Sunday, December 30, 2007

Where Did We Go Wrong?

I'm not one to write about politics, but after all that's going on, how can I not? My dear Kenyans, what have we done? How did we allow things to go so wrong? I don't recall ever crying over something I've read or heard in the news, but every time I hear about the chaos that have descended upon our beloved country, I can't help but weep. I weep for the many innocent people that are being killed mercilessly in the name of elections. I weep for my fellow Kenyans that are sitting in their homes in Kenya, not knowing what's going on outside the walls of their homes.

After hearing about all the ethnic hatred and supposed ("supposed" because I don't have any "proof" aside from word of mouth) massacre of Kikuyus in Nyanza, I found myself wondering what fate holds for those Luos in Kikuyu land. Immediately, one of my good friends popped to mind and I decided to call her and make sure she and her family are ok. She told me that some people in her neighborhood were going around looking for Luos two days ago and she hasn't come out of the house so she doesn't know if those people are still there waiting.

I was surprised to hear about the extent of the gag order on the media. She has no idea what else has happened in Kenya since Kibaki was sworn in, and all she knows is that there are protests but doesn't know how bad things really are. She has no idea what Raila said about the Uhuru Park meeting at his last press conference. She lamented about the inability of both the government and the opposition leaders to communicate directly to people via the media. She and her family are scared to death.

I am appalled at the sentiments being carelessly expressed online by both ODM and PNU supporters. Despite the fact that Kibaki has won, it doesn't matter that you supported or even voted for him. In my opinion, there is no cause for celebration when the country has degenerated into violence and people are being killed. These same people dying could end up being your family or friends, and even if they aren't, there's still no reason to celebrate when innocent Kenyans are shedding blood and the landscape of Kenya is quickly appearing to be a war zone. Hold your horses and pray for peace.

And those in ODM. Yes, a lot of things went wrong with the results. Still, that's no reason to start preaching hatred and calling for the killing of Kikuyus. Whoever holds these sentiments should be deeply ashamed and needs to seriously do a self evaluation and some soul searching. You can't sit in the comfort of your home abroad and spread hate and death on your brothers and sisters when you know damn well that you are safely tucked away. Think of your brothers and sisters back home.

It doesn't matter whether you're Kikuyu, Luo, or any other tribe. When there's violence, death is indiscriminate. In the end, we will all suffer as Kenyans. Please, let's put our political and tribal differences aside and join together as one nation. We fought too hard for peace and freedom, and no single person is worth throwing it all away in a day. Let's all play a role in restoring peace in our beloved Kenya. And we can start right here on the internet.


Friday, November 09, 2007

What Breed is THIS?!

Now, in my short lifetime, I've had the (mis)fortune of meeting men that are truly from Mars, although sometimes I do wonder if some of these creatures haven't mutated and become totally new aliens, even to their fellow Martians. Seriously, what kinds of men do these things? Take for example Mr. Desperate. I had a semester long class with him and aside from acknowledging each other as the only two black students in that class, we didn't have much else in common and to that effect, we never hang out outside of class. Even in class, only polite words were exchanged. So imagine my surprise when at the end of the semester, the guy decides to propose. Yes! PROPOSE!! And he wasn't kidding. No! He was dead serious and he had a ring(a cheap one, but that's beside the point) and even went ahead to give me this long speech about how beautiful, smart, yadda yadda yadda I am. I was so shocked, I simply stared and didn't say a word.

Then there's Mr. Manipulator. When I met him, he seemed cool enough. He was an army sergeant so my first thought was "at least he's disciplined". Everything was going great on the first couple of dates. He was funny, charming, smart, etc. The first sign of trouble came two weeks later when he picked me up from school and his first question was "You didn't go to class looking like that, did you? Cuz I'm the only one that should be seeing your fine booty." Ok! I was wearing capris and a tank top...big freakin' deal. The next day, he went out and bought me an expensive (and by expensive, I mean EXPENSIVE) diamond necklace, which I promptly returned. That's when his true colors came out. He started throwing a tantrum like a 2-year-old and I decided to break up with him. Little did I know that I had just exposed myself to a stalker. He started calling me and begging me to give him a chance, threatened to kill himself, and even said he was being deployed to Iraq so I should give him a reason to go off and fight and come back alive. Of course the calls were ignored. Then I would find him outside my apartment and he would cry and cry and cry and make more suicide threats. I filed a complaint with the police, but since my lease had expired anyway, I moved to a different apartment and switched my cell number. He still managed to track me down, but thank God for restraining orders!

