Confession! Number 8 was reserved. But I have taken it for me. Not myself really, let’s call it a note from the editor in chief-ess.
When I heard the first Christmas Carole on the last day of November, it hit me that the baby in 2017 had grown to old age real quick and would soon be down, possibly in a grandiosely attended requiem mass to celebrate a life well lived…How time flies!
The gratitude challenge is my way of saying thank you.
To the people who add value in my life, whose presence makes me better every day and whose work continues to make the world a better in the own special ways. To the people who journey with me in my daily life, through the highs and lows, the pain and the gain; and have believed in me in immense ways. To associations and institutions which have trusted me enough to accord me responsibility in one field or another.This is me taking a challenge to let people see themselves in my eyes, and to take the back to moments in time when their actions or words made a whole of a difference. To let them know that I bookmarked those moments and once in a while, I revisit them; with nothing but a grateful heart. This is me telling you that if I ever stood at the pulpit for you, ‘this is what I would say’.
(8 of 31- About the challenge)
It was a leap of faith, a blank easel, a new page and everything uncertain. I had obsessed about an association for (Close to) 2 semesters. On the afternoon that Rosca was born, @Wanjira had paid me a visit when I casually dropped the idea. But you all know this girl, she is the force that transforms ideas to actions like NOW!
It took us the whole afternoon and evening to come up with a list that we both agreed to. Scaling down, adding names, comparing notes, dropping and adding back, redoing the list all over again, giving pros and cons and all. We eventually settled on 4 names.
“We might need to drop one, for breaking the tie in decision making” She prompted.
We did not, we simply could not. At this point, each and every one in that list felt like family. That sanguine imagination when you feel like you have just found THE ONE and are ready to settle and grow old together. And even when we approached them individually and personally, it was more like ‘welcome on board’ rather than ‘will you’
It has been a couple of years now and still! From a leap of faith to leaps in faith. Our easel is now full of pleasant memories, our uncertainty now replaced with certitude in our combined synergy. It’s not a blank easel anymore: just a new line, in a new page within a chapter of a beautiful book….of girls determined to make it or make it.
(7 of 31- ROSCA/ MyAteam/chama)
If you are yourself, they will definitely like you! He said in his usual composed voice after I told him that I had been shortlisted for the partners’ interview. It always surprised me how a voice could be so calm, affirming and inspiring all at the same time. That day, I had bumped into him at the supermarket and in those few minutes, I could not hold back my nervous excitement about the whole process.
“Hopefully you chose PSD? You’d love it” I nodded.
Rewind! I met @sokky7 back in 2010. He gave me his business card and I almost hated him for putting me in a position where I’d be the one to look for him, if need be.😏😏. But that business card was everything😄. I do not know about you, but knowing someone in the big 4 was a BIG deal. *stretching my arms to show how big🙌. I’d listen to him and hear wisdom; look at him and see class, talk to him and hear nothing but elegant brilliance… He was reading ‘The 48 laws of power’ then, which I ended up reading through his mind. He’d tell me about this law and that strategy that he had just learnt. I took mental notes like a student needing that A in life. Safe to say that he was in the knowledge zone. (His for sure was never brother/friend zone). He took interest in what I did, and what I hoped to achieve. On this day, getting that job was what I wanted and here he was reassuring me that I had what it took!
A few days later, I got that call! And I made that gratitude call!
“I knew you’d get it. I’ll have Mwanasha take care of you when you come…”
So here’s to you for the part you played in molding me in campus, and the part you play in shaping me in my career. For every piece of advice that saved a situation, every cheer that made me push a little harder, every minute you spared to listen to my rants and for every single time you reassured me and backed me up at the verge of despair.
