My Shoes

Only one pair of shoes do I own
They are dusty
They are old-fashioned
They smile beautifully exposing my nice set of toes
Their thirst is unquenchable; they gulp down every liquid they come across

They are a source of ridicule
They have become some sort of identity
“You know Miss X?”
“No, not really.”
“You don’t know the girl with red rubbers?”
“Oh, that one! Of course I do know her!”

They are dusty
They are old-fashioned
They are worn out
But they are MINE!

Yes, my neighbour there buys a new pair everyday
Yes, everyone around me seems to have many pairs
But these ridiculous pair of mine
Ever so proudly do I wear them

There are times when I step on sharp stones
When thorns and needles prick me
When I slip and fall because the treads of my sole are no more
When my feet reek

But I refuse to let something small as my shoes hinder me from advancing in this journey called life
I refuse to let the contemptuous glances of the onlookers deter me
I refuse to listen to their bitter remarks
I refuse to look down on myself

Yes, my shoes are dusty
They are old-fashioned
They are worn out
They are dramatic
But they are MINE!

I will walk
I will surmount all the obstacles on the way
I will go far
One day I will own numerous pairs of glamorous shoes

But for now
I’ll keep walking

The Skinny on Introverts

They say silence has a power that very few people can handle. Well, introverts are among the few. Introverts are often misunderstood. I hope this will shed some light.

If you are an introvert, I know you can relate to the following situations:

Making phone calls is a daunting task. Heart races, hands tremble, and sometimes they become sweaty. You rehearse on what you will say when the person you are calling picks the call. You fear lacking something to say. Awkward silences are part and parcel of the conversation, well unless the person at the other end of the line has no problem with talking ninety percent of the time.

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Bumping into people? That is a nightmare. I must admit there was a time I changed routes just to avoid meeting someone.

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I forget names easily. I remember a time I took someone’s number. By the time I get home I had already forgotten her name. I had to go through my contact list to identify a new name and in turn remember the person’s name.

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It is very difficult to get over embarrassing moments.

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When you are not prepared to answer a question, confusion reigns.

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Rehearsing on what you’ll say. And then your words get jumbled up. The struggle is real.

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When people are having the time of their lives, I get bored to death. It has happened so many times.

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Why are you so silent? Why are you shutting yourself out from people? That’s our nature.

A comment that often gets on my nerves is this: Silent people are the worst kind of people. Well, introverts are normal people. We have weaknesses, and sometimes they are not noticeable. Just because we are silent does not mean we are perfect. This comment is often made by people after seeing an introvert’s weaknesses. They had assumed that the person is perfect.

Simple things like socializing might be very difficult we should continuously work on them since no man is an island, and at the end of the day we need each other. 🙂

 

 

NOTE TO SELF

“And then there are people you communicate to often via the phone, but when you meet each other in person you find that you have nothing to say. I don’t know if I am alone in this.”

A friend of mine told me this (rather texted me) after reading some post on friendship. I wondered if we would really talk as much as we do via social media when we meet in person. Then we remembered there was a time we bumped into each other. He confessed that he almost fainted. Good heavens! I also told him I would have loved to tell him a thing or two but I was too scared. When we meet in person, our conversation is punctuated by awkward silence. However, when we communicate via phone, there is so much to talk about since we listen to the same kind of music and have so much in common. That painful reality hit me hard.

Technology can make you become someone you are not. It makes it easy for one to pretend. Think about it, how many times have you sent the laughing emojis and the LOLs and LMFAOs when you are wearing a frown on your face? How many times have you texted something that you would be ashamed of saying out loud? How many times have you edited your photos to cover your blemishes?

I keep wondering if all the people who hurl insults to others on social media can walk up to them and say the same things. I bet most cannot. We live in an age where people take videos of happenings, post them on social media then complain about them instead of trying to stop the action there and then.

Thanks to technology, we can stay in touch with people who are miles away. Yet sometimes we are so preoccupied with keeping in touch with those people that we forget those who are around us. Whenever I go to a restaurant alone, I usually throw glances around. I never fail to see people who are on the same table but are not talking to each other. What has taken most of their attention is their phones, and the remaining attention is taken by food, of course. Silence with staccato bursts of, “My pic on instagram has 1000 likes!” and the likes. What a bonding session!

While social media and technology is not bad entirely, the problem comes in when it is the primary mode of communication. (That is if the person you are communicating with is someone you can afford to meet with regularly) If you have a friend who lives near you, why use the phone to communicate? Meeting in person is way better. My two cents.

