Grief is exhausting

When I received the news of my father’s passing, it felt like the earth had done a flip on its side. I couldn’t make immediate sense of what had transpired- in retrospect this slight delay to comprehend was a defense mechanism -when I did my body began to shut down. I could feel every cell going into survival mode to conserve energy and I soon became a zombie, unable to sleep, eat, or think clearly. The only thing I did quite effectively was cry. I wanted to be alone most times except when something needed to be done, and then I felt the need for the presence of another who could function better as I had let my own faculties, for the most part, go on leave.

I grew reluctant to answer any more calls unsure of which ones would serve against me, as my guesses proved, time and again, to be wrong. I came to find that ‘some’ people can be weird and sometimes offensive towards the griever. It made me wonder why they even bothered at all. During this time, it became clear to me quite quickly those who were no good, and I must say the revelation coupled with my grief was stifling. Disappointing messages from a few who I had termed a part of my ‘inner circle’ poured in with excuses “I’m tired right now, but sorry for your loss, call me if you want to talk.”

“I heard the news, but I’m busy, I’ll call when I can” radio silence.

It was as though they had heard I had a stomach ache or had stubbed my toe. Unfeeling. Cold. Then there were those who reached out seemingly to rile me up and upset me further. I was in no position to cater to the confusing emotions of others. I felt like an injured animal sprawled on unforgiving streets, waiting for the vehicle that would bring me to my fate.

Even more surprising to me were the reactions I got from ‘some’ people I hadn’t had frequent contact with, or who were not necessarily as close to me. Their support, love, and readiness to be present threw me off balance completely. It certainly was not a time to make comparisons, but when a bright red light is flashing at you in the darkness it’s impossible to ignore. The suffocating feeling started to wane a bit when I made the instant decision to let go of those who proved to be, quite frankly, useless. I began sifting through the clutter, or maybe this was some sort of distraction from the dark cloud that pressed in around me so that I could see nothing but grief. I came to despise the words “You have to be strong” from well-meaning people. How on earth was I to do that?

I did however manage to find a sliver of peace when people told me funny stories of dad. Those were the conversations I enjoyed and entertained. They certainly made me laugh, something I never thought could be possible in the midst of all the turbulent emotions.

It hit like a punch in the gut when people said words along the lines of “It has happened, you have to move on,” did these people not realize that I was entitled to my grief? That they did not have the right to tell me how to grieve, or when to ‘move on’ as they put it. People don’t seem to understand that when you lose a parent your life doesn’t simply bounce back to how it was prior to the loss. Something changes, however little, something changes.

The experience of grief is of course different for each individual because different people experience grief differently. Regardless, if you speak to a griever, they will tell you that it changed their life. It could be that it changed their mindset, or made them more aware of their mortality. For me amongst other things it was that I no longer wanted to do anything just for the sake of doing it, or because it was expected of me by society or some other self-imposing body or individual. This realization in itself changed my life overnight, from the work I was currently engaged in to even tweaking my long-term goals and reshuffling a few plans here and there. My pressing need to only want to do things that would bring me peace and fuel joy heightened.

I became completely intolerant to accommodating behaviors that made me uncomfortable and I voiced my views more readily- something I had often been cautioned against because “What would people think of you?” I no longer could be bothered to care. Life is too short to please people at the expense of your self-respect, or to be miserable because you are trying to adhere to societal expectations and rules, or to not add value in however little of a way you can. When you lose a parent, life as you know it changes.

-Nemi B

Competition for Romance Writers!

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Hi everyone. I want to start off by saying no I have not abandoned my blog. I’ve spent most of my “writing time” reviving and fixing up my manuscript. Progress is slowly being made and hoping to be done sooner than later after years of putting it aside and making excuses.

I got this in my email and thought it would be great to share! For those of you who are fantastic romance writers you should take a look at this!

https://www.eharmony.co.uk/dating-advice/dating/love-story-competition-2?utm_source=CURTIS+BROWN+CREATIVE+MAILING+LIST&utm_campaign=09c4741941-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_06_07_01_26_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_5df635d3ae-09c4741941-61625213#.WyPLR8lrm7N

Nemi-B

Wicked

If the face of a man was a portrait of his personality

It would be blue, now red, now safe

Some would be abstract and open to interpretation,

Some fearful,

Others sweet and beautiful,

Others faceless,

If the eyes of a man held the expression of his heart

They would shine bright, now dark, now wicked

Wicked for he could see to the very depths of your soul

Wicked, for his smile could melt the heart of a goddess

His words like sweet nectar, will trap…

Flip a coin, and his passions fiery and fearful, not for the faint of heart

Will be the oppressor,

But if his eyes could betray the extent of his conduct,

There will be no lilies trapped in webs of poisonous honey

For they would fleet away in an instant

And all will be plain as day.

