The most authentic thing about us...

is our capacity to create, to overcome, to endure, to transform, to love and to be greater than our suffering

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Ben Okri

Marian Wright Edelman
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The question is not whether we can afford to invest in every child; It is whether we can afford not to.
Jesse Owens (1913-1980)
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The battles that count aren't the ones for gold medals.
 
The struggles within yourself—the invisible, inevitable battles inside all of us—that's where it's at.
Let's NOT waste the opportunites we have...

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  1. Our Battles with this Illness 

    Hmm… c growing up wasn't easy 

    Not just through financial hardship and strife

    But cause M**** and I neva really got on

    Making things harder I a already troubled life

    M**** is ya typical strong black woman

    A single parent, but entrepreneur and psychologist

    She paved the way for my motivation and work ethic

    But love, affection, time and understanding were all missed

    I felt isolated, depressed and needed a listening ear

    But M**** was juggling to much at once

    So something had to give and cause externally I seemed ok

    I moved out at 14 and only saw M**** every other month

    Things were ok, hard but manageable

    I looked after myself and my business

    But as time went on and consistency increased

    It was only a matter of time until things turned to unhappiness

    One day outta the blue M**** called

    To say they'd found a lump that was that seemed to be cancerous

    After numerous tests and decisions made by doctors

    They told her the cancer was invasive and very dangerous

    Upon hearing the news I quickly rushed over

    Straight from work after collecting my son

    She was distressed and confused over the journey she'd now make

    But moms being the fighter she is fought to do all that could be done.

    Gradually I began seeing M**** as no longer

    The strong, defiant self sufficient woman

    But a lady now humbled by this life threatening disease

    That you wouldn't wish on anyone.

    M**** had the op, then the chemo, now radiotherapy

    All both devastating in their own unique ways

    And as I've seen her pain and apprehension

    I've also seen the battle for her hair, weight and confidence to remain

    Now I'm tryna b there when as much as possible

    Cook, clean and visit more frequently than I'd normally

    But while moms battles cancer and tries to stay positive

    I feel little emotion even tho M**** is so poorly.

    Now I gotta drop some history on you

    Before you think I'm ungrateful and cold

    But c during ma upbringing  moms and me had a rough journey

    And what you see in me is what's been mould

    I've gone through a lot of sh*t with no support

    Financially, emotionally and spirirtually

    An even tho from the outside looking in M**** was a gd role model

    You can't successfully bring up a child solely supporting them mentally

    Don't get me wrong…… knowledge is power

    And to be bombarded with information has its 'goods'

    But without the time and understanding to support the above

    As a teacher your student will neva know all they should

    I feel hurt I was left to feel all emotions alone

    You know I didn't wna live anymore M****

    I took that shaver and kept cutting away

    And you neva said anything M****

    You let me leave home before I should of

    And you didn't even come look for me

    In your head I was rebelling cuase I had it too gd

    But M**** I hated what you wanted me to be

    My leaving was gd for us though really

    Cause if I didn't I woulda bn dead or bn killed

    So now I've finally found ma feet

    An I can still  respect and admire you being  string willed

    Thing is tho M****, my mummy died

    Along time ago and I still haven't grieved

    Gran was ma lifeline, my hero, my guide

    So now I battle 2 help u selflessly while u still ignore what I've achieved.

    I will always b your daughter

    And always come running when you call

    But I just wish I could do it more lovingly

    And I wish you'd wna catch me when I fall

    I see the pain in your eyes over your ill-health

    Your business slowing down, and you being alone

    But M**** your achievements have made you selfish

    So now the most u have is one 'friend', big house and your still alone


    Talking of your 'friend' M****

    I respect your choice and your preference in women

    Growing up you ensured there were no male role models

    But now u seem disappointed in my preference being men

    I'm non judge-mental and a loving person M****

    And endeavour to be humble in your presence

    But the decisions you've made have affected those around you

    And you caused so many people to have a grievance

    M**** point is my love is on-going

    And no matter how strong or weak, it'll always be there

    But M**** it'd be great for you to take this time

    To look into your self and find what motivates you to care

    I'm scared that you've lost all humility

    And that over time you've become bitter

    But I've learnt form your mistake

    And I'll ensure to try being a better mother cause I neither am a quitter

    So as you battle with the real cancer

    I'm battling with this cancer of my own

    The struggle of not having had a M**** there while growing up

    As das still destroying me inside even tho I'm grown

    My knowledge I want to share

    But in a way positively that does not undermine

    I want to love honestly unconditionally

    Not because they've achieved what I've defined.

