Live and let live

Everything comes around

Life in a way is like a carousel, a merry-go-round
Everything comes around,
Although it isn’t always merry in the true sense of the word
Still our circumstances are a thread of unheeded events, and unfinished businesses
And the unwanted sprouts of an unattended garden
Like a neglected wound, the pain and the resulting infection will force you to care
Like the unresolved issue that comes knocking at your door years later
It is also the beautiful reward,
Like a booming winery following the undaunted effort of grooming a vineyard
Life gives us what we put in, there are no jackpots, no lottery tickets, no shortcuts
And those who win will always begin with a mind to finish whatever comes their way
Life rewards the fearless; not the fugitive, not the deserter, or the runaway

Friend or foe

Life is full of the ups and the downs
And the downtimes are great for reflecting
Fantastic when you have a goal,
Tempting for hasty decisions when you don’t have a clue
Anger and pain they say,
Are not the best states for making major decisions
Well, so is momentary solitude, it could be a slippery slope
When bombarded by a thousand thoughts
Usually the first instinct is to push a familiar button
Call up an old acquaintance, indulge
And the dog returns to its vomit
Long after we’ve been bitten, we realize the truth
That we can’t make the leopard change his spots
Not so much as we can make the fish love the shore
Man know thyself

A ghost from the past

That familiar delighted cackle
That broad cheerful grin
That piercing warm gaze
That tender loving touch
That sweet fleeting promise
That callous mean rebuke
That stifled sizzling silence
That rattling unnerving scowl
That creepy dark presence
That giant intimidating ego
That inevitably sour story

Wake Up and Live

It is sunny day
The night is long gone
Life’s been re-birthed
You’ve been allotted a second chance
This day is your blank page
You can now start over
Write a new script
Be a new person
Tell a grand story
Be the belle of the ball
Wake up to your opportunity
Bathe your face in golden sun dust
Let today be your grande carriage
Step out with poise
Let the newness be seen in your gait
Part your lips with grace
Say your wish

Summer Romance

The beauty and romance of the night
Dinner by candle light
He cooked with the stealth of a knight
Caressing her arm as his affection crept all over her
Tonight he would once more tease and rock her

In a way she romanced the past
Reminiscing about summers that went slowly past
Soon he too would be gone, never to last
Her slender hand strokes the gem around her neck
By morning she would once more cradle a trinket on deck

IT IS THE TOUGH TIMES THAT MAKE LIFE WORTH LIVING

Good days give you happiness, bad days give you experience, and the worst days give you the best lessons. – Mark & Angel


Your life is like a book that you author alone and though you do not control the unfolding events, you control your role in them.

There was a time in my life when everything I held on to for so long began to slip from my grip and I could do nothing about it.

It felt as though I was going to lose my mind and I would cry myself to sleep. Eventually I had to let is go and move on.

Moving on wasn’t easy but I did it anyway. During that course of time, I met many obstacles along the way, a few that beat me severely, I cried in the open.

Some others where subtle, hiding beneath masking that soon wore off and I had to detour yet again.

It is easier now to talk about this here because I overcame. If I’d given in, fallen on my face and never gotten back to my feet, there would be no story to tell.

No lessons learnt and no victories won. I can talk about it only because I pulled through. Because I never gave up. Because I never cursed my darkest days.

I know that life is dotted with tough experiences, and so whatever happens I have decided to be comforted by that part of my history where the clouds were once darkest and bleakest.

I have learnt also to laugh through the most bizarre of experiences. Sometimes things can get to worse to ridiculous and the only thing left to do would be to laugh.

I have also found fortitude in prayer; form conversing with God and sharing my despair and drawing strength at the same time as I travelled along on my journey.

One tool that has helped me to literally count my blessings are my journals. In them are several accounts of where I’ve been, what I’ve seen and how each event has turned out.

Each time I read through the pages I am more than grateful to God for being there, just like he promised that he would. To never leave me nor abandon me. To be with me through deep waters and through the fire. To protect me from drowning and from burning.

My lessons would remain strong footholds in my life. Lessons like holding on to dreams, choosing your friends carefully, saying no anything that no longer defines me, walking away from negative people and relationships, staying true to my calling, and trusting my intuition.