ABRACADABRA TALES: PART I


I was going through my high school journal when this card popped out. It sure did take me down memory lane. Have a look at it. Do not be put off by the French, just look at the guy and look at the fork. Its prongs look amazing huh? The guy is the one who worked on the fork. He achieved this feat not by using physical force but by using his mind. (Don’t be so unbelieving, I saw this!)

I used to watch magic shows on television when I was young. As much as I was in awe of the magician’s ‘superpowers’, I was somehow convinced that there was a trick behind every magic, and that there was no such thing as real magic. However, when Guillaume (the one in the card), a magician from France, came to our school and performed his magic onstage, my belief (that magic does not exist) was shaken.

Ever heard of levitation? levitation illusion is one in which a magician appears to defy gravity by making an object or person float in the air (from Wikipedia). Guillaume had perfected his art in that area. He made a goblet float on air. Even when he poured water into the goblet, the goblet was unrelenting in its mission of defying gravity. At some point, he himself floated on air.

He called anyone who had a coin and a girl stepped forward. The coin was in the girls hand (now clenched into a fist) the whole time. Unfortunately, my memories of what the magician and the girl really did are hazy. I only remember her opening her hand and finding out the coin was bent. The coin was folded almost into half literally. You can imagine the astonishment on the girl’s face (and on our faces too). Good thing it was a one shilling coin. Guillaume said he would replace it anyway.

We saw so many other things including Guillaume being able to tell what word one was thinking about. The audience was astounded, astonished, lost for words all through the show. At the end, someone gave a vote of thanks and when she was done Guillaume asked for her spectacles. He broke one side of the frame (at the hinge) then fixed it in seconds.

That is just a glimpse of what we saw.  Today I did some research on levitation, bending of spoons and twisting of forks using the mind and one word that I constantly came across was illusion. Perhaps the magicians only play with our minds and there is no such thing as magic; and maybe behind every magic there is a trick. To say the truth, that was not in my mind that day during and after the show. I remember gathering the very scanty reserves of courage remaining and went to where he was. I collected the few french words that I could find in my head asked him about France He answered my questions coolly just like a normal person. His blue eyes seemed to traverse the deep confines of my soul though, and that filled me with jitters. How I ended up with this card? Let’s just say someone asked for a card and I happened to be with her so we all got cards.

I reckon he always is a normal person off stage. Otherwise we would be seeing random things floating in the air all the time. Can you imagine meeting him floating on your way home?

IMMUNITY

For those who have never understood the concept of immunity, do not worry, I am going to help you. You can thank me later.
Many of us use matatus*. All of us have EVER used matatus. (With the exception of those of us who were born with diamond spoons in their mouths) I am privileged to be a beneficiary of the wonderful matatu sector almost every day of my life. (I’m not being ironic. Those people really help us a lot yet all we do most of the time is complain.) Many a times, it is a source of my daily dose of laughter. I recall several incidents of people who board them, stay close to five minutes, and when the vehicle starts moving they suddenly recall that they left their luggage behind. Or once in a while; someone boards one for destination X thinking it is one for destination Y. Whenever I saw the reactions of these people upon realizing their mistakes, well, nothing really happens. I maintain my grave serious face, which could be taken for showing pity. If you were to peel off my mask and dissect my brain, I assure you what you would see would be the exact opposite of the exterior.
Yes, you are right, my mind would be rolling on the floor laughing hysterically, at the same time pointing an accusing finger to those people. How could they forget such important things? Is this how choosy amnesia affects people? (By that I mean choosing to forget such things while in the matatu). Yes, these were the kind of thoughts that were running through my mind. Yesterday, yet another person was kicked out of the matatu for not having enough fare. Only that this time my thoughts synchronized with my facial expression. Both empathizedwith the man. You might be tempted to ask what on earth was responsible for this radical change.
Well, one day as I was going home, I ransacked my bag, removing everything and returning them. Bad news: my purse was nowhere to be found. This was no dream, it was reality. Had I stayed in the matatu for more than five minutes without bothering to confirm if I had my fare? Had I been too sure that I would never make such a silly mistake? The answer to both questions is yes. Yet here I was, making the same mistake I had termed as silly. Funny what God uses to help me grow.
To cut this short story shorter, sometimes we think we are immune to making mistakes, or silly mistakes for that matter. Wake up and smell the reality coffee; human nature is fallible. This is not only about the matatus. Think about that girl who got a child out of wedlock. Think about that business person who missed his flight, the food that happened to have too much salt, the child who messed up with something that you treasure. Are you quick to point an accusing finger? Are you quick to judge without bothering to know the details? Are you angered easily?
The only person who is immune to making mistakes is God. Don’t feel bad if you make mistakes. As Natalie Grant sings in her song Perfect People: come as you are, broken and scarred and be changed by a perfect God. Do not be quick to judge people, you’ve not reached anywhere near perfection, so you have no right. Try to understand people no matter how inexcusable those mistakes they make might be because who knows? You might end up making the same mistakes or even worse.
It is one thing to make a mistake unknowingly, and another to make mistakes knowingly. I have been talking about the first thing. I rest my case.

