Everyday Is Mother’s Day

I think about my birth, my gift of life gave you pain,

I think about the people in my life… some leave me but you always remain,

Even when I am your source of grief my joy is at the top of your list.

Even if you are cold to the bone, keeping me warm you cannot resist.

You’re the epitome of sacrifice, a close definition of love.

When I see you being selfless I see that there really is God above.

I see Him perform His acts through you,

As you care for me and my sister too.

Through being human, through being emotionally blind,

I had failed to see the truth, I had shutters on my mind,

But through some miracle, through some inexplicable event,

I finally see what I was supposed to see-something even my ignorance couldn’t prevent.

You are a rare gem, you are a bright beacon in a storm of darkness,

You are my favourite poem-all of you, including your bluntness.

All of my success I owe to you and your perseverance,

I owe it to your love, your attention, your constant vigilance.

Your prayers were not in vain;

I will be worth all that pain!

Through what won’t come , through what may,

By your side, Mom, I’ll forever remain.

PS This is a re-post from before I had a blog but it still applies perfectly

Advertisements

I Am

You are what you eat.

You are what you constantly listen to.

You are what you say you are.

Seems like the mouth is responsible for what we are and what we will become. For it is with the mouth that we eat, it is the mouth that speaks and it is the mouth (albeit someone else’s) that dictates what we hear.

I wonder what happens if you spend years saying: “I am not good enough. I don’t deserve this. I’m an idiot. This it too hard for me. I’m going to fail…”

Perhaps that’s what it takes to bring down a promising individual. Get them to say such things over and over, in their mind, in their heart and with the lips.

What about those that hear these negative things said to them? Haven’t there been success stories among those with bad/unsupportive parents? I think that means the opposite can be true. A non-success story in the presence of ultra-supportive parents and to be frank – that is terrifying. 

Haven’t there been success stories among those with bad/unsupportive parents? Well luckily there have. You know what that means? There is a solution! A suitable workaround. If you can say to yourself over and over positive things, only the things that you want – it’ll supersede that which you hear. Imagine if you were to proclaim in your mind, in your heart and with your lips: “I am capable.” What do you think would happen then? Picture it, the person you would be now if daily you said: “I am a genius. There is nothing too hard for me! I will succeed! I am creative! I provide solutions to problems! I am disciplined! I am organised! I am successful! I am rich!”

As easy as that sounds to do on paper maybe you haven’t heard it enough to say it and believe it. This is where Youtube comes into place. If no one in your life is willing to affirm positivity, find them online, they will be there. Listen to them on repeat until you mould your plasticine brain to adapt. Then say it to yourself and share the change.

I challenge you to start the day with saying: “I am – “. Fill in the blank with what you want.

That’s what I will be doing.

The Best Landlady

Hey there. It’s me your former tenant; remember?

I used to live in your place 21 years ago.

I’ve just come back to say thanks again.

I’m more grateful for your care than you’ll never know.

 

I was broke without a penny to my name.

The warmth you offered to this day is unrivalled.

Offering me your inner room without shame.

Prepared for me long before my arrival.

 

You fed me well too.

All free of charge!

As a former tenant of your womb.

I can confirm you are the best landlady.

 

 

Thanks For Teaching Me How To Love

“How?” he asks beyond incredulous at this point. “You’ve seen the statistics, you watch the news, you talk to you people, your friends, clients, classmates… So tell me, how? How can you be so naïve? Why do you still believe? It just doesn’t work.”

My answer?

“Ah… but it does. I’ve seen it.”

I’m sure you know the saying: monkey see monkey do. I’ll be the last to call myself a monkey but kids do learn a lot from seeing their parents/guardians in action. I will have you know, this guy’s been doing a lot of seeing, this guy’s been doing a lot watching – when your guard was up or when it was down. I was listening when the words were smooth. I was listening even when annoyance had long barged in. I was learning – I still am – how one ought to love and how one ought to accept being loved.

As your son I’d like to utter words that might seem odd to you now but ring true nonetheless. You’ve done a stellar job! Thank you… and I’m so proud of you. I need look no further for a greater example of how I want my marriage to be. Yes the journey is still ongoing but you’ve done real good so far, hontou ni (there’s that Japanese becoming useful). Obviously this is from my selfish point of view but I hope you keep it up… so your grandkids can learn this lesson from me, their mom… and from you too.

It’s because of you that I can say these words with ease and with meaning. I love you 🙂

So… to my heroes, to my parents, to my inspiration –

Happy anniversary

Courage Born From Disobedience aka I Used To Be Afraid Of The Dark

Fears… phobias are just a few of the things we often keep close to our hearts. We don’t like to talk about them for fear others will ridicule us or worse, use the knowledge against us. Fear is a powerful thing; it’s enough to start entire revolutions – or stifle them. Fear can win wars or lose them. And yet sometimes the smallest thing can help spark the courage you need to overcome that fear. I used to be afraid of the dark. “Used to be” because I’m not anymore. In fact, anyone who knows me knows I now prefer a dark room and night time to day time. All for one simple, ridiculous reason.

From the 7th grade onwards I developed an insatiable appetite for reading. This was a localised fascination, it had to be fantasy (and largely still is) simply because of the creativity it inspired within me. *I’ll discuss how I became fond of reading in tomorrow’s post.* However high school loomed and the work grew more intense. I would no longer have the countless hours to pore though fantasy and science fiction novels the size of dictionaries day in, day out. I had to be realistic. This is what my parents told me.

“Focus on school, read the books later.”