-Nemi B

All is vanity

Image result for jewels paintingShe rips her heart out thinking it will stop the pain,
Hoping to turn cold, like ice and fails
She lets go of the one she cares about because it makes her feel insane, because all is vanity, all is vain.
Emotions play like chords on a guitar,
Feelings none but she can explain, but not with words,
Not with words,
Do not suffer her to speak, for her thoughts are confusion but her heart is sure,
So let her show you…
But, you refuse her,
You stay her hand and refuse her comfort
You shun her because your walls are high and mighty
But you do not see, for you are blind,
Blind to behold that only one bold can venture unarmed into the lion’s den,
Or one foolish…foolish with emotion because all is vanity, all is vain,
You fail to see that which you have been served on a platter of gold,
Until it rots and gathers the flies so that it must be cast out,
For all is vanity and all is vain… and even the best of meals will rot untouched
Comfort refused, silence for compassion and coldness for warmth…a punishment ill received,
A punishment that turns sweetness to venom against its will.
Those high walls…they will not keep,
There will come a warmth persistent in its craft that the irons would melt, and you will find that all is vanity,
And all is vain.

-Nemi Boyo

 

 

Image credit: google images

The Voice of Eden

Eden      The fragrant smell of aged wine drifted into the air like one being called forth by the melodious pipe of a sorcerer. She sat by the window seat, still like the statue of a saint, hardened like forged steel. But her countenance, it was filled with grace! Her dark hair rolled softly about her shoulders like a silken threads, and her smile, in the days she used to smile, lit up the very night sky.
When Eden’s father died, one can say that misfortune and his friends arrived upon her threshold. Her life lost its luster, and she became a shadow of herself. Bright lively eyes became stern and brooding, lips that easily curved remained a firm line like she bit them in order to remain silent and unspoken to.
She shunned gay colors, but consented to black and grey, forever in mourning. The voice of Eden, it danced upon one’s ears as lightly as a feather would brush against the frail leaves of a tree- her father loved to hear her sing. It lingered like the drowsiness that often accompanies port. It soothed like the drops of rain on the day of an unforgiving summer, and it nourished the hearts of all who were blessed to have heard it so that they ached and lusted to their ruin. And when Aunt Betsy came to visit, Aunt Betsy who was to Eden like a breath of fresh air…still there was no change.

“Can she no longer speak?” Aunt Betsy inquired of her mother

“The doctors say she is in a state of shock…”

“For two years! Mercy me” Aunt Betsy clucked her tongue

“Shh, do not speak of it” her mother cautioned weakly, nervous fingers gripped her tea cup as though clinging for dear life. She could not bear to see Eden’s almost soulless eyes, fixed upon her in disapproval of being discussed.

“But she cannot carry on so!” Aunt Betsy exclaimed eyeing Eden pitifully out of the corner of her eye as she sat by the window, looking out at the world below. Things went on in this manner, until one night when the clock struck twelve, and a maid whom had awoken to get herself some water, caught a glimpse of a figure in a white flowing gown. She gasped in surprise “Why, t’is Lady Eden, upon my word and clothed not in black!”

The figure turned to reveal tear stricken cheeks and then Eden did a most surprising thing startling the maid out of her wits so much that she knocked over a lamp, and it crashed to the ground!

Eden spoke.

Quietly, but audibly enough.

“Papa was poisoned by mother, it is with these hands that I fed him the medicine which I thought would make him well, but it was all her doing, all of it, Oh Marian! Do you think papa would forgive my childish foolishness?” Her voice had not lost its radiance for all the silence it had borne these two years and her hands, which now gripped the shoulders of the maid were alarmingly firm and cold. Marian, still very much startled, managed to somewhat collect herself on hearing the sound of approaching footsteps. The noise had awoken the Manor. But Eden was already gone!

As Marian fumbled for words to explain what had just occurred, leaving out Eden’s distressed message while eyeing her mistress with a curious eye, it was with excitement on hearing that Eden had spoken at all that the mistress of the manor, along with Aunt Betsy, the doorman, and the servants made their way to Eden’s chamber, where they found her lying peacefully in black like a princess in a picture book.

Not a single breath escaped her, Eden was cold as marble.

-Nemi Boyo

 

 

Image Credit:  http://asimg.artsolution.net/tsmedia/MacConnalMasonMacphoto/MacConnalMason1162008T123442.jpg?qlt=100&ftr=8&cell=950,500&cvt=jpeg

 

 

Every day is beautiful

Distant beats arouse my feet so with the ground they meet,
The sands of Porto da Barra sift through my toes, Warm from the heat of the Bahiana sun,
The ocean sprays upon my face; the air is fresh with salt…
Água de côco cool and sweet, like the beats of OlodumOlodum
Ah Olodum! You know the pathway to my heart
The beats entice, so hips sway restless and feet move in samba formation,
Seduced by Caipirinha Capoeira dancers line the streets,
My heart skips a jolly beat because it’s alive,
The music, the dancing, the laughter, the singing,
Celebrating life “todos os dias é bonita”

 

Glossary:
Porto da Barra: a beach in Salvador
Bahiana: from the state of Bahia
Água de côco: Coconut water
Olodum: African- Brazilian Percussive group
Caipirinha: Brazil’s national cocktail made with a distilled alcohol known as Cachaça, sugar, and lime
Capoeira: Brazilian martial art that combines dance, music and acrobatics
Todos os dias é bonita: Every day is beautiful

 

Image Credit: http://www.copa2014.gov.br/pt-br/noticia/olodum-araketu-e-margareth-menezes-se-destacam-na-fan-fest-de-natal