For You

You step on to the train, seconds to spare and slightly out of breath. You give a small smirk for your mini victory and set off to conquer your next battle as the train lurches into motion.

You flop down into the only booth with an empty bench and scooch over to the window seat. You sigh as you adjust your headphones, preparing for the long journey ahead.

Across from you is a girl. At first glance, nothing special. You don’t want to admit it but no one will ever be as special as SHE was to you. Despite everything SHE put you through, it boils your blood that your thoughts always goes back to HER. The lies, the pretences, false promises and sour revelations. SHE left you and yet…

To prove to yourself that you can get over HER you make the effort to give the girl across from you another look over. Walnut brown skin, natural hair pulled into a smart afropuff, wide lips and smile lines…a girl who smiles and laughs… She watches the outside fly, by her strong hands rest on the table. You can almost feel her vitality. Her chest rises and falls to the steady beat of a heart she knows to follow.

And then your eyes lock. For a moment you’re surprised by casual intensity of her gaze. Her attention holds you prisoner, your only crime? Pure intrigue about those intelligent chocolate eyes framed by thick black lashes lined with sharp black liner. In a moment you imagine them laugh, cry and spill a thousand secrets then close as you…

But in an instant it’s gone. You remember you’re strangers on a train; it’s 2017 and no one strikes random conversations anymore unless you want to seem like a creep. And besides you’re over girls and officially a player. If they’re all shallow, Insta-obsessed fakes, no one would blame you for treating them like it.

So like a fugitive, you cover up your tracks with a stone face and crossed arms; you flee from a truth so blinding it scares you to admit it.

This girl is beautiful.

Not just surface shine though, there’s something much deeper.

And maybe, just maybe, if you took a chance…Let yourself be vulnerable one more time…she might see you for more than your job,your major and your plans. Perhaps she will not only see but understand your dreams. Perhaps she will take the time to read through each page of your life story; diligently making notes, laughing and crying with you. Always and honestly rooting for you.

As she bites her lip, her eyes glossy with unshed tears, you sigh. Your fortress built of loneliness, pain and regret is the only thing (other than the train table) holding you back from something wonderful. To break it down will be a military operation. A job for a King but no sweat with your Queen by your side.

Maybe it’s time to let courage override the regret and fear. Maybe it’s time for you to fight for a woman who will feircly fight for you.

For You (a response peice)
~~TM~~

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Shattered

“Gentle reader, may you never feel what I then felt! May your eyes never shed such stormy, scalding, heart-wrung tears as poured from mine. May you never appeal to Heaven in prayers so hopeless and so agised as in that hour left my lips: for never may you, like me, dread to be the instrument of evil to what you wholly love.”

Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre

 

Things have happened to me that have shattered and consumed me.

But like precious metal I have been purified, tried and tested.

Like pottery, I’ve been moulded and intricately carved, woven with gold and laquered with hope.

Like the phoenix, the ashes that were meant to bury me were just a nest from which I rise.

The beauty in humanity is our endurance for pain and what is created from it.

We are cruel creatures.
And when faced with the duality if our nature
Someone I thought I
trusted
shattered me
With the casual assumption
that I knew what was happening
And I was okay with it.

My Top 11 Tips for Productivity ( Especially in University)

1. Preperation begins way before Uni (get into the habit of making yourself do things and not relying on teachers/parents/ basic seld discipline, etc.)

2. Consistent planning and preperation is key. It always goes a long way. Meal Plans (even if rough, have a list of recipes you know how to cook/like eating) A go to shopping list, a meeting notes template- anything that can make your life easier and more efficient down the line is worth investing a little time, money or thought into.

3. Know yourself and develop around your preferences. If you know you like to party all weekend stagger your week to do the bulk of studying/assignments Tues/Wed/Thurs so by the weekend you can accomadate your tastes. If you’re a morning person try and wake up consistently in the morning and get your hardest tasks done early. If you’re prone to taking long naps, take yourself out of an environment that encourages napping(I.e. leave your dorm bedroom and go to the library)

4. Sort your habits. We are creatures of habit. The first 60 days of a semester/year are probs the most important as you need to establish a solid habit and stick to it.

5. You have quite a bit of free time. Fill it. It doesn’t have to be just studying but try to be productive with something. It’s always good when it relates to a goal (e.g. go to the gym, read that book, clean your room,etc.) But even if it isn’t (e.g. just finally meeting yo with frienda or going shopping) at least have something to show for your time.

6. You basically want to avoid loads of moments when you go to your dorm and think damn Idk what to do with myself and get sucked into gaming/watching/internet binge.

7. Aim for progress not perfection and Track it. Have proof to show to yourself that you are getting better at whatever you’re aiming to do. It can also be motivating and gives you incentive to improve.

8. Things not working? Diagnose the problem asap and actually do something about it. Do you always sleep in and miss your morning gym session? Maybe plan to go in the evening after work when you know you are awake and have no excuses. Or sort out your sleeeping patterns. Do you always end up eating out because you end up too tired to cook. Why are you tired, figure out a time when you’re not and try to meal prep in advance so you save money and eat healthier. The point is to find out where you are going wrong, why and then plan to work your weaknesses.

