“A TALE OF FRIENDS” (1)

Lilian Ekeh, Mutiat Ajadi, Uche Obi-Orumgbe,Lorreta Osuji,Andero Bunmi (in mrs Nwosa’s voice),this Ghanian girl I can’t remember her name now (Caroline Lamptay!) Myself – Seun Oladapo..then came Obianuju Ihekwere.
Mrs Nwosa,class teacher
JSS 1 white,LAGGS.

Fate brought us all together into that half fenced,concrete floored class room. The fourth on the block and the beginning of the “not so cool girls” side of the block.. Soon we’d be judged by our academic prowess,IQ,choice of career,tertiary institutions we attend,marital status and geographical locations..
BUT first, JSS 1 white..our stories began..

*Mutee (as I like to spell your name),dearest..I can’t say good bye. I don’t know how to. I’ve cried,wept,I’ve wailed.. at different times of the days and nights since the news,nothing seem to stop the tears. I’m trying..trying to face the present but it seem “not fair!”. I keep skipping to glimpses of the future ..and plunging back to the past. I don’t want to say goodbye..
Mutee..darling,walk with me back in time again.. to JSS 1 White.

(2)
I resumed that faithful morning to Jss1 Purple,as I’ve been earlier placed. Soon news came that a list of us were to be ‘displaced’ to other classes. I was placed in JSS 1 White. Skipping two other classes from purple. Not many of us liked it. I didn’t. However like everyone of us I had no choice. It was later rumoured or claimed – I was too old for Purple class. Soon we’d all come to know Purple as the most prestigious class in the entire school.
Long after we’ve been gone,I realised however,if I was placed in that class for my age,why was I older than 80% of them..Mutee being one?

Anyway..I gallantly moved my personal belongings to JSS 1 White,not being much of a rambustious person,I quietly settled down. To the distaste of the soon to be most wonderful..fun loving yet smart,kindhearted and never ending girlfriends I’d have.

Lorreta Osuji made life a living hell for me,Uche Obi-Orumgbe was her ‘wing gal’ at preying me. Caroline was a silent co-hort,Lilian was mostly amused . Andero Bunmi was the most unserious annoying human-girl I knew (a factor that soon endeared her to me among many) Muti..Mutiat as we’d call her then..she I remember with that never ending ‘jestful’ teasing laughter!
She’d make any joke seem 3 times funnier than it actually was. Yet she’s the first to back out when a mischief turns ‘hurtful’ or ‘unfair’.
One thing I could never fault those young ladies for then and now,is pretense. I didn’t like my transfer to White..but I met the most awesome girlfriends of all times in that class I wouldn’t change for the world. And when I count my blessings I count mrs Nwosa ,our class teacher, twice!

*Mutee..do you even remember our first ‘hello’..did it even matter to us anymore after all the years? Could our parents get between us? I still haven’t told mummy about you. I’ve made myself unavailable for any courier info services as to where you are ..what’s happened to you..and endless similar enquiries I’ve got since Saturday. Others can do it.. For now,I just reminisced our first ‘hello’.

(3)
Uche was the ‘fairy’ princess *smiles* the last time I saw her,she still is..quite ‘prettysome’. Lol. Lilian,smart studious and gentle. Bunmi,boisterous and industrious. Lorreta,prettiest smile ,quite obvious jaw (we nicknamed her Lori-jaw! Lol)she turned out to be one of the most sweetest girl I knew all through secondary school. Caroline..where in the world is that girl? ( She went back to Ghana). Obianuju..by the time Uju joined us,I was part of the ‘crew’. We teased, played tricks and ‘hate’ on her till we were tired. Uju never bulged,never caved in,she was a one girl army who prided herself a lot on her ‘flat chest’ than we cared to challenge her to any duel. Uju was generous. A rich kid with absolutely no airs. We all bonded,threw down our swords and made up. Through Mr.Johnson’s lesson days,garri and ofio parties..cultural dance presentations..dramas,”fash par” (lol) and many many squabbles that were never unresolved. We soon beat our counterparts in other classes through our academic prowess,we won our seats in the prestigious side of school as we were promoted to Jss 2 PURPLE.
Muti,myself and Obinauju. Our friendship waxed stronger. Jss 2 Purple was where we met Chinelo. Another interesting girl in my life.