But the one who wins it all is Mr. Desperate-Weirdo. Now this one, our moms were classmates in high school. He must, therefore, feel like he has a divine right to me or something. To a casual observer, he is smart (let me add "very" for effect), very BOOK smart. We somehow found ourselves travelling down the same career path and he took this to be a God-sent sign that he and I were meant to be. Nothing remotely romantic has ever happened between us, but he has never made his "love" for me secret. He even goes around telling people that he and I are dating and we're gonna get married when we're done with med school. Did I mention how much I loathe this guy? He has done and said a lot of inappropriate and offensive things and no matter how much I try to tell him to leave me alone, he just doesn't get it. The fact that our parents are such good friends makes it that much harder to get rid of him. Despite all the weird stuff he's ever done (including calling my parents to request a meeting to discuss dowry...yeah, dude's on crack), nothing beats his latest BS. He called me early in the morning to tell me about a dream he had. This dream happens to be erotic and the idiot proceeded to start narrating the details of our supposed sex act. I did cut him short and was so mortified that I couldn't help but wonder if he's NORMAL. Really, what kind of guys go around telling girls they're not dating that they've been fantasizing and jerking off on their account? Maybe Martians can enlighten this poor Venusian on these things, or do you also think these guys are mutants?

Sunday, October 21, 2007

The Kite Runner

Unfortunately, our bookworms blog died due to poor management, (HnH, Bantu, don't kill me for saying that) so I'll use this space to rave and rant about this novel and issues surrounding it.

I'm an avid reader, and it's not everyday I read a book with a story line that leaves a lasting impression on me (in fact, I can't even remember the title of the book I read before Kite Runner).

This is a powerful story about an Afghani who immigrated to the U.S. and is sharing his life story, going all the way back to his childhood in the 70's before the Russians invaded Afghanistan, when there was peace in that country, and a degree of freedom that will, perhaps, never exist again (at least in our lifetime).

Nevertheless, the caste system was rife, with the Pushtans being the elites and the Hazaras being their servants and considered the "scum" of society.

The story is told by Amir, a Pushtan, whose dad was a successful businessman, and is centered on his friendship with Hassan, the son of his father's servant - a Hazara. While growing up, they were like best friends, although they both understood their place in society. At the age of 12, Amir watched as the neighborhood bully sodomized Hassan, and he did nothing to help him. Aside from the political turmoil that affected Amir's life, this single event forever changed his life, defining his character, and setting off a chain of events that he would later regret.

I don't want to give away the plot, but this is one book I would highly recommend because the story is told with bluntness and a reality that makes it hard to believe that it's a novel, not a memoir. There are many scenes that are difficult to read due to their graphic nature, and there are so many tragedies that by the end of the book, all you can do is sigh in relief because you feel you can't handle one more tragedy. There are plenty of surprises in the plot too and this makes it that much better.

One of my greatest pet peeves with many novels is the "happily ever after" way in which the author chooses to end his/her story. There is nothing happy about the way this book ends, just a glimmer of hope. Rightly so too, because you really can't take two big tragedies like rape and war and sugar coat them because the effects on people are real and unfortunate.

Then comes the "controversial" movie. If what the family of the 12-year-old actor is saying is the truth (and I bet it is), then the film makers ought to be ashamed of themselves for lying to the family and cajoling the boy to act out the rape scene with the promise to take it out later. Of course if you take out the rape scene, then the movie doesn't make much sense since it is central to the plot.

The movie was slated for release in November, but it has now been pushed to December with the promise to take the actor and his family out of Afghanistan until next spring when the hype surrounding the movie dies. I'm not sure I like the way the film makers handled this. They should have been more forthcoming during casting in the first place and made full disclosure to the family about the content of the movie before the boy signed the contract. I'm not comfortable with the idea of uprooting a family from their home, especially since they'll still go back, and people may not be as forgetful as you would hope.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Dalili ya Mvua

For real I'm in a dilemma. Why can't some choices in life be black and white and easy to make? How is it possible that you can want something, yet when it seems like it's a possibility it'll happen, you start tripping? What am I rambling on about?

Well, Steve and I have been dating for like a year and a half, and despite the mucho drama that accompanied our first few months together, and our recent switch to long distance, we're still going strong. This may seem like cliche, but within the first month we started dating, I had already decided that Steve was special, hence the patience and willingness to give him a chance, even when the odds seemed against him. In reality, it was during these drama filled days that his true character really shone through, and I loved what I saw. It was during this time that I decided I was going to spend the rest of my life with him. I was so sure of this to the point where, before I moved, I told him that if he proposed, I would say "yes".

