Tag Archives: faith

Feel Good Drag

Instagram: @she_her_and_them

When I don’t workout at night something happens to me. I manage to reduce my entire existence to bad moments and poor remarks. I see the faces of people I wish I’d never met and I notice the tangible and intangible scarring inflicted on my person. I see my demons a little clearer and the color of their eyes isn’t black like my hair but it’s a color I’ve seen before in people I know—in people I love. It’s like an awkward paranoia that arrests me, I suddenly wonder what side the bullet will come from and whether I’ll recognize the scent of my own demise, or if perhaps I will know instead the sound of God’s gavel.

I yelled at someone tonight. He fucked up and I ended up having to monetarily pay for his fuck-up. It didn’t make me feel better though. I didn’t feel more powerful having admonished him while he stood feebly. I felt wicked as I looked into his sorry eyes and still refused to relent before driving off infuriated. Everything and everyone got in the way today, and by the time life and all its mishaps had finished obstructing my path, not enough time remained for me to go workout and not enough strength was left for me to survive it anyway.

It isn’t so much the physical activity I’m addicted to, it’s the feel good drag. The idea that running nowhere at all is still running. Friendship is fleeting, love is a choice and happiness is a myth. Running—running is real. I get to go beyond the prison walls. Moving away from that which is torturous and consuming for an hour or so where the only pain I feel I have chosen to inflict on myself.

I hate this air, this life that is nothing but a series of humans hurting humans to forget what it’s like to be hurt. This projection of wasted feeling staining the walls of regret. The rough road pickled with menacing nails puncturing tires.

I think God is playing a cruel game and I can’t quite seem to find the edge of the board.

One day.

One fine day.

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Another Year: Reflections

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I wrote this version of me (above) out of my life because she was not strong enough to survive my circumstances. Her nails were too long to write novels and her soul too weak to take rejection. Her hair was chemically relaxed and tangled up in string and synthetic tracks; she was ruining her edges and conforming to the wrong standards of beauty. There is too much make-up on her face hiding her skin. She was struggling to maintain her individuality- her obedient stare exemplary of this. She was so young, so broken and so unsure of who she wanted to be.

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This girl (above) is not much better, but she is at least sure of who she is not. She is not the girl with the silky, soft flowing hair and she will never comb chemicals through her locs to make them straight. She detests long nails and is strong enough to face rejection because she is desperate enough to chase freedom. She is still insecure but not about her Africanity, not about the texture of her hair or her individuality. She is scared of many things but she’s also a lot stronger. She is still broken, a little older and not convinced the path she has chosen is one that has been paved for her.

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I don’t know exactly who I am or what I’m becoming but I know I’ve never been a banana. Always plantain. Never white rice, always jollof.

That’s something anyway.

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Breakup Blues

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My favorite Instagram couple broke up. They were literally #blacklove #couplegoals; cute pictures together on each others profiles; names next to heart emojis in their bios; and endless declarations of love in the comment sections of one another’s posts. It was all perfectly adorable. Well, until it ended. No more pictures. No more I love you, baby’s. No more, never let me go’s. No more you are my forever’s. No more dancing in the dark. No more loving in the light. When I noticed the absence of their affection I felt oddly concerned, like somehow I needed closure too. What happened? Did he cheat? Did she quit? Did she cheat? Did he move? Did they grow apart or stop trying. Are they broken now? Is the damage irreparable? Of course this led me to twitter, where a medley of subliminal messages wrapped in genuine pain found room to nest.

I said forever.
She messed up.
I don’t want to see him with someone else.
I give people way too many chances.

They both seem so hurt, and so tragically in love. I am devastated for them- these strangers I have no business feeling anything for, whose love I seem to have irresponsibly admired.

It made me realize how unwittingly reckless we can be with our hearts. I remember writing subliminal messages two and a half years ago as I second-guessed my decision to end my last relationship. I remember missing our friendship more than anything, and wanting so desperately to cry on his shoulder about our breakup. I remember making a video, writing blog posts and reading self-help books all in effort to heal and let him go. I remember deleting him on Facebook in anticipation of the day his status would change from single to in a relationship. I remember running to 90s R&B breakup tracks, and clutching at my side deceptively as tears welled in my eyes, when really it was my heart that was hurting. We’d been together for years and I fell out of love and I thought I’d be okay. When it came down to it, when the words were said, it suddenly dawned on me that this person was in my system and it didn’t matter how prepared I thought I was, he still rented rooms in my being. I couldn’t see myself marrying him and simultaneously, I didn’t know how to unlove us for the longest time.

Two and a half years on, I don’t miss him, I don’t love him and I want him to be happy. I want him to be loved. I want someone to see him the way I did when we met and I want their narrative to end in promises they intend to keep. Should my favorite Instagram couple not find a way to reconcile, I hope they heal enough to only ever want good things for each other.

Someone asked me a few months ago what type of men I attract, and I said: “I don’t really know”, when I should have said: “all the wrong ones”. The ones that want more than I can give, or the ones that want parts of me I’m not ready to give, or the ones that don’t really want me at all. The ones that still think it’s cool to hurt people’s feelings and keep a count of the number of women they’ve slept with. Anyway, I think love is meant to hurt sometimes. Not so much that it breaks you, just enough that you feel like there’s something to lose. I can’t love right now because I’m not strong enough to overcome the inevitable hurt. The same someone made me realize that a couple months ago and reiterated it again today. So to that someone, at 26, I don’t need to hurt you or play any games. I just want you to be happy. I’m old enough to know that’s all I should really want for you. I’m wise enough to know she might be the one to give it to you.

So I hope you are.

Happy.

Take care.

 

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Does anyone know which way Jesus went?

I have so many questions for God. The past few years of my life, I have struggled to trust the weight of His promise to never leave us nor forsake us, as so often I have not been able to feel his presence or recognise the work of His hands. I find myself drowning in thoughts that we are not all tantamount to His plan; that He has abandoned some us in favour of others. I have wrestled with the temptation to renounce my belief that He lives and that He is. How desperate I am to realize His grace, to know again his unending love, to feel once more the comfort of His promise. Jesus, I miss you.

“Help me, Lord my God; save me according to your unfailing love.”- Psalm 109:26

“La soledad es de piedra/ Sorrow” by Isaí Moreno

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Surely He Lives

“Whoso has felt the spirit of the Highest,
Cannot confound nor doubt Him, nor deny,
Yea, with one voice, O world, though thou deniest,
Stand thou on that side, for on this am I!” – F.W.H. Myers

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I very rarely get it right. Most days I grapple with the idea that a Being so great would live and love us so completely as to let us choose. Most mornings, I wonder why I have to endure the task of a day’s worth of everything that goes against the rationale that God could exist. But He must. For me to live, He must. And if the day should ever come when I find He doesn’t, so my life will reach its end.

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