Sometimes, Its OK Not To Be OK…

You can’t be strong all the time, you simply can’t. Its OK to cry sometimes, therapeutic even. Its OK to be sad, to be angry and or be upset at the turn of certain events. However, it is not OK to dwell on those feelings, cry but then wipe your tears and move on, Be sad, but then remind yourself that you are better off than certain people and that it could have been worse then promptly make up your mind to be happy. Be upset or angry but like the Bible says don’t let the sun set on your anger.

Its OK to lean on people, you cannot stand by yourself all the time,but be careful not to lean too much for everyone has their own baggage to carry. A support system is important too, mine comprises of my God, my mum, my siblings, my Pastor, and some select friends. You can figure out a selection that works for you and you will be amazed at how much lighter the burdens will become.

Disband the pity party! do not sit alone and whine and complain about how bad things are for you and about how things are not working out as they should, make a conscious effort to be thankful instead. You could make a list, maybe write it down, or type it on your phone or on your laptop. A list of the things you are thankful for, you will find that you might not even be able to write them all because for each thing that goes wrong, there something that goes right, something to be thankful for.

Its OK not to be Ok, and to lean on someone every once in a while, nobody has to be alone, everyone needs someone.

This Constant Struggle…

This is a subject that is deeply personal to me and it is my hope that anyone out there going through a similar situation will read this and know that they are not alone. For so many years I have struggled with this, walked in this valley and shed a river of tears but I have come to realize that the only person holding me back is me.

Life as a plus sized person has not been the easiest and like I already mentioned has been a constant struggle for me. From the hurtful comments to the thinly veiled sarcasms to outright insults its been hard to just be. People seem to forget that words hurt. Actual physical pain can come from a few words that come from someone’s mouth. “You really need to watch your weight”. “You are a very beautiful girl but if only you were slimmer”. “Ah! as fat as you are you still eat? pls stop eating.”  “I would have bought you the dress but your size was unavailable”. All these sentences have been said to me and in very recent times too, by friends, and sometimes strangers. They are usually accompanied with laughter and a series of “I am just kidding oh!”  but they have been said nevertheless.

Society has a definition of beautiful and its getting smaller and smaller these days. Its why people, especially women all over the world are bending over backwards, not minding the costs to fit themselves into what society thinks they should be.

How did I get here? I didn’t make any conscious decision to be fat, somehow over the years, the scales kept shifting and it didn’t even occur to me that maybe it was time to make a change until recently. I am not absolving myself of blame. I should have taken some steps to prevent it, and I didn’t so its on me but I don’t need any constant reminders especially from people I barely know.

It took a recent trip to the Doctor to open my eyes to the fact that It was time to make a change and make it fast and I am. I am making those changes. Changing my habits has been a slow and painful process but I am. I am consciously making those changes and I am confident that they will pay off soon,God helping me.

Do I ever want to be skinny? No! I have come to a stage in my life where I don’t care so much anymore of what people think I am or who they think I should be. I want to live a long and healthy life and I am working towards it and with God on my side I will make it.

I am beautiful, inside and out. I am smart, kind, easygoing and happy go lucky. If you cant look beyond my body and see me for me, then that’s not on me.

I am thankful to my mother, my sister and my brothers, my aunts and my friends who have stood by me all these years. Do they tell me I need to loose weight? Yes they do. but do they smirk about it, call me names and be crude about it? No and this is why I am deeply thankful to them. My mother tells me I am a star, her star and she makes me feel like a million bucks and that makes it all better. I have a great support system and I am blessed.

So, to anyone reading this who is big, people will stare, ask you pay extra on buses, make crude comments about you even when you try to jog on the road side, but take a page from my book, lose the weight for all the right reasons, lose the weight for you, for your health not because anyone thinks you should or because that’s the only way you can be beautiful or acceptable.

Above all, love yourself because if you don’t, nobody else will.

Why Am I Here?

I thought I knew what I wanted very early in life. I knew what age I wanted to finish from the university, intended course of study, career path, when I wanted to get married and how many kids I wanted to have. I knew all these thinQuestion_markgs, dreamt about them and in my naivety  I was so sure they would pan out exactly how I thought they would. 

Over the years, things seem to have gone in a totally different direction, all my lofty dreams and visions have gone unrealised and I have adjusted my numerous checklists so many times that I have lost count. Alot of questions have been on my mind…If all my plans had gone the way I had hoped they would, I might have been married, might have been having my second baby and managing my career at the same time but after all that, what would have been next??? 

What was I created to be? Wife, Mother and? I wish there were answers, I wish I knew. I believe I was made for a reason but for the life of me I have no idea what that is…am I the only one going through this? who is unsure as to what exactly the point of all this is? 