Life lessons are priceless. They can never be bought,not with silver or with gold. They can only be acquired through tough times.


Laugh at the confusion, live consciously in the moment, and enjoy your life as it unfolds. Mark & Angel

-Girl-In-Flower-Garden-1920x12

ANGER MANAGEMENT 101

The man who cannot control his anger is like a city without walls – Proverbs 25:28


When people are rude to your or talk carelessly with very little restraint it usually because they too have only received judgements and accusations from the world.

The thing however is not so much that the world handed them misjudgments and ill treatments, but that in the process of being underrated, they chose to absorb the hurt rather than reject it.

Therefore, it would be  wise to not overreact when certain people blowout on you. While you tell yourself that there is absolutely no cause to react, also remember not to stay too long in the poisoned atmosphere or it’s only a matter of time before you too are infected by the same misjudgment.

The next time the cashier at the supermarket or the front desk secretary acts up again, other than muttering ‘bitch’, remember this lesson and be grateful that you can understand her better.

Choose to be uninfluenced. Be the gracious one. Kindness is the magic touch. Some people may want to resist this as well, don’t cuss and say, ‘Ha! I was even being nice!’ Just smile and go your way. They probably do not know how to react to kindness either. Thank God you can and that you even know how to express it.


Most people can only give others what they have received themselves – Mark & Angel

angry-woman-pointing-finger

Bless The Past & Say Hello to Your Future

You have to make peace with your past in order to keep your present and future from becoming hopeless battles. – Mark & Angel


I spent some quality time with my mum today. Talking about the challenges I’ve had in the work environment and sharing the victimizing experiences I’d had with former work colleagues over the years. I found myself laughing as I recounted the bizarre stories, and quietly but briefly, relived a few of the demeaning and humiliating moments.

I felt sweet gratitude wash over me as I shared these incidences because somehow it was hard to believe that I actually did survive them. I felt immensely thankful that they would now forever remain in my past.

I also felt hopeful about the future, knowing that the lessons I’ve learnt can only bring me good and gracious rewards. Just hearing myself laugh as I related these stories of meanness gave me a sense of contentment and tranquility that meant I was at peace with that part of my past.

Another thing that was so comforting during the conversation with my mum was hearing her share about her own sordid experiences in the work place. Many years ago as a young military corporal, and practicing Dental nurse, she had the devil for a boss.

She told me about the unrelenting sexual harassment and unwarranted punishments she had to endure and eventually, foregoing a promising career was the only way to end the continuing coercion.

Years later, she would later to be told by friends and former colleagues, about how the said officer was paid back in his own coin and severely too by time and chance. At the time, she had regained back her profession, and had had many more promising opportunities, some of which she voluntarily relinquished because she wanted to spend more time with us her children.

Today I’m reminded again, that life itself has got its own memory bank where it stores our dos and don’ts and then processes our wages alike. In due time it will give to each of us a corresponding feedback. Everyone in his own coin.

In this regard, I am reminded to consider my present moments as blessings, no matter how they turns out, because I know one day they would be my past. I am reminded also to bless the hardest and toughest of memories and to never hold on to pain, rather release them completely.

My mum also shared about another very disturbing encounter of victimization which she suffered from the hands of two female instructors at the Army Training School in Ojo cantonment, Lagos; in the 1970s. I wasn’t born at the time.

They were both her junior in age but she never spoke back in defense nor did she act rudely in any way. She was the only girl in her class, and for some reason, these instructors decided that they would make her life a living hell. In an attempt to explain how cruel they were, mum said that the only thing that kept her going was because she was bent on becoming a dental nurse by all means. Otherwise under normal circumstances, she would have quit.

Unbeknownst to them my mum’s uncle was a LT. Colonel at the time and as a result she had the acquaintance of several officers who knew her to be his niece. Still she never for once, did she fight back. Least of all make a boast or threaten to use her connections against these female instructors.

They would finally come to this knowledge during an unfortunate encounter with a third party and senior officer who witnessed the ill treatment they rendered to my mum. It was only then that the mistreatment stopped.

Several years down the line, their paths would cross again; they met at the military hospital in Yaba. Mum was visiting an old military acquaintance who worked there as a senior nurse. The story that ensues is one of soberness and regret with tons of apologies to my mum.

