazing stories of “WOMEN AND THEIR FATHERS”*

I’ve made it my business to observe fathers and daughters.And I’ve seen some incredible beautiful things.Like the daughter who’s not very cute -her teeth are funny,and her hair doesn’t grow right,and she’s a tiny angel that no one can touch.He gives her the best gift a woman can get in this world;protection.However,this has not always been my case,my world is pretty much different.My mama is my queen and king.She is my pillar and my rock.She is my everything.I’m asked a couple of times why I hardly talk about my dad but it’s pretty much simple I’m not proud of him.I’m not proud of the man who brought me to this world.Well,the fact is we don’t choose where we are born,so he happened to be the one fate chose for me.

It’s not easy being around people who endlessly talk about their fathers but this has always been the story of my life.”My dad promised me a trip to England if I top my class this term” “My dad is getting me a new phone mine is pretty old” my dad this my dad that is becoming music to my ears.It’s like my ears were immune to those stories that kept replaying in my head during my high school days.I know philosophers defile comparison but lets face it we are human-prone to compare ourselves or our stories to others,it’s not right yes but it just happens and we become victims of comparison.

I still have good memories of my father engraved in my mind when I was his little angel.Trips to the park,road trips,days on his farm when he’d attend my first seven birthdays at home,but that’s where it all ends.From there my mind just goes off. It’s like a door I decided to shut.Memories that I hold of him are tormenting.Enticed by flames I presume.It burns and weakens me every time it crosses my mind.All of a sudden the perfect dad became a beast or maybe his mask became too rugged he had to pull it off.He became a stranger to his family.He became a hindrance to my mother and constantly held her back every time she tried becoming something better.Our mama became the bread winner of the family.I mean has that man even spent a dime on me? *sigh*

But yet I was still supposed to stand tall and proudly say I was his daughter.He was a bit laid back;old school.He was against success of the woman.What is that word again? A chauvinist ,yes.To him a woman’s job was to keep the family together,to cook and to satisfy him.I’m proud of my mother because she defied his expectations.A learned lady who clearly understood her goals and ambitions in life.She had her businesses which kept her family going.Ironically this pissed my father each passing day.”A woman can never be on top of a man” often I’d hear him say that.He tried it all to pull my mother down and he’d tell everyone all my mother owned was his.He definitely was not the perfect father figure.

I could see my mother play the ‘he would become better’ card.She had so much hope in him and she’d constantly talk sense to him.She tried all she could to make him better financially and also a better father to his children.Let’s face it.You can never change a man.How hard is it to change simple bad habits we develop? Then what makes you think you can change someone else?Sadly,it’s something that took my mother close to sixteen years to learn before she finally moved out of this oppressive marriage.It took so much pain and tears.She was reckless and remorseful but one thing I adore in her is that she is a woman of faith,an iron lady and a strong woman.

Today she is all about her business, trying to pick up broken pieces even after being held up for more than a decade.She loved my father so much and it’s true that love is blind.Today whenever she speaks about my father her voice is filled with vengeance.”You have no father, that man is a devil”  There is no better word to call a man who spends money he hasn’t earned on prostitutes and cannot even spend a cent on his children.

Each day I yearn for his affection and tender care but I guess I should wake up and stop dreaming.Some things in life remain a fantasy. It’s hard to explain how I feel but one thing is for sure,I despise my father.If however I had one wish,I’d wish that he was a better man.Truth is we all need a father figure in our lives.Someone to build us and make us stronger,but I’m glad my mum plays this role perfect.

My mum,I love her the more we spend each moment together.Her challenges in life have grown to be my greatest strengths.The role of a father has been left only to my imagination.So what’s this father y’all talk about?

-Anonymous-