Now, he's starting to show the "dalili" to propose and I'm starting to freak out. The other day we happened to be talking about one of my friends that's getting married and somehow the topic switched to wedding rings. It was during this period that he let it slip that he'd visited a few jewelry stores. I pretended I didn't hear that part and started joking about how huge my rock has to be.

Then came the phone conversation today. We've both had a rough week and even though I could tell there was more going on with him, tonight I wasn't emotionally prepared to cheer him up as I needed some cheering up myself. Needless to say, our conversation was lukewarm and we both hang up in frustration. One of the things we don't ever do is go to bed angry at each other. Imagine my surprise when I received a text message from Steve, apologizing for his mood and confessing that he's been thinking about marriage.

Of course, that text went unreplied cuz suddenly, I was in panic mode. Do I wanna marry him? YES!!! However, I'm just starting a new phase of my life and I know exactly how my parents will react, especially my dad who doesn't believe in getting married while in school. I personally have no qualms about it and sometimes even imagine that it might be better for me to be married (with no kids) so I can get the kind of support that only a lover can offer as I go through med school. If I follow my dad's advice, I would have to wait at least five years to get married, which is fine by me, but makes no sense when I already know I wanna spend my life with this man.

On the other hand, if I go ahead and don't heed my parents' advice (eventually they'll come around if I'm hell bent on getting married), I worry that it could easily turn into one of those tragic "I told you so" stories where I might end up wishing I'd waited.

So I see the dalili of the propasal forthcoming, but I'm stuck in this dilemma. Should I follow my heart and let it rain or should I seek shelter? After all, all forecasts project a storm, not a drizzle...

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Do You Believe...?

You wake up one Sunday (or Saturday) morning after a night of partying and you don't feel tired at all. Unlike a normal weekend where you would have spent half the day in bed and the other half lazing around the house, you feel strangely energized and a sudden urge overcomes you. Somehow, you feel that you have to go to church. After all, it's only 9:00 in the morning and you haven't been to church in a few weeks. The longer you sit there debating it, the guiltier you feel about missing church all those weeks, and the stronger the urge to do something different for a change.

So you jump in the shower, pull out that modest dress you keep at the back of your closet for this occassion, go online and google a church. There are lots of churches that jump out at you and you randomly choose one, not because it's the nearest one, but because it's on a road you've heard of. By 10:30, you're ready to head out and hoping to make it to the 11:00 service.

You get to church fifteen minutes late and try to find a seat at the back, near the aisle, so you can slip out when the preacher starts getting boring. At least you'll still feel nice that you made it to church, even if it was only for an hour. Unfortunately for you, all the aisle seats are taken so you squeeze in between old ladies, miffed that you can't easily escape. You resolve to simply daydream when you get bored and suffer through the entire service. After all, it's only two hours.

Soon, the familiar ritual starts: announcements, song, prayer, song, offerings & tithes, song...right about now, you start thinking about what to do in the afternoon. You're only five minutes away from the mall, so you could go shopping right after service and call one of your friends to join you. Just as you're picturing that sexy pair of jeans you were gonna buy from Express, you hear someone sniffling.

You look up to find the choir leader in the process of introducing the song they're about to sing and all of a sudden she's overcome by bouts of crying...something about her best friend hurting her deeply. You roll your eyes and wonder why people always tell their life stories, especially when service is already running late. You look at the time: 12:45. Damn! The preaching hasn't even started. You're about to continue your shopping spree in your head when all of a sudden, some elderly lady takes the pulpit and proclaims, "The Holy Spirit is present here today".

Oh! Crap! You look around and everyone is either sniffling or their eyes are shining. You start wondering whether now would be a good time to make that escape, but then you realize you're stuck in the middle of the pew and can't exactly slip out unnoticed. You silently curse and try your hardest to block out what's happening. You've never been a big fan of stuff like this and you simply don't function very well in an emotionally charged environment, be it due to the "Holy Spirit", at a funeral, or whatever.

There's an eerie silence in the church. Even the piano is no longer playing in the background. That same old lady looks right at you and says, "The Holy Spirit impressed upon me to come up here and deliver a message from God..." You start freaking out because you realize that the lady still has her eyes fixed on you. "...there's a young lady here today who underwent some childhood trauma and has been struggling all her life..." By this time you are completely hyperventilating. "....and God wants you to know that...." The old lady's eyes are still trained on you and you feel blood rushing to your head and you're about to pass out. You tell yourself to stop being silly and try to prevent yourself from fainting, because you most certainly will. By the time that feeling passes, you realize that the lady has gotten off the podium. Worse yet, you didn't hear that last part of her message. You convince yourself that she was crazy, and even if she weren't, she was totally talking about someone else. I mean, how many young ladies are there in that whole church?