    I will still play the obedient child M****

    But as I watch your struggle I know it's hard for us both

    Despite my feelings tho M****

    I will always have respect for you M**** that my oath 

     

    For Your Response

     

    Please help me understand this
    Why did you lie about that baby

    I didn't know I was your first encounter

    So why did you lie so elaborately

    I believed every word that you said

    As I had such innocence and calm

    But you took advantage of my naivety

    And played with me in your palm

    Be honest b, y did you not help me through

    Such a traumatic and difficult time

    What I went through alone changed my life

    And you weren't even there to say 'it'll be fine'

    I had to let you go baby as you

    Non –communicative ways were unsupportive

    I thought you'd even put up a fight to stay with me

    But you didn't seem to care about what I went on and did

    Tell me b, did you think I was lying

    About the predicament I was in

    Did you really believe thati was trying to stop you

    From achieving all you believed in

    I wana be open baby and make you feel good

    To be open with me too

    So please baby put my mind at rest

    And let me know the difference bwtween the lie and the truth

    I wanna know how you felt when I told you

    I wanna know what you thought …telll me however

    You know you're the only person I'd never give up on

    So don't feel like it's too late to bring brighter whether

    Are you really unable to have a family baby

    As back then you were adamant it couldn't be yours

    You said you'd had that part of life giving removed

    But that still didn't hep explaining my predicament

    Did you really go under the knife/have that op

    And are you still in that same position

    Are you saying that you thought I was telling you lies

    Because you couldn't be part of recreation?

    What did you think I did about it

    Or was I meant to have kept lying to cover my lie

    Did you not see I wanted to be with you

    But wouldn't ever of stopped you from being able to fly

    I wanna understand what happened

    In your heart, your head and your soul,

    When I told you in the park what was going on

    You never once tried to play any kinda role

    Unanswered questions race through my mind

    Did you feel I lied to try and trap you

    Did you think that was part of my master plan

    Did you think my intentions were untrue

    Please know I hold no grudges baby

    Simply I hold hurt, confusion and awknowledgement

    That the experience I went thourgh made me who I am today

    Despite what little for you it might have meant

    Of all my childhood memories baby

    Your one of the best, but also one of the most painful

    What I would love sweetie if for you to provide clarity bout what I've asked

    And for this I'll be eternally grateful

    © 2007 All rights reserved.
    No republication of this material, in any form or medium, is permitted without express permission of the author

      

    Their word or mine? 

    B, I can feel the blood rushing around
    Every vein in my being

    I just read the note that you left for me

    An I can't believe what I'm seeing.

    Ist off before I start tearing you down

    I wna THANKU for your LATE revelation

    I didn't know you felt so strongly bout all this

    But let me drop on you a lil education

    Now normally I cringe when I hear women say

    'How dare you…' and 'Baby we need to talk..'

    But I understand y shit gets so predictable

    A there are similarities between weak ass men like you that wna walk

    U wna walk away from acceptance, love

    Kindness, certainty and appreciation

    You knew how bad I loved you

    and despite our past u wna believe them bout ma reputation

    Stinking liars, jealous hates, it's them that b

    Winning this game you seem to wna play

    But I'm grown now sweetie, and I'm about keeping it real

    So listen carefully to these words I'l gna now say ..