*Mutee.. It was in this class we experienced many ‘girly’ secrets. Lol..I still remember how proudly you proved to me you now had “the sign” of maturity..what crazy need ..haha..lol! But to us then,just to graduate from “bra-tops” to actual “bras” was something..! Hian..how the years have passed. I remember your first pregnancy,you’d come over to my place at Ikorodu then and we’d gist about “growing babies” (I was already mom of 1)..
I made you up for your wedding..dressed you..all with my then big tommy (pregnant with my first)
You believed in me,make up wasn’t totally your thing but you’d have ME to do it.
We weren’t sisters..we weren’t friends..we were more than both!
WHY did you leave me without a warning? No goodbyes..?

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We Are Mothers not Martyrs (2)

Growing up as little african girls we are taught women own ALL the chores in the house. Your inability to carry out those ‘house chores’ is treated like a disease in fact. Little wonder we grow up to become competing “little” women- I can do housework better than you becomes the new race. So much so some even take that as far as child rearing! Wo-men p-lease. Where lies your pride? Who took your relevance? What in the world happened to your PURPOSE? ‘Cos as sure as God is alive you have one too! God told Adam to “tend” the garden and gave ‘you’ to him as help. You are HIS help,NOT ‘house’ help. Whatever he does,help HIM do it. His purpose wasn’t to tend,that’s mere instruction for living. Man’s purpose was to dominate the earth,that’s yours too woman.
Our peculiarities,giftings and bends are what define our rulership on earth.
We clean the toilet because we need it clean for our use,but the ‘use’ of the toilet is not to be cleaned.
Your purpose in life is beyond ‘house chores’ though having a home must come with such ‘benefits’. You are way more than what you’ve been programmed to be. Quit competing for the wrong crown.

Seriously what were you made for? What’s the solution your life was meant to profer?
As women we have moved from finding God..to seeking man’s acceptance.
Eve really should have listened to God herself,not go off to some ‘other’ sneaky,sliming ‘old wife’ to take instructions and corrections which eventually led to her deception!
Stop cleaning up just to “meet up to standards”. Stop stifling your kids just so they “fit” in to someone’s beliefs or social strata.
There’s so much we can do at every given time but we don’t have to do it ALL by ourselves. The Proverbs 31 woman had MAIDS and she got all the praise for it because she knew how to ASSIGN. As women we are multi-tasking,with certain innate leadership skills. Work on it. Learn to delegate,seek and accept help,ask your husband sweetly. (What do you think P.31 had all that “law of kindness” gigs going on on her tongue for?)
Honor your husband,submit to him no man wants a woman with no strengths to submit! Your “take home to mama” qualities must be beyond she cooks,cares and can bear children.
Rise up woman to God’s measure of you. Let His wisdom guide you. Serve your home,love your man with all diligence but do so as “as unto the Lord”.
Children though sweet to have can wear the living daylight out of you. I remember someone used to say to her kids,I’m not mummy for today.lol! Years down the line I’ve come to judge her less as a bad mom (yes,don’t we all judge?). Yep today I wish I could tell mine “hey let’s say you or your brother plays mommy today..”(To be continued)

I know a woman,who works 9-5 everyday of the week, gets home 8pm and starts dinner.
Wait a minute. I know not just a woman,I know quite a bunch!
They are mega ‘chores’ stars in their own rights. They know all the corners of work to be done at home and without, their clock never stops.
Maybe you’d know a thing or two about them too. You are probably one if you are reading this.

You wake up stifling a protest right before it sees the light of day just like you. Its not yet dawn but you can still hear the kids’ morning school bells all the same. God forbids that your child be called ‘late’.
You’d brush up,scrub up,wash down,kneel down..
All the ups and downs of the morning having nothing to do with you until its 15 minutes to running late for your job! Kids are set,hubby is now honking,it’s time to go.
One of the chores you must learn to do this weekend is how to do your make ups faster. You mentally note.
The weekend comes and you suddenly realise why that little improvement on you still hasn’t been done. Laundries and loads of home works later,you are totally blue for church.
I don’t blame you if you are reading this sis.. You thought right when you felt this piece might just have been written for you.
I came home one day to discover I’ve been robbed. Someone took my relevance and almost,trained a martyr out of me..

(To be continued)

Beyond White and Black

Life is beyond black and white. There are different (oh so different) shades of grey to it!
I can’t help imagining how many shades or hues of testimonies people have about life. While all you see is every kind of ‘gloom’ someone else is all kinds of ‘glee’.
Can you imagine all of us being born with the proverbial ‘silver spoon’? I tell you none would still be contented or as happy as other. From the beginning the creator of heaven and earth made us so. Man AND Woman He made us. Each with his own DNA to propagate the earth. Colour,shapes and fingerprints NONE alike! Yet we just want to make life about whites..and blacks..?
I say it’s folly.