Now I know what you’re thinking. This post is about fear of the dark, what does it have to do with reading novels and high school? Firstly let me rephrase the term “fear of the dark”. I possessed (especially in my younger years) a quite incredible imagination as often is the case with youth. All I needed was space and time to create whatever universe my whims led me to. I only fell just short of the imagination Oscar for never having had an imaginary friend. I had an imaginary army but never the one friend who would take up space at the table etc for that would have been near suicidal. It was this intense imagination coupled with the housekeeper’s fascination with horror movies, ones I had to watch with her at all costs, that made me fear the dark for a long time… yes even into my teens.

So I would sleep with the light on. “I need to read,” was the typical response. It wasn’t nearly as intense as the phobia I wrote about earlier in my blog though. So long as I was already in bed with my eyes shut, I’d have been fine. But that was rarely the case so the light stayed on… until I was told to stop reading novels at night. I had to wake up early in the morning since my bus to school left at 0630. Immediately my mind went into detective mode because the love for reading was too great to let go instantaneously, much less for something as mundane as waking up on time for school. How to beat the system? That’s what I pondered for a few hours at most. The answer finally came.

“Good night. I’m going to sleep.”

Then I would switch off my light, proof that I was actually sleeping… only to go into my  blankets, produce my latest novel from under the pillow and switch on my Nokia’s torch. This is how I read Stephenie Meyer’s ‘New Moon’ in one night. I did this often enough that the fear of the dark evaporated. I needed the dark for me to do what I loved; read. And I read. I went through 6 to 8 books a month this way. In a school of 700 students the librarian new my name and would set aside new books for me to devour. So repetitive and exciting was the new habit that even my study habits tweaked to accommodate this mindset so that even now I’m extremely productive in the hours from late evening to early morning.

And that’s it. I told my parents about it a while ago and they had a laugh. It was silly beyond belief. But one can’t deny that it got rid of an unnecessary, hindering fear… even if it may have replaced it with a less than necessary habit. The young man no longer feared the dark… he was just borderline useless early in the morning.

Man O’ My Word aka Be My Hammer, I’ll Be Your Thor

Dear Blog,

 

Hey you! Yes you! Haven’t you heard?

You can count on me – I’m a man o’ my word.

And you’ll believe it, coz I’ve said it, then it’s gotta be true.

You won’t believe me? Fine then – believe you!

You say it more than I do, I know it sounds absurd.

“Ayanda Joe Munikwa, you’re a man o’ your word!”

 

Maybe if we say it enough times it’ll finally happen.

Coz the sheer number of promises I’ve been snapping is amazing!

Now I’m not making excuses, I put that PhD to the side.

I laid down my pride and decided I wouldn’t ever lie.

Even if it’ll save me trouble later, better to stay humble now.

I don’t want to stumble so I’ll mumble, goo goo gaga, ciao.

 

In the future, even now, trust is gold.

So I’m sorry I’ve been missing truth be told.

I said I’d take care of you. I didn’t even forget!

The truth of it is I just chose to neglect…

 

But I’m a man o’ my word. That’s what we said!

So I think it’s time we finally prepared,

For a rollercoaster ride like never before!

Where you will be my hammer and I’ll be your Thor!

Love,

Joe

 

 

Hey Brother, It’s Been A While

Dear Ayanda,

Hey there. It’s been a while since we last caught up… so this might be a long message. I’m sure you won’t mind too much.

Some interesting things have happened lately, most have made me very happy and others have made me ask questions of myself – that’s a good thing, right? The standout feature of my time away is that most of my waking hours are spent at work. The hours racked up in direct proportion to the responsibility I was handed. Funny how I think it’s great that I have this responsibility, yet I used to detest it. I’m winning trust and responsibility each and every day. The joy that comes with it proves it’s something I’ve intrinsically aspired for… trust. As a result I’ve worked loads of hours, encountered so many guests; all of different voices, appearances and temperaments. I’ve had to handle certain situations that tested wit and patience. I think I may have grown in confidence and eloquence. I’m also much better at timekeeping as a result, can you believe it? The downside is that I don’t get to chat with the family as often as I’d like to. It’s not great but at the same time I understand that they’re always there for me but I must also learn to do some things on my own.

Away from work I’ve been really looking at the relationships I’ve forged over the years. I remember reading somewhere that the friends you make at this stage in life will be friends for life. This makes me glad that I still chat with my good friends from high school. I’ve also recently learned to burn certain bridges. I must say it’s not an easy or pleasant thing to do but neither is cutting a tumour and though it sounds rough some people just shouldn’t be in your life. So I’ve said some goodbyes. I hope I’ve made the right decision.

I’ve met some new people lately. One or two interesting recent graduates. Arts and Sciences. I’m not going to lie, I haven’t enjoyed a conversation as much as the one I had with them in a long time, no offence bro. They just had different ideas and points of view. We discussed the purpose of a chair and how a chair should feel when our massive buttocks gracelessly plop on top of it.

I do hope you are well. I’ll fill you in with more details soon, I promise.

Yours forever,

Joe

Call Me Morgan Freeman

A memory just flashed across my mind accompanied by a tinge of nostalgia. Someone (I know not whom) used to call me Morgan Freeman presumably because of my voice… you know, as opposed to my looks (I’m only 21 after all). I cannot for the life of me recall who it was or when they said it but I genuinely miss the nickname for one reason or other.

Maybe I should stop watching all those “best-acting” compilations on YouTube. After all, Morgan Freeman is in a lot of those.