Welcome to Preggo Land

Three things are guaranteed in life.
1. You will die.
2. As a girl, if you sleep in a tank top, when you wake up, one of your titties will be outside.
3. The pregnancy scare will make you religious.
 In our African culture, a child is a blessing until it’s born out of wedlock. So I will try and put into detail what goes through the minds of ladies when they have a pregnancy scare.
You know when they range the causes of cardiovascular complications, they should start with missing periods. Especially when you use one of those tracking apps, and it’s there screaming in some Armageddon looking color, PERIOD: 6DAYS LATE. You may be atheist or a heathen but you summon the Lord in all the Hebrew terms you can remember. Sijui Elohim, because you need a celestial warrior for this one. And Nissi and Shalom and Shammah and so on and so forth.  You take a blood oath to chastity if God agrees to take away this cup of suffering from you. It worked for Jesus, right? You rack your brain and call Cucu, confirming the side of the mountain you should face, the angle at which your hnds need to be raised at and specfics of the libation the ancestors require to keep the fruit of your fornicating womb in dormancy. Its called covering all the bases.

Then you have self-doubt and start to wonder,' what if I’m overthinking? It’s just my periods, right? Let me consult the internet.' HAHAHA!
Out of the minimum 5 sites you’ll search, you will get the following signs
Tender breasts.
At this point, your hand will reach out and give your boobs a squeeze and is that your bra pad or your baby food generator already up and running?
You feel yesterday's rice rise up your throat as if on cue.
 Food cravings
You remember you ate mukimo wa njahi on Tuesday, a culinary special you last ate in Njeri wa Makorofia’s ruracio last year. And you strolled four restaurants to find it. (In real sense the other three were packed but your mind won’t work like that right now).
 Fatigue and mood swings
Suddenly you crave sleep even though it’s a weekend and you slept right up to midday. And you snapped at Wa Ciru for hanging her duvet above you when you’ve just put out your weekly underwear for some sun.
Now Dr. Google has confirmed indeed there’s a bun in the oven. Then you start to think of the future, because now you’re a mother and you’ve evolved from the person you were 5 seconds ago. Your browser history now has things like: How to make money from home; a guide for single moms. DIY shawls for your newborn. How to swaddle a baby without suffocating it. On a scale of one to letting my child down a river in a basket, how ready I’m I for motherhood?  Or how to sue a deadbeat father, because this is the 21st century and ‘we are pregnant’ is a marital and social status.
Then you go to those online baby shops on Facebook. And it suddenly hits you that pair of crotchet booties costs the same as a small pizza. Calculating the costs has you at the point where you want to sell your kidney, coz we both know your promo jobs won’t cut it.
I don’t know why in all this madness, no one ever thinks of taking the test first. In fact, it is the very last thing you do. So after a cold weekend in hell, you decide to get the kit. On the way to the chemist, the universe keeps giving you signs. You see that happy couple making Shrek faces at their bundle of joy and your mind acknowledges that the lady that sells trench coats on the other side of the road just opened a bail in mini size. It’s raining babies people.
You get to the chemist and the display is padded with pads and tampons. You look at them longingly, like a kid at a toy store. Then you remember the time you took your period pain for granted and you whisper a short please to God.
Then you buy the kit and take the test.
If you thought election candidates have anxiety, you have never seen lady waiting for the pee stick to line up.
Then the results come in. Let me tell you it’s one straight line but it could as well be a halo because God didn’t send down a helper for this one. He came down himself. Then you sing a hymn of praise, develop selective amnesia, pick up your phone and dial the person who got you in that conundrum in the first place.


Maisha ni zawadi

My friend Shikoh is a mad woman, at least she likes to refer to herself as such. She tells me we should make noise when leaders steal our money, when they get pay rises before they work, and we should name and shame corruption in every shape and form it may manifest itself in. But if you know anything about what the president with a bird nest for hair called a shithole country, you know she will always have something to yell about. Probably until her last breath. And I commend her. Because sycophants see her as a nuisance. And small fish politicians hire people to send her headless chicken. But she still yells because she wants better.
I figure in essence, that is all human beings want. Well, most human beings. Trump doesn’t. But sometimes, I look at the bigger picture and pardon my arrogance, I cannot help but think we don’t have problems. Okay, if you’ve ever travelled on those my town service pieces of metal, you see the problem. Heck, you’re paying 40/- to ride the problem daily. That sounded wrong, you get it, though, yes? I swear those matatus are literally held together by paint and the will of God.
I look at the state of a planet on the verge if the world war; people being sold off as slaves in Libya.  Branded, treated like rabid dogs, thrown around from one owner to the other. One hellhole after another. With nowhere to run to. I appreciate the fact that civilization got to my grandparents on time, and thanks to this not only is my clitoris intact, but I’m also still running around being feminist when I could have been traded for rice at 11. I appreciate that I can go out and come back home daily, without the imminent danger of rebels taking over my village, stealing me and raping me over and over and over again, forcing me to birth their next generation of terrorists. I’m grateful my religion is not a cause for my persecution and consequential wiping out of my tribe. That I can dress however I want, without fearing it may cause loss of my limbs. I know, it probably seems like I’m throwing sense out the window and letting arrogance reign, but there are times I wake up and think; perhaps I’m lucky the only problem I face is bad governance and corruption. Furthermore, haven’t they both existed since Judas sold out Jesus for thirty bob? 
Sometimes, Thank You.

