Monday, 13 February 2017

Unfinished - 1


I once had a boy tell me I dressed too African for him. I stood, mildly flabbergasted that an African child whose country almost shared the same border as mine, whose skin sits well in the category I like to call 70 percent Dark Chocolate, whose parents, I'm sure, are blessed with melanin so rich, had the audacity to allow such a statement escape his lips. In the following seconds, amusement spread from my eyes to my lips until it burst forth in bubbling laughter. This boy somehow thought I cared for his opinion on how I looked. How funny. I had mentioned before using the words "don't care", "do I care though?!" and "whatever" to convey my amusement and mild irritation but perhaps he had not fully comprehended how many cares I did not give. To which the correct answer is none. Zero. Zilch. Nada.
You see, this same boy had approached me earlier in the year, telling me he knew me from somewhere. As it turns out, I had attended the same secondary school as he except, there was a two year gap between us. As you would imagine, I had nothing to do with his year group, only interacting with mine and sometimes with the year directly above which meant stopping to respond to questions about my brother or physical features.
Our first conversation centered around reminding me of classmates I had removed from forefront memory five years earlier and what he hoped were words of impressive wooing whilst informing me that he lived alone and I was very welcome at any time, most especially that moment. What did he think, that I'd immediately rip every item of clothing from my frame and scream "My body is yours! Please me, O highly experienced sexual being!"? I politely declined over and over, letting him know in that moment that I would never encounter him in that situation and them proceeded to leave him, praying that I'd never bump into him again. Deep down, however, I knew we'd meet again.
Our second meeting was more spontaneous, more interesting and more endearing. As suspected, our paths crossed and since I had been in the house all day, escape from boredom influenced my decision and I went on an unplanned walk with him. To keep details to a minimum, the night was peppered with "these bitches this", "these niggas that", "my dick this" and most annoyingly "your ass is so fat... mmm!", "you're thick, you know. I like my women thick" and "you should let me fuck you. you can't handle this dick". If I had a pound for everytime I rolled my eyes and a piña colada for how hard I rolled them, I'd be a drunk girl with enough money for a taxi home.

...

Friday, 21 October 2016

I Moonlight As A Writer With Very Little Confidence - 'Untitled 1'





















The title to this post is not quite true. The word 'moonlight' suggests that I am secretive, lurking in the shadows using my interest in reading, writing and the English Language as the Clark Kent to my Superman. This part is true.
But it also suggests that I take writing seriously, that I hope to start a revolution with the tapping on my keyboard. It suggests that I know what I'm doing. It suggests that I, a random London child, am somewhat a pro. That's a lie.

I still do not know exactly why I write this blog, I guess more time is required to sift through the wheat and chaff of my thoughts, separate the precious jewels from the worthless stones and appraise it all to arrive at a better conclusion. Or maybe I'll never know. Maybe I'll keep moving back and forth, toying with the idea of writing until my thoughts are saturated with a task more pressing, churning out one post every three months or more until altogether, I forget about The Musings Of A Young Black Woman and press on into the incessant waves of Life and its woes.

Well, back to the present.

Recently, I've felt an strong push to write or rather, to complete something (someTHINGS - notice the plural?) I started roughly a year ago. The head space I was in at that time was quite different and for that reason, I have been reluctant to sip of that nectar again.
But once, whilst at church, I bumped into someone who, in a nutshell, encouraged me to post some of my writings and on that note, here is a snippet of 'Untitled 1'

...

Everyone was excited; my parents, his parents, even the neighbours were involved in our heightening joy.
Earlier in the week, my parents had driven out of the compound accompanied by his parents without divulging their whereabouts. A few hours later, with an open back van cradling a well-fed cow trailing behind them, they drove back into the compound. My siblings, the babies that they are, ran down the stairs and out into the compound in a hurry to greet the adults and get the first look at the cow as it clambered down from the back end of the van. I, however, remained upstairs and chose to watch from the closed balcony area. Pent-up inexplicable feelings swelled inside me, pushing up from my stomach to my throat and I swallowed hard numerous times to push it back down into the nothingness it emerged from.

