Diaries…of relationships

Hello brilliant readers!

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Today, we shall talk about those questions which do not have answers and leave you doubting your brilliance. When parents, grandparents and the larger society gang up to ask you why you are not getting married. You have the job, the house, the car, and you are a nice person. But then, why can’t you find a husband or a wife? The biological clock is not friendly either. You know things are starting to get thick when your next of kin start suggesting the viable bachelors and bachelorettes and telling you that you probably need to revise your standards as though they were there when you were setting the standards. What matters, they tell you, is simply a respectful person you can start a family with, humble beginnings never killed anyone and blah!

A friend of mine suffering from lack of a woman to marry recently told me that nowadays, once you hit 30, it becomes a taboo to still call you single.

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Your new title becomes an ‘unmarried man’ or unmarried woman’ and a small graduation ceremony should be held where you meet men and women of your cohort to revise strategies. But I will be the adorable writer who will just call you single, whether you are 20, 25, 30 or 40…

Why are you single? Or why are you in a relationship you see no future in.Take a few seconds and think about the people you choose to date. What they do differently, how they treat you, What you see them for, and why we date them. In the grand scheme, why do we choose one person over the other as a partner? What really makes them better? And why do we settle for convenience relationships or say that we cannot find the appropriate partners?

We spend time lamenting about the lack of men and women to settle with, the lack of eligible life partners. Paradoxically, we live in a world and a generation full of single men and women who insist that they cannot find marriageable women and men, leaving you wondering whether the problem is the men or the women. We find solace in failing marriages and opt to lie that we are taking time to ensure that we make the right choice.

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why

I recently got into a small fight with my good friend. Reason? He had just gone through a pregnancy scare (Yes men do also go through these things)…But then, his worry was not the possibility of getting an unplanned for child, but having a child with that particular woman. ‘Certainly not the type of genes I want for my babies’…he said. Offended (more as a woman than a friend), I gave him some short tiff on how vain he was, asked him why he was with her in the first place and reminded him to keep his mentality that he was God’s gift to women in check. (Sorry by the way). Thinking about it later though, I realized that we all trend on such acute double standards at one point or another. We possibly have been with people who we either feel are not good enough for us or vice versa.We settle and compromise, but conveniently hope that somewhere along the way, we will get better. That our prince charming or our fairy tale princess will appear and sweep us off our feet and eventually find our happy ending. We consider the possibility of marrying our current partners with faint hopelessness. We cannot admit that we are dragging them along to a future that possibly does not exist, or a future that we do not necessarily look forward to. But we keep the options open so that in the unfortunate case that our happy ending does not eventually show up, we will have a fall back plan.

Sad as it is, most of us date people…not for who they are and the combined synergies we have that would ultimately make us the power couple; but for how good they are for us. Because they are good for our profile, socially acceptable, appealing to the eye, good for the babies…As you climb the corporate ladder, standards rise and we automatically draw the profile for the people we consider for possible partners. And naturally so.

And so we step to the dating world with that profile of what we are looking for. So much so that when we go to our friends all smitten, they first seek to fit the potential partner to the profile that we had previously (obviously) presented to them. We discuss their ‘personality’, their brains, their sense of class, their looks, their background…and seldom how they make us feel. Should we have the slightest feeling that they do not match the profile or will not be accepted warmly in our circles, we subconsciously find ourselves defensively inserting ‘buts’ in every single line .

And then, we start dating the profile idea; that they are this, but they will be that; or they have the potential to be that. We get into relationships that we have already played over and over again in our heads. We settle with the expectation that they will treat us in a certain way or they will grow into being our dream partners. (FYI, People never change, much less for others).

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We know what he is capable of doing judging from his talk, he has conveniently chipped in the kind of life he ‘leads’, his potential, and his grand life scheme. He has mastered the art of talking about his life plans alluringly and he is gifted with the striking ability to make you buy into his dream and vision. Complementarily, as a woman, you have the natural ability to buy into a man’s dreams blindly and to believe all his promises. The world temporarily stops when you meet a man who tickles your fancy. #husbandmaterialalert#suitablefatherformychildrenalert#weddingbells#patiencepays and all those sappy hashtags.

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But reality kicks in as soon as we get into the comfort zone. As we get deeper, we get frustrated when it turns out that they are not as ambitious as we thought, not as romantic as we had imagined. The richness lustre probably falls off as we realize that they are tangled up in loans. For men, you start realizing that she is not as sweet, brilliant and loving as she seemed. She is more nagging than you expected and more demanding than you can tolerate…

You both start noticing possible greener pastures forgetting that the grass is only greener where you water it; and you occasionally stalk seemingly happy couples on social media and wonder how they do it, how they remain sane while you are suffocating!

