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April

Better Than We Ever Could Have Imagined

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Relocating for a significant other?

Over the past few days, I've been thinking a lot about relocation. It has come up in two conversations with friends of mine. I can definitely relate because I have lived in Nigeria, Botswana, the United States, and Canada.

My mum was the mobile one who wanted to teach around the world. My dad, a lawyer, moved with her. I have to say, my parent's situation was quite different. We lived in a tumultuous part of Nigeria, and they absolutely needed to move.

The question is: Would I move for a significant order?

On first glance, yes. Yes, because I don't want to end up like my mum. She's great, however, moving across the world for career related reasons has not resulted in happiness in her personal life.

I'm 23, but I've decided at an early age that I would put a committed relationship with a person I love first. Meaning that person is my number 1 priority (note: family and friends are somewhat number 1 too). I consider myself a very ambitious person, however I know that there will always be better opportunities out there, but I can't always expect my partner to choose to move with me because of my ambitions.

But, I also have to think of my dad. Moving around the world with my mom made him resentful. Understandably so. He went from owner of a successful law firm to a lawyer with credentials that are barely recognized in a foreign country.

What would I choose? Career over relationship.

I guess I can't really say. Something I want to do differently from my dad is making sure I would want to live in that country without my significant other in mind. Would I want to live in this country/state a if my significant other was not in the picture?

This depends on career options, cost of living, proximity to friends and family, etc.

Something else to consider: What the future holds? Being in academia meant that my mom had the option of moving around a lot. I would not want to be in situation where a few years down the road, I am being asked to move again.

Also, does this person make me a priority. What would they do if the situation was reverse?

Things I will not consider: long distance for extended periods of time (i.e. over 4 months)

"The way it starts out is the way it ends up."

My motto: I don't just end up with someone. I choose to stay with them. Life changes can happen and it could be easier to break up, but I choose not to. I choose to work through it, compromise, and try to make things work.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Loving and leaving...

Leaving a person you love is like a paradox. Of course, I understand why people choose to leave. 

I leave because I don't want to take his love for granted. I leave because I ask myself if I can make him happy if he can't find happiness from within. I leave because the person he is right now can't make me happy.

It hurts. So bad. 

I've learnt that you don't choose who you fall in love with. I've dated those "perfect people" and broke up with every one of them. Here I am in love with a less than perfect man. *cough cough* like I'm perfect myself

I will continue to shed tears in solitude because they bring elementary closure. Also, because the tears show that I care. I want to find comfort and piece in these words. Comfort and piece to heal my breaking heart.

But I'll miss him. His kindness. His warmth. His love for me.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Relationship issues: 5 love languages, insecurity and poor communication

Two people got together, let's call them B & P. B (me, btw) can be quite insecure in relationships and can take that out on people in a very bitchy way.

B knows that her insecurities stem primarily from her parent's divorce.
P's "issues" come from constantly being in his head, not always being present and actively listening. When he's always in his head, he can think negatively about himself, making him need external validation and become emotionally needy.
Oreo = Interracial dating lol

To resolve our issues, I've been thinking a lot about the 5 Love Languages. P shows he cares using physical touch, words of affirmation, and gifts. I show I care by spending quality time with a person (especially listening), physical touch, and words of affirmation. The 5 love languages reminds me that P shows he cares in other ways.

It is not surprising that I can get quite frustrated when P doesn't listen to me or remember things that happen in my life. It hurts that P sometimes does not realize that I need help just as much as he needs help.When I feel this way, it's important for me to to conduct a detailed self-analysis.  When I cannot tell P how I feel for whatever reason, I resort to other forms of communicating my feelings: resentment, distance, short-temper.

Resolve
I want to work on my short-temper. Basically, to stop being a bitch when I get frustrated with myself and how I'm feeling. I want to do the following things:
-being self-aware of my temper
-writing how I'm feeling to be able to distance myself and give perspective
-vent to a friend
-use music (heyyy Westlife)
-Clean because it moves my focus to something quite intense.
-Communicate how I'm feeling with less intensity

When I get frustrated with P, I want to remind myself about who I am and why I'm doing what I'm doing. Basically, why I am with P. Cos he's smart and hot.