(6 of 31: Ed, Knowledge/wisdom fountain)
In my second term of high school, I was summoned for a meeting. ‘You can surely do better than this Kimuya, your sister is doing great, you too can’ . I listened to them in tolerant exasperation😰
I left the staff room full of mixed emotions. Motivated was not one of them!It felt like I had just been told that I was failing myself, my brilliant sister and the Kimuya name by extension😕…To the teachers, we were Kimuya Senior and Kimuya junior. To everyone else, she was Kim and I was Lil’Kim… I went looking for her, balancing between tears. The pressure to perform was immense at home, and now in school. @winniekimuya never hit the double digits in class in all the 4 years. ( For my gen x readers, double digits in class is any number from position 10)..She was those nice students you want to teach and watch them do you proud… She saw my flusterred look and the distant tears now welling up and immediately walked me down to the hockey pitch, her arms around my shoulders and my head occasionally resting on her right shoulder.
We had a long talk that evening. I broke down telling her about all my challenges dealing with the fact that I had missed my dream school so narrowly, the faint hope of getting transferred, my struggles with Physics, Chemistry and history, my inability to believe in my abilities and my fear of failing. To me, it felt like there was an imaginary bar that I would always have to match as long as they went ahead of me and that my success would always be gauged based on theirs. (last born struggles). She let me cry it out, and after the last tear, she started her speech. It is amazing how a girl could have all the right words for that moment, delivered so effortlessly and smoothly. It changed a lot!
11 years later, I still revisit this moment in time. When she told me to define my path and to stay true to it. To set my goals and to remain personnally accountable for them. To step out of my insecurities and look at myself in the same eyes that she looked at me with because ‘little sister, you have so much potential in you’…
( 5 of 31: Winnie, my cheerleader)
When I was young and wild, santa visited me with the teenage defiance.( nikaota mapembe🐂 ongezea mkia🐒)…. He gifted me the eye for short dresses among other things. But when I was just but a fantasy in my father’s head💑, long before I was conceived, there was the santa who had brought @thedonfel to the homestead👶! He was the boy who never let me step out of the house in my mini dresses! I have lost count of the days that I had to change my outfit because he said so. And if he said it, I did it without questions! Not because I was taught to blindly obey but because his opinion matters, it mattered and quite honestly, I hated that it did!
I look back today and realize that it was all because you cared about me. Because when you have a baby sister, it is only natural to want to protect them. To teach them that just because they will desire you by your looks, they won’t necesarily value you! So kid sister, do not try too hard to grab that attention!
We are now old. We do not fight over what I wear or do not wear anymore. I hope that you know the impact of all what you do for me as your baby sister and for them as your younger sisters! (You read it right, I am your only baby sister😂). I hope that you look at us and feel that somewhat, we have turned out to be the girls you wanted us to be. I also hope that you know just how proud we are to have you for a brother. We are lucky, we are blessed, we ‘dem girls!
Thank you because you keep up together, because you give us a sense of direction and because you care! Thank you because I can count you as one of my own and count on you in the hour of need.
Ps. I am really proud of boy you were as child, the gentleman you are and the man you are becoming
(4 of 31: Felix, my guardian)
For more than a year, I did not know @miss_serambugua beyond her whatsapp status which I tumbled on during my usual stalk-takes for my contacts. “Smart, sweet, talented, strong, pretty and kick-ass; all in adequate portions. The type of attitude you’d like in any girl🙌, not so?
But we have grown past the whatsapp status and hi/bye typa friendship now. To me, she has mostly been like a big sister, sometimes like my own Mom, often my partner in crime, occasionally my common sense advisor and always my friend.
At work, she is my favourite parrot with never ending stories, my code names decoder and the owner of the plate that I always poke my hands into over lunch. I know that you do not like it, but deal with it. 😅
She is a pro bono analyst of situations. You will be seated somewhere, quietly and then her call comes and you excuse yourself because you know it won’t be short. ‘So Kim, I have just done this, buuut, I have analyzed it like this; am I crazy?’…by the time someone is asking you that, yes of course, they have a level of crazy; a huge level at that😂. But aren’t we all?
Serah watches out for me like her own baby. If we go somewhere, she will only leave after I have left,, her patience level is unmatched!
