Category: personal growth

unlearn

To Unlearn: What I No Longer Believe to be True

unlearn <un·learn>

ˌənˈlərn/verb
discard (something learned, especially a bad habit or false or outdated information) from one’s memory.
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  1. College is the only or surest way to succeed in the modern world. We know no examples. Bill Gates. Oprah.
  2. Smart people always make good decisions. If you are smart, you cannot be wrong. Ever. Duh.
  3. No one will ever truly look out for you, with the exemption of your family. Family members – the ones you do not choose – are the only people you can trust. Surely, everyone is ultimately out to get you in the long run. If people leave, even when their appointed season in your life is over, that is the zenith of betrayal. Off with their heads! Every institution – even the most blessed, pure, and loving – has its limitations. That can’t possibly be ok.
  4. You cannot set boundaries with family. “I love you, mother… Thanks for calling the third time today… Yes, yeah… I’m on the look out for my future husband. Of course!…. Yes, a medical doctor, yes, medical… I have the criteria list seared into my mind… I’ll review the scroll right before I head out to work… Oh yeah… yeah, it’s morning here – kinda early….”
  5. Life is not meant to be enjoyed. What is happiness? Struggle is life. Struggle defines life. Despite the fact that you only get one chance at living, why would you actually enjoy any part of it? This is not a game. #struggleislife
  6. Men are on the fuckboy spectrum. Therefore, can they really ever be a partner and ally? Not one man is worth the time of day. They’re all such good men, and yet leave behind throngs of broken women in their wake. I mean, why expect respect and harmony in a relationship when all he really needs from you is a warm, cooked meal and a warmer body? I mean, really, #NotAllMen, amirite?
  7. True love eludes women who are decisive, inquisitive, and have at least one degree. The more degrees you attain, ladies, and the more you desire out of life and people, the worse off you are in the love department. Facks on facks. And you’re over 30?! We all know you tuck your degrees and diplomas and career under your pillow, bitter, lonely woman. I mean, can you even cook?
  8. The goal in life is perfection. Live up to everyone’s expectations at all times. This is the true measure of perfection. If no one complains about you, and you’re worn ragged as a result, who can fault you for being exactly what is expected? At this point, you’re perfect!
  9. People’s opinions of who you are and what you do matters immensely. Again, it’s amount molding yourself to the pleasure of others. You’re a humanitarian, after all. The only life you’re gifted cannot possibly be lived according to the terms of the personality gifted the body. Benevolence is cute, but my opinion of who you are and what you ought to be matters more than the love you ought to generously dole yourself.

“what’s new, udee?”

“What’s new, udee?”

I’m adulting. I know this because my daily routine, if I’m not careful, easily consists of work, working out and occasionally enjoying a night out, which I joyously would cancel if the comrades are too undecided or I decided on homemade steak and wine for dinner. Honestly, the yacht parties are fun, but nothing compares to an evening of pinot noir, writing and watching Peaky Blinders on Netflix. I’ve become an older woman.; my comforts keep me infinitely happy.

“What’s new, udee?”
“Oh girl, y’know, work and working out for the most part…”

I’m cognizant and resentful. Who am I?! And when did I sign up for this adult routine? In my defense, I’ve taught myself this response. It’s a filler; it means nothing. I’ve come to view it as the reponse you give when asked, “how are you?” or “what’s up?”: “I’m good”; “Nothing much”. Fillers. The response tells you nothing at all and almost means nothing at all, unless you inquire further.

As I do frequently, I have over-thought this “what’s new, udee” question and what exactly is going on in my life and dammit, I’m doing more than just working and working out! In an effort to be present and grateful and remind myself that I do things, the #Top5SummerHighlightReel:

1 | #summer16 hair – it’s darker and I’m ’bout to stunt for both no reason and all the reasons;

2 | My new diet has become sustainable, so crop tops and tiny dresses will feature with more confidence this summer;

3 | I attended one of the best parties I can recall to date: an all night Beyoncé basement dance party. It was a sweat your edges out, no frills, dance with strangers in the dark all night to the Queen party, and I lived;

4 | Summer vacay plans in Cabo; and

5 | Upgrading my wardrobe

Have you become the adult you don’t recognize?

