Author Archives: marcia

TILL DEATH PARTS US…..

Black letters crept across the expensively-embossed letterhead like a tiny snail, leaving a trail of slime in its path

“We will be petitioning the Court for full custody…”

Alan was making good on his threat; he would let her leave, but she would not take his children he had told her; as if she had been nothing but a vessel for their delivery.

Rachel looked up from the lawyer’s  letter while trying hard to control her emotions. She didn’t want to lose her temper and have her soon to be ex- husband Robert use it against her. So she bit her lower lip and listened as  he went on and on about how she cannot afford to maintain the children.

“Rach’, let’s admit it. You will not be able to maintain the kids. I am just saving you.”

Rachel bit her lip even harder, till she tasted blood upon her tongue. Everything sounded like an insult. This man, seated across her; the man who didn’t even know how to have a conversation with his children was now implying that she was not a good mother.  Simply because he made more money than she did. It made her feel physical pain.

He smiled at her smugly, took a paper napkin and wiped his mouth. Rachel could not even look at him. She felt disgusted.

“Let’s do this the easy way. I guess you will know what to do….let me have the kids. I am marrying Gracia and she is good with the kids. Do this for the kids will ya?”

Rachel nodded. Then she smiled and watched him leave. It just dawned on her that “till death do us part”  had developed a new meaning in her mind.

Death will do them part alright!

 

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Categories: FLASH STORIES | Leave a comment

TRIP TO CRAZY LAND

A while back, I was in a bus from work heading to town. As usual, all the windows were shut. No air! It always surprises me just how much people hate cracking ‘em windows and letting in a little freshness. Well, I took it upon myself to nudge the stuck glasses into submission so that I could get lost into my own world while staring at the blankness of traffic.

It is from the point of the ‘window opening’ that things started sinking.  It took a while, but the window slid open alright. Only, I used a little  ‘too much force’ and it kind of hit the young lady who was seated in front of me. Next to her was a man who she kept whispering stuff to; so let me rightfully assume they were lovers.

The window hit her. Nothing serious….or so I thought.

She turned to me and told me in Swahili: “Wewe, umenigonga…”
She was frowning! And so angry, I eased back and muttered a sorry.

She frowned even more, turned to her man and said audibly:
“I think she did it deliberately. Had I been alone, she wouldn’t have done it. She is just pushing me because I am with a man…..”

I was confused. First, errrm, that she talked to me in Swahili, then turned to her man and spoke the pretentious English with a fake accent suggested that she thought I probably didn’t speak English.

Please, allow me to be petty!

Then, it isn’t like English is some strange dialect spoken only by a few anthropologists and people in a remote population off the continent.  Come on, it isn’t like you had to go through some special schools ad fill several forms for you to know the language.

So, I didn’t get why she would audibly talk about me in English, in a tone that suggested I couldn’t understand a thing.

I have a lot of chills.

I decided to let it pass and keep my mind occupied till they probably found a topic suited for lovers and leave me alone.

She didn’t stop. She went on and on about women and jealousy. It made me uncomfortable; for someone to talk about me like that. I wanted to put a stop to it, but I didn’t know how to do it without creating a storm and getting all passengers freaked out. My ears were on extra alert though.

“ I don’t understand why women cannot be happy for each other. Imagine, you get so jealous mpaka you hit a stranger you have just met in the bus….”  She said.

Her man laughed nervously, trying to steal peeps at me. I pretended to be reading a book.

You will pardon me, when I say that I develop extreme disgust towards the lady. I mean, I have my own man, and I wouldn’t get jealous just because some random person in the bus is with hers.  They were not even doing anything that would make my stomach warm, or make me go green….so why would I get jealous?

Then she started acting like an expert of Psychology – throwing gems like: “You know it is something people do without even  knowing….it’s like an impulse.”

Seriousy, all this psychoanalysis and Freudism because I opened a window and it hit her? Add a man into the mix and aha! I deserve my own couch in a psychologist’s chair, talking ‘bout my jealous rages? C’mon!

