On mangoes and cheating spouses…

I love fruits, I really do. My favorite fruit has to be grapes, especially when they are frozen. I can write an entire post about my love for grapes. Udara is a close second (I don’t know the English name for it.) The number three spot goes to…You guessed it!!! Mangoes. Particularly the sherri and German species.

I have bought my fruits from the same woman for as long as I can remember and I truly consider her a friend. When I saw her in February after years away from home, she gave me a bagful of fruits and we spent a good thirty minutes catching up; I digress. You’re probably wondering what mangoes have to do with cheating spouses, here goes:

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So unfortunately, Udara season is over *insert tears of anguish* but the silver lining is that after udara goes, mango resumes LOL so it’s almost a win win situation for me. This afternoon on my way from Church, I had my smile in place and I headed to my favourite fruit stall. After our usual banter, I looked at her wares but the mangoes weren’t calling my name. They didn’t look ripe and they weren’t just appealing. I was still rummaging around, trying to find some good ones when I looked at the stall next to hers and saw the most beautiful, perfectly yellow, succulent sherri mangoes. I was so torn. I didn’t want to hurt her feelings by buying from her neighbour but I also wanted the ripe mangoes from the next stall.

I managed to stifle my longing for the luscious mangoes, bought a few unappealing mangoes from my friend and went on home. Let’s compare our spouses to those mangoes shall we? I recently watched a show where people who have cheated on their spouses were interviewed and they gave their reasons for cheating. Majority of them cheated because their partners weren’t as appealing as they used to be or because the magic simply wasn’t there anymore. Those excuses are lame mehn! If the magic is fading, make new magic, rekindle the flames or whatever! Stay with the wife/husband you promised to love till death did you both part!

I guess my point is if I could walk away from those delicious mangoes, you can walk away from temptation!

Everyone must choose one of two pains: The pain of discipline or the pain of regret.”-Jim Rohn

29 going on 60…

My birthday is always the one day of the year where I have no worries, the one day where there isn’t any cloud in the sky. It usually kicks off with the generic message that my bank sends me to tell me how much I mean to them blah blah blah, then the calls and the messages and the status updates and the everything. Some of the messages are well thought out and deeply personal and might even make me cry, others are impersonal and to the point, and somehow I already know that the next time I will speak to or hear from such people will be on their own birthday or next year on mine again. I usually don’t get any gifts (yes, shade to all my friends and family) but I honestly don’t mind because the heartfelt prayers and the love soothes my soul way more than material things would.

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So on March 17th, I turned 29. It wasn’t a cloud free day but I didn’t mind. My sister dragged me out for drinks and I got to see my niece so it was a day very well spent. But the thing about birthdays is that they have a way of waking you up! On every birthday since I turned 20, there is always one part of the day where it suddenly hits me that this is a whole new year, one step closer to the grave, one year further away from youth. I end up thinking of the things I have achieved and even more about the things I have not achieved and usually I come to terms with my life as it is but this year was different.

29 is a very awkward age for me, it feels like I am standing on the precipice of something that I don’t quite know. A year away from 30, the last year that I can officially say that I am in my late twenties and this year, the birthday reflections did not wait to hit me at a random time of day; they hit me as soon as I opened my eyes. All I could think about was all that I haven’t done. The husband I haven’t married, the babies I haven’t had, the places I haven’t seen, the feelings I haven’t felt, the book I haven’t written, the car I haven’t driven, It went on and on and on. Typically, the tears came and they came hot and fast and rolled down my cheeks in rapid succession. Ordinarily I would have let them. I would have cried myself into puffy eyes and a blocked nose and a raging headache but this time, this time was different. I got up, cleaned my eyes and played my favorite playlist. I did my makeup, treated myself to a special breakfast, went for a job interview, saw my dearest friends,  rocked my niece to sleep, and went out for drinks and I must say that it was a beautiful, somewhat cry free day.

Whats the point of this post you ask? The point is that I have grown up some. I have finally learned to consciously count my blessings and not my sorrows, to be grateful for what I do have, rather that pinning for what I have lost or I am yet to have. I Finally learned to ditch the tears because listen the eyes are the first to age; and my eyes are my best feature sooooo I better catch up on my carrots and cucumbers and glasses of water rather than crying and always rubbing at my eyes. Plus I already have eye bags, why enlarge them further?

