Goodbye and Hello

Dear K,

I have been thinking lately, and trust me I have had a lot of time to think.

Thinking from the time I started writing to you, ’til now, there has been so much growth and I have learnt a lot about myself and about life in general. Writing to you has helped me. Granted I was not very consistent but I always had little notes for you. Maybe when we see each other I can show them to you.

I cannot express into words how grateful I am. I did not realise how much healing I was receiving from this. Thank you for allowing me to do this.

However, it is time to say goodbye. I think that our friendship can continue to grow away from here. I am excited for that as well. You see, as I said that I am now taking a different journey that I am not too sure where it will lead and I am excited for it but I think this part of the journey I will take with someone that I need healing from still. Hopefully, it will improve how I see him and myself of course, but also how I see what we had and one day we can be friends again, like me and you are.

See you soon Kevin x

Love Always,

Steph.

Dear A,

I have contemplated for weeks and weeks about this. I was mainly held back because I was worried about what you will think. However, I have come to see that this is not about you but rather about me. I have come to accept that the closure I need from you I shall never get. Just like it was with Kevin.

You once told me that you are dreading the day I will come to resent you, although I do not think I trust much of what you said to me, but if you meant it… well, I loved you. A lot! And that is why I know I can never resent you, that plus you are actually a good person, aside from everything. However, lately I have found myself walking around with negativity. Granted it is not all on you, but you are definitely a trigger. I have separated from friends because of you and I am tired of you having that power over me.

You know I love to confront things head on and knowing that calling you and texting you will not do the trick, I have decided to write to you. Something you did not know about me, I love to write. When I gave you that letter (you probably threw it away), I told you it helps me address my feelings and is the best way to express myself. So here goes.

I would love to do this with you. For me and for our friendship. I know this will not necessarily make you happy, Mr. Secrets and Private life but like I said, for the first time since we met, I am putting myself first.

Welcome to the journey friend.

Awino

Song for blog: Saved- Khalid

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Post Twenty-Three

Dear K,

Post 23. 

I remember waking up horny. (Plz, ayam human). I remember thinking to myself “If only he were here.” And then the Pandoras Box opened. All the pain, all the betrayal, all the lies, all the pretence. I couldn’t stop thinking “How could you do this to me?!All I did was love you?! Why did you do this to me” Then it moved from him to my life. 

And I could not stop crying. 

I came to Kenya ready for a re-birth emotionally and mentally. I spent 2 weeks thinking I was happy. I truly believed it. But then that day I was triggered. The night before my friend asked me “How are you dealing with it all, because you still sound hurt”. And I mumbled because the truth is, I wasn’t dealing, I was ignoring. I would walk around saying I don’t care that my life has moved on but it’s a lie. I came to Kenya running away from Bristol, but I was in truth trying to run away from myself, and that’s not possible. It all caught up with me. 

So I am still crying. And feeling the pressure of all that. Plus questioning people in my life. How genuine they are. Thinking of all the fake people I allowed in my life. Remember how I said I do Extreme. But it’s Sunday. We turn to God and Melissa and Joan. But first God. 

I was in such a low place. I just wanted it all to stop. I needed everything to just freeze so I can think and feel. So I can hear myself, truly listen to what I am feeling. 

My birthday was great!! I got extremely drunk and you know that’s messy. But that was all for the moment. Life after that night is as bad as the hangover. Only this one the cure is not as simple as water and exercise. I am working hard at it. I knew it wouldn’t be easy. I just didn’t think it would be this hard. 

I will one day heal. Once I forgive myself for him then maybe I will be happier. Once I forgive myself for being to trusting maybe I will stop feeling low. Once I finally put myself first, love myself. That’s probably the hardest thing I will have to do. 

But Stephanie no one in this world is carrying you but you. So what if  he is gone. So what if she betrayed you. Imagine you were fine before they came in. You will be even better now that they have left. People are temporary Stephanie. Remember that. Only person you can rely on forever is yourself. ” 

23 year old Graduate

Congratulations! We are very proud of you. You did it. But now is when life begins. By doing it you have set yourself a bar and that is where we rate you now. So you can’t go any lower”

Dear K,

How has life been? How was your vacation? How is your family? I hope life is treating you well. 