9. Power Naps CAN help if you can control yourself. Limit them to no longer than 45min.

10. Having a dedicated place to do things often. Limiting distractions and getting you into the mindset.

11. Do not compare yourself. You will either get stressed that other people are working harder than you and getting better grades or feel overconfident as you’re doing better than everyone else and become complacent. You may think that the stress helps you produce quality work. It doesn’t. In promise you. Work on tour weaknesses without it eroding your self worth.

The Rejection of Marriage

It’s ironically interesting to consider how many female innovaters and creators throughout history have rejected the institution of marriage in favor of the freedom that came from not wanting to exclusivelt fit the mould set out for them.

And we often look back at figures like Emily Bronte,Emily Dickinson etc. And think “Society has progressed so far that women need not be so-called social outcasts to achieve their dreams”. But I argue that we are not as far as we like to give ourselves credit for.

There are still many who believe that to be married and be wife and mother is the highest calling of women. It’s more ingrained in our culture than we care to admit and more so in African and Asian cultures that are still heavily traditional.

Pressure to ‘complete’ our dreams/education by a certain time before you settle down suggests to me we still have limits. We’re still tethered by expectations that by certain ages or accomplishments we stop being us and start being woman.

We’re encouraged to be modern but deep down there’s a part ingrained (at least in a few girls like me) that reminds us “this is still a mans world and respect that. That is the way things are, you can choose but not from any tree because you are still different; flawed in comparison to a male child.”

A woman’s honor is still measured by her dress, her company, her virginity and sexual experience in ways that guys still don’t have to subscribe to.

On the flip side a man is not a man unless he is lustful, hypermasculine and “not afraid” especially to show that he is the smartet, dominant force in a situation with another women.

My call isn’t to radicalise us all to a feminist march. More personal than that, I think we all owe it to ourselves to challenge those little limits and sayings that put us in a box.

Question the intention and possible outcome of another’s ‘advice’ in our lives. Do they say this from a place of traditional safety because that is all they know to say or because they know you and want you do somethig remarkable in the world. To build our lives in such a way we dismantle the things that hold us back from our dreams from the root and heal the underlying issue/craving. Maybe I am naive to believe that African culture can coexist with modern freedom but until proven otherwise, I will live this out. Otherwise if we do have a timeline, a certain checklist that degrades us bacl to obhects or mindless things, I don’t want to play. Even if it means that the rejection of married life; as long as it means freedom. 

Speak Not ~ Spoken Word Poem

Speak not to me of love,
But of friendship so
“love” seems overrated

Speak not to me of love,
But of laughter so wide and deep and Bursting
It hurts to be that happy

Speak not to me of love,
But of tangible uncertainty
Plabable ambiguity

Because when push comes to shove and you’re sure that your in love
Something always comes along to show you that you are not.

It wasnt “Meant to be”
He was not your “soul-mate”
It wasn’t “destiny”

Speak not to me of love,
But of quiet hope.

A seed of possibility resurrected from a graveyard
Speak not to me of love,
Speak not

Instead
Just breathe
And one day
When we are older and wiser
Our hearts much calmer
We will find each other
And speak of those things
Called love.

Yin to my Yang~ A Poem

We pushed and we pulled,
Taught and learned,
Scratch, kissed and held

Belonging to another
At least for now
We are smooth and defiant
Like the quirk on your brow

Shy smiles on soft skin
Satisfied.
Then,
Bullets of day break infiltrated our solace, Stole our serenity

I closed my eyes.
I didn’t want you to go.
So I said,
“You need to go”

Yin to my Yang
We will push and we will pull.

Hurting in the Age of Social Media

Emotional pain caused by people on a social level has probably been a constant factor to deal since society’s beginings. Friction in social groups is inevitable and usually results in some type of conflict and resolution. (anecdotal and observational evidence from my life and Animal Planet).

It’s at that stage of resolution that emotions run high. More than the end of a problem, it signals the beginning of something more; the beginning of closure. The beginning of healing.

(Lovely read: https://www.google.co.uk/amp/thoughtcatalog.com/jamie-varon/2014/09/why-we-need-to-move-on-when-its-time-to-move-on/amp/)

This is where Social Media fucks it up.

We don’t get closure in ways that we should when we’re too subscribed to SM. In many ways we are all like celebrities, our lives on constant blast to an audience and when messy plot points arise you have to either try and erase evidence of the conflict (i.e. delete all the pictures with your friend/ex and unfollow them and their friends) or live in vague reminder that it happened (having mutual friends on SM so you see glimpses of their new lives, through the rose-gold tinted glasses.)

And it can be painful to be constantly reminded of things you need to time to process or would rather forget.
Which is what has happened to me recently. The evidence is all there and because of the highlighted nature of SM we’re not meant to openly talk about shit that goes down. So were kind of distanced from some of the people we need whilstt supposedly having the most access to them. It’s a damaging dichotomy.

Then to be bombarded with the idealized versions of everyone’s lives and perfection of advertise adds to any hurt/self loathing/general negativity.

My point:

Today, in any type if break up you’ve got to let yourself have time off the SM and just breathe. Sometimes you are tempted to release those screenshots and defend your honour.
Have people take your side and expose the vilian… or maybe that’s just me….

Recovery comes in many forms for everyone. Let yourself regrow outside of the artificial light.

 

~~TM~~