Category Archives: Life

Gardasil & Laziness

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I found myself getting caught up in the Gardasil debate today. I was quite surprised because I had already made my decision about it a couple of years ago so I wasn’t even thinking about it, until I saw an article on Facebook about a researcher who couldn’t sleep at night knowing what she knew (http://southweb.org/lifewise/the-lead-vaccine-developer-comes-clean-so-she-can-sleep-at-night-gardasil-and-cervarix-dont-work-are-dangerous-and-werent-tested/), and then watched this video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=0gCVCP8BFrU) and I just kind of lost it.

Ladies, parents of girls and really anyone with a female you love in your lifedo not take or give this ‘vaccine’. Even if it turns out to be the safest drug on earth, take your time because from what I’ve read & heard, the side effects last a very long time. Remember the drug that was given to many women in the 60s to help with their morning sickness but ended up costing them their fertility? If you don’t, google it. The cost of a long term side effect is higher than the cost of annual or bi-annual pap test until/unless you’re sure Gardasil et al is right for you. My personal rule is: if a drug hasn’t been on the market for 7-10 years, count me out. I’m not taking it.

As for laziness…that was my middle name today. My most taxing activity of the day was moving from one bum cheek to another, in search of a more comfortable position. Shamelessly 😀

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East West…I’m back!

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Mezzo-soprano

I can’t believe it’s been this long since my last post. Why am I back, you ask? I ‘met’ a new friend today – Wolf. In short, he forbade me from giving up on my blog. He said I must write something, even on days when I feel I have nothing to say. It made sense, so here I sit, years after my last post.

This time round, I’ll be more open. I won’t sensor myself as much and will therefore say things that might be considered wrong, controversial or even naughty. Consider yourself warned – in as friendly a tone as possible.

In the spirit of being a little more open, here are a couple of things:

1. Let’s start with my name; it’s Maggie

2.  I’m a classically trained opera singer; a Mezzo-soprano to be exact. I will continue to use Mia for this blog, but that’s for sentimental reasons more than anything else

3. I’m currently living in East Africa.

4. I’m technologically challenged so it may take a while to post any of my musical work, but once I can figure it out, I will. I’ll also try to spruce up my blog, but again, I’m technologically challenged so be patient 🙂

5. I just ate the yummiest snack. plantain + ginger milky tea. YUM *smacks lips*

OK, I think that’s a good start. I’ve shown you mine, now show me yours. Tell me something about you.

Happy long-long-after-Valentines Day

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“We attract who we ARE not who we WANT”.

This has been one of my guiding phrases. I love it because it focuses the conundrum of love on you and not ‘those others’. Here’s the thought process: all your partners – former and current – have only one thing in common: you! You are the common denominator so if you are always attracting or attracted to a particular kind of person, then it’s up to you to explore if there is something in you that is similar to those characteristics that always appear in your love life.

I wouldn’t say that love is something you go out to find but I do think you must be ready for it; your heart needs to be fertile enough to receive it when and/if it shows up. That can’t happen if conditions are only perfect for the wrong kind of people; those who neglect, abuse, ignore, insult or take you for granted. If you’re needy, pushy, closed-off, bossy, boring….whatever it is, you need to know it. It’s not the end of the world if you’re those things, but my policy is “it’s best to know”. Furthermore, if you keep doing the same thing when it comes to love, then it stands to reason that you’ll keep getting the same results. Now is as good a time as any to try something different. Tweak something, change something and see if that changes your love patterns.

Now that the hullabaloo surrounding Valentine’s Day is past, I hope you will take the time to assess your love life. Think of it as taking your car (heart) for maintenance before a long road trip (your love life). There’s nothing to be ashamed or judgmental about and who knows, you may be pleasantly surprised. You may find that you’re always attracted to smart intelligent partners because you are a smart, intelligent person. You may also find gems of information, for example you’re attracted to unavailable partners because you yourself have an entire security system, complete with guard dogs, around your heart. While this may not feel like a gem, it actually is since it points you to a specific aspect of who are and gives you the opportunity to change it, or not.

I look forward to hearing from you. I truly hope you had a fantastic Valentines day but I hope even more, that the future of your love life is much more fantastic than just one day.

