The Girlfriend Blog

Girl, Woman; Royalty

Love Letters and Unkept Promises — November 5, 2018

Love Letters and Unkept Promises

“Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every time one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.”‭‭1 John‬ ‭4:7-8‬ ‭KJV‬‬

One time after secondary school, I had this really amazing friendship with a boy. That was the first time in all my life I understood what girls in secondary school were talking about- getting worked up over boy issues; it was strange to me. I was more concerned with being a respected tomboy in our all-girls community, than slim-fitting skirts and wearing lipgloss. He was so intense- always saying deep sturvs.

I laugh at myself presently.

He would talk about the future and how it was going to be so beautiful, about the things we had in common, the way we fit so nicely and all of that boy-girl thing. We never really dated, we were just ‘talking’ and chilling – I think that’s the term.

It was really an interesting period, I became interested in lipstick and nice fitting clothes- I tried to be as girly as possible, because the young man had a bevy of side chicks waiting to devour this little seedling.

I call them side chicks because I saw myself as the main. After all, he called me every other day and his friends greeted me well.

Haha. If only I knew.

I would write funny notes and pass them to him and he would write me back, until it sort of became our ‘thing’. Then he wrote me the longest letter I had ever received in my young life: longer thank my penpal’s letters in secondary school, but it was no big deal.

My guy promised to be with me to the end of the world, yet after first year in University we were already strangers; he had moved on to the next.

‘What happened to ‘I will always love you? Even if you asked me out and I didn’t accept, couldn’t you just wait for a while?’

‘You didn’t have my time’

‘What?’

Water under the bridge. *eye roll*

The only thing left of that ‘season’ is the sheet of paper where he declared that he would push my wheelchair if ever I had to be in one.

He was that intense.

The only love letter I believe now is my bible. The word that consistently comes up to get me, comes up for me in my lowest state.

If it says I’m going to prosper, I believe.

If it says I’m royalty, best believe there’s a throne waiting for my glorious backside to sit on it.

After all, before I could read, the Author already gave me a precious gift: the gift of salvation and eternal life.

I’m still hoping to write something as beautiful as The Psalms for him.

Does this make you remember a moment you got or gave one of those letters?

Have a wonderful week.

Love,

Your Girlfriend.

Advertisements
My Failed Road Trip — October 24, 2018

My Failed Road Trip

“For great is your love toward me; you have delivered me from the depths, from the realm of the dead.”

‭‭Psalm‬ ‭86:13

I remember the day I was coming back from Seme border -the first time our road trip to Ghana was cancelled- I was tired, angry, irritable. I was confused and didn’t understand why, after doing the needful, the border patrol didn’t give us access.

I came down at Badagry at started my journey home to Okota while the others went back to somewhere-in-Ogun-state.

After waiting for what seemed to be hours, a bus came. Soon as I entered, a man tried to get in.

This man has left a lasting imprint in my mind. For ever.

He was drunk. To stupor. The type of drunk that you saw in the soul, and not from the Holy Spirit.

The bus conductor wouldn’t let him enter his bus because he couldn’t even utter an audible yes or no. ‘Oga you get change?’

‘Muninenslamvhe’

‘I no dey for all dis one o. If you no get am make another person enter’

His friends began to plead on his behalf and sorted his transport fare.

The next struggle was how to get him into the bus. He got in, And that was when we saw that he had a little boy with him.

His friends kept saying ‘hol dat boy well. Do small small’. I don’t think he heard all that.

As we moved, the breeze that came into the bus through the windows wafted the odor of his alcohol to my side.

Inconvenient.

What was more inconvenient: he slept off on his son’s shoulders- that made the kid sit at a very odd angle.

People in the bus started their life coaching in the official language of Lagos life coaches- pidgin- ‘oga na which kain life you dey live?’

‘You no dey see say your pikin dey look you’

‘I no dey gree for dis kain tin. Wey im mama’. ‘Oga you for leave am for im mama if na dis kain paraga lifestyle you wan dey follow’. ‘Which kain yeye man you be sef’.

Through all the coaching, he would lift his head, say something to his little man, and his baby boy would nod yes.

