Tag Archives: happiness

We see people how we see ourselves

15 Jul


 I came to this conclusion over the weekend after I read some negative comments about someone I happen to respect and admire. I was appalled at the amount of hateful words heaved at this person based on assumptions and misapprehensions. As much as we as humans like to say everyone is different, on some subconscious we still expect everyone to think like we do. Or maybe not exactly think like we do, but do things in a particular manner and when that pattern shifts a volcano erupt.



In the world of today social media and the internet gives everyone a platform to voice their opinions. Back in the day one had to try to get their views in a publication or media outlet and would be expected to have knowledge on the matter they were discussing or reporting. Radio shows are being replaced by podcasts, television shows replaced by online videos, magazine and newspaper columns replaced by blogs, and anybody can get on any of these platforms and share their opinions and get heard as long as they have the internet. These outlets give people the opportunity to share their unfiltered opinions, especially if there is no monetary gain or conflicting interest. A real journalist is usually told by the organisation they work of certain limits that cannot be crossed when reporting on certain individuals or establishments. Propaganda cannot be avoided and power cannot be ignored, the shadiest people are sometimes also the richest people in control of the world. So a respected media outlet has to consider how important sharing an opinion is as opposed to losing a huge amount of funding. Do you get what I am saying? I mean I don’t think I have to elaborate on that the real life case studies are out there on this matter existing in different countries across the world.

I’ll be the first to admit that I am naïve. Naïve is the way someone who just sees black and white might describe me, in the sense that I do not just see things as they are and always look beyond the surface. For every action there is an equal reaction and I will say it goes the other way too. We just see people actions and have no idea if it’s a reaction to something that has happened to them. And we also hear people words but can read their minds to understand their thought process. Okay! there are people out there who are bat crazy and just do thing for the sake of it. I am not looking at those people, or the ones who have some sort of mental illness and have less to no control of their actions. I am referring to regular people like me who often get misunderstood. I have sent text messages I thought were very clear and precise and gotten instant frantic phone calls asking for clarification and further explanation. I have given compliments to people that have been mistaken as jabs. I have been shy in a gathering and dismissed as a snob and anti-social. I have been honest and described as rude. I have been genuinely happy and lively in a setting and been pegged an attention seeker. I have found it hard to get my points across to someone, mumbling for the right words and perceived as clueless. I have just wanted alone time with myself and considered a missing in action friend. I have been coy about admitting how much I wanted something and was concluded to be uninterested.

Because of my often misconceptions even described by some as a mystery, I like to give other people the benefit of doubt when their actions seem odd. I see people how I see myself, you know as someone who deep down has an optimistic view of the world. I don’t purposely try to hurt people but sometimes it’s inevitable, in other words I can’t hurt myself to please other people. Everyone has to be selfish at some point, maybe sometimes I become more selfish than others would like me to be. There are more straightforward people out there who will find me frustrating, because of what I leave on the surface. I do not blame them as I have come to understand that we see people how we see ourselves.

With Love,

RD xxx

A Day to Remember

23 Jun

“Thirty days had September, April, June and November all the rest have 31 except February which has twenty eight days and twenty nine days in a leap year”(class chants).Teacher: Now John stand up and tell the class how many days there are in March. John: (stands up looks round the class before speaking) there are 31 days in March. Teacher: Everyone clap for John (kpa kpa..kpa kpa kpa everyone claps for John and John smiles). As a child in Nigeria this is an example of what I learnt in Nursery or Primary school not so sure what level now. At some point may be Primary two or three I had to write creative writing essays such as “My favourite person”( I would debate whether to write about mummy or daddy), “A day you will never forget”( I would debate whether to make up my perfect dream day or write about yesterday).
A day to remember
There are many days I remember and probably will never forget. Oh like the day I saw him for the first time, he was so cute I was scared to touch him at first. He was so tiny with red patches on his face. Granny held him and I looked at him so wowed and went into the hospital ward to hug mummy and she says “do you like your new brother” and I say “yes but when are you coming home”. Oh what of the only,first and last day I saw my dad cry, I had recently turned eight. I mean it’s my dad the definition of a true African Man in tears; well it was at Papa’s funeral. I expected women to cry but watching him and his 5 brothers’ cry was quite gripping. I guess they were allowed to grief the loss of their father but nonetheless it left me bewildered with the knowledge that even the strongest of men do cry. 
This day was sometime early last year. I woke up early in the morning and within an hour found myself in a moving car listening to my then old generation 2gb IPod. My cool sister put all the songs in there and all I can say is I was listening to good tunes. In about two hours or maybe three if you were there you would have spotted me coming out of the car in a foreign city wearing a dress, black jacket, tights and black pumps. I was seated near the front of the church so I could see the pulpit and casket surrounded with flowers clearly. I cannot remember now if it was a Catholic, an Anglican or a Methodist church. I do not remember if I herd any one say Hail Mary or if the prayers were long. But I am sure I was in a church at the funeral of a lady I had never met in my life. From the programme I gather that she left behind a husband, two daughters and a son and many loved ones. Her son reads a bible passage with coldness in his eyes. Her husband is in tears professing how much he loved her and how much he will miss her. Her brother gives a captivating speech of his best friend who always supported, motivated and inspired him. A Christian group say how much she contributed to them. This congregation was full and this was a week day and I wonder how many of these people ever met her unlike me. I sing the hymns wondering if it is right for me to be there. I read her biography but still I do not know her and now I cannot summon up what her name was.

I am in the car again and stepping out at a cemetery. I feel the water pouring, sadly it’s raining. I am given an umbrella which I share with a partner. I am at the grave side again I question if it is right for me to be there. Would this lovely lady that has passed away find my being there disrespectful? Songs are sung by choir, the pastor or the priest say prayers. And then one of the most moving scenes I have ever witnessed occurred. Her husband shovels in sand into the grave crying someone holding on to him. He is saying stuff I cannot utterly hear from where I am standing. Her eldest daughter that looks nothing more than 14 years old shovelled in sand to the grave wailing and crying saying mummy over and over. When it came to her son’s turn he still had the coldness I had seen in his eyes in the church. He shovelled in sand with so much anger. My eyes became watery; he had no tears in his eyes. It was as if he was angry at his late mother for dying of cancer. He moved back and looked away watching the people crying as if he was irritated and dismayed with their grief. More and more people shovelled in sand I remember a woman who struggled to walk to the grave with the aid of her walking stick. The rain was still pouring heavily and I remembered stories I heard in Nigeria of how people consulted native doctors to hold rain from falling during functions. Or stories of how enemies sent rain to obliterate a function. Well I do not think this was the case here as this was in Britain and we all are acquainted with the British weather.

I am in the car again and step out in front of a town hall. And inside there is a buffet of Nigerian cuisine. Jollof rice, pepper soup, assorted meat, moin moin, food and more food. Typical of my people to turn everything to a “come chop” (come and eat) party. I look round and see faces unenthusiastically beginning to smile. Over hear conversations of reunited friends “I’m married now…, it was 5 years ago.., 2 kids” “are you on facebook” (I think why are these forty something year old Nigerians discussing facebook). I look around her husband is talking to people with a plate in his hand smiling; on my way out I catch sight of the back of her son. I could not see his face but I suspect that he was not smiling but I wish that now wherever he is he is smiling. I hope he is not still angry, I hope her beautiful daughters are happy. O I hope there is harmony in their home. And I am grateful to them for having me there. For them I’m sure it was a day of grief for me it was and still is a day to remember.