Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Is 'blob' my new favourite word?

Driving back home after vacationing with extended family, and I can't stop thinking about innocence versus .. not guilt - but knowledge. The absence of innocence is to know

My kids are very sheltered. My husand and I are typical new age helicopter parents. Constantly hovering. This means we are pretty much always with the kids. We only go on play dates if it's ok for mummy to be there, any birthday parties that say 'drop off' are given a side eye and tossed into a bin. Definitely no sleep overs.

I will not delve into the whys today.

Today I'm preoccupied with 'knowing'.
 I cannot protect my kids for ever, they must explore for them selves and then choose for themselves.
I listened to my 6 year old talking with his cousins today and was struck by the lack of sophistication in his speech.  Sophistication is a product of experience.
He pretty much sounds like a child when he talks and right now that's fine by me.

At six I was a voracious reader. Six year old me would scoff at the age appropriate books my son reads under my adult supervision.

I decide to let the kids play without constant supervision and as I walk by a room I hear one cousin ask my four year old if she can twerk.

Oya all of you come out now!!!

Twerk Ko!

But at some point, we will have to let go.

I want strong independent kids.
I have no clue how to go about this.

 Naivety may be cute at six but I know what it does to book smart sixteen year old in university.

Spits them out in one well chewed blob.

Saturday, 26 September 2015



When  white people give you flowers and you are too fucking African to have a vase  know what to do with it.

Monday, 21 September 2015

Help ! I'm drowning, my bones are in my way.

Had my second swimming class yesterday.

The first class was about finding our comfort level and I was surprised to find I wasn't scared of the water.

I've always described my self as scared of water- well I'm terrified of drowning. One day I'll be in a plane crash, somehow manage not to burn in the plunging inferno even though I'll have two heart attacks on the way down and then I'll crash into the sea where I'll drown as theatrically as possible, so that all the people who look at my gnarled corpse, every single one of them will wake up at night screaming "quelle horreur" - they'll all be french you see.

Anyway, just so there's a chance I survive this inevitable  plane crash, l'm learning to swim.

So its my second class, and I'm surprised how comfortable I am in the water. All the years of taking my kids to their swimming classes and it's soon clear that I've learnt a couple of things, except how to float.

So my instructor comes over and hands me a floating device and after a couple of minutes, I'm still unable to just lay flat and be. On Water.
This very nice lady comes back  and says to me
"well its also a matter of how you are built,"

And I'm thinking "geez I know I'm middle heavy, but Shuan T has been kicking my butt for the last 5 weeks and my core is finally emerging from where I kept it six years ago ..."
And instructor lady goes ahead and says.

"Your body is built differently,"
And to my 'hmm?'
She clarifies by saying with some  hesitation
" African American bodies are heavier, so they tend to sink"

I remember thinking  while she was speaking, don't say anything, leave it alone, let it float into the atmosphere to wherever all the lost items we never find again are.
Unfortunately, my eyes and my face rode a roller coaster of 'reallys?' that ended right where it began. If she noticed, she didn't let on and kept explaining about bone density.

Go ahead and tell me how black people can't swim dear white lady.

She soon stops and I say ok and get back to flapping around.

I didn't even think about the fact that I'm not 'African American' until I was in my car an hour later.

Just plain African.

Monday, 31 August 2015

Femme and the wailers.

I am extra needy today.

I want more.

Love me.

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

When words are not enough.

For my birthday this year, I got a tattoo  on my arm that says ------.

I wanted something I could look at when life's  inevitable shit comes for me:
Plane crashes, tsunamis, earth quakes, fucking religious  extremists and the  more probable breast cancer.

I would look at my arm  and tell myself not to take it personal.

Because shit happens, and it just might happen on me one day.

I just saw a woman whose husband got killed in a bomb blast at the Erawan shrine in Bangkok. She was talking about how she would remember  the good times she'd had with her husband with a smile while bravely fighting away the tears.

I look at my arm and realise I wouldn't want to see ------ if that was me.

It would be no consolation.

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Don't hug me bro! ..Please?

I hate hugs.

Don't know why.

Never liked them.

I evaded one today from Frank's college by  pretending to be shy and couldn't avoid another  one when I met up with Frank and a friend of his for drinks.

Pressing my body against another human, for an uncertain length of time is weird to me.

Like Frank's friend who hugged me tonight,- she held me  long and hard and I kept thinking "really? You don't think the side hug would have sufficed?"

My sister in law drives me crazy with the hugs. There's  a big section of every visit dedicated to the hello hug and the good bye hug between the kids, and the "did you hug auntie?" and then I have to lean in with a stupid smile on my face. If you have to tell people to hug, what's the point?
Shouldn't there be a mutual 'oh my God I really need to press up against you for a socially accepted length of time to show you; I care, I missed you, I need to know what your hair smells like, etc."

I have felt this urge, I know it's real and I have given in to it with joy. BUT COM'ON, NOT EVERY SINGLE TIME.

My sister is sleeping over tonight  and will leave in the morning. I probably won't see her for another year.
Will I? Hug her?

Sunday, 12 July 2015

Happy birthday Charlie.

It's the last 15 minutes of my son's birthday and I couldn't be any prouder of who he is.

He really does have the best heart and I just had to explain to him that not everybody is NICE. Some people are mean or act mean and we can't always report them to a teacher.

I'm afraid for him.

Nice won't cut it

femme and frank

Female and Nigerian

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Semi retired feminist, closet online shopaholic, avid googler, unapologetic foodie who refuses to count calories until they are an acceptable means of barter.

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