Then he would kiss his son’s head and pull him closer to his chest. Right after, he would fall asleep again.

Most inconvenient, was when he finally threw up all his booze just beside me and all over his son. At that moment, the disappointment of a failed road trip to Ghana paled in comparison to the disgust I felt.

Yet as soon as the bus passengers started their secondary school ‘guidance and counseling’ session, I felt a sadness overwhelm me.

This time, he finally let someone carry his son away from him to clean him up. Then he started leaning towards me.

No sir.

I kept tapping him to wake up till he got to his busstop.

He had whispered to his son ‘it’s us against the world’.

I don’t know if it was a confession out of rock bottom, or one out of drunkenness. But his drunkenness could have been a function of his mental state, and I didn’t know his mental state. All I knew was that he looked like sorrow.

Yet I can’t be sure if his sorrow was alcohol induced, or if his drunkenness was sorrow induced.

Perhaps I will never know.

What I know now though, is that if ever I find myself in such a situation, next time, I should take the child from the man first, and provide as much comfort as I can; who knows, maybe that’s as much as he would get.

Let me also not be too caught up in myself with the things that seem important and/or detrimental to societal status, that I forget that there are people who are not only financially poor, but emotionally so too.

That one kind gesture says more about me than about the receiver; man or woman, friend or foe, acquaintance or stranger. That a hangover with a child watching is worse than a cancelled trip, because after all trips are not in danger of growing up too fast, rather children are.

That a man could also suffer a loss so wrecking, that alcohol is sucor, yet not strength.

That love can’t only to the people we know, and that maybe the people who shout at you in a Lagos bus, but still get a satchel or two of ‘pure’ water to wash your head after you vomit are the ones who really show love- although they may call it something else like ‘to avoid bad smell’. Of course.

Not the ones who move aside and let you handle your pain- or drunkenness- alone.

That it may not be any of the above.

But now I know better.

Much Love,

Your Girlfriend.

If I could run away… — October 22, 2018

If I could run away…

But I won’t.

I stopped the writing challenge when I saw that I was going to get more personal as days went by- even with tags as simple as ‘what are you listening to right now?’ I started looking deep inwards to find the answers to other questions not on the list.

Then I ran into a shell of questioning God and being angry. Or being angry and questioning him.

He says ‘go through your emotions with me’, so I do that. It’s been a rollercoaster ride.

Growing up can be hard. Growing can be hard. And painful. And irritating. It’s almost easy to run away and just touch the ‘skip’ button on one or two that don’t look appealing. But queens don’t run.

Some days I want to return the crown and be a normal person, but I ask myself if I really want to do that, and go through with a skewed crown, if at all it’s on my head.

Greyginger was not on the list of relevant things in my life within that period. I was not motivated to do anything sensible with myself.

I was journaling a lot, asking questions, questioning my questions and moving to find the motivation behind the reason for the questions.

I was getting answers and not liking them. I mean, I thought I was an amazing young woman?

So what was/is up?

After completing ‘The Subtle Art of not giving a Fuck’ by Mark Manson, I came to the conclusion that I can be an entitled little lady.

Entitled. Superiority-complexed. And timid.

‘A whole me?- Abeg let me hear word- Wow, Nneamaka, why is your light shining outward and you’re a mess-Oohh, you see your life outside- A WHOLE YOU, claiming Queen up and down’

That’s how I was moving from one thought to another.

If you are going to be phenomenal, you must be ready to ask the horrible questions, no? Yes.

So I read the book with my mind open. I didn’t like the answers. That’s okay. I know now. I’ll save the details for another post.

Just as a tip, he said that Action begets motivation, which begets action. It’s a cycle. Motivation does not beget sustainable action. Because motivation fades.

I had to go on a personal retreat that I came out of before I was done, and then go back again. I felt disoriented, yet looked so put together.

I listened to podcasts- you should check out Jesus and Jollof by Luvvie Ajayi and Yvonne Orji- they were like therapy. Sometimes.

Who said self-discovery would always be fun?

My dear mum would say ‘ a man can deceive others but he shouldn’t deceive himself’.