You spend the next hour trying to block out what you heard, but the voice in your head keeps nudging you what? Find the lady and ask her what on earth she was talking about? As soon as service is over, you walk out, trying to make yourself invisible and head straight to your car. You forget all about the mall, head straight home, and vow never to go back to that church again. In a few days, you'll have convinced yourself that nothing ever happened.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Too Much Hype

Have you ever waited so long to try out something because it seemed like the rest of the world had already tried it out and loved it and you were the only one left out? Have you ever gone to a super hyped up movie expecting the world to explode into fireworks, only to come out disappointed and wondering why you even bothered?

Well, that was me today. It had nothing to do with a movie though. I was talking to Steve on the phone and by the time I hang up, I was so horny I could have simply creamed myself without trying. I was lying in bed, sexually frustrated, when I suddenly remembered that somewhere deep in my yet to be unpacked suitcase lay a vibrator that Steve had gotten me as a going away present. I have never in my life used one, although I know plenty of chicks who have. I'm not sure why I've never owned one myself, but from all the hype surrounding the little toy, I've always wondered if it really is as good as it sounds.

I looked around my apartment, only to realize that I didn't have batteries. I was too horny to give up so I decided to go to the gas station across the street and get some. As I put the batteries in, my heartrate increased ten fold and I could barely contain my excitement. Finally, I was holding a vibrator in my hand and I was about to experience an earth shattering orgasm. Perhaps I could even have multiple orgasms for the first time in my life! A fleeting thought crossed my mind: what if I become addicted? What if it's so good that I never wanna have normal intercourse again? As I adjusted the speed on that vibrator, all thoughts evaporated and the only thing I wanted to do was close my eyes and prepare myself to go to heaven.

Ok, I realize this blog is rated G so let me skip the details. But, I have never been so disappointed in my life. First of all, the so called vibrations feel as though someone has a stick in there and is shaking it up and down, only there's not enough room to shake the stick. And the orgasm is no different than normal masturbation...nothing like the real deal. So how anyone can even become addicted to a vibrator is beyond me. I had to call Steve and let him know that I still prefer the real thing. All he could do was laugh, I'm not sure if it was out of pure amusement or relief that his girlfriend would still be horny when he came to visit.

So, if you're one of those chicks that's never used a vibrator and have always wondered what it feels like, believe me, there's nothing you're missing. And for the guys that are even remotely concerned about their chicks using a vibrator, really, there's no competition there.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

I had forgotten just how much I hate moving until I had to this past weekend, and it has been hell. The damn landlord was supposed to change the carpet and re-do the tiles and get me a new fridge before I moved in on Monday, but none of that happened. In fact, I ended up moving into my apartment on Tuesday, only to discover that not only did I not have my new fridge and floor, but the apartment had not been cleaned. I had to spend the night at a friend's house and I started orientation classes today. I came in to dump all my stuff in my apartment and I can't unpack until I scrub it spotless (I am borderline OCD so the clutter is driving me nuts).

On the other hand, the city ain't so bad. I haven't had much time to explore, but I like the atmosphere. Everyone in my program is really nice and I even bumped into a med student I did research with three years ago and he made my day. Steve and I are handling the separation really well, all things considered (but of course it's only been a few days). He's shopping for a ticket to come visit at the end of the month and I hope things work out with both our schedules.

It's so weird to be sitting back in a classroom. In fact, those guys are so cruel, they gave us a biochem test on our first day. It made me remember just how much I hated sitting still and listening to someone drone on and on, but at the same time, I remembered how much I'd missed the student lifestyle. I'm so glad I decided to defer my med school admission for a year so I could do this postbac program. For sure, I would have had a rough time adjusting to the fast pace of med school after working full time for so long. Now, it would be nice if I bumped into a few Kenyans on campus, hoping they don't turn out to be of dubious character.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Top Three Ways...

Another dreary, foggy day. I guess that means summer's over. I'm moving in ten days and I still haven't done jack as far as packing goes, and I'm running around having coffee/lunch/dinner dates with everyone in my life except the one that counts the most: Steve. You'd think I'd be spending every waking minute with him, but it turns out I've only seen him once this whole week (keep in mind we used to see each other everyday). I must be weaning myself off him already.

This will be my first time ever being in a long distance relationship, and I thought it might be fun to hear from the veterans what their opinion is about:

a) Top three ways to make a long distance relationship work

b) Top three ways to ensure a long distance relationship doesn't last

Be creative, honest, funny...

