Finally, a cactus!

I don’t remember the last time I was this elated about something. You know when you just can’t keep calm. Or quiet. Its just itching to get out. Like I want to shout on a mountain top kind of thing.

So I finally got a cactus! Okay, didn’t ‘get’ it necessarily, someone got me a cactus as a first gift. And I don’t remember the last time a gift got me all mushy like that.

I think for as long as plants have existed, I have always wanted a cactus. It isn’t my favorite plant. Baobab take the first prize. But I’ve been looking for small baobabs to no avail. By small I mean like a 100 years small. Juzi I told my dad that I had never seen a small baobab, I was asking if he had ever seen one. And I forgot about that topic. Until when suddenly on the road some days later, he stopped on a highway and made a U-turn, to show me a ‘small’ baobab along Mombasa highway. I have never been more satisfied. My mind went into a ‘ so they do exist’. I admit that I had been getting worried about the possibility of baobabs going extinct. I mean, if small ones don’t exist, then probably we were seeing the last of their awesome kind.

Anyway, I had digressed. So since I kinda can’t have a baobab in a pot( I think its possible, but I might have to search the ends of earth to know how to either germinate one, or find a tiny little baobab seedling anywhere), I had settled on my second favorite plant, a Cactus. Third one is acacia in case you want to know. And fourth one, up to the last one are all arid and semi-arid plants.

Its more like giving a tribute to my roots. I come from a dry place. And I find that art rarely represents us. Like I don’t see my hometown represented by anything I ever see around. Be it drawings, pictures or even where videos are shot. So home always feels like that alien place that exists in my heart. Well, and in my love for arid things. I could say I am more of a desert girl. Explains why Turkana has been one of my most idolized travel destinations. Like I think if I traveled to 3 African countries and when I finally set foot in Turkana, the Turkana experience will feel more like home, in a different way. Also explains why I was so damn excited to go to Chalbi desert.

Anyway, don’t remember where we were in this story, but I got a cactus!! Was almost considering hugging it, but that was moments before it reminded me that even touching it would hurt. Its producing this prickly little thorns that get into the skin and kinda itch. Which reminds me of the sun at home. I love sunny weather, but there is a reason we don’t walk around at noon at home, the sun will fry you alive.

So after getting my cactus and hoping my excitement kinda subsides so that we get into the business of taking care of it, not that it requires day to day care- which is another reason why I love it, it occurred to me, that this is actually the first thing, or person ( let’s just settle on living thing), that I have chosen to take care of. Like life didn’t give it to me the way we don’t choose family etc, but that I’ve gone out of my way to love this weird plant and now I have it in my house and its dependent on me for survival.

And my heart is so elated! To date I’m always surprised at how ‘simple’ my heart’s desires are. Like the things I love and desire are so simple, that I’m surprised by how easy it would be to date myself ( ahem 😂😄)

Anyhow, this cactus has validated so many things in my life. At this point I think I sound like those first time mothers saying how they are now seeing the world in different beautiful lenses since their babies come. That is so me right now. Anyway I should probably finish writing this so that I continue watching videos of what not to do in raising cacti.

Ooh..and one last motivational quote from a new mother ( of a beautiful- no baby is ever ugly, cactus), you see all those clowns you are crying over for breaking your heart? Just leave them. Like don’t think even twice about it. One day you shall be minding your own business in the land of the living, and someone, who may not be necessarily yours, shall have listened to those weird ideas you alone thought sane enough to hold and put them to heart. ( for clarification, I’m the sole custody holder of this baby- not sharing my rights with anyone, be pricked by yours😆)

Of course I shall be sharing, or do I say over sharing , pictures of my living thing, ooh wait, I should probably name it. Anyway, let the infancy period first pass before we do so, in our community we let things first pass through their most vulnerable state before fully celebrating them. Lest people look at them with bad eyes😎

Good kind of tired.

It has just occurred to me a few seconds ago, that I am tired. Wow. I didn’t expect tiredness to feel like this. Not emotional tiredness, though there is that too, but like a burn out.

You see, the only familiar tiredness is the emotional breakdown one. The one where things become so overwhelming that you just can’t take it anymore. Where you crumble. Where its a breakdown. Can’t move, can’t process anything. That’s what I’ve always meant when I said I am tired.

Until I found myself not wanting to read, work and even travel- if its hectic, I’m not in the mood for it. All these signals have been there since Mid- November.

Somewhere in there I noticed I was throwing everything to 2020. And though I know holding off stuff is never a good thing, I just couldn’t help it. I could feel I don’t have the energy required to start those amazing things.

But I ignored that loss of energy, because I have never ever started closing my year in November. I’m a sucker for endings and new beginnings. I love my endings neat and packaged. Closure for the year. Which I usually have at the last week of the year.