Give it time, thats what everyone says so thats what I will do, I shall keep praying to God too, He made me so He has all the answers. In the mean time, I’ll live each day trying to impact someone, to bring a smile to someone’s face and to do whatever my hand finds to do to the best of my ability.

“Somehow, we’ll find it. The balance between whom we wish to be and whom we need to be. But for now, we simply have to be satisfied with who we are.”
Brandon Sanderson, The Hero of Ages

Photo credit: assassinscreed.wikia.com

What friendship Means To Me

Some years ago I got into the University and I knew no one. There was not a single familiar face and it was tough spending my early days in school alone. For someone as outgoing as myself, I was so convinced that I was going to make a lot of friends very quickly but it was not so, Sooner or later, I met six amazing individuals and I will try to use our story to explain what friendship means to me…

Jainee, Sef, Mims, Ebi, Lolu and Ohaks; anybody who knew me in school knew these girls along with me. We went every where together, ate almost every meal together, went to church together, sometimes even the Library! Guys were scared to walk up to us because we were intimidating, well so they said … There were very few things that we did not do together, and though we were seldom in the same hostel, it made no difference. Now, it wasn’t all sunshine, rainbows and unicorns, we had fights, very major fights that we didn’t even know we could get back from, but we did and it made us even stronger.

School was bearable thanks to them and soon we became sisters, we knew each others parents and families and it was hard to to believe we only met in school. We each had very different personalities. I was the bubbly one, the outgoing and goofy one. Jainee, half nerd, half dancer…one of the best dancers in school then, Roommate at some point and my fellow Indomie Noodles chef. Sef was the reserved one with big dreams about establishing a fashion empire which by the way she’s now on her way to doing. Mims had an adventurous streak, and was never afraid to try any thing new. Lolu, quiet and prayerful and not as goofy as the rest of us, Ebi was probably the most serious one of us all, very prayerful, she was our Chaplain and many evenings of Bible studies happened in her room, and then Ohaks. Ohaks danced alot too, and she had a creative imagination. She held us spellbound with her stories and always had something quirky to say.

One of the best things about our friendship is laughter. We laughed so hard sometimes, we cried. We laughed all the time, and everywhere even at meal times. People who listen to us speak will think we are probably stroke victims because of the way we talk when we are together, hard for others to decipher and it is often impossible to read chats between Jainee and myself because of our lingua.

Then life happened…school ended, and NYSC came, soon jobs came and it became impossible to catch up. Everyone was living their lives and for a moment we lost sight of what we had in school. The beauty of it is that though we are far away from each other, somehow we are making it work.  Ebi is in the UK and is almost a Dr. I’m so proud of her, Jainee has a demanding career that took her to far away China at some point and so does Mims and Ohaks, Sef is a proud business owner and she deals in what she knows best which is fashion. Lolu is a happy wife and mother to an adorable little girl. God has blessed us all and even though we don’t see each other or speak as often as we would love to, it feels good to know that they are always there and just a phone call away.

I have other friends who mean the world to me too( My heart is that big, yes!) and I am thankful for each and everyone of them, they are way too numerous to mention and I love them all…

What does friendship mean to me?

Friendship means trust, it means love, it means sacrifice and it means commitment… I am blessed with friends that support me, motivate me and encourage me. If you don’t have friends that pray for you and support you and tell you the truth even if you don’t want to hear it, then you need to re-evaluate as fast as you can.

Show me your friends, and I will show you who you are. I am proud to show mine anywhere, they are a worthy reflection…

Enjoy your week!

Not So Random Tip: If you live in Abuja, stop by at Suite A56 Area 11 Shopping Mall, 2nd Floor above Fidelity Bank, Ahmadu Bello Way, Area 11 Garki, Abuja. BB pin: 74672FB3, IG: @bellabrandfashion…That’s my friend Sef’s store details, and if you tell her you saw it here, you just might get a discount!

Where Is Your Laughter?…

Yessss….Yesssss your money for back. The bus conductor dashed any hope I had of catching a brief nap on my way to work. I faced the window and attempted to sleep again only for him to nudge me; yessss sister your money, I no get change oh…after attempting to give him my special brand of ”bad eye” I dug out my wallet and paid him.

I put my head down again and continued my bumpy ride to work until the guy beside me decided that 6:15 am was the best time to play Eleda Mi by Olamide on his loud “chinko” phone, I raised my head to glare at him but when I saw that he and some other passengers on the bus were humming along to the song, I decided not be a kill joy and reached into my hand bag for my earpiece. I searched and searched and only then did I realize that one of my brothers must have borrowed it and forgot to return it to my bag. At this point I was so distraught and all the sleep I was clinging to had fled from my eyes.