It’s folly to see life from your bend and then absolutely assume everyone can see exactly what you see. Same folly it is that makes a Man and a Woman in Marriage come together as one expecting the other to be exactly tailor made to the description IN YOUR HEAD.

Wait a minute bro no one knows you unless you tell. No one gets you sis till you can express your innermost,sometimes tangled beyond logic,emotions.
Would you quit judging every end you see until you’ve heard all parties and all ‘shades’ concerned..no matter how apparent the case may be..?

I’ve one too often found myself in situations I once made myself a judge of only to ‘see’ differently when life turned its beam on me.
Hmmm..
As for life.. I have seen dark,experienced night. Sometimes it beamed its whites,the greys are held at bay. Yet sometimes you look back,you glance forward and you can neither say its black nor white..grey has come.
Still the sky though grey..will sometimes shine it rays,colourfully bright as The Rainbow. Have Faith my dear.

Legging it

pexels-photo-866370.jpegA lot of people know what they want and intend to dress themselves up to suit their intentions,but they lack the knowledge or seldom ask ‘HOW?’
Often time I’ve said, the difference between vogue-setters and vogue-watchers is in the “how”!
There’s a what,where and “how” to every look.
Let’s take for an instance, If you wear a pair of “leggings” to church on a sunday,you’d best be putting on a dress that falls below your back side in length. However this same leggings done with a sash loosely tied around your hips complete with a cropped top and a wide brim hat should set you in a mood for the beach.Its the same item but worn differently to suit ‘where ‘ you’re going.

Talking about leggings,they come in different shapes,shades and styles. We’ve got the Jeggings (denim leggings),that’s an adaptation of the Jeans wear. We’ve the lycra ,cotton,corduroy types..panty hose..pop socks etc.
With all these varieties also comes diversity in taste and most especially, “how” to wear them.

The thing about panty hose (sheer hosiery) is that it’s in the underwear category and shouldn’t be worn otherwise. At best it can be an accessory. Its known as panty hose because it’s seen as an extention of your panties. It hides blemishes, on the legs and could tone down the shock of an exceptionally short dress, skirt or shorts. Difference between panty hose and pop socks is apparent,one is a pant,the other is a sock. Other than that, both can serve the same purposes.

pexels-photo-663437.jpegThe thing about denim leggings is its likability to the Jeans wear. The difference is in texture. One has a sleek snug feeling,the other is ..well stiff. Denim adds class to leggings.
You could wear any of these items with a dress,skirt or extremely short pants.
This holiday season is usually synonymous with extra cool weather. The harmattan season requires more coverage yet cool comfortable fabrics. This makes the dear old leggings one of your most valuable items for now. How? With it you enjoy coverage that a regular trouser/pant can give and the lightness that’s as close as can be to being bare!

The down side of leggings is it can make your skin really itchy when it’s been worn all day. Not to worry this shouldn’t give you a rash unless your skin is already reacting to an infection. Nonetheless,a good moisturiser can help soothe and prevent your skin from being chaffed.
If you already have that painful rash between the thighs however the sheer hosiery is a smart choice to add to your outfits. Simply because it prevents the friction between your thighs while walking and saves you from painful..oh so ‘peppery’ stings of the rash.
Whether you dress for comfort, covering or just to make a fashion statement ,remember,often times what we really need isn’t more clothes,but more ideas to wear the ones we already have.

Be smart,LOOK good!

Holy..crap!

Now i understand why God has a huge distaste for religion.
Seeing a neighbour all dressed up (more like ‘cloaked’ up) brought a bile up, even, to my mouth.
I’m wondering where exactly the real person is at this moment..?Perhaps,God wonders too.
Hmmm…
The folly of a gathering that allows people live double lives,still, amazes me. And to think that this lady-neighbour sings in the choir?
Look..
“It doesn’t matter ,you can do all you want with your body all through the week..so long as you can cover it all up under ‘the prescribed” cloak,you are as righteous and holy as you can be”.
This seem to me,to be what is being preached.

God looks on our heart ,true,but I wonder what this is really doing to the “poor soul”,my neighbour-lady here’s mind. I wonder whether her heart is even being reached AT ALL. (does anyone care? so long as the choir stall and pews are being filled weekly,they can go to hell there after… Right?)