When I felt like I had heard enough (Which wasn’t really a lot, except for that one time when she shook her head and tried to steal a look at me through the cracks the chairs provided) I tapped her oh so slightly and asked her:
“Excuse me, do we have a problem?”
“She blew air into her mouth, let out some in exasperation and then said: “Nope…”

Theeeeeen, she grabbed her man’s arm in an ‘I- told- you- so’ manner.

You know, uhm, the: “Bae, seems like this jealous freak will not leave us alone.”
Of course, I wasn’t going to. Had she stopped sooner, I would have let it slide without a word. But she had stretched it, and I wasn’t going to let her go home and tell the false story of the woman in the bus whose green eyed monster is so much on the loose; she hits the lovers she meets riding the bus.

I looked her fiercely in the eye….okay I am being dramatic. I looked at her, and asked her:
“Why would you imagine that I hit you because you have a man? Do you know that I have my own, and I am sorry to say, I wouldn’t even be slightly attracted to the one you have by your side?” I  said in the most polite way.

I know. I know. I know.

I shouldn’t have involved the man, and I shouldn’t have mentioned things that I said about both of them as the conversation progressed. But can you blame me? He should have leashed his lady! He should have tamed that Itch in his B! But noooooo! He let her go on and on…..

The lady decided to put up a show. And great! Because my calendar was also on the same side as hers.

She told me:
“Why cant some people let others ride in peace….nini nini….”
I was just on my seat, looking at her yelling and throwing a tantrum, because I am a ghetto chick, and my mama taught me how to fight without shouting. We were taught to throw the lethal stuff without maximizing the volume.

I looked at her man and told him:
“I really feel sorry for you. “

I didn’t wait for his response. That is now such fights are won.
Then I shrugged, wore my earphones and leaned back. The whole us was now straining to see what was going on, and the more the lady shouted, the more I put on a face that indicated I was clueless about what was going on.

 

Lakini seriously, why do women think that all women are after their men; some of whom you would not even look at twice without feeling nauseated? Why?

 

 

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BY ALL MEANS

“This is not good. For heaven’s sake you used to be a good journalist! The sales are going down and people up there are not happy!”
It was the second editorial meeting Petro was having with the media owner, and he was feeling defeated. For the first time in his career, he was speechless. He wanted to say just how much he wished things were different.
“I am trying all I can…” he said in a tone that wasn’t convincing even to himself.
“We are not seeing results. Do more…”
Those were the last words they said before they tucked their papers into their sophisticated files and left.
Petro knew that he had to do something. Even though the bashing by his seniors had been harsh, he knew that in the depths of those screams and admonition was a truth he was not ready to confront.
He was losing it as a journalist.

He wanted so bad for his stories to make the headline headline. He wanted to have a story that would get the whole nation talking. He wanted the scoop, and he wanted his name to be stuck upon the tongues of people who matter…long after the event had happened. And even more importantly, he wanted to convince himself that he still had ‘it’.
He wanted his old self back.
“By all means necessary….”He whispered to himself as he hanged his coat on his shoulder and left the newsroom.
The events that happened later that night created the shift he needed in his journalism career. A prominent woman died under mysterious circumstances.
He was the first one at the scene of the crime. He had all the details….the exclusive story. He became a hashtag; trending on twitter within the first hour that the story broke.
Later that night as he watched news analysis while sipping his vodka from a plastic cup, his senior editor called him.
“That was good. The sales have gone up. The advertisers are streaming back for space.”
He took one final swig and said:
“I did what I had to do Sir…”

press

Categories: FLASH STORIES | Leave a comment

BETWEEN TWO FRIENDS….

In the darkness of the night, blasts from the high powered guns tore through the silence. It was followed by a stampede, a low groan and sounds of soldiers stepping onto the foggy ground. There was something different about this night – the soldiers had left thinking that their enemies were far beyond…..only to be met by a series of gun shots.

