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Monthly Archives: November 2013

Dating Again!

I guess as the earth rotates on its axis and day becomes night, people fall in and out of love. For those who are lucky, the experimentation happens when they are still young between their teens and early 20s. There are late starters though. First relationship happening in their 20s or those who marry very early (often forced into marriage) and many years tears later they realise they cant take it any more and want out.

So you find yourself, late 30’s to early 40’s female and thrown into the dating scene. First, let me say you may feel like a fish out of water (well, you probably have never been a fish so you don’t know what it means to be out of water so let’s throw out that saying and replace it with something more…er…human. Say, a (wo)man out of oxygen). Two things, you either decide to make do with the little oxygen you have until it runs out and you die or you venture out in search of more and well, maybe you will die trying too but death is death so either way you die. (okay, I have no idea what I just said)

Back to the matter of dating again…

I read a research recently which says that people who got a divorce out of their first marriage were more likely to divorce again…and again. Well, I wont even argue the authenticity or not of this finding. Perhaps in an effort not to make the mistake of the first coming people tend to make the same mistakes, you know like how a child who works all his life not to turn out like his father and turns out to be exact replica of his father.

This post is technically not about choosing the right person in your second coming, but more about why you should even decide on a second coming in the first place.

You know what they say: You can not really long for something you never had. If you do not know what ‘afang’ ( a popular dish among South Eastern Nigerians) soup tastes like, you cannot wake up one day and start craving ‘afang’. I think the same goes with relationships (It can certainly be argued that some can be as sweet as afang soup but really there is more to this than just the taste of the soup). That you have been in a relationship for any stretch of time even it was a bad relationship (except if you were so badly damaged that you have become an unfeeling, emotionally unavailable humanoid) then you will miss the relationship.

What are the symptoms that show you need to start dating again:
1. You lie down at night surrounded by your pillows and all you want is a human body beside you.
2. You feel so lonely at night that you just wish there was someone to wake and share your pain with.
3. You are cooking in the kitchen and you find yourself talking to the ingredients and cutlery.
4. You are watching a hilarious comedy and you switch from laughing at a joke to crying at yourself.
5. You try to avoid events where couples will be present.

The list is definitely not exhaustive. But, if you find yourself displaying one or all of these symptoms then it means you really should find a cure…Date again!

You will soon notice however that your dating skills may have become atrophied (if you had any to start with)when you decide to date again.You may also find it harder depending on your looks and disposition, to find people your age who are interested in anything other than fucking relationship (do excuse my French, though I meant that literally). Yet, it is always better to be selective than to settle. Making yourself available might just be the first step.

Dress and act age appropriately. It will not help your cause to try to dress like a teenager when you are 30.

Do not stay stuck up in your house and expect love to come find you (I don’t even think that happens in the movies any more) Find opportunities to mingle. Yet, like someone jokingly said : ‘Do not wear a bold “I AM AVAILABLE” sign on your forehead. Huge turn off.

Dating again has it’s challenges. There are those moments while dating someone new that you begin to wonder if you are not simply reliving your last dating experience. There are other times when you may feel your love life is jinxed. Oh, and there will be moments when all you want to do is run out of the ‘house’ screaming. But rest assured, thousands have gone through the same route, thousands more will. You never walk alone. And if the second time doesn’t work out, the third time may be a charm and if you live to see it, maybe the third or forth. (Kidding!)

 
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Posted by on November 29, 2013 in Relationships

 

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Interconnection

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Like a runner in a relay race
Passing the baton from one runner to another
Our actions, some large, some small
Beget reactions

Like a row of domino
Falling in place, one card into another
Our movements, some large, some small
Sets off reactions

Like the waters in an ocean surge
Forming waves that clash one into another
Our ripples, some large, some small
Produce counter reactions

We are all interconnected
Even though we act like we don’t have a clue
Strangers today can be neighbours tomorrow
Though we cross the others path without saying how do you do

We are all interconnected
Even though we act like we don’t have a clue
Northpole today we may be in the equator tomorrow
Seismic earth shaking motions can make it so.

You may seem like just one
A speck in the sea of billions
But your action can set of a chain reaction
That can echo in the sea of billions

And so I met the stranger
Stranded with no place to go
His eyes asked ‘can you help me’
And with my heart I answered, ‘yes I can’.

The stranger found a place to stay
And a happy mouth to speak
Thousands of miles he had traveled
Only to find a brother in me

The stranger helped another stranger
His postcard did say so
Because you showed me kindness
I swore to be kind to others too

You may seem like just one
A speck in the sea of billions
But your action can set of a chain reaction
That can echo in the sea of billions

 
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Posted by on November 27, 2013 in Poetry

 

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Lagos-Ibadan Express Road Construction.

I recently took a road trip to a number of southwestern states in Nigeria, including Ibadan, Abeokuta, Akure, Adoekiti, and a drive through Oshogbo. Most people would cringe at the thought of road trips judging by the quality of our roads which often leads to traffic and consequently delays that increase the time spent on such journeys.