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Most relationships end out of frustration. Not because their partners are bad people, but because the idea that we had bought in the beginning fails to materialize. When he stops putting the effort to win you over, and when she stops the pretense of trying to act as a wife material. ( By the way, women work for that ring, a big deal)!

And then there is the money/romance issue. Effort starts being gauged on the price tags and pricey gifts are taken to replace emotional connection. We envy couples who seem to have a certain kind of life, and even pressure our partners to plan for similar things…on bad days, placing them on the same scales with the exes that we have never gotten over.

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Speaking of which, I cannot possibly end this without mentioning this in passing. Ladies, do not become a gold digger in the name of being a high maintenance woman or having standards. In fact, run if you find yourself deep in a lifestyle you cannot sustain if the relationship tumbled. If the only financial decision you are involved in is the sort of gift you get, you clearly do not belong there, and if you do, you are part of his wealth/property. There will come a point when life decisions will become weighty, when you will not be judged by the ability to receive gifts but by your ability to add value and hold the home together while remaining subtly grounded.

But perhaps, the problem is never who we date really, but the motives behind which we date.Good luck in finding your genuine happy endings.

Newbie

Welcome on-board and once again- congratulations on your new role. Be it a promotion at work, a switch of careers or organizations or you are kick-starting your career. While this can be a very exciting experience, it comes with a lot of anxiety and uncertainties and here’s why…

  1. You will have moments of immense self-doubt.

Between figuring out your new role and getting to master it, there will be moments of unadulterated self-doubt.  On one hand, you want to be the ‘wow’ newbie and on the other hand you are starting to realize that eeerm, green is what you feel: majorly because there is a whole lot of learning, unlearning and relearning ahead of you. You find yourself constantly trading between trying to demonstrate that you are up to the task and figuring out what you are meant to do, how best to do it and how to create your space within the system.

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Silent Tale

He had the type of face one could easily forget even when looking at it. But he also had a manly demeanor that intrigued her. For the next couple of months after meeting (in no manner that called for tea to tell), she found herself mesmerized by this manly-yet paradoxical-demeanor. He was neither polite nor impolite in his approach, neither too much in giving of his attention nor too thirsty for her attention either, neither express about his intentions with her nor vague in his actions that to any rational human implied his intention. In a nutshell, he was neither here nor there right from the word go. Difficult to read; and a man wrapped in mystery is worth a fantasy trip, no? she thought in awe.

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Complete…

Welcome to my small ted talk today. Been feeling a little extra on this love topic lately- call me cupid (ess)*

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We do not look for partners to complete us; rather to complement us. How true, and yet how false at the same time. The younger me would object… I would say that we choose partners (whether for relationships or occasional trysts) who make us whole; in the sense that with and around them, we feel ‘more of what we are’, more complete, more accomplished, happier, more alive and everything admirable. The me (now) would concur. I would say that before you know who you wholly are outside of someone else, you will never find any form of completeness from another. That being in any relationship will not make you any happier if you are not already happy with yourself. My point here is that it is only when we are comfortable with who we are that we can truly function independently and in a healthy way in our relationships.

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Sunny side

Happy 2019!

Between my last post in October last year and now, I traveled to the moon, passed by hell, got stuck in my own space for a moment and now I am back on earth, back down to earth; no pun intended. (Sips tea). Okay, what I am saying in many words is that a lot happened between then and now; but that is no excuse for my inconsistency. This year, (and I like to keep my word), will see a lot of consistency from me.

Anywho, somewhere in my roller-coaster, I found myself in this heart to heart tête-à-tête. I don’t know how we ended up in the part of what we could have done differently….like if you knew what you know now, what would you have done differently.

Nothing, I said.  I think in life, there are no misplaced steps…..we need all of them; I added.

Is it? She asked, obviously underwhelmed

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Remembering my grandmother

I miss her in big portions. Some days more than others 😦 !

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Before our birthdays nowadays, we (generation Y and Z kids) have this thing we call #birthdaymonth and #birthdayweek. I tell you this because July was my birthday month and 9th July 2018 was the beginning of my birthday week. My grandmother took her last breath on this day-9th July 2018.

Our conversations never had any order in particular, but there was the general flow. That she would see me from as far as the gate and call me by name. That we would exchange pleasantries and then out of the blues she would say…

I am here where you left me waiting for my day, orthis my body does not have energy, my eyes can’t see anymore, my feet can no longer take me to the farm”.

It was always hard for me to believe her. It is difficult to believe that the woman who called you by name from miles away could possibly fault her eyesight.