They panicked as the barrage of bullets tore through six of their own; including their commander. They were facing death, and no matter how much they tried to hide and fire back; it was obvious that they were getting overwhelmed by each second.

Isaiah, who had worked in the army for 9 years, heard his best friend whisper his name. It wasn’t so much of a whisper, but a deep cry from within. He looked back, and saw him clutching on his stomach….with blood oozing from it.

“James, hang in there, I will get some help. Don’t move.” He whispered.

He was trying to hide the fear in his voice.

“Shoot me Isaiah….I know I won’t live. So end this pain…..don’t leave me here!” He struggled to say.

war

(Image courtesy: wikipics)

From a distance, he could hear his colleagues running and firing aimlessly in an effort to ward off their attackers and prevent their own impending death.

Isaiah held onto his rifle. The enemies were getting closer….and he had to think fast.

He looked at his best friend and saw desperation

Again…..in the darkness of the night, , blasts from the high powered guns tore through the silence.

Twaff! Twaff! Twaff!
Three bullets.

Then silence!

Categories: FLASH STORIES | Leave a comment

THE EARLY SIGNS OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

This weekend, I listened and followed the story of the lady who was shot dead by her husband in Buruburu. It broke me for many reasons. First, nobody should go through any form of violence. It is not right. I was talking with my friend about the whole situation. See, my friend, a mother of three little boys is a victim of domestic violence. The good news is that she finally got the courage to leave, and looking back, she says that the man would have killed her had she stayed even a day longer. Please, if you are going through domestic violence, stand up, pack up and leave. I cannot say it enough. The signs are always all over, but we always ignore them.

We choose to justify things: “I must have pissed him off….he hits me because he is jealous, and he is jealous because he loves me….”
please, stop….please, leave, please….before you die.

abuse

Some of the signs of domestic violence include:

Narcissism and alienation:
Most violent people have intense narcissism which may be hidden, but if you are keen enough, you will see it. It could be how he always wants things to go his way, and how he never gives you a chance to express yourself. You are nothing but an object that he uses to satisfy his narcissism.

Most abusers always make sure that they convince you to cut links with friends and family. They want to choose for you your friends, and even prefer when you have nobody around you. They want you to depend on them emotionally, financially, physically, and in all aspects of your life so that they can suppress you.

“I don’t want to see you interacting with those people, they are not good for you.” they say.

the truth is, they are afraid of you getting empowered and deciding to leave.

meme

Stalking to no end:
How they monitor your every move, hovering near you like an albatross – sitting, waiting, watching…so close! They wants to know how you spend every ticking second. When your phone beeps, they linger , taking in every conversation as if it is their own….
They demands for your passwords and make you feel guilty when you do not want to share personal details of your life.

My friend says that a few months before she walked out her marriage, her ex-husband would pace up and down the path she used from work, waiting to catch her. She would find him walking up and down, with a hood on his head, just stalking her like a creepy thug.
“When did it start….?” I asked:
“A long while back. But I used to think it is cute, and that he does not want to lose me….”
Then he started demanding for explanations on every single move she made.

stalk

Putting you down with toxic words:
Domestic violence doesn’t restrict itself to the fists and punches. Sometimes it is in the words that crush your soul and shatter your self esteem.
“You are a bad mother. Your people are useless. You are so stupid. You are nothing without me.”
“He really makes me feel bad.” My friend told me over and over.
Some words permeate the air and tattoo themselves in the heart such that you have to battle your self esteem to find yourself long after the relationship is over.

Please, tower above it and walk away from the toxic relationship…..

words

The fists. The blows. The punches.

You have probably heard of the cliché, if he hits you once, he will do it again. Hey, do not let anyone hit you. Never allow someone to cause you harm for the sake of love. That is not how love is supposed to be. That is abuse. Do not stay hoping they will change. They never do….