Fear is a Retarded Chicken

Photo Courtesy: Pinterest
There is this chicken at home. Ever since it was young, it has never really fit in. When it hatched its feathers were more like fur, too small and not what was normal. She was taking too long to grow and she was quickly left behind by her peers. It came to a point where she was too fragile to even move. You think a chickens bones can’t get any hollower. So we put her in a cushioned box in the kitchen where a light bulb hung always for warmth and light. We fed her fresh milk and yoghurt and cooked rice. We had eye drops for her. She got better, but she couldn’t walk straight. She leans on one side, stumbling more than walking.  I don’t even think its little brain works properly and if you observe it well, its eyesight isn’t as useful either. Most of the other chicken that hatched together with her are either stew or trade history. No one will eat her (is it okay if I use it, rather than her? yes? ok)
So no one will eat her because we don’t want to catch whatever is ailing her. We don’t even know if it’s contagious, but what are we, guinea pigs?
So this chicken lives in her coop alone. We let her out daily, unlike the other chicken. So it gallivants around our small compound, feasting on worms and cozying up in the cool holes it digs in the soil in this hot weather. We should have built it a chicken pool, with ledges where it can dry its feathers after a dive and sip layers mash flavored mojitos. It doesn’t even lay eggs. However, it gets privileges the others don’t. In essence, we keep the chicken alive until it dies. Its purpose is to die. I don’t even know how it will explain this in chicken heaven.
Like an old tycoon, only there will be no inheritance tussles, because this chicken did not read enough motivation books and did not @billionarequotes. It also didn’t go to bird school, so while others became eagles and rode the thermals, it just sits there, waiting for me to clean the verandah  so that it can carry its body weight and relieve itself on it before the floor soaks up the water.
And it got me thinking, feelings aside, chicken rearing is a business. This one adds no value, yet it continues to enjoy the investments. In your life situation, I don’t know if you have this chicken situation. Relationships or jobs or just general situations you know too well have no future, but you keep feeding your energy into them. There are signs in bold, highlighted italics that tell you to take the next step on the staircase. But suddenly youre afraid of heights, you’re scared you’ll lose the security of a monthly salary and the thought of being alone leaves you petrified. Like a stain on a peasant’s linen, youre stuck. The uncertainty of the future too overwhelming. So you feed the chicken and wait for it to die. But what if the chicken wants to die? How will you handle your chicken?

P.s: no one is touching this my chicken.


What is Freedom...