I am not able to control P's behavior, but I can control mine. I want to be better at giving P verbal cues (i.e., "this is really important, please listen to me"), and/or making an events calendar so he remembers things that happen in my life.

Final reminder: I am this wonderful organizer person who gets stuff done. I am able to create situations where what I want to happen can happen.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

10 things I love about him

1. He's smart, funny, one of the kindest people I know
2. He's really affectionate. He tells me how beautiful he thinks I am
3. He really respects me
4. He's really hot
5. We share similar views on building community, anti-racism, decolonization
6. We enjoy a lot of the same tv shows
7. He makes me food and is a good cook
8. He is emotionally sensitive (can be a flaw, but whatever)
9. He understands my blackness, and understands my spirituality which is an important part of my black identity.
10. He's a really good singer and musician

I think he knows how I feel. I'm really nervous but I can't wait to say that 4 letter word to him someday.

Friday, April 11, 2014

As I See You

I wish you could see yourself through my eyes
Sometimes...
I wish you always remember how I cherish you
Despite your flaws

Nerdy looking, tall & handsome, Italian you
Compassionate, Affectionate, Forgiving
Disorganized, Insecure, Mopey 
Talented, Creative, Melodic

You who sees my flaws without judging
You who gives without expecting
You who makes me feel loved with one touch
You who laughs at your own jokes

So unorganized, I'll just do it tomorrow
So compassionate, I want to show I care
So forgetful, tell me what happened again
So affectionate, you make me feel so good

You're not perfect, don't beat yourself up
Me and you, I think there's a lot we can do
This is cheesy, but life is a journey
I want to take that journey with you

Friday, April 04, 2014

Thinking of bell hooks and sharing the burden of relationships

In the chapter titled Honesty: Be True To Love, bell hooks quotes John Welwood:

"When we reveal ourselves to our partner and find that this brings healing rather than harm, we make an important discovery - that intimate relationship can provide a sanctuary from the world of facades, a sacred space where we can be ourselves, as we are ...This kind of unmasking  - speaking our truth, sharing our inner struggles, and revealing our raw edges  - is sacred activity, which allows two souls to meet and touch more deeply."

bell hooks, all about love, love, relationships,
I did that last night. I shared my deepest darkest secrets about my insecurities in relationships and how I feel like I'll never find happiness. His reaction was caring and understanding. That's one of the things I like about this man. He is so compassionate and non-judgmental. On the other hand, I can be very critical of him, but he says he likes it..sometimes.

He also shared things that he's insecure about and we agreed to work on our insecurities together.

He's not perfect, I'm not perfect, but I look forward to exploring our flaws and working on them together.

I am falling in love with him...

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Trying to get back to blogging and being more personal on the blog

No excuses, but life is stressful!! But I miss blogging, sharing my thoughts and venting in the safety of the internet. What has happened since I stopped blogging:
-I'm in the last few weeks of my final semester in university
-I am applying for full-time career jobs
-Applying for Canadian citizenship
-Getting braces that cost approx $10,000. Where on earth is this money coming from?
-Being in a relationship

Applying for jobs is so nerve-racking, especially since I know what I want to do with my life and the industry I want to go into. I'm hoping for the best.

Everything else on the list is pretty self explanatory, except the braces part. My teeth have always been my biggest insecurity and once I get that full-time job, I'm planning on starting the braces process. The entire process will take about two years, but I think the time and money will be worth it. On the topic of insecurities, I am the most insecure person in relationships. I constantly think of breaking up, of stuff going wrong, of me being too critical and breaking it off, of him being too irrational and calling it off, of him cheating on me. It needs to end.

I'm not insecure in the sense of "I'm not good enough for him". My securities lie in not believing in a forever kind of love, in the happiness of relationships. Although I have friends who are in happy long term relationships, I choose to dwell on relationships gone wrong. Like my parent's divorce and how that tore me apart.