One road many people, especially those travelling out of Lagos often complain about, is the Lagos-Ibadan express road. This road links out of Lagos for people travelling out of Lagos towards the North, East and West. The economic importance of this road cannot be overemphasized. So it must have been with glee that many received the announcement that the road which has fallen into disrepair will be rehabilitated.

However, the bigger question was: when will work start on this project? I do not have details of who the contract was awarded to, how much, or how long it should take to finish. Surely, those are google-able info. But I do have eye witness info that work involving the expansion of that road has started and is in full swing.

We came upon the workers just after Sagamu and there is about a kilometer of expansion which has already taken place. The pegs on the road seem to suggest the expansion will come way further. I am not too farmiliar with the names of the towns but I think I stopped seeing pegs just before Ibafo. Again, I am not too sure of this. Perhaps this is also google-able information.

I was able to take some photos of the construction and I will share a few at the end of this post. Whether this work will be seen to a conclusion I cannot say, but one thing is sure: work on the Lagos-Ibadan express road has begun in earnest and the RCC (I believe this is the construction company handling the project) have strong presence on the roads and seem to be doing a great job so far. I think a thumbs up to the authorities may just be in order πŸ™‚
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I hope the pictures give a feel of the ongoing work. Forgive my amateur photography.

 
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Posted by on November 21, 2013 in General

 

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If You Really Care…

When you hear those words just before your partner adds what they want you to do for them, it is only natural that you feel you are about to be blackmailed. It is just as bad as when someone precedes a statement with ‘I’m afraid…’. Surely doom follows.

The truth is that the basis for any relationship between two people is the belief that one cares for/about the feelings of the other. If you find yourself constantly needing to remind the other of the need to ‘care’ enough to put your feelings ahead of theirs, ask yourself : do I care enough about them so as to let them make the decision of how to care by themselves?

We live in an inherently selfish world. People are generally more concerned about how every situation will best suit them. Unfortunately, that attitude has crept into relationships. No one wants to be the others fool or ‘maga’ as we say here in Nigeria. But really, isn’t that what relationships are about. We both agree to be the others fool. If you always put my feelings above yours and are assured that I will put yours above mine, wouldnt we be happier in our relationships.

This issue of putting the others feelings above ours can be the key to resolving most relationship issues, if not all of them. Think of this: would a person who puts their partners interests above theirs cheat on them? The first thought that would come to the persons mind when they start getting attracted to someone else surely would be: How will my partner feel if they found out about this?

What if after agreeing on the family budget, one of the partners find that they are prone to hiding some funds like Ananias and Saphira in bible times? The question again: how will my partner feel if they found out. And even if they never found out, would you really want the same done to you?

Even on a matter as simple as body odour. If you genuinely care about others you would know that no one would be smiling if your presence keeps fouling up the air. You would be an embarrassment to your partner at the least…even if they can’t smell. Same goes for your dressing and grooming. You would want to always appear on such a way as to make your partner proud of you. I know of families where one partners lack of personal hygiene has been a constant source of conflict.

What if you genuinely feel that you are doing your 100% to care but the other is not and so each time you find yourself throwing up the ‘if you really care’ card?Β  It would be a good idea to find time to discuss your feelings openly before a situation that makes you need to play that card arises.

Most people in meaningful relationships take out time to discuss how issues like these will be handled well before they arise. You may not be able to set rules for every ‘care’ situation, but you will be able to set principles that will cover most situations. For example, you can have something like: if you notice I have not showing care, bring it up just before we sleep at night and mention in specific terms what upsets you. You could have a rule of resolving all conflicts before you sleep at night.

If you really care, you will have a communication system in place.

 
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Posted by on November 15, 2013 in Relationships

 

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Love Note Exchange

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Dear Abigail, he wrote
Let’s sail off on my boat
On the blue sea we’ll float
To an island remote
Plant kisses on your throat

Back to him I wrote
“Vow on me only to dote
Your affection, every mote
To no one else you’ll devote
You will be no Don Quixote”

My Jewel, he wrote
With love, you I will smote
As legal as a promissory note
As real as a bank note
My words accept as choate

Back and forth we wrote
Till it be became our rote
As I stashed away each note
I knew they each connote
Treasured memories in tote

I love you, my darling haute.

 
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Posted by on November 13, 2013 in Poetry

 

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Another Sidechick’s Tale II. Episode 5

Chelsea slowly opened her eyes to farmiliar surroundings. She knew the picture on the wall from the first vacation she and Akin took together. It was two weeks of bliss inΒ  Calabar. She. enjoyed every bit of the carnival…and every frame if memory she built with Akin.

Akin. Chelsea tried to get up and realized she was a littl light headed. She recalled the conversation. Akin was wedding someone else. Chelsea sat up, willing herself to get out and run. Every fibre in her body told her that was the best thing to do.

Akin walked into the room. He was carrying a tray. She recognized the mug from her graduation. A gift from Akin. She had kept it all through her stay in the UK.

Akin smiled at her. But it looked like a forced smile. It seemed he was in pain. Chelsea could swear that Akin had a plan. He was too methodical not to. And if he had a plan, she was willing to hear it.