That nothing truly goes unnoticed will be my solemn conclusion from these stories. Life sucks it all in into its master memory board and each one of us must tread carefully as each step is a written code in that drive.

How about me and you? We too have also played our sordid roles one way or the other; somehow we have hurt others, mistreated another and betrayed some. Though the memories remain in the past, even so that past too should be blessed and released.

Today as you reminisce upon your own toughest and most engraving encounters, remember to bless them and release them, so that you can embrace the future. Life is too short to hold on to pain and too brief to hold back from liberation.


 

Sometimes your eyes need to be washed by your tears so you can see the possibilities in front of you with a clearer vision – Mark & Angel

Bless the past

LEAVE A DOOR OPEN

Love doesn’t hurt, expectations do – Pushkaraj Shirke


 

Pain can be a real bitch at times. Especially pain inflicted by someone you love and genuinely care about. The more hurt you bear for the sake of love, the more danger you risk. You are at risk of the inevitable explosion that comes after the cup gets full and then it gets very messy. The broth is spilled on everyone and everything. You are at risk of letting your pain get in the way, it first poisons you, then it poisons the other. If you are familiar with snake bites, you know that poison must be stopped immediately from traveling further through the body fluid of the inflicted. Well, unlike snake bites, what unattended pain does to us is more like slow deadly poison. An emotional wound that isn’t treated becomes infectious and deadly.

Perhaps the easiest way to deal with pain is take your eyes off the offender and set it on their vulnerability, our vulnerability as humans. How we all can be weak, afraid and misguided. How we are easily misunderstood by each other because of our colored perceptions and how we often overreact and only begin to see sense once the milk is spilled. We only feel remorse after we have fully satisfied our urge to damage, mutilate and wreck a havoc. In a way we are like vampires, having a voracious appetite for human blood, easily aroused, then we are like the werewolf, remorseful naked and ashamed once our cravings are gratified.

However when we see and accept our vulnerabilities as humans then we can understand better and act in wisdom other than react out of fear. We can be wise and give some distance, go somewhere to heal. You must heal because you now know that an untreated wound can easily be infected and that it is slow poison in action. Therefore, going away from the scene and from your precious friend isn’t exactly out of disdain but an act of protection, protection for yourself first. It may seem selfish, but selfish is good at this time. Distance is required. You must heal, so that your heart can recover and your mind free of poison. You may want to cease interaction at this time with this person who is acquainted too well with bites and stings. It is for the greater good, both for you and for her. By going away, you may be perceived as unforgiving, hateful and resentful. But you do know deep down, that by that distance, you leave a door open.

 


Pain is a sudden hurt that can’t be escaped. But then I have also learned that because of pain, I can feel the beauty, tenderness, and freedom of healing. Pain feels like a fast stab wound to the heart. But then healing feels like the wind against your face when you are spreading your wings and flying through the air! We may not have wings growing out of our backs, but healing is the closest thing that will give us that wind against our faces.”
― C. JoyBell C.

walking-in-the-rain

Sometimes you have to say yes to what you really feel to be free indeed

 

I know we try to do our best all the time. I know we all truly wish to be good and try to do right by all means. I know we try to change our thought patterns and try to adopt new value systems. I know in general, we want to forgive, we want to let go, we want to move on.

We try every tool in the box and follow the 7 steps written in the book but if we are sincere with ourselves, if we keep still for just one minute, one-second, we will sense the rumbling deep down inside of our stomach. Down underneath the sea of conflicting emotions, lying still and undisturbed at the bottom of our hearts, is the hate we truly feel, the raging anger, toxic unforgiveness and bitterness eating away at our core.

While we go about our quiet lives, we sense its presence, and every now and then amidst our devoted worship and sincerities and professed goodness, we sense a faint vibration, a small movement of the beast sleeping within our subconscious. Even though we have successfully concealed the hate with layers and layers of positive affirmations and pronouncements, in group gatherings and in private therapy, we sense the phantom, the sleeping beast, a looming disaster, the deadly clutter that holds us back from being the best and greatest that we could be.

Here then, is my theory. Why tell ourselves a lie when we can tell ourselves the truth. Sometimes it is only when we have told ourselves the truth about what we truly feel that we can then recreate a new and transforming truth that frees us from the bounds of hate. Sometimes these negative feelings need recognition, airing and verbalizing as much as we can.