    I DIDN'T break our TRUST, YOUR confidence

    Or our FRIENDSHIP baby

    I AM friends with HIM, and you know exactly how we roll

    And baby you should know that I am nothing but a lady

    You KNOW my RESPECT for YOU runs real deep

    And my LOVE for you is EVERLASTING

    Check yourself before you wna run up your mouth

    As I'll be the one left out here laughing

    I'm so mad right now, at YOU, your WORDS

    Your thoughts and your accusation

    Just cause they knew a few bits of info

    Doesn't mean the whole story has no elaborations

    The saddest thing is that your automatically

    Believed that skank over me

    I'm devastated you hold so much hate

    About something that was created to hurt me

    The stories, the looks, the questions you asked

    Its all created what we have now

    A fuc*** situation, a bit*h with whom I want a provocation

    And I'm continually angry so all I wna do is row

    I'm a chilled out one normally babes

    But nothing I do now can console my emotions

    Your lack of reasoning, and distance from what your heart says

    Explains your inability to appreciate ma devotion

    Here we go, 'but don't you dare tell me…'

    That I've become someone you want to distance yourself from

    After all the drama and hurt you but me through

    I'm the only one willing to accept you exactly as you come

    I'm not after anything you have baby

    Not your connections, opportunities or recognition

    So don't ever bring up what I coulda had wit you

    As I don't need you to accomplish ma ambition 

    Time after time I explain that back in the day

    I wasn't' as supportive of you

    Because at that time I needed support of my own

    And I thought that had to come from you

    More recently I've tried to convey that

    I'm here for you in any way you need

    But you'd rather believe that I wna hurt you

    Which is an idea conjured up by those who on drama feed

    I've said ma piece, the rest b up to you now

    It's your choice about who you trust, and who you think loves you

    All I know is that from back then I'd of done anything for you

    And despite the hurt your causing now,my love for you is still true

    © 2007 All rights reserved.
    No republication of this material, in any form or medium, is permitted without express permission of the author 

    Nanna

    On a day like this who would have known
    That today would be your final day
    I would have never imagined that the end was so near
    When I look back on memories, just up to yesterday

    You have been a devoted grandmother
    A trusted friend and a mother in so many ways
    You have been my inspiration for doing numerous things
    I feel sad that there are to be no more of those days

    I could sit here and wish that I said this and that
    But that isn't going to get me very far
    So instead of me mourning, I'm going to continue believing
    That you will always be my guiding star

    Thank you for being understanding when I was
    Younger, a bit difficult and naive 
    You'd always pull me up, and try to show me right from wrong
    And always made me feel like in life I would succeed 

    You've helped me find myself In more ways
    than you could ever understand
    And i can't be grateful enough for you being you
    And always giving advice and that helpful hand.

    As time goes on and your smell fades away
    I'll continue to cherish your pictures and my memories 
    Although i wish you were still here to talk to, laugh or cry with
    My love and respect for you will go on for centuries

     

    Religion

     

    I’m always asked 2 explain ma religion

    As they want to categorise us based on our understanding

    But I’m not religious, I’m a spiritual woman

    And I find it enlightening and manageably less demanding

     

    I have been blessed enough to have seen a few religions

    In their place of worship and teaching

    And after seeing all I’d rather be ‘me’

    As I can’t come to terms with some of the things they believe in

     

    Some ‘fear god’ which is something that eludes me

    Why would we want to fear what we love and respect 

    Some condemn others because of their sexual preference

    While others want to destroy what’s different with no regrets

     

    There are extremists, pacifists and preachers

    There are temples, churches and mosques

    But for me self respect, selflessness and gratitude

    Allows me to extend my love to others at no cost

     

    I love learning so enjoy experiencing different faiths

    To see what holds them, guides them, and in their eyes sees all

    Whether it’s a church or synagogue one thing in common

    Is that they all build their religious walls.

     

    These institutions create an illusion

    That their walls are the sanctuary that evil can’t break through

    But when a believer is sometimes engulfed by fear, hate or doubt

    Sometimes they r still unclear of who to turn to, and what to do

     

    We do as ‘people’ need something to believe in

    And it’s human nature that we’d want to have faith

    In comparison for me religion is a feeling 

    That guides me, teaches me and keeps me safe.

     

    Extraction…..                       

