“Children do not deserve privacy,” and other abusive myths masked as good parenting — RaceBaitr

Content Warning: This post contains descriptions of abuse against women and children There have been many good men in my life. The last conversation I had about my ex-stepfather was with a friend who felt I should stop being so hard on men. He thought my ex-stepfather deserved the benefit of doubt because he provided…

via “Children do not deserve privacy,” and other abusive myths masked as good parenting — RaceBaitr

Over a Chai Latte

 

Image result for chai latte starbucks

 

We sat across each other, not knowing that this was the beginning of an overstretched end. Perhaps an over-extension of grace, time, emotions, effort?

It was over a chai latte (which happened to be the wrong order) that the unraveling of  our story resumed. We had taken time out from each other, a lot of time. And somewhere along the way I had convinced myself that it was enough time to lay an unbreakable foundation and build the fortress around myself that would hide me safely away from all the things about you that I could not defend myself against before then. It was just one drink after all. There would be no damage to repair thereafter, or so I hoped.

Yet with you, there are always reparations to be made once I have opened myself up to the mere possibility of us. I am never the same girl once I have sat across from you, or read your text message, or seen your smile, or made you laugh. Something in me always shifts. I move closer to you, and strangely, I move closer towards myself. I shift towards wanting to tear down those so neatly laid bricks, and immersing myself completely into this crazy whirlwind called you and I. All the things I think will reinforce my stance and galvanize my resolve against you begin to crumble until I start to question everything once more.

When I’m with you, it doesn’t matter that the waiter brought me the wrong drink or that the hairdresser pulled my braids a little too tight. Because I’m with you. I suddenly lose interest in everything that doesn’t concern you or the way your eyes light up when we rediscover that we have a lot more in common than we are often able to admit. I love how you cautiously ease into regaining your confidence in what is so obvious to us both and doesn’t need a thesis to explain. It’s the progression  from that initial awkward apprehension, to the light bulb turning on, to hesitant but deliberate fireworks,  to our playful banter and familiar exchanges, to our loaded questions. Loaded because some things between us are undeniable and some are so uncertain. The ambivalence of these polar opposite forces weighs heavily on us, our brains churn as we attempt to demystify all the erected barriers that have kept us apart.

We’ve never quite gotten to  the point of investigating how real the uncertainties actually are. Will we buckle under the pressure of knowing how our differences could so easily rip us apart? Can we stand the unavoidable strain brought on by two people trying to explore what their connection actually means but knowing if there is a chance for more? How vulnerable are we willing to get? Are you too good to be true, like my mind keeps telling me? Is my heart deceiving me and have I completely lost it?

Over a chai latte, the more self-aware, healed, knowledgeable and mature version of myself rediscovered this irresistable pull towards you. It’s not books that we have in common, we have each other in common. My soul sees you, my spirit resonates so deeply with who you are, my heart loves you so fiercely that I’m not sure which parts of myself I’d still be able to distinguish from you if the universe decided that I was finally ready for you.

I’ve never felt so unlike myself, so hopeless, so lost. All the pain that I’ve known, subsequent to losing you, has had a multiplicative effect on me, pushing me further away from understanding and clarity. At every corner that I turn, I’m not hoping to see Amanda’s little black Ford winding down the road anymore, I’m hoping to see you crack the door open to let some of your light through, I’m hoping this gesture is your way of beckoning me in again.

Over a chai latte, I reconnected with and somehow managed to lose you.

 

 

 

 

Baggage from my Broken Home

baggage

My parents split up when I was in grade three. We had recently moved back to Zambia and suddenly, my dad was moving to Windhoek. I was devastated. I think my younger sister was always the daddy’s girl from the looks of things, but at my core, I have always believed that I am the daddy’s girl.

It must have been at some point when I was in grade four, my mom had traveled out of town for work and my aunt was babysitting us for a couple of days. I had a mini breakdown and just started weeping for my dad. I don’t know what hit me in that moment, maybe it was the reality of not having both of my parents at home. Even though my mom was coming back, my little heart couldn’t quite handle the loss of both of my parents.