I can already hear some of you heaving a sigh of relief. Thankfully I didn’t stuff a long explanation of the process of immunity down your throats. Even if I wanted, I could not do it. It is beyond me. The only one who knows it is the One above.
*matatu – public service vehicle in Kenya

PAPA AND MAMA, PLEASE COME FOR ME

Dear papa and mama,

Though many surround me, I feel lonely. Though many claim to love me, I feel unloved. Though many accept me, I have no sense of belonging. Though I smile all the time, my heart is heavy. I am sick of my plastic smiles. We last saw each other ten years ago. That was the last time I smiled genuinely. Papa and mama, please come back. The flame of my hope to see you again used to burn ferociously; right now it is just a flicker. One thing still remains though; the fire has refused to die.

Ours was one happy family. Though we slept hungry on many days, though our clothes were mere patchworks, though our abode was not something to write home about, you always had indefatigable spirits. You worked relentlessly to fend for me. We all had hopes of a better future. Never at once was I ashamed of you. I always knew that I would one day change the state of affairs. However, my dreams were shattered due to your act that day. Despite all that, I still wish to see you again. When will you come back to see me?

That fateful day, I remember it as if it was yesterday. You told me to wear my Sunday best, and to pack my scanty belongings. You took me to a place, where I found many other children about my age. You promised to come pick me later on. I was shown a place where I would be sleeping, well until the day that you pick would me. I waited expectantly for you but you never showed up. I cried myself to sleep every night as reality dawned on me. I cried till the tears could not come out anymore.

Why did you take me to a children’s home? Did I become a weight on your shoulders that became too difficult to bear? Did I do anything wrong to you? Am I not worth having a family? Did I embarrass you in any way? Why did you lie to me? Papa and mama, do you know how your absence in my life affected and continues to affect me? I however still wait for the day you will come back. Please come for me.

I apologize for anything wrong I did that led you to abandon me. When you come for me, all the pain that you caused me will be fade away. All the brokenness that I have known will be healed. I will find answers to my questions. We will be reunited and be the happy family that we once were. My heart longs for that day. Papa and mama please come back. Be part of my life once again.

Your child

ANY OTHER IDENTITY WILL SELF DESTRUCT

 Take a minute to exit from reality. Imagine that you are a much travelled person. (If you are already then there is no need to imagine). You have so many souvenirs to remind you of the countries you have visited. They mean everything to you. You have displayed them in your house so tastefully that anyone who visits cannot help but notice them. You are happiest when your visitors’ curiosity is aroused since you have a golden opportunity to blow your own whistle sorry trumpet as you narrate to them your various exciting escapades. “That painting is from France, the porcelain plate you see there is from China, oh and that scroll, that one is straight outta Egypt,” you tell them as your face beams with pride.

Then a ragged child out of nowhere makes some ‘slight’ modifications on the souvenirs. He makes a commendable improvement on the painting by breaking its frame and scribbling on it; decides that the porcelain plate will look way better when it is lying in shreds and begins an art project by cutting the scroll using your pair of scissors, the one you bought from Britain. Within an hour, all the souvenirs you collected in so many years become nothing, useless. What would you do? How would you feel?
Back to reality now. What is it that you treasure most in this life? Is it your money, your fleet of cars, your beautiful house, your leadership position or your family? Is it your thriving crops in the farm, your animals, your intelligence, your friends or your reputation? What if one day you wake up and you are told that all your money does not have any value? What will you do when you find out that your fleet of cars have all been stolen and are irretraceable?  Your precious house demolished, your crops burnt down, all your cattle raided, your friends gone, your name tarnished and your power gone? Dejection is an understatement. Will life be worth living when all you have worked so hard for has vanished in thin air?
I am reminded of this man that I really admire. He was a good man and was careful not to do any evil. He had seven sons and three daughters, 7000 sheep, 3000 camels, 1000 head of cattle, 500 donkeys and so many servants. Indeed he was the richest man of his time. And yet when all went away, he said, “I was born with nothing, and I will die with nothing. The Lord gave and now He has taken away. May His name be praised!” (Job 3:21)
Who are you? Is our identity tied so much to our physical possessions such that when they are no more we also become nothing? If who you are is what you have and what you have is gone, then who are you?
Our identity is found in the God we trust any other identity will self destruct. (From the song: Identity – Lecrae)