For my brother Didi…

It was always me and my sister for the first seven and half years of our lives. We would squeeze our eyes shut at meal times and bedtimes and ask God for another sibling, Everyday without fail until He answered and gave us our brother Chukky. Chukky was and still is so quiet; as a toddler it was hard to know there was a baby in the house because as long as he had his bottle, he was fine. For four years, he was our muse, our big toy and our only brother until Didi came roaring into our lives.


Didi was a sweet suprise. We were glad our mum was pregnant again and we looked forward to when the baby would come, but nothing about Didi was on schedule. I remember my mum taking long walks, dancing and doing everything she could to induce labor; all to no avail. I remember all the false labor and the disappointment each time until that fateful night in December. Oh! The drama that surrounded your arrival! From rushing to the hospital in the dead of night, to having surgery soon as you were born, God showed Himself strong at your birth and I guess that’s why dad named you “Chukwudike”: God is powerful…

The cutest kid with the biggest afro and tiny little perfect teeth, how have you become a man with the deepest of voices, as tall as I am and with a face full of beards? I cannot believe I just saw you off to the University, wow!!!

I cannot believe how time goes by. My tiny sister whom I wouldn’t even let into the kitchen for fear that she would break is now a mum, Chukky who was bow legged and following me all around is now over 6ft tall and set to graduate from the University this summer, and now Didi is off to University as well. 

Dear Didi,

I know that as you read this you’re probably rolling your eyes and wondering why I’m so emotional, but as you venture into the world all by yourself, don’t forget how much I love you and that I am only a phone call away! 

Love,

Maama

Be A Unicorn! 

Sometime ago, I made a batch of cupcakes. I followed the recipe to the letter, and so I had lofty expectations and I expected them to turn out perfect. To my dismay, they turned out wrong. Some of them looked lopsided, others were still a bit runny. The truth of the matter is that out of a batch of eight, only one came out decent. I was a little salty that the other seven chose to go awry, but I was super proud of the one that turned out right. 

Thinking about it now, I should have been proud of all them. They had the same amount of ingredients, they were in the same pan and they baked for the same amount of time. But Sometimes, being different is not a terrible thing. We all started out the same way, cells that latched on to each other and did not let go; but when the time came to be born, we came differently; the point being that we came nevertheless. Via surgery or natural birth we got here and we got here with our own unique set of personalities. 

It’s hard and almost impossible to own your flaws or what others see as your shortcomings, but it is deeply comforting to know that those things that some people loathe about you, others will love. So be like my seven cupcakes, be your own version of okay. Love your freckles, your stretchies, your vulnerability, your whatever it is that makes you somewhat different ; be a unicorn! Be magical, be different, be you. Don’t apologize for your uniqueness, it is not your job to make being around you easy for anyone or to make anyone like you; those who will, will like you regardless. 

Conventional is not for me. I like things that are uniquely Flo. I like being different.”  Florence Griffith 

When I Can’t Sleep…

Insomnia and I, we get along quite well unfortunately. Some nights are easy, I just fall into bed and I am off and most likely won’t wake up till dawn; but some nights like tonight, my eyes stay wide awake, as bright as the sun. Sleep becomes a distant memory and I toss and turn till there’s nothing left of the sheets. 

Tonight is one of those nights. I’m vaguely grateful for my blog app and that I can share my thoughts without assembling my laptop. So it’s me and my phone, sitting at the balcony, reveling in the silence; sweet merciful silence. The generators are off thankfully; no blaring horns, no noise; just peace…

What do you do when you can’t sleep? It’s way too hot for me to consider making a cup of tea. I tried the white noise on my phone and my mum said it sounded like witchcraft! Does witchcraft have a sound??? So it’s me and my phone and my thoughts and the candy bar I found under my pillow.

So today, Mr. E brushed me aside for his mistress soccer. I don’t think there’s anything he loves more, sigh…and he didn’t say goodnight(yes,shade!) maybe if he were up, atleast this insomnia would have fierce competition. Back to reality, my mum has summoned me away from the balcony. “Please come inside and lock my doors for me!!! The days are evil!” I’m very grateful for the darkness that keeps her from seeing just how much I rolled my eyes. 