These same feelings crowd my insides again today. We all are gathered, parents and well wishers, early enough so that even our shadows would not be late.
That's how seriously they take the event. My cousin's graduation ceremony; the culmination of 3 years of study, all-nighters and partying.

I sit, amused. My cousin has finally finished his three years of university study, yes, but how many adults present know his final grade?
"Congratulations" and "well done" coupled with "that's my boy" flow around from different mouths with different accents but they all were directed at him. He is the centre of attention.
I sit, amused, knowing fully well that no one knows that he graduated with a 2:2. A second class degree.
My very African family would have erupted in very vocalised distress and possible physical attacks, if they knew.
It was not my place to say, however, I am prepared to let him enjoy his day.
'Or am I?' Angry bubbles rose to my throat threatening to pop with verbal accusations and jealous actions. I whisper to myself, I have to calm down.

So we squeeze ourselves into our respective vehicles and begin transporting  ourselves to the venue. We sit in the hall and cheer like the extremely proud and loud family members we are when his name is called. Then begins the horror. Name after name, course after course, they strut onto the stage. An hour passes, then two and it still carries on. My buttocks begin to hurt. My stomach growls and pins and needles swamp my legs. Only one thought raids my mind 'Why didn't anyone else tell me graduation ceremonies are this long?!'

A few more minutes pass and then, all of a sudden, it is over! I thank God and haul my body out of the chair at the same time as everyone else. Slowly, like chain-bound slaves, we make our way outside into the blazing sun. For a minute, I am distracted as I take in my surroundings. The contrast is jarring; on one side, where we all stand posing for photographs and acting for  videos only seconds long, tall trees flank the building, carefully placed flowers of different colours and hues grow by a well-trimmed hedge, displaying the effortless beauty of nature. Opposite this apparent beauty, is the total opposite. Dilapidated buildings and unfinished towering structures dotted with scaffolding are scattered around the horizon. Puddles of murky water hover above hollows in the ground, masking the thick mud that lie undisturbed until tires run through it revealing its depth and true nature.

In the corner of my eye, a figure waddles past causing me to turn my head and my eyes are greeted by a pregnant nanny goat whose bulging stomach reminds me of mine. I stare down at my shirt stretched across my stomach, it looks noticeably tighter than it used to be. My stomach has grown bigger, it feels heavier. I tug and pull the shirt forward so that it covers my bulge and trudge back through the numerous people still capturing moments on phones and cameras, in search of a toilet.

...


Live and Love

Saturday, 9 July 2016

#BlackLivesMatter | Ode to the Black Man

Black Man.
You are special.
You are loved.
You are held in high esteem.
Do not believe otherwise
Black Man.
You. Are. Loved

Black Man.
You are beautiful.
In all shades.
In all sizes.
Do not believe the media
They are known liars.
You. Are. Beautiful

Black Man.
We cherish you.
Even if they don't.
Don't act like THEY want you to.
You are too important
You are too important.

Black Man.
Beautiful as the sun
emerging on the horizon
Black Man.
Bold as a lion.
Gentle as a dove.
Black Man.
So full of rhythm
A walk is a dance.
Black Man.
Your smile is like a thousand full moons
on a unlit night
Lighting up the atmosphere.
Your laughter is a lion's roar 
A baby's mirth
You stand tall
Like the Palm of the Caribbean
The Baobab of Madagascar
The Iroko of West Africa
Black Man.

Black Man.
You are strong
You are indispensable
You are needed
You are important
You are beautiful
You are special
You are loved
You are cherished
You are made in His image
Survivor
Champion
Overcomer
You are LIT,
Black Man.

Black Man.
You are loved.