Don’t deceive yourself. Ask questions and get the answer.

At the end of the day, Royalty is not the gold on your wrist or the fur on your feet. It’s the blood in your veins. Your crown may not presently be on your head, it does not take away the significance of who you are.

Much Love,

Your Girlfriend.

Five Ways to Win My Heart — September 20, 2018

Five Ways to Win My Heart

“My flesh and my heart faileth; But God is the strength of my heart and my portion for ever.”

‭‭Psalms‬ ‭73:26‬ ‭ASV‬‬

Hello, precious, how was your day?

Mine was incredible. I’ve been having Back and Forths with my dad. Yesterday I just rushed through the post about places I would love to visit. I wasn’t feeling up to it, I’ll revisit soon.

I’m also really excited about a couple’s wedding: Lala Akindoju and Chef Fregz.

They are proper Nigerian Celebrities, more, they are Christian Nigerian Celebrities. Why do I make a case of that? Because I identify with the kind of values I want to have.

They don’t know me personally, no, but I love a beautiful love story.

Apparently it was kept coded from the world! Chai. I love coded gist…

…maybe it’s just the amebo in me showing up-lol.

This man cried at his wedding. He cried. I have written a note to my future husband that he must cry at our wedding.

😄😄😄

A little back story. I compered one major event- WIMBIZ- on Campus as an Undergrad, and Lala came to speak. She’s a seasoned theatre practitioner. She practically sold my market to the full hall and kept recommending and commending me for doing a good job. From someone I had been stalking on social media to meet me for the first time and do that. Maannnnn.

You get the feeling?!

Okay, so she’s gotten married to an equally yummy chef (feel my word play?) and I’m grateful to God for her.

Now let’s move to What you can do to get into the Bottomless Pit of my heart, as my fellow Nigerians say.

1. God.

I don’t know what works for others, but I Know what works for me. A person who has the fear of God will love you sincerely. I’m not saying just ‘Christian’ now, because I once met a man who claimed he was a Christian but wanted to show me how much of a sex machine he was. I should gist you the story one day. The Bible had spelt out how true love works and I’m down for that.

I’m not talking just about a man now, I’m talking about man and woman alike.

2. Intelligence.

Oh please! What’s that thing they say about Sapiosexual? Ah! Hmnnn! I like intelligent people oo. Now add the fear Of God…

Come to me honey. Yet I’ve seen people that form intelligent. No, ma and sir. Be sure of what you’re saying, please, thank you. See, intelligent people don’t shout about it. They show it. There’s just something about them and I learn more from people that know more than I do.

They keep you on your toes and challenge you to know even more.

3. Humility.

It’s almost rare now to see a humble person. It’s also sad. I’m a big supporter of blowing your trumpet when it’s necessary- because if you can’t believe in yourself, very few people will take the effort to believe in you. That’s not what this is about. The Bible says to esteem the other person above yourself, not because you’re less of a person, but because love is not self-seeking.

But most of us become so selfish, we hardly even notice. Pride goes before a fall all over the world.

4. Sincerity.

This one is a gift. If you can give it to me, then you can take it. And that’s so beautiful. Don’t come at me stroking my ego because you want to get ahead or because you don’t really care, or because ‘of what use is it anyway’ it’s of GREAT use! You need one or two friends that can call your bullshit out in love or even in ‘vex’. Open rebuke is better than secret love! Proverbs said that. 27 verse 5. It’s a tough pill to swallow sometimes, but you become a better person.

5. Music and Art

If you don’t love these, well, what do you love? You must love one. In no particular proportion. I don’t know what I’d do if I didn’t have a dose of good music or find the art in something, it’s just amazing to find the beauty in something simple? Today, for example, as I stood to buy corn by the road side, I was just amazed at how the smoke was so intrusive- it never asks your permission before it smells on you.

Five ways. Five ways to be a better person, really 😄. Five ways to be a richer person.

Because a rich friend is better than a poor friend. And in the words of small doctor, ‘if you don’t have money, hide your face’.

How that reference came into this post amazes me. But I’ll leave it anyway.