They hit you, over and over,…you stay, miserable and sad. Do not stay for the children. No child should ever be brought up in an abusive home. They are the ones who suffer the most. The trauma of your parent falling upon receiving blows crushes the children, and causes them pain that they do not deserve.

Please, leave for your children.

child

It never helps when you stay for the kids. They wish you could leave….

kid

The constant lies and excuses:
An abuser will lie:
“I will change. Don’t leave me. I don’t know what got to me. I do it because I love you. I will be kinder, better and gentler. Give me another chance.

Sadly, we fall into these many lies, hoping that they will keep their words, and the love will grow better.
They promise to help you chase your dreams and be the person you want them to be.

And then the blows rain again…followed by a series of apologies and more lies.

Over and over…until they kill you.

Categories: LIVE! love! continue.... | 1 Comment

WHERE I COME FROM………..

I come from Kisumu city…
…the town of my upbringing. Of scorching sun, and a thousand dozen stars upon the skyline where I made several wishes, telling God many things, chief among them being that I wanted big big things…some of which have happened.
….where my mother fried golden fish and sold them to give us education and a brilliant future. Where I first tasted marshmallows and the sticky dates that my friend used to carry to school….

fish 2

I come from my mama’s womb….

she who bore me, and four other beautiful siblings. My sisters and my brother.  The one who taught us the value of good music, good morals, and choosing our battles, long before we grew up. The one who loved us before we took our first breathes and the one who loves us still…
My mama, the home maker, the fish monger, the profound singer, the cake baker who always wears dangling earrings that stream down her neck….the smiler, the one with a gap between her teeth…..that is where I come from.

The one who  continually whispers the name of the Lord in our lives, even when we feel God is in a far far distance!
pray
I come from powerful books….
Life altering, browning pages of words that flowed and transported me to different places. Books that were layered with deep imagery and delicious vocabulary that melted me and made me shiver. I come from Wahome Mutai’s “Whispers’ column at the Sunday Nation, A thousand splendid suns, I know why the caged bird sings, The Kite Runner, Chinua Achebe’s proverbs and other succulent books.

books
I come from Brokenness:

Of a broken body, tears flowing and knees bending. I come from hundreds of broken Ha-lle-luyas muttered from a place deep within me.

I come from cancer, of disease incapacitating, of surgeries that scared the hell or of me. I come from a series of healing….of searching for God’s arm, falling on my knees over and over.

I come from sighs, of scattered pieces of me that I am learning to gather. I come from growth, of self, and walking away from several things. I come from my own liberation, of learning how to let go and accept that I am whole only if I accept that I am broken.

I come from tears falling, heart mending, and learning over and over…..

broken

I come from immense LOVE!
The unequivocal  and so so so remarkably great love. The love that rains hard, the one thatcannot be stopped. Love that surrounds me and drowns me. The love that assures me that whatever happens, I will never be alone.

The love of my beloved, he who walks with a huge part of me! Mwaah, the love of my siblings, the foundation upon which I grow, the love of my friends, who make me smile and embrace who I am.  The love of my whole family, and their presence in most things that I do. The ones who nudge me oh so often towards the direction of my dreams.

The love of God, the one who RESTORES. The love of my mama, the one who taught me all I know about class and grace.

I come from a past, the things that made me who I am today…..and I am walking towards my new future.

I cannot wait for 2015.
It will be my year great promise….. a year of CLAIMING things that I have always wanted to do, It is my year of focus, and shutting out the noise. I cannot wait!
Hooooray…..to many more…of where I come from!