-
(@chxamaka)


I'll keep this short.
In light of the unrest happening in the United States, the above was penned in support of our male counterparts who are the most marginalised. We (Black women and all other races alike) stand firmly behind you. Never forget that you are loved, don't believe the lies that the media tries to sell to the masses about Black Men mostly being thugs and criminals, we know you are better than that.
(Then when we graduate with a degree and further our lives by becoming ultimately successful, we automatically become 'One of The Few Who Didn't Go Down The Path of Destruction'. Mate, we're ouchea YEARLY slaying whatever exams and hoops and loops you put in front of us but for some 'random reason', it's STILL a HUGE surprise when we display, ONCE AGAIN, that we are not dense. Unlike what is and has been portrayed for centuries. Anyway, rant over.)

We still lit outchea, Black men AND women alike.





#AltonSterling
#PhilandoCastile
#TrayvonMartin
#MikeBrown
#EricGarner
#BlackLivesMatter

Live and Love
x

Thursday, 7 July 2016

The Future? 😕

Ok.
So,
Here we go.

I don't know what to do with myself.

That's probably not the best way to phrase my feelings in totality but HEY! Hear me out.

I've recently concluded all that there is to do with my degree (GLOWWRAAYYY TO THA LAWWDD) and I am so happy to be rid of everything to do with projects and deadlines an official Product Design degree holder (Graduation is in November, don't ask me why, and I refuse to call myself a graduate without actually having graduated) and back to 'normal'.
'Normal' being:

- back to sleeping 8 hours a day (PRAISE KING JESUS!)
- back to eating right. Or at least trying to. Don't judge me. It is NOT easy.
- back to living at my parents. This one just makes me want to cry hehe. I miss my space. I miss not having to explain why I'm going out at 11:30 pm or why I am sleeping at a friend's house. I miss being able to make last minute decisions about whether or not I'm going to go to a party with my friends. Yeah. Loved doing that one.

(side note: I declined most of those invitations and spent my night in bed with Idris Elba & Morris Chestnut Netflix. And sometimes Cookie Dough ice cream. This side note is mostly for my mum. Yeah woman, I see you)

This new normal though has given me more than enough time to think. And God knows I'm not refusing this opportunities. Consciously or subconsciously. And what I've discovered is:

I. DO. NOT. KNOW. WHAT. I'M. DOING. NEXT.
EVERYTHING IS TRIAL AND ERROR. CURRENTLY.

There is this assumption that once you're done with your degree, somehow, all the unclear and fumbly jigsaw pieces of life should somehow fall into place, corresponding with the date you graduate and hold that certificate in your hands. Somehow, life should suddenly make sense and you should know your life purpose and have a 50-year plan towards achieving it.
Maybe it's just me (guess what? I don't think it is)

That said, I am coming to terms with this and I'm learning more and more to be fine with it.
Don't get it twisted, I am a Christian and I do believe that God has a plan for me and that I'm not without purpose and that once I ask and search I will discover what I'm supposed to do next. I know this. I am applying this.
But this post is just to let any others know, it's okay to not know what's next sometimes.
Sometimes, if you're like me, you're not thinking of what's next, you just want to rest and appreciate what you've just gone through for the past four years of your late 'teenage-hood' and early adulthood.
So don't feel pressured, just go through this season of not knowing and keep praying, keep planning and keep working.

So shalla to my fellow "I'm just taking a break"-ers. Honey, I understand you all the way!

https://soundcloud.com/dscottmusik/b-e-y-o-n-d


This song right here uplifts my everything concerning this topic and everything else. Plus Darius Scott does some goooood singing on it so enjoy!


Live and Love
x


(PS: Blogger won't let me be great so there are numerous links to the song. Use freely lol) 

Sunday, 22 May 2016

GUESS WHO'S BACK?



"Guess who's back back back?
Back again-gain-gain?"