Tomorrow I write about 10 songs I’m loving right now.

Much Love,

Your Girlfriend.

If I could travel the world — September 19, 2018

If I could travel the world

I want to go to Kenya.

Then South Africa

Then Uganda

I want to visit Jamaica

I’ve been thinking about brushing up my French for France

Spanish for Spain

Italian for Italy

One time I thought I needed to work on my summer body for the Carribeans, (but meh, God loves me and my big stomach)

I want to visit Dubai and walk in the desert.

I want to travel the seas

Go to Australia,

Japan

China

This list is endless, I have to come back and finish it.

Love,

Yours truly

Who Inspires You? — September 18, 2018

Who Inspires You?

Hello, precious, how are you?

First off, my sincere apologies.

You know life throws curveballs at us? And we don’t always hit, but thankfully we always find a way to get our balance.

I was just getting into the 30-Day challenge, easing into it and preparing my mind for the next few days of mind exercise, when my phone fell from the top of the bunk. I had to get it fixed before I could come back on the blog.

Thank you for visiting, reading and liking my posts so far, it means a great lot.

You may have questions about who The Girlfriend is exactly and why the blog is named that. I would be glad to do a re-introduction soon and meet you.

My name is Nneamaka, I’m a beautiful Igbo woman. I love myself a lot, but it took quite some time before I could get there. There’s more, but sadly I can’t do that immediately.

I wouldn’t want to take all the time talking about something I have a lifetime to do- literally, so let me move into Day 4

Day 4 that should have happened about a week ago!

Who inspires me?

That’s easy, almost.

I would be quick to say ‘my mum’, but that one is standard, so let me talk about someone else.

She’s a Nigerian actor, one I was privileged to speak with and seek counsel from. She Is Incredible 🙌🏾

Her name is Nse Ikpe-Etim.

I sent her a mail when I was about to take my final semester exams, asking if she would be available for a conversation, she responded, and I’ve been the better for it.

She gave me so much information about her career and how she gets into her roles for my exams and then she gave me more.

I was star struck. See, we were chatting on whatsApp. I could have put my phone in a museum at that point, because it was priceless.

I was conversing with an international icon. On WhatsApp. Amaka has blown!

Now I know there are celebrities who really don’t have time because of work schedules and engagements, but how this lady kept responding made me know the kind of celebrity I would like to be.

Because I’m going to be one 🙂

I don’t support ‘pesticism’ (lol I’m no Wole Soyinka, but the words come to me), because even stars are human beings, right? But I know when I see an opportunity to be counseled as often as possible. And I take it.

Do you?

Nse- She does not subscribe to our Nigerian way of calling an older person ‘ma’, which was a struggle, as I have a Yoruba mum- has been a big help in my transitioning from University to the ‘Outside World’. She gave me advice on what next and asked for feedback still.

As you may have guessed, I will keep giving her the feedback.

What a gem 💎

I’m happy I took the step to reach out. She’s a terrific human being and she’s my role model.

You already figured that, right?

Food for thought: have you ever been at a place where you were really the rave of the moment? How did you respond to people who tried to talk?

Or, when you become great, rich and famous, how do you want to be perceived?

Success is sweeter when people can be blessed by your life, yes?

Yes.

I’m back. Please feel free to drop a comment or recommendation, thank you.

Day 5 would be about the places I would love to visit.

Much Love,

Your Girlfriend.

Pet Peeves — September 6, 2018

Pet Peeves

“Hatred stirs up conflict, but love covers over all wrongs.”

‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭10:12‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Hello, precious. I hope you had a good day?

This is supposed to be my day 4 of the 30-day writing challenge, but I’m sorry I missed a day, so I’m on Day 3.

It’s Pet Peeve Day.

I could laugh out loud right now, because I remember one time I was a very short-fused person… but thank God for Jesus in my friends- they really love by example.

So, pet peeves.

There are some things that just don’t sit well with me.

Let’s see about three.

1. Touch. If you don’t know me, biko don’t rub my shoulder.

But most Ibo men in Lagos don’t understand that one.