I'm working on this...

Friday, November 29, 2013

Aamer Rahman on Reverse Racism

It's just so good!!


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Oh Pearlle, how I miss thee

I shall return . . .

In December, and after I graduate in April.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Reminiscing Mondays: The ridiculous search for a hard bristle brush

It's been ages since I blogged, and obviously since then, a lot has happened.

For one, I decided to go natural. I decided to do this almost a month ago, and I'm not looking back. I'm not gonna big chop anytime soon, and plan to transition for a while. While I transition, I'll be wearing my hair in protective styles like box braids, corn rows, extensions, etc. On Friday night, I decided to give the cornrows a rest and wear my natural hair in a bun. I did "research" on Youtube and decided that for an effective bun, I need hair gel and a good hard bristle (also known as boar) brush. Ummm..where on earth will I find this in Victoria, BC?
Natural hair inspiration
I called Shoppers Drug Mart, and the lady who answered the phone didn't sound like she had any idea what I was talking about. I called Sally's Beauty Supply, and the rep said that the "ethnic hair section" was quite sparse but they do have boar brushes. Thing is, the only Sally's near Victoria, BC is 57 minutes away by bus. I decided that I gotta do what I gotta do.

The next morning, before embarking on my gel and brush journey, I decided to stop by Walmart. I got in there and couldn't even find the "ethnic hair section". That aisle was so sparse, it did not even have a mini-label. I walked by it a few times before finding it. I went with Ampro Pro Style Clear Ice Gel (roughly $3) and a Goody hard bristle brush which cost $15. I'm pretty impressed with both products and I'll do a review of the gel in a little bit.

Hats off to my natural sisters in Victoria, BC. The struggle is real

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Thoughts: On Tonto's skin bleaching and self-hate

Now that Big Brother Africa is over, the spotlight has moved from Beverly Osu back to Tonto Dikeh. Here's the video where she admits to skin bleaching:



First off, I really appreciate her honesty but I find it hilarious when she says that skin bleaching can be done right because she sounds like a scientist. Apparently, there are some bleaching creams out there that don't have hydroquinone, who knows? I highly doubt it that she does not use hydroquinone because her skin is just so much lighter. I also find it problematic because I feel that many people out there will get the message that bleaching is okay, because it can be done "right".

Self-hate?
Self-hate is usually believed to be the cause of the bleaching phenomenon. Tonto obviously thinks that being light-skinned is so much more preferable than dark-skin, and she alludes to this by proudly saying "Don't get me wrong, I've always been light skinned". I disagree with the self-hate thesis, and I DO NOT think that people bleach their skin because of low self-esteem either.

Charles (2003) defines low self-esteem as "a persons overall positive or negative attitude toward him or herself". A skin bleacher is obviously concerned with their body image, particularly their skin. We all know the politics of black skin, especially as it relates to the black female body. If you had a positive attitude toward your dark (or darker skin), why would you feel the need to make it lighter?

Charles study indicates that 9 respondents surveyed for the level of self esteem scored a median of 23/30. 7/9 respondents had self esteem scores over 20. Charles explains that the survey was carried out on adolescents who may be bleaching due to environmental influences rather than low self-esteem. Four of the respondents said they bleached because it prevented pimples. He writes that this is a very small sample of the Jamaican population, and there certainly are some skin bleachers who suffer from self-hate, however, this is not the entire story. He brings up an interesting point, that thousands of white tourists who flood tanning salons are not deemed to be suffering from self-hate. Double standards, anyone?

Decolonizing our minds
We need to decolonize our minds and re-teach ourselves that our standards of beauty should not be defined by European ideals. Black is beautiful! We say it so much but do we actually believe it and practice it?

Tuesday Tips: Organize pdf files with Mendeley

If you work with a lot of PDFdocuments and love keeping them organized, Mendeley is for you! I write numerous papers all semester, and it can be frustrating having to go through files of documents in my computer. Or trying to input a citation but you can't figure out what document the paragraph is from. Mendeley literally saves my academic life!