‘Chelsea, you know I love you, don’t you?’

Chelsea stared down at her hands. The calmer side of her told her to hand Akin back his ring and say goodbye.

Goodbye

The word sat cold and alone in her chest. How could she just say goodbye to a six year investment and all without so much of a fight? Why would she let this girl, whoever she is, just strut in and take Akin away from her?

‘What do you want to do?’

Chelsea’s tone was surprisingly calm. In less than five minutes, she had evaluated her situation. Life without Akin flashed through her mind and she just knew it was a life she didn’t want. It was a life she couldn’t live.

‘I know this might sound crazy, but hear me out’

Chelsea was willing to listen to anything, no matter how bizarre. Anything to take out this emptiness that was creeping into her heart. As long as Akin still loved her, she was willing to do anything to keep him. There were no options really. She simply could not live without Akin.

‘I will marry her for the sake of my baby. I am marrying her in name only. I will have absolutely nothing to do with.her afterwards’.

Akin paused slightly, allowing his words to sink in. Chelsea pretty much had her emotions under control. Her countenance betrayed nothing.

‘In two years, maximum three, I will ask for a divorce. That is if she doesn’t leave herself before then’.

Chelsea could not believe her ears. That was it? The grand plan involved her giving up Akin for three years? And what would be her status during this period. Chelsea knew the word but could not get herself to think it.

Chelsea tried to get off the bed, Akin stopped her. His hand brushing her arm sent a tingling sensation through her spine. Chelsea could not imagine her body betraying her at this moment. Suddenly, all she wanted to do was pull him close and make him suck her nipples one after the other while fingering her to ecstasy.

‘Chelsea, I’m sorry…please don’t push me away. You are my life, my all…’

The floodgate of tears broke. She hated Akin seeing her cry. Crying was for weak women. She was Chelsea, strong, independent…the tears kept coming.

Akin turned away.

Chelsea just wanted to get away from him. She just wanted to crawl under the covers and cry herself to sleep hoping that by tomorrow this will all turn out to be a dream. Akin would just call and tell her it was a joke. Chelsea automatically thought of the day’s date. And then it struck her.

 
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Posted by on November 10, 2013 in Series

 

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Remember the Wife of Lot

Most people have a thing for the past. Some memory that they just hold on to and won’t let go. Often, you will hear people reminisce about a time when things were better. For many, this attitude creeps into their personal life.

A few weeks ago, I wrote about a phenomenon I refered to as ‘relationship limbo’. I was thinking about a feedback I got on that post this morning, when a scripture floated into my mind and I saw the need to share especially as I felt it can be applied to relationships.

Remember the wife of Lot.

For those not farmiliar with the bible story. Lot was a nephew of Abraham and God asked him to take his family out of the city of Sodom as He was going to destroy the land. They were instructed not to look back as they fled to the mountains. The Genesis account however tells us that Lot’s wife went looking back and she became a pillar of salt. 😦

Lot’s wife looked back. She longed for the things left behind and she paid for her actions by losing her life.

When it comes to failed relationships, there is a lot wrong with looking back. We may not literally lose our lives like Lot’s wife, but we can lose out on living in the present because we are stuck in longing for a past we can never get back. Think about it. Is there anything we can do to bring back the past no matter how fantastic the memories are? We can only live one moment once. If we cannot bring back great moments, then we should be assured that we cannot change unpleasant pasts either. No amount of wishing can change the past. As a friend told me recently, if you have made mistakes in the past, the best you can do is forgive yourself and move on.

Indeed, we may not become a pillar of salt for looking longingly behind, but we can be forever be stuck at a point unable to summon the courage to move because we keep hoping that the past will come back to us. I have seen people who will not date someone else because they were hurt by someone in the past. Can you see how such people have become like a pillar of salt? I have also seen people who after deciding to date other people cannot seem to get over the fact that they have been hurt. They, in fact, keep searching for their past in the present relationship. Whatever their present partner does, they keep seeing the failings of their past partner(s) in them. Do you not think such people need help in breaking out of their pillar of salt?

There are also those who broke off a relationship for very good reasons but the fear of being alone forces them to look back like Lot’s wife. Have you not seen women who suffered physical, mental and emotional abuse from a man and everyone can see he is not good for them and still after moving out of the house again and again, they keep going back? Why do you think they keep going back? In the process some have literally lost their lives. There are also men who are well aware that a woman is bad for them but monophobia is keeping them in bondage.

Remember the wife of Lot.

As we go through life and relationships, we will hurt people and other people will hurt us. There are very few if any on earth that did not go through some form of hurt in relationships. Lot’s wife’s example is there to tell is that most times the best thing to do is to move on no matter how difficult it may seem. Or as another friend put it, ‘fail forward’. For indeed, there is nothing wrong with failing but there is something wrong with holding on to a failed venture. Failing forward entails that you cut your loses, learn your lessons and move on.

When you really think of it, are relationships not like a business venture?

 
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Posted by on November 8, 2013 in Relationships

 

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