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Moving On

Do you ever look back and pinpoint a single moment in your life when you knew nothing was ever going to be the same again? When your perspective of the world around you changed and you looked at yourself in the mirror and wondered who that stranger staring back at you was?

Since my last post, a lot has changed in my life. It's been a summer of major growing up and major changes. I finally got the opportunity of a lifetime and I'm about to embark on an incredible journey to build the career I always dreamed about, and to that end, I'm moving to a new city in two weeks. I've never been one to live in one city for too long, and after six years here, I'm ready for the change and looking forward to making new friends and exploring a new environment.

My view of love, friendship, has changed dramatically. And yes, those of you that were following the mini soap opera of my drama-filled relationship with Steve are probably wondering how that whole situation played out. It makes me wanna laugh out loud saying this, but...we're still together, somehow. Now we just have to see how the long distance pans out (I do know that LDRs don't work 99.9% of the time but really, after all the shit we put each other through, we might as well try it). Someday, I'm sure I'll continue where I left off and blog about how on earth I ever forgave him. Maybe I'm crazier than I think.

So, I hope you'll continue reading about the mundane happenings of my life as I read about yours. After all, what's the fun in living if you can't share your experiences (or lack of) with others, huh?

After the storm...

Hello fellow bloggers, after a very long, much needed hiatus, I'm back. I missed you people's blogs and I look forward to reading your funny, serious, crazy, and sometimes meaningless blogs. This time, I'll hopefully have less drama to write about. My life has changed...really :)

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Bad Jokes

Here's a really bad joke Steve once sent me. Obviously, I don't have photographic memory so I'll paraphrase it and it probably won't come out right, but here goes. There was this blonde bimbo who went to visit the doctor and said, "doctor, I think my breasts are made of water". Puzzled, the doctor was silent for a few moments before asking, "what makes you think that"? The blonde bimbo, pleased with herself replied, "because everytime my boyfriend touches my nipples I get wet"....

Here's another really bad joke. Steve wants to get back with me. Here's the hard part. He enlisted the help of his dad to talk to me. You know, I've come to the conclusion that a lot of men are idiots. Steve insists that he never cheated on me with his ex, and in fact, he hadn't seen her in over a year. Apparently, she started calling him earlier this year and he started reminiscing about the relationship they had. He was still looking for closure because the chick had just walked out on him without an explanation why. His phone calls and emails had gone unreplied and finally he gave up. But, that never stopped him from wondering all the "what ifs" because they had been pretty serious (to the point where he almost proposed). Her latest reason for walking out? She was too busy with school and couldn't handle being in a relationship.

So what does the clever guy do when the chick starts calling him and claiming that she still loves him? He starts fantasizing about what could have been. He feels like he's torn between me and his ex. So he runs to daddy for advice. By the time I was reading that email, he hadn't resolved his feelings. After I asked him about it, he of course told me everything (the fool has always been honest) and I was super mad and just couldn't think straight for a few days. Since then, he's obviously had a chance to see the ex and he realizes that he was simply elevating her onto a pedestal and she's nothing like what he remembered. Hence the reason for his coming back to ask me to give him a second chance. Yes, and his dad agrees with him, perhaps because he adores me and has this image of "the perfect daughter-in-law to be".

Now, guys, please explain this phenomenon to me cuz I simply don't get it. How many times have I heard stories that closely resemble this? How in the world can he even justify us getting back together? He's quick to point out that he knows it'll take time to re-build the trust and all that BS, but seriously!! This is a no-brainer. Of course I need to look him in the eye and tell him to "fuck off" so I can move on with my life. Except....

There is that little matter of love. What a strong emotion that is! Sometimes, I even allow myself to entertain the idea that somehow, I can find it in me to ignore this minor "irritation" that is his ex and try to re-build the relationship. That's when I quickly pick up the phone and call my fav cousin for a pep talk. You know, the kind that goes like, "You are so beautiful, smart, with the personality of an angel. You can have any guy in the world". Or, "There are so many Steves out there, move on already". Or, "You are too young to even be in this situation. Let it go". Or my favorite, "Good heavens! You're starting to sound like those desperate chicks we hate."

Yeah, that does snap me back to my senses, until I go to sleep and lay in bed thinking about Steve. Wondering what he's doing, if he's also thinking about me. And then he'll send a text to say good night, and I know without a doubt that he is thinking about me. I'm seriously tripping, and I really should know better. I SHOULD.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

It is Good to Snoop!