The Work in Relationships

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“People are in your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime” goes one of my favorite quotes. Here’s another: “Friendship is optional; people are allowed to opt in or out of a friendship, and so are you.” Actually, that second one is my personal (and original) mantra.

 What about the lifetime friend who somehow turns into a seasonal friend? What about the lifetime marriage that turns into a less-than-a-lifetime marriage? What do you do when your best friend inexplicably turns cold or your boss from hell also happens to be the guy who signs the very paycheck that puts food on your table? When your children disappoint you or your parents drive you up the freaking wall for the umpteenth time? What do you do? What are you willing to do?

In my opinion, few things can hurt as the realization that a relationship with someone you love and/or respect has reached an end. It’s harder to deal with it when it happens for no reason at all; not one that you can see anyway. The first response is to take a step back and depending on the relationship, your next instinct may be to walk away, or in some cases, RUN away! Pride may also kick into high gear at this point.

We’re often told that marriage is hard work and not for the faint of heart. What we’re not told is that in actual fact, ALL relationships that matter to us are our business. It’s our job to nurture them, protect them, fix them if broken, and improve them. Here’s a thought: if a relationship is not working, the first place we should evaluate is our role in its failure before looking at the other party. Depending on the kind of relationship it is – friendship, marriage, work related etc – we may also need to put in extra work because it’s not possible for it to be a 50/50 split in its maintenance at all times. A pregnant friend may not be able to put in as much work or effort in your relationship for a season. That means you’d have to pick up the slack. A grieving friend may not have the effort to meet you half way. You’d need to meet them more than half way. Your over-protective parents may need to be loved exactly as they are, since you’ll never have other parents. In that case, you would need to do the work necessary to both keep your sanity and respect/honor them.

My challenge this week is to assess my failing or failed relationships, make the decisions that need to be made, see what, if any, work I need to do to rejuvenate them and then move forward, with or without them. This means that I’ll have to be willing to see some uncomfortable truths about myself e.g the energy and work invested in them or the lack thereof. I’d like to think I’m a good friend/partner/employee but alas, maybe not always and maybe not to everyone.

Join me in assessing your own relationships. If your marriage is on the rocks or you can’t stand your boss then make an honest assessment of the situation. What kind of work are you willing to put into your particular relationships? Remember that sometimes, it’s better to be happy than to be right so you may need to compromise. You may need to forgive or ask for forgiveness, even when you feel they should apologize first. You may end up having an uncomfortable conversation or two – or God forbid, more – with certain people and some of those relationships may be beyond salvaging and you may need to let them go.

Be advised that sometimes, talking to other friends about your current situation may not be helpful, so take every piece of advice with a grain of salt. Of course, sometimes it’s easier to tell a stranger who cares so feel free to share with me and ask questions; you know I’ll definitely reply.

I challenge all of us to roll up our sleeves and do the work necessary to maintain our relationships. In case you haven’t heard, relationships make life worth living; they make the world go round…or maybe that was love? Either way, here’s to stronger, better, healthier relationships!

Three cheers!

The Yes Trail continued

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As  you know (from my About page), I started this blog almost two years ago with the intention of shouting a big, loud, resounding YES to life! I imagined writing and broadcasting many cool, fun, mundane, interesting moments of saying yes to and embracing life. Well, here I sit almost two years later with a barely updated Yes Trail.

Well, it’s a new year with new beginnings so this year, I really am going to make more of an effort to write down my YES moments of victory. In the spirit of the New Year, I have updated my YESes; check out The Yes Trail on the top of this blog page.

The point here isn’t just about writing down all the things that have added value to my life. It’s more than that; it’s about proving to myself that my life – contrary to Facebook photos – has many positive things to be celebrated. Never did this come in more handy than in 2010. My family buried many of our members, and with each funeral, a part of ourselves too. Life took a grim, dark and twisted turn and everything took on an eerie shade of grey; the kind of grey that clouds get right before a funnel cloud forms. The sun slowly faded and was replaced by the fear of phonecalls, which seemed to bring news of yet another death. I begun to feel as if I too was fading into despair.

In 2011, I am more determined than ever to embrace life, if for no other reason than to honor of those who would have loved to be here but instead rest 6ft under. Join me by living and celebrating YOUR life; life is afterall for the living and tomorrow is promised to no one.