I’m grateful that my dad always reminded us that their split was NOT OUR FAULT and that he loved and still loves us. I was saved from potential feelings of guilt and abandonment (even though I don’t think I completely escaped this one, sadly). I know my dad loves me and that it’s hard you know? To have to protect the hearts of two little precious girls when you are so ill equipped to do so and are very broken yourself. I have a lot of grace towards my dad, he did the best with what he knew, and from the looks of things, it wasn’t much ☹

Fast forward to the future…

I think because my parent’s marriage ended way before they probably knew it themselves (the signs are always there), I was too young to process or deal with the repercussions of their decision. I remember when my parents officially divorced, I must have been in grade 7 or 8. It was a painful ending, despite being long overdue… I probably started and stopped crying about it in junior high school. I’ve never really thought about the impact that divorce has had on me since then, until like a week ago.

I’ve known I have “daddy issues” and life-traps for a while but my relationship sabotaging skills have reached gold-medal status and have forced me to dig deeper into how divorce has shaped my view of love and my view of God.

Of late I have been very angry at God and numb at the same time. I feel like I have been hiding under a rock with very little strength to give of myself emotionally. I sabotaged yet another relationship and the post-trauma has just left me feeling so tired. Like, wtf do I keep doing this?? You’d think I’d have this part of my life figured out by now… I guess I need to stop trying to cure my pain with the same poison.

 

Since I started to think about the real meaning behind marriage and understanding why I want to be married someday, I have low-key believed that I don’t deserve a good man and that I will always be less than impressed by the men God allows into my life. I have always thought that God is holding out on me, like I will be short-changed. This was all before and after I met Jacob* (one of the biggest ironies of my life to date). I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why I always felt like I would have to settle for some corny dude with no swag or sense of excitement until about two weeks ago. A conversation I had with a friend about therapy actually revealed some things about old hurts.                             I think God is holding out on me because I have this unwavering belief that my marriage has no chance of surviving, at least not if I can help it. Because my family ties are mostly strings of divorces and remarriages and more divorces. Divorce feels like a strand in my DNA, like a family curse, like the monster after lights-out that never fails to reappear. I am deeply afraid of the devastation of another failed relationship in which I am directly involved. So, I kill the ones that so much as look like potential. And you know you really have a problem when your fear snatches you away from exactly what you want. Like it’s right there, and it’s making no attempts to push you away or run away, yet you still punch away and hit it where it hurts the deepest and you feel justified in your actions until you have shredded it to pieces with your words and can’t undo the ghastly mess you have created around you. That is what showed me that I have a major problem. I will sabotage every good thing that comes my way if I continue to haul in the baggage from my broken home along with me…

Spirit Move

I must constantly remind myself that nobody is coming to save me, Jesus has already done all of this. No relationship and no man, can create any lasting changes to the level of happiness and joy that I have not sought after on my own.
My life will never be perfect, and it’s neither mine nor God’s job to perfect my life on this Earth. Rather than seek perfection, I will seek righteousness, peace and joy; fruits of the Holy Spirit that will always be available to me as I remain under the covering of God’s love.
Under trial, I must remember that my struggles are not death sentences, determining ultimate doom and gloom over my life. They are not even unique to me alone. I must somehow gain enough discipline to compartmentalise the negative impact that difficulty brings with it so that I am still believing in the goodness of God and not allowing my world to fall apart at the experience  of a few disappointments.
To walk by faith means that sometimes I will have to give into blindly and boldly trusting in God, while not knowing where I am being led. Walking by faith doesn’t mean that the Holy Spirit will reveal every step of God’s plan to me beforehand, no matter how intently I listen out for a word from Him. It means that I must carry on and trust that I will never be led to a place where God cannot be found.
I will often have unfulfilled desires, and sometimes this will frustrate me. But the intensity with which I desire things or people must not supercede my desire for God. I will delight in the Lord, and He will give me what I want and most importantly what I need.
In the battle between the truth and my feelings. The truth always wins. The truth always wins. Even when I am unprepared to accept it,  the truth always wins.

Escape

“Escape”- by Kehlani

Never did I think I’d want you
Always seen you ’round my way
Never had the strength to tell you
I kinda, sorta think you’re great

Strange for me to wanna love someone who’s better by themselves
Hate to know I made you crazy for myself

‘Cause I don’t want you thinking that my love’s in vain
‘Cause, baby, I’ve been falling for you but falling back up out your way

‘Cause I can’t let you lose yourself looking for me
And I can’t let you make me your, your everything
I just wanna be an escape
I just wanna be an escape
Baby, can we escape, escape, escape?