I am only 29, but sometimes I feel like I am 60 and that is my fault, because really what is stopping me from being happy go lucky? Life is for the living, and you are only as old as you want to be. Last year, I shared 28 lessons I learned from turning 28 but this year I have just one; find some time to find yourself. Don’t be like me, so caught up in other people that you forget yourself, we only have one life, and there are no dress rehearsals or do overs. Choose yourself, it’s time!.

“You’ll learn, as you get older, that rules are made to be broken. Be bold enough to live life on your terms, and never, ever apologize for it. Go against the grain, refuse to conform, take the road less traveled instead of the well-beaten path. Laugh in the face of adversity, and leap before you look. Dance as though EVERYBODY is watching. March to the beat of your own drummer. And stubbornly refuse to fit in.”
Mandy Hale, The Single Woman: Life, Love, and a Dash of Sass

We ain’t never gettin’ older!…” The Chainsmokers

Hello From The Other Side!…

Hello from the other side, literally! I am sitting in my old room, on my old bed writing this heartfelt post. A lot has happened since the last time I was here. The most monumental of them being that I moved back home for now; well, not really, I live in Nigeria once again. *mentally inserts “for now”* it took a lot to move my life around, to pack three years of my life into three suitcases but I did it! Amidst all the conflicting opinions and all the emotions and everything, I can sincerely say that I am glad to be home, there truly isn’t any place like home and all the minor inconveniences seem like a small price to pay.

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February 21st 4:35 pm, my flight touched down in Lagos. I had been staring at the window as soon as I was able to see the trees and houses gradually start to appear, and as they grew from tiny specs to fully formed images, it was all I could do not to cry. I promptly forgot all the tediousness that came with twelve straight hours of flying, the TERRIBLE food and three slices of fruit that Delta Airline served us, LOL. I forgot my snoring, drooling seatmate who by the way wasn’t so bad when he wasn’t snoring like a freight truck. I peeled myself away from the window, hastily removed my socks and my jacket, stashed my book, my scarf and my passport in my hand bag and mentally prepared myself for landing. Boom! We landed and as is the norm on almost every Nigerian flight, there was hearty applause for the pilot in gratitude for the smooth landing and loud sighs of relief, followed by copious choruses of “thank you Jesus”. I was oblivious to all of that, I only had one mission, get my suitcase and head to immigration, oh! And pee, as I hadn’t peed in fourteen hours and then some. (Don’t ask why)

Ah! the blast of humid, hot air that greets you as soon as you get off the aircraft, never disappoints. Nor does the instant itching and sense of mild disgust at the state of the airport, but all that though was tempered with the thought that in a few short hours my niece would be in my arms and the delicious eforiro and white rice my sister made for me specially would be in my belle. So who cared if the airport was as hot as hell? Or that the stench from the nearby toilets made my eyes water? Of that it took forever to find my luggage? Or that my mum was late to pick me up? All was forgotten as soon as I walked into my sister’s home and I saw my niece! Dear Lord is she gorgeous??? Shes the cutest little thing and I still cannot believe my tiny sister made a chunky baby like her, God is awesome! Really.

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So I am back home my people, and its almost like I never left. And all the preferential treatments I had been enjoying such as specially made meals, running the generator all night and making my brothers run all my errands are officially over because my “IJGB Status”- (I Just Got Back) has since expired and its back to jumping buses and fanning myself to sleep. Wouldn’t trade it for the intense loneliness in America though, never!

God knows I missed you guys but I am back now, for real! It was my birthday a few weeks ago and I just might do a post on that later.

“it don’t matter where we go, we always find our way back home…”- Andy Grammer

“Nothing is better than going home to family and eating good food and relaxing.”- Irina Shayk

 

Tell Me…

If you are a writer, there is nothing as daunting as a blinking cursor. Nothing as taunting as that little black line, blinking away daring you to write but you have no words so you just sit there and stare, stare at it until you slam your laptop close in frustration. There is nothing as frustrating as reaching for your phone because you thought you heard a beep only to find that it was a phantom beep; no one sent you a message, no one is calling.  Your mind is playing tricks on you because you want your phone to beep, you want a call or text or something! nothing as painful as scrolling through your timeline, seeing your friends celebrating milestones, and achieving great things. There is nothing quite like sucking it up, repressing that surge of envy and typing them a congratulatory message…

“So and so asked me out and I don’t want to date any of them, I don’t have the time to date because I am trying to…” it’s painful to hear because you cannot relate but you smile anyway. The only man that has spoken to you in months is the doorman at your apartment, asking you if you had a good day and telling you that you have mail. Tell me what is worse than seeing your plans unravel, adjusting and resizing your dreams because they just won’t work out like you hope they would. Does it get lonelier that screaming in the shower and standing there till the hot water runs out and you are forced to get out of the tub?

