Tag Archives: Friday

The last Friday before Christmas

merry christmas

Today’s the last Friday before Christmas. That means Christmas is just a few days away. Yay. Since I was a kid I’ve always loved Christmas. It’s the one season of the year when I feel like everything around me comes to life. One thing I’ve noticed over the years is the fact that Christmas isn’t just a day’s celebration; it shouldn’t just be celebrated on 25th. Christmas is a season. I’m not sure when it starts exactly but I know in my house it starts on my birthday. It’s always been a tradition that we start putting up the decorations a few days before my birthday or latest, a day after.

Since we put up the Christmas decorations I feel like I was bitten by the Christmas bug. Everything just feels Christmassy. Maybe it’s just the good cheer, but my food tastes sweeter, and the cold weather makes the days feel even more beautiful. There’s something about Christmas; I noticed that two years ago. I spent all my days working. Not even music from live bands could do anything to cheer me up. It was horrible. I only got my Christmas break on Christmas Eve and even then it was too little too late. That was the one time in my life I felt like I never celebrated Christmas.

merry christmas 4

I learnt then, that Christmas is about spending time with others, spreading love and good cheer. Without that the beautiful carols will just sound like any ordinary song and all the traditions associated with Christmas will feel meaningless.

This Christmas, reach out to someone in need; spread a little love and the Christmas cheer. Forgive more, laugh more, and just celebrate the birth of our new born King.

merry christmas 3

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

Tribute to grams

I’ve been away from this blog for the past three weeks, even though it feels like forever. I apologize to any of my readers who I may have inconvenienced in any way. It really does feel like forever; so much has happened. When I wrote my last post last month, my family and I had just been invited to my uncle’s birthday party. At the time mom hadn’t made up her mind if she wanted to attend the party or not, but in a weird twist of fate, nature intervened; we all went to my uncle’s that Sunday.

Mom was stressed up at the time because her mom was admitted in hospital. She couldn’t contemplate going to a party when her mom was lying on a hospital bed. It all happened so fast. Grams fell ill and was taken to hospital by two of mom’s siblings on a Wednesday. They called her from upcountry to inform her. Thursday, mom was so distraught when she went to work because she had never seen her mom admitted in hospital all her life.

I overheard a conversation she was having with one of my cousins on phone that evening; she was telling him how much she’d cried while at work. I bet she didn’t know I heard, and she carefully avoided telling my sisters and I. Somehow, she acted all cool, downplayed grams’ illness so it didn’t even seem like it was anything serious. Friday morning, she left home, not for work, but to visit her mom in hospital. It was entirely unprecedented. I doubt she’d notified any of her bosses she’d be skipping work that day.

In the afternoon I called to ask how grams was doing and she told me she was still recuperating in hospital. I couldn’t hear her clearly, so I texted her, telling her not to worry because grams would be well in no time.

Later that day, when she came back home, my big sister hadn’t come from school yet. Pokerfaced, mom asked what time she’d be arriving and I told her she’d be getting back home after ten. It was only thirty past seven in the evening.

“I don’t think I can wait that long, so if you don’t mind I’ll just tell you how my day was,” she said. I didn’t think there was much to the story as we’d been texting during the day, and generally she seemed okay, relatively. My small sister took a sit on the couch adjacent to mom’s. Dad was sitted on the one opposite mom’s but since I didn’t think she would take much time I remained standing, behind my small sister’s couch.

With a straight face, mom told us how she’d arrived at the hospital. When she walked into the ward grams was admitted in, she saw her mom lying there, frail. She was on drip. Mom’s elder sister was in there too. Quietly, she walked over to gram’s bedside, saying, “Mom, it’s me.” Grams didn’t open her eyes, instead, she just turned her head to the opposite direction, and she heaved, breathing her last.

At first mom thought grams was just too weak to talk, so she asked her sister to go get a doctor. It was only afterwards that the doctor revealed to them that grams had just passed away. When mom dropped that bombshell, she did it so calmly, my sister and I didn’t get it at first, then when what mom had just said hit us we asked simultaneously, “Grams died?”