But this one came a whole month and a half before. And I was perplexed by it.

Then December starts and I asked my inner self yesterday what she wanted. I expected some cause or something she would want to work towards. Guess what she wanted? To dance. Be light. Be merry. Like just have a whole month of ‘Christmas’. I still didn’t get the hint.

Until today, when I’m debating on whether to work or not. Of course I have to work. But there is no energy. And its not like I’m doing badly emotionally or anything. We just want to rest.

It must have been a tiring year for me. And I don’t think I had noticed how hard I worked. For everything. My life worked out beautifully this year. But it takes effort , strength and dedication to finally have some foundation.

I’m really looking forward to next year. But for now, I just want to rest. I am tired. My ideal holiday right now would be where I did nothing. Like just stare at the sky, float on a canoe most probably, sleep, laugh at memes, and just stay immobile.

I am tired. And for once, this is a tiredness that I’m fully embracing. I sincerely hope I’ll get enough rest this month.

Within a week

I’ll miss Trevor. But at first, I hated him. Or disliked, since people say hate is such a strong word. Weird how so much can only happen in a week, right? Like you can discover your whole life with a certain person has been a lie. Or have your eyes opened to things you didn’t know that change your entire life.

Or in my case, you can refuse to pray in a crowd for the first time. And own up to the fact that you are actually not a Christian anymore. And when they insist that you pray regardless, you shall proudly say that in your chosen nonreligiousity, you do not pray. And that small public acknowledgement, shall light up your soul in ways you didn’t know possible. Its like taking control of something that belongs to you but had been snatched from your hands.

But back to what can happen within a week, you could meet Trevor. A huge man. Not humongous. Just big, like gym instructor. And tall. Not in a scary way. In a coach-like manner.

And brash.

But at first, he doesn’t concentrate in class. And you hate that. Again, dislike, not hate( note to self, people reserve hate for the devil). Imagine teaching a class with a student always on his phone ? That would be rude, right?

But that only lasts in the theory class. Once the training gets to the skills part, Trevor comes alive, as if he was waiting for this moment. Suddenly he is participating. Overly participative if we are to be honest. Volunteers for shit. Answers back. Asks questions and chooses to demonstrate back. As in, in a twinkle of an eye, Trevor becomes the ideal student. Right from the worst to the best.

While for me? Within a week, I become the Trevor who started out. The one always on their phone. The one whose mind isn’t in class. The one who fumbles when asked a question because reading about Uhuru’s sinking ship sounds better than sitting down for 8 hours a day. My butt complains the whole week. This isn’t what I signed up for in adulthood after a whole lifetime of sitting down in school.

And within a realize that maybe this is what adulthood is about. Experiencing a week with people, going through the motions of life together, hating some bits, quarelling at times, bonding over bad lunch, and finally, finishing and exchanging contacts which you know you probably won’t use, but you still exchange them enthusiastically anyway.

Maybe life is about a week like this. And then another different one. Then another boring one. Then another one. Till its that week when you meet Trevor. And become him. Or till it’s that week when you realize your love life and school life are in the same boat. Sinking. Or till its that week you drink yourself to sleep. Or till its that week you find yourself in Chalbi desert. Or till its that week you barely eat a meal. Or till its that week you go back to therapy.

Until finally, its that week you start alive and end up dead.

Back to me.

I need to return myself back to me.

To recover the pieces that I have so generously shared with the world, and in its usual unmerciful self, it gave me nothing in return. Mostly gave me nothing. And since the world abhors vacuums, the emptiness was quickly filled in with tears and anguish.

I need to return myself to me.

And once again feel the girlish excitement of being alive. Of doing things that bring me alive. Excite this little precious soul of mine. Make this battered heart, once again, a place where flowers grow, instead of the weeds that now inhibit it.

I need to return myself back to me.

And laugh endlessly at my own jokes. At the peculiarities of my brain. At the memory of Ngugi wa Thiong’o’s description of that contraption that was transporting souls to Ilmorog for the festival of thieves. And wipe tears as I wonder how Tricia Adoabi is just a mere mortal, yet that’s the only author that has ever made me throw decorum to the wind and howl in laughter in a foreign country, surrounded by my dreams come true. I need to recapture that in new ways.

And as I return myself to me, I am aware of how much of a battered soul i am returning. One that ventured out into the world. And got bitten in the ass while at it. Not once, not twice or thrice.

And as I coil back my tail to in between my legs, may I not regret the tears, but instead celebrate the courage. May I not guilt trip whoever between the soul, heart and mind, thought it a good idea to give ourselves to mere mortals, when we have always known we were made for the gods. May my heart not worry much about how it got here, but about how to grow back wings, and fly on its own.

I want to return myself back to me.

To feel the warmth of being alone. The heat of my own making. The light from my own heart.