My first few posts on this blog detailed my very first snooping experience where I actually stole Steve's phone, bought a charger, and read his texts. I felt pretty psychotic back then, but that didn't stop me from snooping around a second time. Actually, this time was pure luck. I've been so caught up in my emotional problems for the past few months mpaka all I could see was the total support that Steve has afforded me, totally ignoring anything that he might have said or done to raise an eyebrow.

Last week, we happened to be at my fav coffeeshop just chilling when he asked to use my laptop to check his email. He did and when he was done, I shut the computer off and we left for dinner. I didn't touch my computer again until last night. I got off work late and just needed to go sit at a coffeeshop and de-stress before heading home for the night. I got to the coffeeshop and took out my laptop to check emails. As soon as I clicked on Yahoo! mail, I found myself in Steve's inbox. "What the hell?!" I thought. Usually, once you close the window, Yahoo! automatically logs you out. I was about to sign out of his account and into mine when a thought occured to me. When on earth will I ever find myself logged onto Steve's email account with him nowhere in sight? This was too good of a temptation and even an angel couldn't have resisted.

So I started going through his mails, most of them junk and uninteresting. There was the occasional email from an ex who was now married, but there was nothing surprising there since he'd already told me most of the stuff I read. His inbox was cluttered with useless junk mails and I was bored. I almost logged out when I thought to check his sent mails. I mean, there's no junk in the "sent" folder, right? I saw a couple of emails he'd sent me, friends and then one lone name caught my eye. His last ex before he and I started dating. We've had a fight over this ex once before and the last I heard, they weren't even talking. Then here was this one email he'd sent with this line,

"You know I hate it when you start acting like that. It's been over 24 hours since you called me and I'm tempted to text you but I know I can't and it's driving me crazy. There, are you happy now? I'm going crazy..."

Yes, I have those lines burned into my skull. I was so furious! This was sent on Feb 10 of this year. The weekend when he told me that he needed some time alone to think. At the time, I thought my emotional issues were overwhelming him and he needed his space. Kumbe! I picked up the phone and called him. Nothing. He finally called me at 10:00 p.m. sounding all tired. I was so mad I could barely talk. But, I did manage to ask him if he was "talking" to someone else. He got really defensive and that only served to make me more suspicious.

So, in a few minutes, his ass is gonna show up here and he's going to explain what the hell he thinks he's doing. And, no, I'm not jumping the gun here. The circumstances leading to his break-up with this chick were fishy to begin with. For crying out loud, he'd even proposed to her (I gathered this piece of info from the texts I'd read back in the day, a fact he denied and somehow talked his way out of).

I hadn't thought about this ex-chic of his for months. Infact, trust was no longer an issue and we were both getting pretty serious with this relationship, to the point where our families are involved. The thing that sucks even more is that today is actually our anniversary, what a bummer. I'm gonna have to ask for his phone and see the kind of texts he's been exchanging with this chick. I'm so mad right now. We're definitely headed down the break-up lane.

While my reading that message was totally accidental, this time around I don't feel guilty for finding myself thumping through his inbox. It's gonna save me a lot of trouble. To think we were even considering ways to make the relationship work when I move out of state in fall...bullshit! So for all you in relationships, don't have qualms about occassionally peaking at your significant other's phone/email. I don't see it as a matter of trust or whatever. If I don't have anything to hide, I'd care less whether or not my guy reads my texts/emails. Shit, here he comes.....

Friday, March 09, 2007

How Much Lower Can One Sink?

You know, I used to be one of those people (read Kenyans) who would marvel at all the seemingly endless mental illnesses that Americans seemed to suffer from. The concept of "mental illness" was as foreign as frappucinos when I was growing up. When you mention the name "mathare", a string of negative connotations and images come flooding to mind. I remember having this study partner when I was a freshman in college. Her parents were divorced, she had been diagnosed with both depression and borderline personality disorder and had been on antidepressants for most of her life. On a good day, she was a fun, smart friend to hang with. When her "craziness" took over, however, it was like staring at an alien. Her constant suicidal tendencies used to scare the shit out of me and her prolonged use of medications had finally started to wear her out. She was an honor student, but by the end of sophomore year, she had dropped out of school and moved in with some random guy she didn't know and her life pretty much went downhill from there. I always thought she was weird and interesting. So fascinated was I with her that I minored in Psychology so I could explore these strange illnesses that I never even knew existed. Little did I know that this would be my chance to start understanding my life.