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A lonely street…photo Credit: Me

What bigger lie is there than “I am fine”? Even when everything inside of you aches, when uncertainty and doubts and insecurities have pitched tents in your head, but you smile anyway because it is easier to say “I’m fine” than to try and explain why you cry yourself to sleep every night. What hurts more when your friends fail to support you and be there for you when you need them the most? Or when you stop confiding in them altogether because your problems are starting to sound depressing even to you? So the bottle of henney you stashed away in your room becomes your best friend and you spend hours and hours on social media because it feels good to watch funny videos and to read about other people’s misfortune for a change…

Your social media presence is quite strong, your posts and pictures are carefully selected, and well picked out and the likes are pouring in by the numbers. But then you make the mistake of  giving  yourself the false belief that if people don’t like you in real life, at least they like your pictures and status updates. Tell me what is more ignorant than saying “Oh, He/She is fine, I saw their status update and pictures the other day” don’t you know that people are not all they seem to post? We often lie to ourselves, especially we Africans that everything is alright, that all is well. Nobody takes mental health seriously and if you say you want to see a shrink or seek psychiatric help, you are instantly labelled crazy.

This probably wasn’t a happy post to read was it? But it’s real, and if we tell ourselves the truth, we have all found ourselves in one or more of the aforementioned situations. Lend a listening ear, a hug, your time or whatever it is you can if you sense that the people you love might need it. Do something!

This is real, I am one to talk; I should know.

Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad.”― Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

You say you’re ‘depressed’ – all I see is resilience. You are allowed to feel messed up and inside out. It doesn’t mean you’re defective – it just means you’re human.”― David Mitchell

 

Dear Late Bloomer…

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Dear late bloomer,

Other flowers might seem pretty and charming and quick to bloom…

Their leaves dazzling to the eyes, their scents delightful to smell,

People pass over you to pick their shiny petals,

And gift them to each other as a symbol of love and hope…

But in the midst of the shinny and bright, the colorful and dainty,

There lies you. Sturdy and a little hidden, tendrils barely reaching out.

Never given a second thought, never picked or fawned over.

Often bent in order to reach the lovelier ones,

But fret not late bloomer, fret not..

For the Master knows just what He’s doing.

Be patient and allow yourself to grow, to be pruned, to flourish…

Because in due time, Just when the time is right,

You will bloom!

And Oh! You will be shinier and more colorful than any flower that ever was and ever will be.

And because God took His time with you, those that skipped you will flee back…

Lines will form just for you, for your beauty and resilience will be echoed around the world.

So Dear late bloomer,

Fret not…grow and bloom at your own pace,

‘Cos soon, you will be the belle of the ball.

And I know this because I am just like you…

 -Adaugo 2016

How To Get Over Your Ex!…

Breakups are  never easy, especially when you were really in love and had grand plans for the future, but like death, rain and taxes, breakups are always bound to happen and will literally break you like the name implies and the question now becomes how to rebuild yourself.

I thought about this post long and hard because being vulnerable is not an easy thing for me and especially in this era where everyone has an opinion about things they have no business having opinions about, it’s really hard to be open and honest but for the love of writing and for my readers who are dear to my heart, I decided to share.

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I do a lot of thinking, like I literally sit on my bathroom floor or on the bus or in my closet or anywhere really and just lapse into deep thought, OK not that deep but still I think a lot and even more lately. So another year has come and gone, another new year, vals day, Easter, birthday, summer, fall, and now it’s almost winter and Christmas is around the corner and I am still single, wow. How did that happen? How did a whole year go by without anyone seeing me? Loose some weight, go out more often, do fun stuff, be open minded they said; done, done and done (well, except for the weight) but alas here we are. So I got to thinking, and thinking and thinking. What am I doing wrong? I am not the world’s biggest girl, I’m beautiful and smart, LOL it’s not by degrees right? But seriously what is it? Then a light bulb went off, maybe I wasn’t over my ex…

