Friday, February 19, 2010

Eternal Sleep

As night falls, darkness creeps in and makes light a mere memory of the mind. Happy events of the day might well have been a figment of your imagination.

In the corners of your weary mind, dreams and shadows play, in a worthless bid to cover and disguise all the pain and hurt away. Happiness, love and joy are silhouettes on a wall too far and too high for you to reach.

You wake up to the sound of your thoughts, your failures are deafened by the screams of your desires and needs, and your pain and fears cry out to be heard amid the turbulence of your mind and your soul.

The air fills with the smell of your humiliations and call upon burning, searing tears shed in the dead of the night, when silence is too deafening for you to bear, the confusion too thick for your mind to penetrate, and the anguish too strong for your soul to endure. Maybe the darkness will be kind and remain just so, the night conquer the day and grasp you with its talon consume you with its fangs and when its duty through bestow upon you eternal sleep….

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Romance in a time of parenthood

Every so often my daughter says “Mommy I am going to marry Ben tomorrow, because he is boyfriend and he said so”. If only it were that simple.

As a single parent love and dating are such complicated issues. On one hand I am an easy date because of my hassled lifestyle. Anything that doesn’t include me cooking and begging someone to eat, far away from the constant cries of “mommy, mommy” would be my idea of romantic date. So on a bad day, a drive to McDonalds with an adult man, just the two of us would be romantic.

But on the other hand, because I am a single parent, I am the toughest client to please. People always assume that when someone has a child its harder to get back into the dating game. It’s a correct assumption. But the mistake they make is thinking the child is the hindrance to them having a social or a love life - the opposite is true. It’s us, the parents, who get in the way. The child really couldn’t care less...just bring Smarties!

As a single mom I have become even more cautious and critical when approaching the dating game, because I now have a little life and heart I am responsible for. I no longer have the luxury to just “kick it” and see how it goes. People say I am too picky but I have to be! The minute someone shows interest it would be remiss for me as a mother to not gauge how they would be as a parent. It’s too risky getting attached to someone who cannot connect with your child.

Trust is another big issue because unfortunately the world we live in is cruel and dark. Everyone has read those devastating stories of sexual and physical child abuse at the hands of those we loved, trusted and let into our lives. How do you protect your child from that? Can we protect our children from that?

And that’s not all! Logistical factors also come into play. When do you introduce your child to a “suitor?” Do you do it early in the game, before you get attached, so you can test it out but risk your child being introduced to lots of different men should it not work out or do you wait until you are sure, which has its own disadvantages should they not get along and you have already fallen in love.

All these things rush through my head the minute someone asks for my number and it may seem psychotic, but it’s my reality and these fears and issues are real and sometimes too daunting to even face for “dinner and a maybe”.

Which would probably explain why this Valentines I will be having dinner and dancing with the love of my life (read: forcing a 4year old to eat and then jumping around to Boogie Beebies).

But I will sleep happy, content and in love.

An Inspirational Leader

Inspire (v.) to motivate, encourage

When I see the word inspire, those are indeed the words that come to mind. I have visions of great leaders like Barack Obama, Winston Churchill and Nelson Mandela and even the lady in Murehwa who is feeding 20 orphans on her own salary.

What does NOT come to mind is a birthday party for the 86 year old President of Zimbabwe. I have no idea who he has hired to write his press releases but whoever that is should be fired, I would say shot but the powers that be might just take it literally and I could be charged with something and spend the next couple of months languishing in a small town stokisi. So we will stick to being fired!

So anyway this bright spark Press Liaison wrote “Mugabe’s supporters say his birthday party should be an inspiration for Zimbabwe’s children, who must learn to copy the President...”

So let me try and see what lessons I as a child of Zimbabwe would get from this party;-

a) That it’s okay to spend obscene amounts of money on party while the people starve
b) That ….
c) …..

Okay I give up.

What I can tell you is this.

This party is not a celebration that is inspirational to anyone. This party is a slap in the face to the people of Zimbabwe and the suffering they have endured at the hand of the very person and government that are throwing this bash. I could go on but it’s all been said before.

And what are we supposed to learn from the President, if he could talk to me now, what qualities and traits would be encourage me to emulate? I remember as a kid I used to attend the 21st February Movement. It was an important occasion for me, an exciting time to meet the most influential person in my world. 22 years later the novelty has worn off, the music has stopped and I just want to go home. This can be said not just of the party but of the government.