Get out there and LIVE, and then come back and tell me all about it 🙂

Happy New Year

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Happy New Year! I hope the year continues to unfold with the same optimistic energy it seemed to begin with. As usual, many people had New Year’s resolutions all made out. I thought I’d wait about 2 weeks before checking in to see how ya’ll were doing.

So….how are you doing with those resolutions? Well, if I’m gonna ask you for info then the least I can do is give you some myself so here goes: one resolution was to stop using the word “Fuck” in all its variations. Permanently. Two weeks into the year and I can report that my success rate has been about 20% (although if I had a curse bank it’d be a bit lower, I think). It’s not that I curse like a sailor, it’s just that I use the word whenever I feel like it. Remember the goal was to stop completely! Yeah, let’s just say it’s a work in progress. Another resolution was to work on my social life. In a nutshell, I want to go out more and do more things since I’ve become quite the home body. Success rate on this one is about 50%; I have gone out more, I have made more of an effort toward making actual changes but I can’t say I’m completely satisfied with progress here. I left most of my friends in one country and I honestly don’t feel too motivated to find new friends because let’s face it, the older you get the fewer quality new friends you tend to have (or maybe that’s just me). Enough about me though. Tell me about you; your new year so far, any resolutions, progress…whatever you wanna share, it’s all good.

Another resolution is to blog more and on that, I’m giving myself a thumbs up! Talk to me and lemme know what’s new and good with you 🙂

Jane & Steve: Update

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Last we talked, Jane & Steve were having some issues. Here’s some of what has happened since:

Jane & Steve were actually doing better than usual. They had even made plans to go someplace that very week. It wasn’t a date and it wasn’t anything romantic but it was important to Jane and Steve agreed to take her. Steve didn’t really come through for Jane within the agreed-upon time frame. However, one day he called and asked her to come over to his job because he’d found someone to fill in for him briefly while they were gone. His friend never showed up so Jane spent the time hanging out with Steve and his friends at work (his job is very laid back. Infact, his friends don’t work there they just come to hang out with him there).While there, Jane seemed comfortable and so did Steve; he usually seemed a bit worried if Jane hang around him at work infront of his friends. Somewhere in those hours, things got weird for Jane but she couldn’t quite put her finger on it. It seems to this observer that it was more of a cumulative effect than anything specific. Here’s what I mean:

1. Jane got to Steve’s past 4pm that afternoon. By the time she got there she was hungry and apparently, while they were chilling out, she made one of those “I’m starving…I haven’t eaten all day today” comments. Steve’s response? Silence. Nothing. Nada. Keep in mind they have a soda-fridge at his job. He didn’t even offer her a drink, which would’ve cost him 25bob! After a while, she went and got a snack and brought back enough for them both, which he gladly enjoyed. I was curious (and furious) about this one. I mean, he called her and she spent her money to go and see him and he doesn’t even offer her a drink or food? A soda is 25bob. Chips is 50bob for goodness sakes! Anyway isn’t it part of our culture to offer a guest something to eat or drink? Gentlemen, when you like a girl shouldn’t this part be obvious or am I missing something? Talk to me people 🙂

2. At a later point, he ordered a fresh juice and offered her one but Jane declined since she already had a drink. When the juice attendant stopped by later and asked if she was ready for her drink, she answered in the affirmative. Steve’s response? He apparently didn’t seem pleased, even though he had offered to get her the juice at the same time he got his. *sigh* he’s an idiot, is my opinion.

3. Later still, Steve got a bit arrogant, for example, he made comments about another woman’s butt and boobs in the presence of Jane. His reasoning? “We’re guys. That’s what we do”. In his defense (and I’m looking for a silver lining here), he apparently preferred Jane’s boobs to the other girl’s. Still, it was a bit weird for her. Later when she asked him if her top was too revealing (because her boobs are for his eyes only, I presume), he said the top was fine and anyway it was ok if his friends saw a little coz it would make them jealous and wish she was theirs and not his! Hmmmm….I’m not a guy so I won’t guess why on earth he would say any of this. Maybe my male readers would care to enlighten us girls?

To cut this long, sordid tale short(er), that night Jane went home but she had a nagging question: “what has he added to your life in the two months you’ve known him?” When Jane couldn’t answer this simple question, she knew that they were over.

A few days later, she broke up with him. Via text message!