Before long I was at my bustop and when I got down from the bus I remembered  hadn’t collected my  750 Naira change from the conductor, I turned to ask him but the bus was zooming away and I couldn’t run after it. At this point I was livid, and  was so convinced that my day was off to a bad start. I had my frown in place and proceeded to climb the bridge and then I saw a friend of mine…

This friend of mine is a crippled guy that sits on the Lekki bridge every morning. There’s always a smile on his face as he whistles cheerily while sweeping the bridge from corner to corner… Him: Ah “Ore Mi! (Ore Mi is the Yoruba word for My Friend) how you dey today? why your face be like this? wey your laugh dey”? Hearing this promptly turned my frown into a smile and I reached into my bag to give him some money like I do daily, but he stopped me and said: “Ore, no worry, this laugh wey you laugh so don reach me,we go see tomorrow”. 

That gesture touched me deep in my soul, because it dawned on me that while I was busy talking myself into being angry so early in the morning, this guy who has no legs and no job was busy finding joy while he was sweeping the bridge. Where is your laughter? where is your smile? the economy is dwindling, you don’t have a car, a good job, a spouse, a house, Brazilian and Peruvian hair, lol… whatever it may be. Learn from my friend on the bridge like i did and make up your mind to be happy and be grateful no matter what the circumstances may be.

Laughter is good for the soul, laugh often and do your best to make other people laugh too, you will be glad you did!

Proverbs 17:22- ”A merry heart doeth good like a medicine, but a broken spirit drieth the bones…”

Random Fact: Dark chocolate, honey and eggs can help increase blood flow, prevent depression and increase your energy.

Where Did My Dreams Go?…

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When I was a little girl, I was so sure I was going to be a TV presenter. I made my sister’s life miserable with my fake shows, she was my crew, my hair and makeup artiste, my audience, my everything. I would sit in front of the mirror with my mother’s wooden spoon which doubled as my microphone and talk my heart out pretending I had a huge and adoring audience.

Fast forward twenty-something years later and I am definitely not a TV presenter! Maybe because I talk way too fast or maybe because I did not think I was cut out to be one, or I was too shy or… I have a million excuses but the fact is that i did not follow my dreams…

Where have your dreams gone? did you loose the nerve to follow them? did your family or friends think they weren’t cool enough? did marriage and kids cost you your dreams? or like me do you have a million excuses?

Here is the thing about dreams, they often times are too big for you to comprehend, and they will sound stupid to the people you might share them with but don’t give up on them just yet. Start by writing them down,  and never forget that whatever you set out to do is feasible all you need to do is to want it badly enough to make it happen.

So quit being a coward and take that first step today, make that call today, write that business proposal today, start that research today, there will always be excuses but if you persevere and say no to procrastination, you are already on your way.

Will I ever become a TV presenter?  Will I ever stop stuttering? Will I ever be bold enough to pursue a career in TV? The answer is YES!!! world, watch out because  ” The Marach Show”  just might happen.

Follow your dreams,who knows where they may lead you?

Random Fact: In China, killing a Panda is punishable by death!

What If?…

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What if you have stopped loving your job, your spouse, your friends, your life??? What if everything feels wrong to you? What if your life feels like you are starring in a poorly directed movie? or like a pair of shoes that you really love but they just wouldn’t fit?

I can bet you that you are not crazy or paranoid, a million and one people are going through the same things…Its life! the plans we make fall apart, the things we are so sure will work out don’t even come close to happening, the man you thought would love you till the day he died didn’t even make it past the first month! i could go on and on.

Take a step back and examine yourself and the life you live, amazingly you might find that you really are doing nothing wrong but what if you are? what if you take life too seriously? what if you are so obsessed with your long term goals that you forget to live in the now? what if you have forgotten to find joy in the simple things like; a child’s laughter, a funny billboard, the smell of a freshly mowed lawn? (well if you live in some parts of Lagos, chances are you might  never smell or even see a freshly mowed lawn) but hey, whatever it is that gives you joy, do it! quit scheduling it, don’t over think it, like Nike says; just do it.

”What do you love doing? Eating? Eat the way you like it…maybe with your hands. Sleeping? Sleep the way you like…maybe on the floor/mat sometimes. Walking, eating, writing, drinking? Do it the way you love to do it. You will be surprised at the joy that comes with the anonymity.”- (‘Kunle Olaifa 2013)

Have an amazing week, do away with the what ifs and just be happy! you’ll see, it works.

Random fact: Deep breathing can help release tension and toxins from your body!