‘Nne, keep this seat for me’. ‘Baby girl how are you’ With a touch on my shoulder, or my hand. What is it please? Just talk to me without touching me please. Please.

But this is a plea on deaf ears fam. I just move away from the people that are likely to touch me when talking. However if we’re friends, bring that hug in beloved!

2. Gossip. No no no mbok. No.

Have you heard that quote about people who talk about people? It’s real my friend! Anyone talking about someone to you will MOST DEFINITELY be talking about you to someone else.

And it’s not likely to be good.

When I see people talking like that, I get angry on all their behalfs. Like- don’t you know you’re not doing yourself any good sister girl?

What do I do: I get up and out of the place. I cannot be caught in the middle of ‘did you hear, were you there when’. No thanks.

3. Discounting my ideas.

Yo. I’m sharing my plans to take over the world. How dare you say I’m unrealistic? I’m looking for a way to do something different, how dare you say I’m forward or not thinking normally? Wow. You don’t know me. This relationship is over. We’re done.

For real, I don’t have small-dreamer friends, it’s one of the things that we share as a value, after God.

Yet I have met people like this, and instead of me to cut them off totally, I just cut them out of my ideas and still let them get a piece of the pie if it can go round. However I won’t give them my share.

Why? Because love and kindness will not always be reciprocated, and at the same time, you must protect your peace of mind, as much as you’re keeping the peace with all men.

Those are my top-three pet peeves.

What gets you tetchy? How do you avoid it?

Day 4 will be about someone who inspires me.

Much love,

Your Girlfriend.

Something Someone told me About Myself that I never forgot. — September 4, 2018

Something Someone told me About Myself that I never forgot.

“For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:”

Ephesians 5:8 KJV

Shot by Sucor Photography

‘People say things to us every day, you would think that one would stick out like a sore thumb, but it’s the way they make you feel that remains in the memory a lot longer’.

You feel how I just changed that quote that’s been circulating into a few more sentences?

Day 2 is for that thing someone said that stayed in my memory…

This is one of those times where choice comes in, because I could decide to pick a time I loved a guy I knew from home enough to stay single in the university, waiting for the day he’d say ‘be mine’. He said something else. *Insert sarcastic laughter*

Or I could talk about the time I came here to rant about one young lady that had been trying to bully me in secondary school, kept at it even in the university- plot twist, she became my classmate in the same department and somehow she felt she knew me so well.

Nah. I’m not talking about that.

Let me go a little further down memory lane to Secondary school. I had a friend and classmate. We looked alike, sang alike, both had Triple-B status (Big, Bold and Beautiful), but she was fair while I was dark.

She’s still fair, while I’m still dark.

Those days in in our All-Girls secondary school, I was a bit over the top. I had thought I could use bullying to get over being bullied, so I enjoyed the reputation of being the most-feared tomboy in our little community. I reveled in the anxiety that followed my name. Once anyone heard ‘Senior Amaka is calling you’, it was enough to give you a switch, like Nepa just took light.

One day, after my classmates had finished hailing me for landing a hot slap on someone else’s daughter’s back, as a Lefty that I am, she called me and told me matter of factly that I should be wise. She said I would not be a secondary school student forever. If I was ahead of a person now, it did not mean tables could not turn and they’d get ahead of me.

She told me not to be too comfortable with making other people uncomfortable, because tables could turn and I didn’t know where I would meet them next.

The remaining one year of secondary school was incredible for me because I took her advice. I made friends with so many people, I was an asset. I never forgot.

Guess what! I got into the university and met some of them, thank God I listened!

Of course, they still remembered me: as a strict tomboy-dining-hall prefect, but definitely not as a bully.

I have had so many close encounters with people who were in classes lower than mine; I was even in the choir with one of them in the university.

Five years after, I entered church one day and the next thing I heard was ‘Senior Amaka…’ I turned to meet the smiling face of a young lady who had been under my supervision at one time, she was excited to see me.

She was actually really excited to see me.

I was excited to meet her. I told her she was in the right place, that I had grown a lot in GLT- that’s the name of my church- and she could too.