Categories: I AM, LIVE! love! continue.... | 9 Comments

HERE’S FOR THE LOVE OF WELL BEING

If you want to live a satisfactory life, then it is time for you to do some self evaluation to determine the things that are holding you back. Most people do not realize that they have the power to control their lives and that they have a button to their own happiness. If only we could internalize the things that we need to stop doing…

1. Stop giving negative people a chance in your life:

The people who speak negativity into your life. Those who put you down and focus on what you are doing wrong…the ones who are keen on identifying what is wrong with your life. They do that because you allow them. It is about time you kick out all the negative people out and flow with those who bring out the best in you. Ignore those who dim your light until they realize how irrelevant they are in your existence.

neg

2. Stop dwelling in the past:
You may have made several mistakes in your past. Things may have gone wrong and left you undone. But it is now time to move on  and grasp the present and the future. There is no time to wallow in the past and cry about how you wish things were different. Time keeps moving…tic-toc…the past is gone. It is time for a new beginning. Start yours now.

Crossing out Lies and writing Truth on a blackboard.

(Photo credits: Frankiejohnblogspot)
3. Stop comparing yourself with other people:

So what if other people have done things that are still elusive to you? So what if you seem to be a bit behind. Embrace the fact that everyone of us is coming from a unique background. The things you have battled, other people have not. There are things that you have achieved, that they haven’t. So stop looking at other people  with the thought that they have it all. Take flight…your own flight and be happy with your life choices.

stop it
4.Stop depending on other  people to give you purpose and happiness in life:

Take charge of your own happiness. Live. Love. Laugh. Continue….
Do not keep pegging your enjoyment of life on  your relationship, or friendship. Be you….and think about the things that you love. Do them, regardless of who wants to do them with you. When you start enjoying yourself without relying on others, then you will find life’s beautiful purpose. Drink coffee, listen to music, dance, sleep… be happy!

happy

5. Stop complaining and whining about how unfair life is:
So what if you have not had things easy? True, you have struggled in relationships, you have sunk into financial problems, you have wallowed in hopelessness, you have cried the whole night when the world was asleep, you have stared into blackness and wondered if you will rise from  it….but that is not your definition. Your struggles are not who you are! Complaining and whining about how hard life is will not change anything.  Learn, and live!

complain

6. Stop holding grudges:
People will hurt you, people will shock you by doing things you didn’t expect them to. Even those closest to you will do things that will uproot the trust you had in them. However, holding a grudge doesn’t help you. It only enslaves you by keeping you on a leash, hoping that something bad will happen to those you are holding a grudge on. Let go! It doesn’t mean that you start trusting them again. No, all it means is that you stop making them relevant in your life…..it frees you and allows you to focus on other important things. Oy! with the bitterness already!

go
7. Stop trying to run away from your issues:
Sometimes it seems easier to ignore stuff and bury yourself in the proverbial sand. Sadly, it doesn’t change a thing. If you have messed up, acknowledge it, and work towards your rising! Do not try to distract yourself with other things, in the hope that things will work themselves out. No, you have to take control and align things for yourself.

congtrol
8. Stop ignoring your own needs:
It is okay to love other people and to prioritize their needs. However, you should never abandon yourself completely as you try to take care of someone else. People will call you selfish, but in real sense, they are the ones who are selfish. For them to expect you to immerse yourself in  helping them figure out how their lives should be, while yours is in a standstill. So, take some time off , take care of yourself….

care2

9.Stop being too careful to avoid making mistakes.
Perfection is boring!  Dare to do the thin gs that scare you the most. Set up a financial goal higher than you think you can. Apply for that job that everyone else thinks you can’t get. Bid for something that shakes your frame. Think of yourself as the best. Trust me, mistakes are the best part of success. They teach you things you didn’t know about yourself. So, STOP second guessing yourself. Just jump in…..take a leap and see how it unfolds.

goldfish jumping out of the water

10. Stop being so ungrateful:
Are you waiting for something BIG to happen in your life for you to start being grateful? Your breakthrough perhaps? That is not how it is done. Look around you…you will see immense beauty, some of which are your own creation. Think about your family, the things that make you happy, the journey you have walked to be where you are today! Aren’t you grateful for life? For the a thousand possibilities ahead of you? For the fact that you are who you are!

Categories: LIVE! love! continue.... | 2 Comments

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