When June was coming to a close my life was pretty good if you ask me. I was graduating with a 2:1 in a week, and my parents would be there to celebrate with me! I had a job waiting for me at home, or rather I had a job lined up, and I was in a relationship with someone I could see myself building a life with. So you see, life was going good. But July came and in one week my “perfect” life flipped. First it was my parents not being able to make the graduation, then it was the job not being there and then my grandmother but icing on the cake was being dumped. I really hope someone enjoyed my graduation because when July 10th came I was emotionally spent. I smiled and laughed when required but I was clinging on. Plus I had a really bad cold ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ™„. 

 I remember lying in bed Tuesday. With a bad hangover and a blocked nose. Crying, coughing and sleeping all day. I didn’t eat, I didn’t drink anything. And I did this again on Wednesday and Thursday (Although I did drink something at some point ๐Ÿ‘€). I have a problem of letting things stop me from living. When I am down I am completely down. I do extreme. I am either extremely happy or sad. And when I am sad I feel so alone and weak. I am sure I am not the only one. I had learnt to lean on one person but when they were not there I was giving up. 

Then the email came. This one lifed my spirits. So Friday wasn’t too bad, plus Tutu was back and graduating, I had to gather strength. But you can only carry a facade for so long. Friday night back in my bed. Saturday all day the same thing. That night I got anxiety attacks. I felt closed in a room and I was struggling to breath. But we made it through. Some motherly love, prayer and a true friend. I am not so alone after all. 

But I was ready to go home. Well I hadn’t packed but emotionally I had checked out of Bristol and the people. I needed to be with my mum and in an environment that allowed me to be myself. To feel and express. So I told my parents I want the next possible flight back. 

When you were a student you were allowed to make mistakes. But now, you’re transitioning to an adult, you need to make your own set of rules. You need to graduate in your character as well. What values do you hold dear. What makes you who you are.”

There is a lot about me I discovered I do not like. I sat there watching the sun set into the ocean from my balcony and just wrote down what about me disappoints me. Then I burnt it, because instead of moaning about it, it’s time to do something about it. The thing about turning a year older is that it allows you to look back and reflect on what could have gone better. Why? Although this doesn’t necessarily have to happen on your birthday. But it’s been exactly a week since I came back and it’s exactly a week to a new age. This one is coming with new experiences, new challenges, new stage in my life, new people… Not that the old have disappeared. 

The key thing is this, I am going to be me unapologetically from now on. I am going to speak for myself. I am going to fight for me. I am no longer going to hide and shy myself from the world and the people I want to keep in my life because they can’t handle me. I need to love myself more. Because human beings by nature don’t know how to appreciate it when you give them your world. But remember no one owes you anything. The world does not owe you anything!!

Although I say this, but… I once asked who do you say I am, but it’s time I answered that question for myself. So here I am, single, unemployed and nervous. Nervous in a good way because I know my journey has just began and nervous because I don’t know what happens next. I hate not knowing what happens next!

Most importantly my daughter, do everything while seeking the guidance of your God! No one can lead you better, no one knows you better, and no one can support you better. Believe in Him. Trust Him. Seek Him.”

What a wonderful place to be! Congratulations to me. Happy Birthday to me! Let’s go for a ride ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜

Love,

Awino

PS: Current read “Her Roots” by JJ Lanji Ouko. A woman I admire oh so much! Look for it. It’s the story of every 20-something woman. You are not alone!!

Dear Charles,


Hey ๐Ÿ™‚

 Charles ๐Ÿ˜˜

Let me start by apologizing for my recent behaviour. I could use the excuse that I was trying to build our friendship but in truth I was being selfish. I wasn’t a very good friend to you either. I thought I was saving you. I thought I was pulling you up. But instead I was just being selfish. You told me to hold on, that it gets better…

Many things are racing through my mind. I think 4 years isn’t enough. But neither would 11, or 8. To be honest there is not enough number of years that I would have been satisfied with having you in my life. You shine a light so bright and illuminated my world. It was not just through your voice; which was so smooth melted through me like butter, which is also what led me to you actually, or your charm which always made me love you even more because you always knew what to say, even when I was mad at you which would never be for long ๐Ÿ™„ or your smile which you blessed me with Every. Single. Time. Or your ability to always bring joy to the room especially with your jokes and word play. It was who you are Charles, that made me so happy to call you a friend, makes me feel so blessed to have you in my life. 

I have so many memories. Some happy, some sad but mostly happy. But my favourite will have to be that night, where you sang for me and we talked. All Night. You made me feel special, you always knew how to do that, to make me feel appreciated in your life through the small acts and little things. I hope I made you feel the same because;

Charles you are a gem. One so rare and unique. There is definitely no one out there like you and there is definitely no friendship I could form out there like I had with you. You made it special. It will always be special, because even in death you are my friend. You are my favourite. And I will always be your biggest  fan. Always rooting for you. 