To my personal finances, she is my watchdog; it is because of her that I took up saving plans this year.💖. She is also the spark that keeps me on my toes when it comes to my career. As y’all know, punctuality has never been my strong point. She noticed this, and rather than scolding me, she started waking me up. But lateness are I were on honeymoon then😍. So one day I got to the office to her flat face. “Kim, can we talk later today?” I was sure as af that she needed to withdraw from my wisdom bank, or just needed some advice. Shock on me! She asked why I was always late, if I loved my job, and if I was happy with my habit”…you need to be diligent Kim, you have to! It was not a lash, I did not even feel like she was being patronizing. It felt like a warning given in the most caring of tones..💟. Thank you because you push me to be better every day. Ps..your you tube channel is wayyy overdue!
(3 of 31: Maryanne- A mix of everything special)
Long before his first cry, I lost the battle of convincing everyone that Ian was the coolest name on planet earth😥. I had secretly figured that if they named him Ian, then I could easily call him Little Ian, which would evolve to being pronounced as Lil’Ian by all the cool pips who had the tongues that could roll in fine tweng.#butwisdomalwayshasmekinsmen#dontyouthinkso? To my disappointment, we named him Karl (Karl with a K)… supposedly derived from Charles, his grandfather. Something like Karl being the modern version of Charles (You also don’t get it, do you😏 ). A week or so after his first cry, I had to woman up instantly! He was not a baby who loved his night sleep, and he was a baby who neither liked nor tolerated any kind of discomfort. But my girl @winniekimuya
was just as new to mothering as I was. We were young and clueless much😂 I remember the first time she called me up slightly after 2am her voice too tired…”sweetie I am terribly tired and he won’t sleep, could you pick him up, pleeease”… I freaked out, he was barely two weeks old! What if I slept on him? What if😭😭. I picked him,yes; but you can bet I stayed awake till morning thinking about that biblical woman of King Solomon’s era who slept on her baby…
He is now all grown💃. We do errands together, we have conversations, he lets me steal him every now and then. He also calls me ‘bestfriend’ like it’s my name 😍. He is learning survival tactics real quick, bless his teachers, his parents and everyone whose effort has impacted him in one way or another👏👏. And boy makes me feel like I am making it in life as a parent by extension. Just the other day, he asked his mama if I could be his mama! And to give the blow a soft landing; he added…”I just thought that maybe she could be my mother because we both have oval heads, and yours looks round”😅😅 Today, I thank you for the happiness you bring us, for the mistakes I make with you that make me better, for the night stories through the year and for every moment that has prepared me to be a better mother for my future baby
2 of 31 (Karl- Nephew by birth, son by nurturing)
I met @ciirulucy in the school of business. She was mostly the girl a few doors away, up until we moved to the single rooms and she became the girl one floor below who made food orders for two. And that said, she was my priority food customer. We were both affiliated to a number of common social circles, but never really exchanged much at a personal level.
Then, we landed the same jobs, had our first assignment together and during that time, I realized just how much of an amazing person Cii was. I cannot remember a day that passed without a good laugh. I cannot even remember any day I went to her for advice and came back feeling anything less than revitalized and reenergized.
There was this one time that I had a really bad out of town assignment; and when I came back to the office, I did not take the normal Das/ (*I have forgotten the name of the other food provider) food. She had made me lasagna!!! Like she had taken her time to make me lasagna that I so much love just because 😍. How sweet, how caring, how thoughtful!
I thought I should make December my month of gratitude, and the first person I wanted to appreciate was Luce. I called her up last week and asked her for one of her best pics. She sent 4, this girl too extra😂. The first pic, is her, and her firstborn baby-Atlas. (You cannot imagine the look on my face when she told me that she was going to be a Mom. And I am there battling between shock and excitement when she sends me a pic and goes like, it’s him, we named him Atlas)…Like how?! “Wanjiru why? But I still love you all like so💗
So Cii, this is to you. Thanks for the part you played in making the year amazing, follow your star, stay cool, stay amazing,keep your hem looking forward and cheers to more years of friendship
1 of 31 (Ciiru- Friend made in heaven)
To continue, please click here for the gratitude soupcons post. (9 to 31)
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