Flashforward to 2007. I had been sitting at a coffeeshop staring at the same page of my book for hours when a thought entered my head, "you're fucked up". That thought was so clear, I actually thought someone had sneaked in behind me and whispered it in my ear. I shook myself up from the daze and realized that I had no idea what I'd been doing for the past 4 hours of my day. This didn't surprise me one bit. I am used to having blackouts where I'll forget entire parts of my day. I can sit in one spot for 5 hours and not even notice it. When I glance around 5 hours later, it'll feel like waking up from a dream and I'll remember nothing. I used to think this was a normal occurence until I mentioned it to my best friend one time and she gave me a strange look that told me there was definitely something wrong with me. Freudians have a name for this.

Lately, I've been thinking about my life, where I've been, where I am, and where the hell it is I'm headed. Sometimes I feel sorry for myself. Those are the times I try to stay away from my own company. I'll call some friends up and hit the clubs, or lose myself in the art of lovemaking (I really don't know what Steve's thinking still dating me). Some days, however, dragging myself out of bed is an impossible feat. Then there are days when I tell myself that I should use my past as a motivator for becoming a better person and it works for a few months. Those are the times I'll lose myself in volunteer activities, one after the other, until I burn out. Then there are those days when I just need to admit that sure, I've lived a pretty messed up life, but there are others who're more fucked up than I can ever be. Such is the fun of reading books like "Running with Scissors", where rather than sympathize with the character, I laugh out loud and pat myself on the back for managing to escape such a vicious childhood.

So, where was I going with this post? Nowhere, really. Just exploring the possibility that maybe, just maybe, it's time I took my mental health seriously and made that phone call. I have the number saved on my cell, just in case. Yet, it never feels like it's the right time. But really, is there such a thing as "the right time" to come face to face with your demons? My year started off with me drenched in tears. Those tears have turned out to be more prophetic than I could ever have imagined. It's gotten harder and harder to simply "forget", block disturbing images and memories from my mind. It's becoming impossible to feign happiness. More importantly, I'm getting really tired of being enslaved to my past. Yet...

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Loss of My Fave Author

First thing I do every morning when I wake up (no matter how late I'm running) is log onto CNN and at least glance at the headlines. This morning was no different, but I was dissapointed to read this story. I remember the first time I picked up a book by Sidney Sheldon. I was in class seven. I'd read all the Sweet Valley High and Sweet Valley Universitys that I could handle and I was getting bored with the same old predictable story line and like any series running too long, the authors were starting to run out of ideas. The result was that Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield were becoming more and more alien (werewolves? For crying out loud!) In my quest to find a different kind of author, my friends introduced me to Mills & Boon books and Danielle Steele. Needless to say, I wasn't impressed.

Then one day, I happened to pick up a book titled "Stars Fall Down" by Sidney Sheldon. There was no ounce of romance in that book and it was so captivating, I stayed up all night reading it. That weekend, I went to some bookstore in city center (centre?) and bought my very first copy of a Sidney Sheldon book: "Nothing Lasts Forever". That's how I became hooked. Over the years, I made it my mission to read every single book he ever wrote, and to that end, I think I succeeded. He was such an awesome writer, always keeping you in suspense until the very end. While most mystery/thrillers usually become predictable by the time you get to the middle of the book, Sheldon did a pretty good job of keeping you clueless until the last few pages, and that's not an easy feat.

And so today, I take the opportunity to acknowledge the great contribution Sheldon made to my literary life. I'm sure I'm not alone out there when I say that on many days, I killed my boredom by burying myself in one of his books. As a result, my imagination grew and I sure put it to good use. Yes, I won an award for creative writing in my senior year of high school. Rest In Peace Sidney Sheldon. I will miss you as one of my favorite authors of all time.

Monday, January 22, 2007

I'm Bored

Have you ever found yourself in a relationship in which you were simply going through the motions of being a girlfriend (or boyfriend)? You everyday to see how the day's going and say goodnight, go on a date and end up in bed having sex (it's still good), and right afterward be in a hurry to leave rather than let that feeling linger? The I-love-you's have dwindled and now you're lucky if you even hear those three words within the month.

At first, I thought that maybe the opposite schedules were working against us. We were both busy and stressed out from work. However, now that I've switched my schedule and synchronized it with his, nothing's changed. If anything, I'm spending all my free evenings hanging out with my friends or family. Sometimes, we'll both be at home, bored, but neither of us wants to drive to see the other. I'm not as eager for the phone calls, in fact, I find myself increasingly screening his calls and intentionally not calling back for a day. I've stopped suggesting coffee/dinner/dancing/movie dates, and so has he. I actually find myself feeling very bored when I'm at his house and we're not being intimate. While he's still thinking we have a future together, I'm increasingly starting to see that what we both want is too different for this relationship to ever work, let alone lead to marriage. I intend to move out of state and start school in fall and I just don't see us surviving the long distance (I don't wanna be a prisoner) and I don't see him moving with me (again, I don't wanna be a prisoner).