You are where you belong. Singing with the Angels. And you will always be in my heart. In that special place you made for yourself. I love you, I didn’t say it enough, but I love you more than I can describe. I miss you already. 

Like I said, it’s your turn to take care of me and guide me. You know I need you. ๐Ÿ˜˜

Depression will be the death of us

Conversations that must be had!

My Side of the Street

Awareness: Depression wolfybytes.deviantart.com

I was a freelance props guy in television commercials. Not a very good one. A hardworking one. I was a nice guy. A very good one. One film director once quipped on set,โ€Chris you work really hard. You are stupid but you work really hard.โ€ Obviously, that left me really confused. Should I relish the compliment as I processed the seeming insult?

We had parted ways with my then boss and I independently sought work from some of the companies with whom weโ€™d previously worked. This was in early recovery โ€“ in 1999 -a truly fascinating time. So fascinating that when I think about it now, how I survived that era of navigating early recovery baffles me. Life felt like a rudderlessness ship in the unchartered territory of a sober adult life.

This one time Ginger Ink called me to work on a commercial; a beer TVโ€ฆ

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Forgiveness 1/490

Dear K,

How have you been mate? It has been forever hasn’t it? I do hope that everything is going well with you and your family.ย I cannot really complain, there has been a lot that has happened since we last spoke but I have to say Glory to God because the blessings have been unending.

However, I wish when Jesus said that we forgive seven times seventy He would add how hard it is. I used to think that I was good at this forgiveness thing but I realise that it goes deeper than just thinking that you have forgiven someone. Once you truly forgive someone you let the mistake go. My ex-roomate and good friend V would say that one of her weaknesses was that she holds grudges and I never used to understand that but now I realise that she had just matured enough to realise that it is not as easy as we thought.

I have been hurting since October because I refuse to forgive I try so hard to make reason for what happened and because of that I have not been able to just forgive. However many apologies I have received I have not understood that as a human he had short comings and was also growing up. I had made him to be perfect and that is the other problem that we as humans have. We revere someone that we think they can never hurt us but we forget that they are still human and they will make mistakes and that sometimes that might come back to hurt us. Someone who cares will not hurt you intentionally, I genuinely believe this. I have said before I do not believe in apologies unless you understand what exactly you are apologising for. I think one of the most misused word is sorry, and I know I am guilty of this but I have never valued that word like I did this weekend. I have said it with so much meaning but I also felt like it was not enough.

But the hardest thing to do is forgiving ourselves. I know I will not be able to forgive anyone else unless I forgive myself. I put so much pressure on myself that I forget that I am human and I am ย allowed to make mistakes and that I will fail all the time before I get it right. My God has forgiven me and if He finds me worthy of another chance over and over and over and over again, who am I to deny myself that right. Also not letting go of that energy means that I am just carrying around Bad Vibes and we no want that!

IMG-20160626-WA0003.jpg

So my new promise to myself this weekend is to learn to forgive myself and to forgive others. Like really forgive not just saying it and taking any opportunity I get to remind someone how much they hurt me and not spending half my weekend reminding myself how much they hurt me. Also understanding that forgiveness takes time and that asking it from someone else means I need to be ready to be rejected.

Thank you for always being there K ๐Ÿ™‚ Talk later xx

Ps: I love you K.O, I am sorry.

This time I will not share a song but just ask you to tune in to Unverified Radio every Monday-Thursday 5-7pm and listen to #Wheelsup. (Kenya Moja, Tunein App, http://www.unverified.co.ke) Okay just tune in always but especially at that time.

 

 

 

Tourism, White Privilege and Colonial Mentality in East Africa

Gospel Truth!!

Media Diversified

By Samira Sawlani

We walked into the police station in Uganda. My white British friend who wanted to file a complaint had asked me to accompany her. The three officers behind the desk stood up immediately, one giving her his chair, the other rushing to take notes and the third, with a great deal of concern on his face asked her what had happened.

Sat in the waiting area were a pregnant woman and an elderly gentleman, both were black Ugandans. The lady had been waiting over two hours for the police to attend to her while the gentleman had spoken to them regarding his issue and been told to wait. Heโ€™d been waiting for almost three hours. My friend on the other hand was dealt with immediately and within thirty minutes all procedures had been carried out and her complaint both logged and addressed.

Two years prior to thisโ€ฆ

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