It’s with this same difficulty that I received the news of her demise. (more…)

Perfectly imperfect matches…

The experiences here may be personal, but the truths are universal.
For the girls waiting on their men, the girlfriends trying to keep their men, the married women tolerating their men, the divorcees who got fed up with their men; and the hopelessly enamored who can’t get enough of their men… For our men, the ones exhausted of trying too hard to please their women, the clueless ones riding in the tide trying to figure it out and the ones who found their perfectly imperfect match…this is to you!
The six stages of relationships…

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Quarter steps

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In the village where I was born and raised, being 25 was synonymous to ‘when I grow up’. After 25, therefore, the script was meant to change from ‘when I grow up I want to be XYZ’ to ‘I am that person I used to dream about’. There is the general delusion that between 25 and 30, life is about breakthrough after breakthrough, gaining identity (Both individually and by extension), happiness, success and every dream come true.

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Nothing close. This age bracket is about excelling in your side hustle as the chief-chef of wrong choices and about perfecting the art of serving yourself with humble pies. Remember those childhood/campus days of ‘who? Me? I can never do that, my pride cannot even let me think of such a thing and stuff like that? This phase makes you a master/mistress in the art of eating that pride with quiet manners.

Quarter life crisis…

Dating: If you are not already married or dealing with baby daddy/baby mama issues; you are most likely stuck in your love life.

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The lady drivers’ corner

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The news that I had decided to buy a car caught Mom Tina more by disbelief than delight. She looked at me disapprovingly and asked if I was ready, already😏. ‘Is that how someone, your own mother, should react to big news like this?’ I thought in disappointment.

“I think I am, I have been planning for it for some time now”. I said cautiously, with a considerable emphasis on planning- to pass the message that I had thought about it; and slightly less emphasis on think- to leave some room for her opinion. But Tina is not a woman to leave you in the ‘I think’ zone. In an attempt to convince me otherwise, she tabled all the other options where I could use my money, challenged me to consider investing the cash instead and maybe get the car when I had a stream of other incomes, presented the challenges that come with owning a car and started telling me the story of how her own husband had only gotten his yellow Peugeot when they were at a comfortable place financially. I zoned out; with my left palm unable to make a choice between presenting itself to my mouth for nail-biting or scratching my now itchy forehead. They say that the two types of people that you cannot advise are 1. ‘A woman in love’ and 2. ‘a man with his money’…But have they met a woman with money who thinks she is already in love with how she intends to spend that money? I doubt it!

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Eventually, when I could not pretend anymore, I took a long breath and cut her short…”Moooom, I was just telling you that I am buying a car…not asking you if I can buy it’! And that ended there- with a shocked mother who had just discovered that it is like she had lost a daughter to financial shortsightedness and a daughter who felt that she knew better.

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I did, I do, I will…

Welcome on board, I am more than glad to have you.

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I have just finished transferring ALL my posts from the other side. Earlier today I gave myself a ted talk on attachment issues, letting go; and about being open and willing to start all over again. To step out of the comfort zone and start something new…

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When I first stepped to the blogosphere, I worried if I would strike my readers as an intelligent enough newbie, worthy enough of the online space, driven enough and with content solid enough to get a community in a world that was crowded with wordsmiths, orators, brilliant writers, professional ranters, love doctors: People who sound better on pen than on voice… I worried if I would find my niche and if I would ever find my voice in a space where I was one in a million, billions possibly. I second guessed myself on so many occasions, put virtual stop signs on uncountable instances and warned myself enough times. I started the journey only certain of my uncertainty. And then one day I came across this brainy quote that ‘great people do things before they are ready. They do things before they know that they can even do it’… So I stepped to the blogging world anyway. I did!

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Dear Daughter…

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My intention to write this is as old as time! (How cheesy!).

I have typed and deleted this post not less than sixteen times in the last three years… Unsure, unprepared, feeling ‘not good enough’ and afraid of letting the world tread into my own battles. I go through tough times and think that I should let my daughter know that this path leads nowhere, she should try another route. I go through thought provoking sessions with a nod, occasionally smiling to myself and thinking ‘Wow, I’d love my daughter to know this; it would help her’. And for every wrong turn I make as a daughter, I take a mental note for my future daughter. I somehow have always found myself in this state: of taking notes and making hushed wishes for a child unborn. But with a life as flawed as mine, I have always held my thoughts for the fear of sounding like a botch too conversant with the script, obviously trying to make up for her mistakes by defining the path for her daughter: which would be utterly unfair.

But I feel ready today, more like I feel ready now!

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