Yes, yes, I know. I haven't written anything since October last year or so... mate, nothing prepares you for the SLEW of work final year of uni holds in store for you.
I want to do a catch up post, but it's too much. Too many things have happened, too much has occurred. However, I WILL select some of the most interesting, most confusing, most emotionally charged moments and replay them. For your pleasure of course. And your education.

Anyway, I've got 4 weeks (give or take a week or two) left at uni, a product to finalise, a 6000 word report to write and I've only written about 50 - CLAP FOR ME! - and it is safe to say that I, a Young Black Woman, am not using her time wisely. So this is my cue to 'ghost'.

But I'll be back.
Take my word for it!

Live and Love
xx

Tuesday, 1 September 2015


Have you ever had your work put down, or something that you created snatched from you? That sinking feeling in your stomach as you're told no, the determination you try to piece together for yourself as you explain in depth to yourself that those "no"s aren't to you but to your work.
You try to disseminate your feelings from your work, to detach yourself means it's easier to get over the blatant no's noes*.

*I strongly dislike (because 'hate' might be too strong a word) seeing grammatical errors like when people type 'you're' instead of 'your'. It irks me to a different level which is why I did some research before going ahead to type 'noes'. Apparently, either 'nos' or 'noes' is acceptable. So now you've learnt this, please refrain from making those mistakes. Google is your friend, use it.
Now, back to the matter (no WizKid)

I am a designer in training (ha! I say that like it's an official job or something. No, I am just a Product Design student with hopes of bagging a job in design) so I get these noes on an almost daily basis from tutors and sometimes fellow students during term time.

-
Shalla - shout out - to all my art and design students who have to piece their lives back together after being told that their concept(s) or ideas were basically for the rubbish bin. Note that I didn't say recycling bin.
-

Sometimes I think, 'We should be able to fight this. Why should our work be judged as such? Who declares whether art is art or not? Isn't it in the eye of the beholder?' and in the same breath, I provide myself with counter argumentative points- 'but you're designing a product for an audience. People will have to judge to either way, how else will you know if your consumers like it or not?!'

I have come to the conclusion that I really do not have an answer, perhaps the former argument is the fruit of someone declining something that I put a lot of thought and effort into. Something that has now become 'my baby'. It's hard when someone rejects your baby.

So this is the moral of the 'story': As a designer, DO NOT become too attached to your project. Matter of fact, as a creative, do not get too attached to your work. Love it, nurture it but don't let it cripple you if it isn't accepted.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Someone else is bound to behold it and declare it beautiful.

Or maybe not.
Either way, keep moving.

Live and Love

Friday, 21 August 2015

'Big tings ah gwaan' - Big things are happening

http://zegist.com/author/chiamaka/
Click the picture to view articles written by me


Recently, I reconnected with a family friend of mine. We grew up together, went to the same church, even attended the same secondary school but we never spoke. 
I actually do not have any memory whatsoever of speaking to this boy man. Maybe there was an odd moment where we locked eyes but that's it. We both kept it moving.

Anyway, I contacted him on Facebook to get his brother's mobile number; I had somehow managed to stay in contact with his younger brother and whilst engaging in small talk, I found out that this young man had started up a lucrative graphics and web design business named Cregital and was also running an online magazine called Zegist  (check them both out)

So guess what ya gurl did!? I like to write, and though I have this blog, I was looking for something a little more on the opposite side of content of my current writings on this blog. 
So I sold my self to him... Not like that, ya nasty. 

But long story short, after a lot of running around and writing impromptu articles with bad titles (hehe) I ended up as a writer on Zegist. Yay me!

I know you're asking: 'why are you saying this?'
The moral of this story is, if you do not ask, you do not get. 
So get out there and do your thing! What's the worst that could happen?
You'll get rejected? No problem. Try again.
You'll get laughed at? Laugh at yourself and try again
You'll get killed? Okay think twice about that one. Your life is important. 

As Aaliyah once said "dust it off and try again, try again" (lyrics may be wrong)
Because you never know...

Live and Love xx