Sometimes to gain closure, we must take a bold step to being completely open with ourselves. We must vent in the true sense of the word. It is not okay to say simply “When I was with you, you hurt me real bad, and its hard for me to forget…” rather say, “When I was with you, you pawned me like a game, and of all the people I have been with, you hurt me the deepest and the longest. You made me hate myself for being so vulnerable, I hate you for what you made me become and I hope you feel the hate for as long as you live…”

Whoooo, you may be thinking, that is harsh, that is hatred, that is bitterness. Yes, it is, but isn’t that what you truly feel for that person whose memory always grates your senses whenever you hear their name mentioned? If you will be truly free, you must let those feeling out of the bag, and only then can you release them. You can send it in an email, or simply write it down on paper…whatever works for you.

The idea is, you must let out the venom or otherwise be poisoned forever by it. When you do, you free your subconscious of it’s deadly sting and you free your mind to embrace your future without any limits or hold. Remember to do this intentionally too, by that I mean, if you are going to let out the venom, do it with the sole purpose of wanting to be free of the hate. Do it because you want sanity for yourself and peace deep within your soul. Do it because it is what you need to be truly free of your past and the people that have hurt you so badly. Do it for yourself, to be happy and be free not inflict hurt on the other person or cause more damage.

That is why I do not recommend the email, because every word you write to describe your hurt will be carrying the negative vibrations of the hurt, anger, bitterness and unforgiveness you’ve soaked in all these years and months. And what you will invariably do to that person is poison whatever peace they may have at the time and cause them to revisit the past again with guilt and regret and sometimes the person becomes damaged goods and they may never recover. You don’t want that. You don’t want to be responsible for any more hate and unforgiveness.

What you want is peace, love, and hope in abundance. In other to achieve that you will need a little bit of faith and a large chunk of belief and courage to trust that simply writing it down (which is what I recommend) will set you free just as much but without causing any more damage. And because every word you write down is negatively charged with all the bad energy from that experience, that piece of paper becomes the victim of that venting and the out pour of your venom. It is that piece of paper that bears the cross and the crucifixion.

After writing down your hate, what you do next is write down your freedom on a separate sheet of paper. Write how you want to feel and how you believe you should be feeling about the experience. Write you healing, your forgiveness, and your hopes. Write them all down and bless your past for the lessons learnt. Write something like “I forgive myself for being a victim in this relationship, for allowing myself to be pawned and belittled. I forgive you for being the mean person that you were and I hope you can forgive yourself for how it all ended. I release you today.” Whatever represents your story, just make sure you are kind and express the freedom you yearn.

What you do next is as bizarre as this whole therapy gets, you burn the first sheet of paper and from your hearts of hearts let it all go. Let go of the hate, the anger, the bitterness and the pride. What you have left is the new truth you have written on the other sheet of paper, it is your testimonial of having fought a good fight and run with perseverance the race that was a failed relationship, a betrayal or broken trust or whatever it is you are battling.

If you still feel the urge to send an email or a text, then you can send your new truth, in doing os you do not hurt the receiver nor send them back into limbo or anything of that sort. Instead you leave them in a good place. A place where they are free to deal with their issues objectively and however that turns out is really none of your business because some people are die hards and never forgive just as much as they never forget.

However, what you would have achieved is really big. You would have aired your negative feelings and emotions, freed your self from a self-imposed prison, and self-afflicted venom that could have destroyed you. You would have earned your freedom and above all else gained closure. You will be free. Free to embrace your future and all your hopes and dreams with nothing holding you back. You would have done the right thing. You have said yes to your feelings. You have let go. You are free indeed.

None of this may make sense at first but the results are huge, if done intentionally, your heart literally feels light and you happier, and thoughts of the past and persons in question will no longer hurt, grate or embitter.

Finally, it is always good to go through the process with an experienced coach who can guide you each step of the way so you don’t find yourself back at the same spot where you began. A coach is someone you trust, someone that walks besides you and guides you without judging you. Allow yourself the freedom to drink in life in all its fullness. Release your hate and release yourself. Life awaits the free and authentic you.

Free