Write it down 

Hey guys,

I know I’ve been MIA; I’m sorry.

I’ve just had a lot on my mind and slowly but inevitably, blogging sank to the bottom of my priority list. I’m working hard to change this guys, I promise!

One thing that keeps me sane in my day to day life is mapping out everything I need to do.

Usually, I do this in my head.

This is almost always a big mistake.

I am someone who cannot even remember what she wore to work on Friday. My friends have often told me I have a selective memory; I like to think I’m simply plain ol’ forgetful.

So you see why mapping out plans and to-do lists in my head is a recipe for disaster?

I decided to start writing things down and storing things for later in better and more organized ways than just cramming them in my head.

Cue, note taking.

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You are the reason

It’s funny how something so seemingly sturdy suddenly breaks and then you begin to see that in retrospect, there were cracks. Cracks you thought you could ignore and they would fix themselves. Cracks you thought you could hide from the world. Cracks that widened and expanded to form irreparable gutters with the things ignored floating on the surface.

Sitting there in church with his bible in his lap, Pastor Tunde was there but he wasn’t. 
He looked over his notes. His sermon today was supposed to be part 3 of “Getting marriage right”.

In the background of his thoughts,Pastor Tunde could hear the choir singing.

“You are the reason why I lift my hands
Why I lift my voice
Why I sing to you”

When he told Tolu five years into their marriage that God had called him to be a pastor and to start his ministry, she had been silent. Then she had told him she couldn’t handle the pressure of being the “mummy” of the congregation. That she didn’t want to be second in his life to a God she wasn’t so sure she believed in. That she couldn’t lose herself for a calling that wasn’t hers. 

He knew she would come around. And she did. She understood that God had to come first.

She always looked beautiful in her skirt suits and hats on Sunday mornings. She handled the congregation with effortless grace. They were living the life God wanted them to live.

For Pastor Tunde his perfect structure had shattered to smithereens when he walked in last Friday from his 3-day prayer summit trip to Abuja to find Tolu and their maid, Jane, groping each other on the couch.

He looked up at his tear-stained face on the projector screen. The camera men had a habit of keeping the camera on those who were moved by the worship and were in the spirit.

“You are the reason I’m alive today
I am here to say

It’s all because of you”

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Hi guys! Hope life is treating you well.

I haven’t been writing a lot these days which is really sad.

As always, I can be found more often on my hair blog here if you’re ever missing me and if that’s your sort of thing. (I talk about other stuff too, not just hair but mostly hair) 

Xoxo

Double standards

My first memory of it was when I was 8 and my uncle gave my brother, Ugo and me a box of crayons to share. The crayons were 15. I wanted to take 8 so Ugo could have 7 after all I was older but Ugo threw a tantrum and said he wanted 8. I ran to my mum and she said to me “Chinenye, let him take 8. He is a boy and you are a girl”.
I didn’t understand what she meant. If she had said “He is your baby brother”, I would have understood even though I wouldn’t give up that 1 crayon willingly. I would have understood.
But she said “He is a boy and you are a girl”.
You see, I’d never thought we were different until that moment. Sure enough I knew daddy always gave him a bigger share of the dried meat he brought home often but I always just thought it was because he was younger.
When daddy told Ugo not to help mummy cook anymore because the kitchen is a woman’s place even though Ugo loved it, I began to wonder.
I said to mummy “why can’t Ugo do what he likes? Does it matter that he’s a boy?” And she said “Nne it does. Some things are for boys while some things are for girls. That is the way it should be”.

In JSS1, I remember practising for weeks the points I would make during the inter-school debate I was meant to represent my school in. I was so excited. My parents were coming to watch me with a photographer to cover the event.
We had had an in-house debate in school and I had won the votes of my classmates beating Vincent 150-40.
On the morning of the event I was dressed in my cleanest, most ironed pinafore with my socks whiter than snow and my shoes so polished you could see your reflection in them. I got to the school bus only to be informed by the debate master that “Vincent will be going for the debate instead. We decided that he will do a better job because he is more confident and assertive”
I cried for days! Vincent that couldn’t even string a sentence together without a grammatical error. Vincent that couldn’t even look you in the eye when he spoke, “more confident and assertive”?. Of course my school lost.

I had worked at B&G Holdings for 7 years and I was due for a promotion. It was down to me and Segun Aina and everyone knew I would be the one because Segun had been in the company for a little over 2 years and hadn’t brought in half as much business as I had. It was a no-brainer, the promotion was mine.
When Segun got the promotion instead, I went to my boss and asked why. He said “Chinenye, you know you are a woman. Very soon you will get married and your family will become number one in your life instead of the company. Besides Segun will be a better representative. People will take him more seriously as the face of the company”.

All the inspirational quotes tell you to work hard so you can be successful. They never mention that you should be a man too if not you will live your life always almost getting to the top, always being second best even when in all honesty you are the best.

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It’s been too long guys, I know!! Forgive me! This post is fiction but is inspired by Chimamanda Adichie’s “We should all be feminists” speech(I’m too lazy to get you a link but you can google it and watch it on Youtube. An excerpt of it is in Beyoncé’s Flawless) and by my baby brother telling me “You can’t be rich unless you marry a rich man. That’s what I heard on Afmag” after I said “I can’t wait to be rich!”.

What do you guys think? Are there (still) double standards when it comes to men and women especially in Africa because I think there definitely are? What can we do about it?

P.S: if you’re ever looking for me, I can sometimes be found over at my hair blog. You can check it out here if you’re into that sort of thing.

Peace!

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When are you making your hair?

Hello people, welcome to the ’ember months’ as my fellow Nigerians like to call the last quarter of the year.
It just dawned on me that the year is well spent and will soon be over and I was reminded that I set out some goals at the beginning of the year that I would still like to accomplish. If you are like me and you like to procrastinate and do things at the last minute, this is the time to start working on said goals.
In order to achieve my hair goal length wise, I think I will be putting my hair in protective styles till the year runs out.
So about today’s post, without getting into the nitty gritty, it’s simply a short piece I wrote about an issue that has been on my mind for years. I wrote it for something I was doing and I thought I’d share it with you guys. Enjoy!
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This morning I spent a little more time than usual painstakingly brushing my hair, pinning and tucking it to perfection. I stepped out the door feeling like a million bucks and skipped happily all the way to work. As I stepped into the office, the first thing my colleague said to me was “when are you making your hair?”. The way I stared at her; if only I could karate-kick her out the window.
Whenever I leave my house without a weave, a wig or braids, at least one person will ask, “when are you making your hair”. As a matter of fact, someone in the house with me may say, “are you going out with your hair like that?”
It has got me thinking: What’s wrong with my real hair? Do I need to have a weave or braids on before people think I look good?
We’ve learnt to rely so heavily on hair extensions that being without them makes us feel incomplete, makes us look incomplete. When did this begin? Did it just become so over time?
I know people whose real hair I’ve never ever seen! They go into the salon with a weave and come out with another. If all the hair extension companies in the world shut down today, I’m sure some people will never be seen in public again.
Personally, I love the look and drama of long, wavy hair extensions that blow in the wind as much as the next girl; but I’m also very comfortable with my real hair and I think everyone should be. You have to learn to love and be content with what you were born with; it’s yours and no matter how much you cover it up, it’s still there. Maybe if we all did this, no one would ask that question because seeing real hair would be normal.
So this is I, speaking on behalf of the hair that is crying to see the daylight and feel the wind; please let it out and be okay with it every now and then.