Admiring you from a distance
Scared to go and make a move
Didn’t wanna be distracting
You be all up in your groove

It’s strange for me to wanna love someone who’s raw by themselves
I’d hate for you to search for someone else

‘Cause I don’t want you thinking that my love’s in vain
Baby, I’ve been falling for you but falling up on out your way

‘Cause I can’t let you lose yourself looking for me
And I can’t let you make me your, your everything
I just wanna be an escape
I just wanna be an escape
Baby, can we escape, escape, escape?

Oh, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, aye, aye
‘Cause I’ve been staying low, holding back
Fighting the feelings that you’ve been giving
And I’ve been trying to put it all into words
But I can’t so I’m singing

I don’t want you thinking that my love’s in vain
Baby, I’ve been falling for you but falling back up out your way

‘Cause I can’t let you lose yourself looking for me
And I can’t let you make me your, your everything
I just wanna be an escape
I just wanna be an escape
Baby, can we escape, escape, escape?

O Come to the Alter

O Come to the Altar
Are you hurting and broken within?
Overwhelmed by the weight of your sin?
Jesus is calling
Have you come to the end of yourself
Do you thirst for a drink from the well?
Jesus is calling
O come to the altar
The Father’s arms are open wide
Forgiveness was bought with
The precious blood of Jesus Christ
Leave behind your regrets and mistakes
Come today there’s no reason to wait
Jesus is calling
Bring your sorrows and trade them for joy
From the ashes a new life is born
Jesus is calling
O come to the altar
The Father’s arms are open wide
Forgiveness was bought with
The precious blood of Jesus Christ
O come to the altar
The Father’s arms are open wide
Forgiveness was bought with
The precious blood of Jesus Christ
Oh what a savior
Isn’t He wonderful?
Sing hallelujah, Christ is risen
Bow down before Him
For He is Lord of all
Sing Hallelujah, Christ is risen
Oh what a savior
Isn’t He wonderful?
Sing hallelujah, Christ is risen
Bow down before Him
For He is Lord of all
Sing Hallelujah, Christ is risen
O come to the altar
The Father’s arms are open wide
Forgiveness was bought with
The precious blood of Jesus Christ
O come to the altar
The Father’s arms are open wide
Forgiveness was bought with
The precious blood of Jesus Christ
Bear your cross as you wait for the crown
Tell the world of the treasure you found
I love this song, it has really spoken to my heart at a time when I feel like I have lost my heart for God and for myself. “Are you hurting and broken within, overwhelmed by the weight of your sin?” Yes, that’s me. I am literally waiting on God to do what is impossible for me and any other person on this planet to do. 2017 ended with me feeling so lost and filled with so many doubts about my future with God, His heart for me and whether I even believed in this God.
My prayer for this year is to go on an adventure with God, to see Him in a new light, to experience Him with a new and refined sensitivity. My prayer is to really surrender my whole life and whole heart to Him, to hold nothing back. My prayer is to let go of the demons that I have entertained in the past 5 years and truly repent, truly change my mind about my destructive beliefs, to truly expect better from God.
I want to believe that I deserve better, that I deserve only the best. I need to believe that God will give me the desires of my heart and that anywhere He leads is worth following. I need God to be VERY REAL to me this year. I need You to come through, God.

Je pleure. Je suis indisponible.

black girl cry

I’ll cry you a river at the source of my pain.

Where my hopes and dreams died and were buried without names.

I want to cry a mound of tears and finally be rid of all the hurt.To be washed and cleansed of all the words you spoke, of the things you wrote me. ‘Til I’m as blank as white stained linen, soaked in purifying bleach.

Oh the wounds of love, how terrified they’ve left me

Unarmed and helpless. Ill equipped against this assailant,  my enemy.

The reminders of your beautiful countenance. How safe and secure you left me feeling. Still in too deep, unsure if I can tell what’s false from the real. My heart has left me. Lights on, false hope. Nobody’s home.

I want to cry until my tears morph into invisible sobs

With rings that only my ears can feel.

Cry to process.

Cry to surrender.

Cry to forget.

Kohl smudged and soaked in my salty mess. My memories fade with the darkness. Healing feels so distant, so far out of my reach. Beyond these blurred images I fail to see. More real than the wonders I once believed.

I want to cry you a river

And empty out all that I feel.

To pour out of this shattered vessel

The things I can’t bear to remember.

 

Para Salvar

new ways

I thought I needed rescuing

You’d save me from myself

My heart was broke

A cloud of smoke

Now nowhere to be found

 

I thought you’d be here longer

And help me to grow stronger

Shattered dreams

Unesteemed

And you’re not by my side

 

They say time’s the best healer

That I’ll learn to stand alone

Baby steps

I’m unkempt

Why the heck did I hold on?