things we carry, chapter 2: autopilot

this is when you attempt to feel the world around you, but cannot
this is when you attempt to douse your nervous system in extra stimulants, but nothing

and there you sit
so many things to be done, you’re thinking
so many orders to give and many more to receive
so many things to say and things to hear
so many items to cross off
so there you sit

unbothered and numb
numb and unbothered

not even the dark roast and quickening heart beat gets you up

you have managed to move your body just enough
just enough to get you right here

so
you don’t move at all

fuck it
we’ll try this again tomorrow

“I am ready for love
Why are you hiding from me?
I’d quickly give my freedom
To be held in your captivity.” -india.aire
I’m trying this thing where I’m putting myself out there and actually saying yes. I haven’t read Shonda’s book yet (I’ll wait until the next century when it finally becomes available at my local library), but I’m trying proactivity, nevertheless. It’s where you meet a guy who as a nice smile, great skin and by all physical accounts doesn’t appear to be of the serial killer persuasion and you offer – unprompted – to hang out over coffee. Novel, amirite? I’ve heard that guys actually like this method of interaction, so why not? I’m grown and I’ve pretty much asked and received everything else in my life, so why not become the protagonist and spearhead my dating experience more intentionally?
However lately, I’ve been asking myself quite self-reflectively whether I would actually make a good girlfriend. The single life has made me selfish and impatient, so much so that even the idea of owning a pet makes me groan with the thought of added responsibility. That a dog could not feed itself and I would have to rush home after work to take it out to potty is beyond me.
I have a routine! I use the restroom with the door open, blasting my podcasts from my wireless speaker every morning with abandon. There is a wine glass in my bedroom that never makes it to the dishwasher in time, and I watch whatever I want on Netflix knowing no one else would care. Is this what people do in relationships do too, because I can’t imagine switching this up. Additionally, by all accounts from the hitched-up women in my life, men have needs. Like actual egos and needs and wants and habits that need addressing and negotiation. They say it’s beautiful; I don’t know, it’s been a while.
Perhaps it’s the commitment of it that makes me wonder… the wondering whether I would have to drastically change to accommodate another human form that I have affections for (child-raising makes me nervous, too, btw!). Or that I would passively be in support of problematic thinking. For instance, I cannot imagine tempering my feminism and blackness and Naijaness to make a man feel comfortable. I can negotiate room temperature preferences to a point, but I’m not giving up pepper-sauteed snails because you have a moral obligation to the consumption of molluscs. I would find it immeasurably unforgiving to hear ideologies that are anti-humanity:
…Amber Rose is a hoe; she ain’t no Ayesha Curry; so if Kanye disrespects her, you can’t really blame him, can you? 
…Syrian refugees should really just stick it out; ISIS is a problem everywhere and all, but we don’t have room! 
…but you gotta admit that black people really need to focus on black on black crime; if we can’t help ourselves, who will?
While it’s taken me lots of growing up, exposure, personal research and trial and error to form the ideologies I hold, one cannot blame me for ghosting gentlemen who are fundamentally perpendicular to my value system. Also, the idea of sharing a lamb chop dinner with someone who doesn’t like me asking questions and who thinks it’s natural for a girlfriend to teach them household cleanliness is beyond me. How will I function?
Has my millennial sensibilities categorized me as a difficult woman?
Alas, here I am! A basket full of peculiar impatience, ready to meet someone who laughs as generously as I do and thinks Instagram celebrity arguments are fascinating to talk about during How to Get Away With Murder commercial breaks. I’m outchea – taking numbers and texting back, even wiping right on Tinder on occasion. I’m charming enough for a second date, me thinks. Will walk cautiously into relationship possibilities… so yanno, heart open and what not!
midtown

holding off from; giving permission to: a poem

 i am quitting that which i have yet to start
and apportioning time to nothing
i am abandoning things i have not committed to
and signing up to not participate
this is the game i play alone
suspending myself in air, barely hoping respite
awaiting the time i’m given the nod to continue
as if anyone is waiting for me
i am figuring out my unhappy
without thinking about it at all
i am whispering through a crowded room
while everyone is looking the other way
i am winding up the clock to watch it tick down
living within its minutes aimlessly
i am elsewhere and nowhere, someone and everyone
and everything’s nothing in between
i am doing this all over…