I want to return myself back to me.

Because out there, souls never know what to do with mine. They gape at it, pinch at it to see whether it bleeds, partake of it in small amounts as if it’ll poison them if they dare take more. Wonder at it, at how awesome a single thing can be, and then walk away. Dumbfounded. But they still walk away.

And as I look into the crushed pieces in my hands, I know exactly what to do. Its painstaking work. This business of stitching back bits of myself. It requires glue only found in the most pristine of places. It requires needles only found in the middle of other people’s words. It requires warm lights in exquisite dinner places. It requires shutting out voices of what should be, and only listening to me.

But it can be done. We have done it before.

I am returning myself back to me.

Those precious little words

screenshot_20181011-1014051079954844.pngIts not okay. Those words were said to me by a tipsy woman. And she kept on repeating them. As if there was something more in them that i wasn’t getting. And there was. Because in my life, normalizing not so okay situations has been the norm. And up until then, i hadn’t noticed it.

That going through so much can only teach you to accommodate pain, since after all, its a constant companion in life. Yet just because the sun rises in Turkana each day, does not mean they cannot complain about the scorching heat. Of course i can blame my childhood, and go on and on about how accepting that things were not okay caused me more anguish than just shrugging my shoulders and claiming its okay. Till it became okay. Or rather till my system couldn’t differentiate between okay and not okay.

Yet i now can’t believe how those three small words can make a big difference. Those three small words made me walk out of someone’s life. As if a while ago i hadn’t been willing to risk it all for them. Those three words have enabled me to pick shreds of my dignity from the floor and walk away, leaving the best thing I’ve ever had, not knowing if the future has better, but knowing that i can’t stay in a not okay situation.

Those three little words are bringing me back to myself, tiny steps after tiny steps. They don’t judge, they don’t blame anyone, they don’t point fingers to anyone, they don’t guilt trip me, they don’t ask me how i got there. They simply inform me, that there is a life full of passion, joy, happiness, fulfillment, dignity, ambition, love, respect, worth and this, this  isn’t it.

Those precious little words have mended my soul in ways that could have taken years using another method.

But above all, they allow me to make mistakes. But we never know when things are going to turn out to be mistakes, do we? So they allow me to take my chances. Knowing that on the day i shall find myself turning in bed distressed, for the umpteenth time about a situation, they shall be there to guide me home.

Its not okay.

And that’s okay.

Bright light to guide me home.

Bright light to guide me home. Another line in one of the songs sang by this human(Haevn). And as I listened to it, I wondered, is there really a bright light to guide me home?

What happens when you find yourself crying because of crying too much? Like how absolutely crazy can life get to get one to that point? Tears heal. But sometimes, especially when they become too much , they form a river that creates ugly gullies in there.

And as I repeated it for the hundredth time, I scrolled through a social media site, and as sure as the universe has my back, the first post has acted as a guiding light. Not necessarily to home, but to at least light the next stair.

And one thing i’ve realized, is that i’m not alone. In going through life in a crazily emotionally intense way. And though humans like me exist far in between, they are there. Feeling lost. Vulnerable. Confused. Raw.

And it may take a while for the light to break out. In between, we make mistakes. Date the wrong people. Put ourselves in not so fitting situations. Etc. In simple terms, in between, life happens.

But one day the light shall break through. No one figures out their life at 24. So I should settle into the confusion, for we are just beginning this chapter of our life.

Bright bright light, bright light to guide me home.

Is there home?

I’ve just discovered this musician on the internet. And his voice feels like its been wired to take me home to myself. Its so soothing, like it has penetrated into those crevices in my heart that barely have any light in them.  And as i repeat his songs, in darkness, so that i can see the lights outside, i think about coming home to myself.

And how this journey is the hardest I’ve ever been through. I always think that after one hurdle, such as getting out of depression, that maybe handling life or living gets easier. It doesn’t get worse per se, there are just harder mountains to climb out there. Yesterday, i wished it wasn’t this hard. Like if there was an easier way out of moving on with life without being haunted by the past at every corner i take.

And as i cursed my past, i was reminded that the world can’t be harsh on me,and instead of showing kindness and gentleness to myself, i follow suit with more harshness. But as i listen to this man sing “the stream will take us home”, a line in one of his songs, i wonder, is there home?

Is there a place my soul will get and be satisfied? Or are we forever relearning, unlearning and learning? And why are my emotions usually so intense? I’ve noticed that some of my friends go through life a little easier emotionally. They don’t seem to experience these moments when the emotion knob in there seems to have been turned on the highest level. But as they say, comparison does more harm than good. After all, i really wouldn’t wish to be someone else.

This place this man sings about seems so beautiful. And i wonder, is there home? Does a place in time exist when my soul will be home?