There. That’s something someone told me that I never forgot that is worth mentioning. Times change, and you have the power to change too. You can change a bad habit, you can correct the way you esteem yourself. If someone calls you out, look for the good in it.

It takes true courage to face your ‘impurities’, and you should rest assured that if you have one or two people who are willing to tell you about the things that you’re not doing right, you are loved.

That being said, thank you Damilola Sampson, you made a big difference in my life. You can check out her IG on @tioluwani_s

See you on Day 3.

I’ll be talking about pet-peeves.

Much Love,

Your Girlfriend.

10 Things that Make Me Happy — September 2, 2018

10 Things that Make Me Happy

Shot by Sucor photography

It’s the first day of the writing challenge I decided to take part in. I had thought this would be easy, I still think so, after all if I know what makes me sad, shouldn’t it be just the opposite that makes me happy?

10 things -out of the many things- that make me happy and a bonus of ‘why’ to follow.

1. Singing/Music- I could sing all day. I turn my words to songs, I replay bits and pieces of songs I’ve listened to over in my head and sing them out. Music is a force that pulls me. Listening to music relaxes me, ministers to me, it’s free therapy.

2. Family- my family is a gift I’m grateful for. Thinking about them, spending time with them, gives me a good boost all the time. They’re my biggest support system.

3. Friends- ‘He who must have friends must make himself friendly’. When I think about my friends I get happy. It amazes me how I was able to get to the quality of friends I have presently because It’s a miracle!

4. Performance Art- I’ve been said to be a drama queen, (no, no, I Am a drama queen, lol) even in my every day interaction with people. It’s easy to be happy when you’re doing what you love. From compering a program or event, to getting ready for a play/drama, either on stage or backstage as a crew member, I’m 100.

5.Nigerian Movies- aye! I love Nigerian movies. Whenever I see one of those I feel something inside me humming, like ‘there’s work to be done, there’s a story to be told’.

6. Books- they keep me ‘woke’. Picking other people’s minds through their books is a great way to learn how other people process things.

7. Silence- I’m learning that God will not speak to you over the noise. You must create an atmosphere of quiet to hear him. And it’s not just about turning down the volume of your TV set or PC. It’s tuning your heart to him.

8. Adventures – adventures aren’t hard to get. Going to a new street that you’ve never visited is an adventure. You can find something new from simple, mundane’ things that we do everyday, or find a new way to do them, it’s just up to you. It doesn’t always have to involve packing a bag and jetting to another country, although I don’t mind that at all!

9. God- how would you feel if you found out that the President followed you on all your social media accounts? Ahhh, see? The Almighty follows me online and offline. The creator of the universe! I’m already excited, merely thinking about it.

10. Mentors, parents, older friends- it’s a big deal, having people who watch over you. Knowing that there are people who look out for you, who let you learn from their experiences, and correct you when you are getting something wrong is a treasure I’m not ready to let go of.

That was a little hard at first, to be honest 😄 being a happy person without having ‘reasons’ as such is easy, but thinking about why you’re happy 10 times…

It never occurred to me.

Nonetheless I did it. And what’s even better? After listing 10, I found that I could keep going on and on and I’m amazed. There’s so much to be thankful for.

I challenge you to think about the things that make you happy; you may or may not write them down, but whenever you feel low, hopefully it will cheer you up.

Much love,

Your Girlfriend.

Queendom — August 29, 2018

Queendom

My mentor told me one time that a Queen is many things, but not all things- and these are my words.

He said a queen must take care of her finances; must take care of her appearance, her relationships, must fulfill her purpose- must take care of her ministry.

I didn’t get it immediately, I’m still getting it.

After all, you do not come into full awareness of your title as soon as the crown is placed on your head and it’s really okay not to, as long as you get it eventually.

Moreover, you have all your life to be a queen, why not take each day’s lesson in royalty one at a time?

This is to say The Girlfriend is back, but as a Queen, not just a woman, but one growing in the reality of her father’s legacy.

Ah… you probably didn’t know my father is a King… he is. We’ll get into this later, after the Queen wakes up from her nap 👸🏾

Ohh! I’m excited to be back.

Much love!

Your Girlfriend.