The days that followed were difficult for everyone. Mom seemed composed but deep inside I knew she was shattered; she was barely holding on. She only put a brave face for my sisters and I, so we didn’t get too affected by grams’ passing. That entire period, during the burial arrangements and all, I never saw mom shed a tear. One of her sisters-in-law supported her all through. Other relatives did too, but this one was outstandingly supportive. Before then I didn’t like her much because normally we just don’t click, but after seeing the support she offered mom, I was immensely moved.

Our uncle’s party wasn’t postponed because everything had already been put in place. We attended the party, and even though we weren’t really in a partying mood, the happy vibes from the rest of the family and friends helped lessen the grief.

The only time I saw mom cry was when grams was being laid to rest. She actually wailed, and as she did, my aunt, mom’s sister-in-law, looked relieved that mom had finally cried because she was afraid mom was in denial about her mom’s passing. Naturally, it was a very tearful affair.

Mom is still getting by, taking one day at a time, and everytime I look at her I just thank God that He gave her the strength to get through the whole affair, because knowing her and all, I can attest that in all honesty that was Him at work.

After the burial I was anxious about my end of semester exams; I hadn’t revised much with all that had been happening, but again, by God’s grace I sat my exams. Now as I look at this past few weeks, I feel so much has happened, and at the moment, I can’t help but thank The Almighty because I can safely say I’ve seen His hand in everything.

God's hand

All the World’s a stage

all the world's a stage

We were sitted in church one Friday evening. It was our usual Friday devotion session. Normally we would sing, learn new songs, read bible verses, then the teacher who headed our devotion session, and also doubled as my netball coach, would expound on the readings. This particular day however, he chose to do it differently. As he paced right-left-center at the area between the altar and the pews, he focused his teachings on one of William Shakespeare’s pieces-All the world’s a stage:

All the world’s a stage,

And all the men and women merely players;

They have their exits and their entrances,

And one man in his time plays many parts, his acts being seven ages: at first the infant, mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms.

Then the whining schoolboy, with his satchel

And shinning morning face, creeping like snail unwillingly to school. And then the lover,

Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad

Made to his mistress eyebrow. Then a soldier,

Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard,

Jealous in honor, sudden and quick in quarrel,

Seeking the bubble reputation

Even in the cannon’s mouth. And then the justice,

In fair round belly with good capon lined,

With eyes severe and beard of a formal cut,

Full of wise saws and modern instances;

And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts into the lean and slippered pantaloon,

With spectacles on nose and pouch on side;

His youthful hose well saved, a world too wide

For his shrunk shank, and his big manly voice,

Turning again toward childish treble, pipes

And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,

That ends this strange eventful history,

Is second childishness and mere oblivion,

Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

I had never read the poem before, but as I listened to him talk about it so passionately-he also taught literature-I understood what he was driving at. His explanation was basic; a child is born, that’s when he enters the stage…he grows up, lives his life-good/bad-grows old, then he dies; that marks his inevitable exit. In his own words, “One only gets one chance to give a wonderful performance. When the curtains fall, the person exits and they never get a chance to redeem themselves. It’s only while on the stage that one can give the performance of their life.”

Referencing Shakespeare’s poem, he likened the world to a stage. Normally, when one gets on stage, it’s only protem, because either way they will have to exit. Such is life. When one gets off stage, they resume their normal life. He delved deeper; if the world is only a stage, what happens when one exits? Which is the real world? He was implying that this life we live is not permanent. We’re only here for a while, then after that we transit to the ‘real world’-eternity, that’s the real world, and we only get to live in eternal bliss or damnation for that matter depending on the performance we gave on stage.

Where we are now, we’re only here to play our cards, to determine where we end up, when we exit this stage-world-which apparently is inevitable. His words gave me so much to think about…