What??? It’s been a couple of years and I sincerely thought that I was, but it took one sentence from my friend to jolt me into the realization. So my friend and I were chatting the other day and the subject came up and he said to me: You cannot be loved because you won’t let anyone love you. I was floored by this statement and so damn mad, I was just about to lose my cool but the voice of reason kicked in and I allowed him to explain himself and when he was done, boy! The truth is always bitter, nobody likes hearing the truth but I got over myself and really listened to what he had to say and just maybe he was right…maybe I cannot be loved in this state that I’m in mentally, because I am still kind of angry about how it all ended and I have been walking around carrying the weight of the world on my shoulders, unconsciously holding on to the fact that just maybe he would come back to me and we would make it work again, I could go on and on but in my thinking it was clear to me that there is only one way to get over your ex and it is this: get over yourself, and then get over him or her, in that order.

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both pics were taken on the same day(when I still had hair lol), on the right I had just cried my eyes out and wallowed in self pity quite a bit and on the left, I fixed my face, went out with some friends and blossomed in their company and in several glasses of wine soooo, it’s up to you to cheer yourself on, don’t fail yourself!

You made mistakes, so what? You wasted your precious time loving someone and then they broke your hearts and stomped all over it? What’s done is really done. No amount of reminiscing or moping around or listening to love songs will change any of the events that has already transpired, so all you can literally do is get over it!

  • Accept your portion of the blame for whatever it is that might have happened, forgive yourself and look inward to see how you can do better next time.
  • STOP stalking them on social media; not everything they post is about you, they just might have moved on and it’s time to follow suit.
  • Forgive them and let them go, because the longer you hold on to unforgiveness and bitterness and anger, guess who you’re hurting? You!
  • Fall in love with yourself, rediscover just how awesome you are, take care of you and become an even more amazing version of yourself.
  • Disband the pity party, for a night of wallowing, I prescribe three nights of going out! sitting around moping will change nothing!
  • A rebound relationship is the most stupid thing you will ever do. You don’t need to get under someone to get over your ex, I don’t even know why that quote is allowed to be a quote. Rebounds never solve anything, they are just another mistake on top your pile of mistakes.

So its time for me to take a deep breath and let go of all the sentiments, the what ifs and the reminiscing about the fun times and to just get on with my life, open minded and ready to dip my toes into the water again. Will it be easy? No matter of fact it is downright painful and especially in the world we live in today where everyone else seems to be deliriously in love and happy and living in Lala land and you’re just there. But it will be worth in the end, it has to be. How to get over your ex? Get over him or her, that’s how!

Like we always do, let’s talk about this; how have you gotten over break ups? I want to learn a thing or two or more from you guys…

“Sometimes it takes a heartbreak to shake us awake & help us see we are worth so much more than we’re settling for.”― Mandy Hale

On Hand Writings & The Big Chop

Hey guys, its me again! Remember me? Your best friend?, LOL

A lot has happened since the last time, but before I catch you up, lets do this quick little handwriting tag. Since Mfon @daintyM could not be bothered to tag me, I decided to tag myself. Apparently you’re supposed to write a few things in your handwriting and post it on here, so here goes:

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I actually had fun writing this, I don’t remember the last time I actually sat down to put pen to paper and to write something, I am so used to taking notes on my phone. I can only hope my handwriting is legible enough. OK that’s a lie, I wrote my grocery list today, but it was barely legible.

In other news, I haven’t written in so long because I would have bled all over the pages and it might have been a little sad, and maybe hard to decipher. But as always, I have risen above and I am also working on a way to share my struggles and victories with you guys, so that even if it encourages only one person I can rejoice in it.

I cut my hair! So I took the plunge and did the big chop, and I must say it is the most therapeutic thing I ever did, I didn’t think I could and other than the slight twinge of emotion I felt when I saw all my hair on the floor, I haven’t had a single moment of regret and can I just say that feeling the water run down my head everyday in the shower is THE BEST FEELING EVER!!!

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So this is it guys, watch this space though, I will post some stuff this weekend and it will be good!

Love,

Adaugo

“Irony, we want our handwriting to look like typed fonts, and our computer fonts to look like handwritten text.”
Vikrmn Corpkshetra

“How to get over your EX? Get over him that’s how!”-random lady on the bus

 (totally unrelated to this post, but watch this space this weekend)