           Photo Courtesy: AmuKay
Let’s go waaaay back. From the beginning. When the earth was just a baby, God’s baby. Like a programmer’s code, being moulded into a perfect masterpiece. Then the gay serpent happened. I say gay because a talking serpent approached a NAKED woman and only asked her to eat an apple. Or was it blind, because we all know, us creatures of Venus have the power to stir up a million emotions when we take our clothes off. Assuming the devil is male, (we know he is), the fact that he did not notice her perfect boobs is the reason we have plastic surgery and Photoshop today.  Take a moment and picture the look on Adam’s face when Eve told him he was naked.  So assuming Eve, did not eat that apple, and the earth remained the perfect universe it was supposed to be. That is my what if story...
First things first, there would be no lies, which is a bummer, because most industries on earth were born out of lies. Starting off with Hollywood. There would be no books, movies and series based on fiction, no Transformers, No Avengers, Harry Potter or Fast and Furious because why would you need a saviour in ridiculously costumed spandex when you have one who rains fire and brimstone? Also, what would be cars, because I’m pretty sure we would be relying on mules and the elite would be having chariots.
Here in Africa, the situation would still be the same same. African mothers will still beat you for getting injured, because “you walk without watching where you’re going”, they will turn a “this food tastes great” to “it will be until you find yourself a wife?” The only maguta maguta Maina Kageni would be selling would the lard off of the buffalos and zebras he hunts in the heart of Kiambu or Murang’a. Kuyus wouldn't be judged by our (apparently nonexistent) culinary skills.  
And why would we need education? We have no careers to beat ourselves over. The careees we would be fighting over would be hunting and gathering. But then, lakeside people would have no bragging rights. What would we be reading instead, the actions and reactions of your fellow humans, which is pretty entertaining. We’d probably still wear loincloths and by my age, my mother would have already traded me for rice. I would be mother to a battalion of children by now. If we still lived in that garden, it would be chaos. I don’t think there’d be a constitution, so God would probably come down frequently and when he couldn’t, he’d open up the earth to swallow up anyone who irritated him. Above all, there would be no period pain. And no Safaricom. And the ovacado would be perfect. Kakuzi perfect .
The only things we would be grinding on would be grain into flour, the only things we would be going down on would be our knees in prayer and the only banging we would be doing would be to crack coconuts open.
Then we’d have no labels. No black. No white. No Asians. No gay. No straight. No bisexual. No petite or plus size. No normal and weird. We would just be there, as humans, facing the wrath of God together. And people would just live, girls not wondering if the skirt from those fig trees makes their derriere look fat and men, well, what are men insecure about?
There’d be no social media, so the only thing slay queens would be smoking would be the incense they burn at God’s altar, the only things they’d be spreading would be sacrifices and the only things they’d be lifting would be their hands in prayer. Then us others would be fat and go through our awkward phases in peace.
But we will never know, because trust me, even if Eve hadn’t been approached to eat that damn apple, someone else, unsupervised by the unclean spirits, would have gone and eaten that fruit anyway, because we all know curiosity didn’t kill a cat, it killed a man called Cat. Because maybe then, we would actually know what it's like to be truly ourselves.  


Cut to The Happy Feeling

           Photo Courtesy: AmuKay

Can we first agree that the term happy is relative, yes? Ok. So, my source of happiness varies greatly. One time it’s a series of memes, the other it is that time the broker fishes out a wad of notes to pay for my vegetables. Let us agree, money is actually a source of happiness and to be very human, I’d rather cry in that Range Rover (I prefer a Ford Ranger) that laugh on that bicycle. What if it starts raining and I’m on that bicycle, then I catch pneumonia and die? Was it worth it? No it wasn’t .Rather, I’d rather cry in that my Ford Ranger, and as I toast in the warmth of the air con, my tears will dry, logical, yes? Also, my forefathers did not blindly fight guns and grenades with spears and machetes, eating ngwaci in a mosquito infested forest, so I can cry on a bicycle.
Back to the topic, happiness. My source of happiness I think lies in the small things in life. The laughter of a baby, (Boy! Do I love other people's babies), his text in the morning, that jaw drop in Tom and Jerry, but above all, in giving. There is a saying, 'kutoa ni moyo, si utajiri' and lets agree there is so much truth in that truth. I love making people's day. I will randomly approach you on that isle in the supermarket and comment ' nice shoes', or ' great hair, what is that, Brazilian?'
I smile at strangers, I greet watchies at the bank and tellers at the supermarket.  The smell of the rain makes me happy, it is a promising of productivity. I used to give money to beggars, until I learnt it is a cartel, like every other industry in this our nation. There are cartels in everything plenty and non-plenty that is found within our borders.
My happiness also comes from appreciating. Appreciating sunrises, because it is a chance to be great again, to breath hope into others. Happiness is talking to my grandmother. If that woman could, she’d crotchet me booties for Christmas.
Happiness is when a food invite ends with “I’m buying”. Happiness is an Mpesa message beginning with “You have Received…” Happiness is a warm bed, a good book and hot cocoa on a cold day. Happiness is my siblings getting scolded for something I’d initially advised them against. Happiness is finding money in clothes I haven't worn in sometime. You know those moments? When people have to hold you down to prevent you from travelling the world and buying a building with that 50/- , that gift from your obviously younger self to your current self. Happiness is also understanding a pun during Upgrade Poetry.
Like I said happiness is varied, it really just depends on the situation. One thing I’m certain of however, it is that there really is more joy in giving than in receiving. This week, give something wholeheartedly. A greeting, a handkerchief to a crying person, a spot on the queue for an old man or make a contribution to a cancer drive, anything…see how that works out.