Doesn’t it bother us that this one may never KNOW God loves her as much on Monday,to Friday and Saturday as much as he does on Sundays too?
That holiness is as much how we live our lives when no one’s watching as it is even when they are glaring down on us.?

I agree there must be ORDER,but nothing more than the code expected of us also (as regards clothing) at our places of work. By no means must we encourage “disguise” by hungry,spiritually parched souls and call it decency.

Holiness doesn’t get anyone to Heaven..RIGHTEOUSNESS does. Holiness is the rich benefit,developed through our walk with God right here on earth!
Without a right-standing with God being holy (by crook or ‘cloak’) is nice looking but FRUITless. You can ask good old Cornelius.

This isn’t meant to attack anybody or doctrines. My purpose here is simply to call our attention to what we are paying attention to. Don’t leave the filth in the pot,while labouring over its look on the outside.
Don’t get satisfied with what you see on Sunday..God is not. Reach the heart with THE MESSAGE that gets the body up and in line all through the week,starting from Monday morning!
-Yours Sincerely.

Miracle Next Door

The thing is God uses people to bless us.
He has put everything we need around us,including our neighbours!
“..Better is a neighbour nearby,than a brother far away.” (Proverbs 27:10)

I have been a recipient of God’s grace and mercy being prominent through my neighbours.
If I had refused,blatantly,the wisdom of God in His word,many a time I’d have gone mercilessly hungry and stupendously loose opportunities.

Many of us stick to the facetious way of living. We keep our ‘silent sufferings’ very comfortable in our already overburdened minds
.
Many are sitting,living on top of their landed properties and perhaps keys to their next dream car. Yet they call it their ‘downstairs neighbour’.

Your next big contract may perhaps have reached your hand if only you take your next door neighbour seriously whenever he tries to engage you socially.
Now you’d say..”Hmmm..people are bad,can’t be trusted you know,this world is wicked!”

Let me ask,are you a good person?
Do you think good thoughts towards your neighbour? Do you wish him well?
Do you do to him what you’d want done to you..?
Dear friend,YOU ARE THE NEIGHBOUR! Make your world a better place to live in. You are someone’s miracle,living next door..

I woke up one day and found someone walking down the street having all the colors of christmas on,then some more!Alarming.cos it wasn’t even Christmas..and even on a christmas day you are NOT allowed to wear that.

So I took a yawning look at this fellow and realise to my sudden amusement: its the ‘in’ swag.As of today.

I smiled,walked into my closet and remembered growing up…
All I had to learn when I needed to dress up was :what colors go with what?

Heck you don’t even need that anymore,today.Seem to me like the more riotous you could get the better and more ‘fashion forward’ you are.Today you could even win an award for it.Something you dare not do some decades ago if you don’t want to suffer the grief of a social outlaw.lol!

Well I’m so amused to announce to you that today you’ve got NOT to teach your kids how blacks and whites are universal colors.And anything could go on it.If that’s all you got friend you can kiss trend talks with your teens good bye.

You need to learn all the new shades of green,red,purple and orange.Today’s universal colors.you’ve got to learn how to match up all those with blue,pink,beige,burgundy and much more.

Yes things got a little bit more complicated.

Well I had to go someplace where am not known as a fashionista but as a customer.Simple.
So I picked my dark brown double butt pocket pants,cream blouse with multi colored embellshments.Red droopy ear rings and red colored pumps.No red bag,I went with cool brown medium sized clutch.
I was set.

now color coding or not I felt good in that collection.nonetheless sometime ago I’d have ‘jeje-ly’ stayed with cream and brown all through.

So color riots,color blocking,color coding.It’s all in the name.
Whenever you need to pull out a collection from your closet,all you need do is remember who you are,what you’ve got and where you are going.

***
SHAWN
2012

***

VICTORIO’US’ ! (5)

As for the avalanche of hopes.dreams and promises. We never intend to run out of those.
Every day we see our dreams being fulfilled (while some are dashed),every hour we dream yet more!
Many will take perhaps many years to accomplish- in fact ,that’s exactly what we want. This journey we both signed up for is a FOR-EVER thing.

At this anniversary (to borrow T.D Jakes’ personal joke between himself and wife) “we talked things over and decided to renew our contract”.
If you ask us why,we’d tell you :
We’ve found VICTORY and it tastes so good in our mouth.

#Dedicated to every newly wedded couple out there who have just embarked on a “happily ever after”.
May God uphold your home and give you LOVE-VICTORY everyday in every way!

***END***

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