This room is hot. I forgot to charge my phone. Oh! Nepa or Phcn or whatever your name is, please have a heart and give us light. Me too I’ll do shakara tomorrow, shebi you love your soccer; I will find something to love ni. I need a spa day and a manipedi asap!. What will I do to my hair? To cut it again and color, or no? 

Those are all the thoughts running through my tired mind. I need to break up with insomnia, it’s becoming a very toxic relationship.

What do you do when you cannot fall asleep???

Dear 3am, we have got to stop meeting this way; I’d much rather sleep with you.”- Anonymous 

Like A Carousel…

When we lose a loved one,

The grief is unthinkable…

We make vows and resolve to always keep in touch…

We write lengthy trubutes filled with

Tears and sad emojis.

But like it always does, life goes on.

Another day, another struggle.

And all our vows and resolve to keep in touch,

Slowly fade away,left behind in the struggle.

The struggle to pay bills, to manage life

And family, and career. 

The struggle to stay alive, period.

And the cycle continues…till someone else dies…

Life is like a carousel.

I never stops. Up and down it goes.

Whether or not you’re ready,

Whether or not you want it to, it never stops.

Life is like a carousel.

You cannot make it stop,

You cannot get off,

Until you have to.

Until you get to your stop…

-Adaugo 2017

Rock Bottom

There’s light they say 

There’s light at the end of the tunnel

Yeah, yeah

I’ve heard it all before…

Where’s this light?

Each day brings a new hurdle,

One day, one trouble 

Quit while I’m ahead,

That’s what I’ll do…

But then a good friend comes along

Chin up! She says

There’s hope, there’s Jesus 

So there’s hope.

Wipe those tears, smile instead 

And remember, that it’ll be ok!

Cos’ that’s the beauty of hitting rock bottom…

There’s no where left to go but up!

And smile I will, cos now I know 

That there’s certainly light

At the end of this tunnel…

Adaugo 2016

If You’re Feelin’ Blue…

Its 3:47am, I should be asleep, but instead I’m on my phone and just as I finally decide to put my phone down, I see the picture on my home screen, it’s a picture of me and my little sweetheart Lola. Now, those who know me are very aware of the fact that dogs petrify me. I don’t play with them, I don’t look at them, I am generally not an animal lover, not since I was a kid but this dog came into my life and changed the game on me.

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Her owner went out of town for a couple of days, so we only have her for a few days, and I am actually  dreading the fact that she has to go home soon. I was safely keeping my distance until one night I went to the kitchen to get some water, and this dog set her paws on my legs and she wouldn’t let go. Took me a minute to get over my initial shock and fear to actually realize that she was just a sweet little dog who wanted to play.

How I went from not caring to worrying about her is quite baffling. I worry if she has eaten, if she likes her food, I worry that she is alone when we go out, I want to leave the lights on for her so she won’t be in the dark or get lonely. I think I might now understand the attachment some people have to their dogs, there’s just so much love and trust in their eyes. So I’ll just be honest and say I haven’t had anyone feel that way about me or vice versa in a while.

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Me and my little love…

I don’t mean to sound weird or overly emotional but these past couple of days I’ve been battling with loneliness.  My whole family is a thousand miles away from me and there aren’t any words to describe how much I miss them, add being single to the mix and it’s just a sob story. The last few weeks have been very challenging for me to say the least and so it was such a breath of fresh air and such welcome affection from a tiny little brown dog. I think in a way it’s just God’s way of reminding me that I am not as alone as I think and that it’s about time I stopped feeling sorry for myself.  Also that there is love all around me and I just have to open my heart and accept it. If you’re reading this and you are feeling a little blue like I am, this is a loving reminder that you are not alone, if you feel like nobody loves you, remember that God Himself loves you and is concerned about you, because in this crazy world we live in its so easy to forget how loved we truly are.

If I have said it a thousand times, I will say it again, you are not alone. Maybe all you need to do is to pick up your phone and call your family, or your friends who you haven’t heard from in a while. Take a walk, read a book, learn a song, try a new dish in the kitchen, dance in front of your bathroom mirror, say hi to a random stranger, whatever it takes to ease that hollow feeling in your chest, do it! Life is too short and too precious to be unhappy, and if nobody has loved you lately, be rest assured that I do.

“Why do I write? It’s not because I want people to think I am smart, or even that I am a good writer. I write because I want to end my loneliness.” – Jonathan Safran Foer