Despite all this, he still manages to make my heart skip a beat, and our conversations are great when we're both not too tired to talk. I went out of town this past weekend. The night before I left, we were cuddling in bed when I brought up the topic of the current status of our relationship. He gave me a puzzled look, acting all surprised. According to him, everything's perfect, and his only worry is what's gonna happen when I move. Needless to say, I haven't seen him since then (almost a week now) and he hasn't even called to ask me how my weekend went (in detail). If everything's ok in his book, how does he explain the lack of touching and kissing (unless it'll lead to sex) and the non-existent I-love-you? Sometimes, I feel like we're simply good friends. Sure, it's expected after you've been in a relationship for awhile, but I'm not ok with the status quo. Maybe it's just been too long since we had drama. I can't cook up any drama right now if I tried. Maybe that's the problem. Our relationship is a little too perfect, hence too boring....

Monday, January 01, 2007

What's Your Recommendation?

A few weeks ago, two different people recommended a book for me to read. The first person is a friend from church, and the other is a workmate. I don't recall exactly how the conversations led to the book recommendations, but hearing the same book title from two different people piqued my curiosity. I am usually very particular about the kind of books I read, and take the subject matter very seriously. But, in the spirit of my 2006 resolution of trying new things, I went to Barnes & Noble and bought a book - blindly. I had no idea what the book was about and I intended to keep it that way to prevent myself from judging it too fast. The cover was pretty. That's lame, but for me, it was a good sign. The title made no sense to me, but that didn't matter. As I sipped my grande chai latte, I tentatively opened the first page and started reading.

The book was centered on the brutal rape and murder of a fourteen-year-old girl and her account of events following her murder, as she observes from heaven. One thing stood out for me: the fact that the description of the rape and subsequent murder and dismemberment of her body was not as detailed and gruesome as you would expect. In fact, the tone of that book is so light that at some time, I had to stop and wonder why exactly these two people had recommended the book to me. It was the kind of book you read just because. But, in the end, it did make me think how horrible it would be if people really died and went to heaven and watched the world from heaven (this is a theological theory I don't buy into. From my own understanding of the Bible, death is like sleep, and people don't die and immediately go to heaven or hell). In the end, I still didn't understand what the title "The Lovely Bones" means.

Since this was a new writer previously unknown to me, I did what I do with every writer. I dug around for reviews of her other books. It turned out that Alice Sebold had a memoir on top of the fictional "Lovely Bones". I am going through a memoir-phase right now, and I decided to go out and buy that book, especially since I found out that she is a "rape victim". I am always interested in learning how other people have coped with trauma in their lives and figured I had nothing to lose. So I went out and bought "Lucky". In contrast to her fictional work, Alice Sebold started the first five pages of this book with a detailed, gruesome account of how she was attacked and raped in a park in the middle of the night when she was an eighteen-year-old college freshman. Perhaps it was the shock of the account, or the matter-of-fact way in which she wrote about it. Whatever it was, I was hooked and ended up reading the entire book in a day. The last few pages were so surprising and dismaying that when I was done reading, I felt like I had lost something. Not sure what that "something" is, exactly.

So, that's how I started my new year. Reading about rape. And crying. Lots of crying. I allowed myself to wallow in self-pity for a few hours. After all, it's my first holiday without my kid bro, we had a winter storm that ensured there would be no new year's eve parties (I wasn't about to be the dumbass being rescued by the National Guard simply cuz I had the urge to drive to a party in the middle of a winter storm). My parents had already called and wished me happy new year at 9:00 p.m, they had no intention of staying up late for no reason. Lilly is gone. And Steve. Steve had gone to St. Louis to visit his grandma and his flight back was cancelled. Plans to spend new year's eve together went out the window then. In bed and alone, I had plenty of time to feel lonely and miss all the people I loved. Hopefully, that's not indicative of how the rest of my year will pan out.

Of course, I'm digressing. Now the point of this post. I want to indulge this memoir craving I'm having. Have any of you fellow bloggers read a mind-blowing memoir that made you cry, laugh, paranoid, or simply go "wow"? One that touched you in some way, perhaps because you could relate? Please make a recommendation, and say why you recommend the book. Thanks, and happy new year. Hope your year started off on a more upbeat note than mine did!