 

Growing to be wiser

This time I’ll take the L

Mistakes made

Barely unscathed

Recognising right from wrong

 

I think I found the method

Of finding my way back

An honest sesh

No crystal meth

I’m dancing to a new song

 

It’s riddled in redemption

Drenched in human blood

Calling me home

Calm in the storm

He is the Perfect Son

 

See, I did need a saviour

His ways now become mine

Forsaken love

Renewed my life

Now I have been reborn

 

 

 

The Donkey and The Ox

somedayDeuteronomy 22:10

Trust.
Trust says that even though I don’t know the outcome of my obedience, I will make decisions that are in line with God’s word. I am not leaning on my own understanding, even if what is presented to me looks appealing or makes sense in some way to pursue. Trust says that God goes ahead of me to lay out a steady path that isn’t always smooth but will bring glory to Him and bless my life exceedingly and abundantly beyond what I desire or can even imagine. Trust says that God’s word is faultless, useful and will stand the age of time, even when I fail.
Trust is not giving your situation over to an imaginary god as a coping-mechanism, crossing your fingers and shutting your eyes and hoping that everything will go well.
Trust is placing my whole life in the hands of a BIG God who loves me tremendously. Trust is being present, riding each and every wave of my life, knowing that He is more than prepared to catch me when I slip and fall. Trust is smiling through the pain and being grateful for everything.

The Big Picture.
My big picture has taken a long time to paint. God is still filling in the blank spaces of the canvas of my life. Focusing on the big picture helps me to remember what is truly important to me. It reminds me that temporary satisfaction, laziness, giving in to selfishness is not what I want. The big picture is founded on many difficult decisions that I must make as I choose what I believe is best in whatever phase of life I am in. The big picture forces me to look insecurity, loneliness, my desire for attention in the face and tell it to back-the-hell-up. It’s making mistakes, it’s knowing I’m weak, it’s shedding tears and admitting that I don’t feel so strong today. It’s turning my back on brief, fun-filled flirtatious moments for lasting, life-long wholeness.

Unrelenting Standards.
I have been relentlessly pursued by a Perfect Father. His standard for me is A-Grade. I may not always choose it but He helps me daily to make better choices. I’m known to have unrelenting standards. I can be stubborn and strong-willed but at the end of the day I know that my boldness must be exerted. I have to be courageous, even if I don’t feel like it because I know my mind and heart can catch up. God-glorifying decisions don’t always make me feel good or comfortable.

Love is the result of a series of reasoned decisions“-Arielle Iniko Newton

Don’t settle, He already has.

dont settle

The path to compromise is rife with obstacles. You feel the need to make him understand all the details. The people-pleaser in you is on the defense, fighting the urge to explain your concerns. But since when did you owe that to him? You make excuses for bad behavior and challenge why you even had those standards in the first place. Once emotions get involved, your decisive clarity can’t keep up with the pace. You exchange your integrity for rushes of fun feelings as you flirt with an empty world that can never make you whole. Your foresight becomes blurry as images of the potential in him take priority and reality is thrown out the window completely; forced to hitch-hike with Lady wisdom who sits in the vehicle of Better Judgement all in the hopes of catching up with you.
The temptations that lure you to believe that he will choose you over the one he’s already with gain more leverage as denial takes her rightful place in creating these optical illusions, which when matched up with the impending self-disdain you will feel, makes for a painful disillusion.

Baby girl, sweet baby girl, love yourself a little harder. No man is coming to rescue you. If you can’t look him square in the face and take him for all that he is right here and right now, you have no business worshiping his potential. Nobody gets to have all the answers, why are you so desperate to explain yourself away? Did you forget he also has a Father, that only through living in His purpose can any lasting changes take place?
Your life right now can overflow with abundance, don’t wait on flesh and blood that can’t match your crazy expectations, to feel like you can finally have more. Trust in Him in the meantime and know that you are already spoken for.

Abide in Him, your Knight is coming.

Don’t give up on feasting at His table just to gather crumbs from the floor. Keep working to be all that you have been called to be, and falling deeper still with the Lover of your soul.
The wonder you are so dying to see is in the secret place of His presence where you can bare it all. There you are seen, known, loved and cherished. The victory is already won, there’s no need to strive for perfection anymore. For only at the final hour as you face the throne of glory, will you fully understand how He has settled the score.

-Mukuka M. Mapemba ©