I don’t know if people actually have a single favourite book. Its impossible. Not with all that creativity floating around and people harnessing it.   Eight years ago, the BabySitter series was the jam ( do people still say that?  No? Ok)I remember Karen and her two families and that colourful blanket ( like the one that drove Joseph’s brothers in so big a jealous fit they sold him off to slavery. Ama  it was a coat?.) she'd torn in two, one for each house. Five years ago, Harry Potter was my favourite book series. Let me tell you I had mastered the spells so well the only thing missing was my wand and a cauldron. HAHA! Expecto Cauldrones!!
Then I grew up into Mills and Boon. The amount of sex, all in detail was so intruiging for thirteen year old me. I used to wonder if the teachers turned a blind eye to these books on purpose. In fact, it used to rain Mills and Boon on the weekends. Let me just tell you the promises of everlasting love and lovemaking in those books were chicken soup for the teenage soul. Around the same time I was goofing off to Greek mythology and the thriller that was RL Stine and his Goosebumps series. Remember those ones you had to choose pages to complete your mission? I used to die gruesomely in those books. One time, I had to either get eaten up by a werewolf or stuff myself dead with chocolate. RL Stine’s head is screwed up.
Then came Sydney Sheldon, John Grisham, James Patterson, Daniel Steel, Alexis Sherman etc. I still love these authors, but my favourite book will have to be the Bible because DAMN. That book is as intriguing as it is fear rendering and messed up. Can we begin with the savagery that is the Old Testament? Remember that time sijui kids laughed at Elisha because he was bald, then he asked for God to punish them? What does God do? He sends freaking bears to eat them up. What?! Then that other time someone was turned into a pillar of salt because he looked back at Sodom and Gomorrah.  I wonder what happened to him after that. Maybe livestock licked him up until he just faded. Or maybe it rained and he dissolved. Or he was harvested by salt harvesters, packaged into a kagunia of the Kensalt of that time and sold off to flavour food.  We will never know. Also that time a sibling, was it Jacob or Esau, traded his birth right for a bowl of bean soup. Then there was David and Goliath. And Samson and Delilah. And David and Jonathan. And Moses, Joshua and their lost bandwagon of Canaanites.  And Abraham who tried to sacrifice his son Isaac. Then just as he almost kills him before God yells “just kidding, there’s a ram in those bushes.” Meanwhile Isaac is just lying there on that twelve stone altar, scared beyond repair, wondering what the hell was wrong with this father. Or the 50 Shades of Grey that is Songs of Solomon. Sometimes I imagine Noah was on that arc after the rains begun, then people are drowning around him, crying out for help. How did he just sit there when it was literally raining terror outside? Then that time the donkey spoke to Balak. If a donkey spoke to me, my soul would literally leave my body.
Then that time in the New Testament when Jesus fed 5k people with 5 loaves of bread and two fish, because he was cool like that. Then after their stomachs were full of his food, they nailed him on a cross. Humans, am I right?
Then the tongues of fire that made the disciples to start speaking in tongues. Haha. That must’ve looked like a scene from the Kenyan political arena. There was a Duale, a Millie Odhiambo, a Sonko, a Jakoyo Midiwo, a Murkomen, a Moses Kuria, a Babu Owino, a Keter, some Rutos and other players. In essence, there were words flying everywhere but no one can comprehend anything.
All in all the Bible is an interesting anthropology. The collection of stories is humorous, shocking, intriguing, inspiring and a whole other load of adjectives. It is captivating. It lights up the darkness. It helps us find ourselves. It is why it is my favourite book.


Is it a Memory if You're Still Living it?

They say a dad is girl's first love. If he fucks her up, he has fucked up every member of the male species that will come into her life after him. Mine didn’t. Mine’s a good dad. In fact, this post is about this man. My earliest memories of my dad were of him narrating snow white stories to me. They were not exactly what the books said, he added his own words and plot twists a lot. But I can tell you for a fact there was nothing I looked forward to more than the stories. Other times, he would tell me of ogres who lured young girls by imitating familiar voices and handouts and then eating them up. Considering the state of the world, I think he knew the exact kind of data he was feeding into my head. I would never get into a stranger's car or take gifts from stranger, because, you know, ogres.
When I was 7, I remember he bought me my first storybook. It was called Mr.Todi from those New Progressive series. It took almost a month to complete. It was about a hibernating toad who lived on a farm or something. I treasured it more than anything. Well, not more than that stuffed panda he got for me that Christmas. And after that, more books came.  And more after that. He doesn’t buy them anymore. Not for himself and definitely not for me. Then I transferred schools. To an academy, where there was an actual library. And from there, my love for stories and words grew. With every book I put down, I wanted another. I don’t read as much these days, because life. But I squeeze in as much as I can. On the mat to town, on that everlasting KCB queue, sometimes before bed. If the story is good, I will forego everything to finish it up.
The other day, he brought Jeff Koinange's book and asked if I still read. I was elated. He thinks I do it as a hobby, as a leisure activity. He hasn’t got the slightest idea that he gave me the best gift a father could ever give. A bond. An escape path. A gateway to a whole other universe. And I am eternally grateful because I don’t know if there are many girls who can say the same.


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