     

    The following piece is not for the faint hearted

    As it’s an open and truthful piece

    It’s riddled with descriptive pain and pressure

    That I’m honestly about to come to terms with and release….

     

    She sat there in the waiting room looking down at the ground

    Not knowing whether it was because of shame or fear

    But as she waited for them to call her in

    She began to run over the events from the past year.

     

    There’d been an amalgamation of acquaintances

    Ones whom she couldn’t even remember their name

    And for the past few months there had been numerous incidents

    Where she had been where she shouldn’t, so she was to blame.

     

    Now as she sat there contemplating her promiscuity

    It actually hit her, that she had no idea of whose it could of been..

    But as she thought more about it, it became irrelevant

    As she didn’t want to have to go through it alone without a thing

     

    As she sat there in the waiting room looking down at the ground

    She began to feel guilt about what she was about to do

    Tho she couldn’t understand fully why it was affecting her so

    As she sat there she became more and more blue

     

    She attempted to be courageous and look around the room 

    Admittedly she thought many of the other women looked a lot like herself

    She assumed this because they weren’t there with their partners

    Some were dressed humbly and some looked in bad health

     

    Regardless of what she thought she knew that they all

    Had one sad they were all addressing

    The fact that they were all wanting to get rid

    Of what many women see as a blessing.

     

    As she was about to evaluate her situation again

    A nurse came out calling her name

    This is it she thought, I gotta decide my future

    And as she got up, she realised she felt immense pain

     

    Emotional pain so intense she had to take a minute

    She became out of breath and tearful

    And wanted to immediately run out of the building 

    But she followed the nurse despite being fearful

     

    She sat there answering the nurses’ questions

    And as she did numbness flowed down her spine

    As she continually gave almost automated responses

    She began to ponder over how this wasn’t her first time

     

    She’d been to this type of clinic before

    She’d also vowed to neva let her passion become her pain

    She had promised herself to respect her body more

    And not to be mis-led by guys that were selfish and vain

     

    How did she let this happen again

    She still remembered the procedure from last time which scared her

    She could still smell the murderous air that had lingered in the room

    And remembered how concerned the nurses were

     

    It had been a mixture of thinking that she was being given an option,

    and fate wouldn’t let bad things happen again

    But in reality it was ignorance, the bad company

    And the drink which always contributed then,

     

    After her blood pressure was taken and a scan performed

    She had an urge to look at her baby

    She wanted the picture they took for her machine

    Even tho she didn’t want it, her intense feelings made her judgement hazy

     

    The nurse advised her that she’d get no

    She needed to now return to the front desk

    She briefly sorted out payment and then wanted to go

    Where she’d put her unborn to rest

     

    Time seemed to creep by as she waited

    An when the time finally came she wished it hadn’t

    Although she was only 8weeks old the realisation that

    It would be no more made her saddened

     

    On all the occasion she’d been here she neva really

    Thought of the life she was murdering

    It just seemed like the sensible thing

    As she really could barely support herself let alone another human being.

     

    Not Nice (Frankly called Rape)

     

    The fear and frustration, confusion and pain

    The sense of truly being helpless, misguided and alone

    The knowledge that you have little options now

    And the realisation that now you should be home.

     

    It all started as a normal day

    A winters evening, that was cold and dark

    Little did she know that a nightmare await her

    In that seemingly familiar park

     

    She had just left her friend’s house

    And happily anticipated going home to a warm hot meal

    But that night changed her life forever

    And left her with scars that would never be healed.

     

    On her entrance to the park,

    She considered which path to take that’d be safer

    But she chose incorrectly and ended up

    Going through something that people would only find out later.

     

    What happened that night changed this girl,

    Into a girl that no longer had innocence

    And the chain of events that happened even after that night

    Were as a result of her continued ignorance.

     

    In the park that night a man appeared

    Who came up from behind taking the girl to the ground by force

    He imposed himself and his manhood

    With little expression or thought of remorse.

     

    After an 1hr of horrendous abuse

    At the hands of a stranger and his knife

    The girl called the police, and her mother

    And only the police saved the girls life.

     

    The police came, consoled and carried the girl

    To the safety of hospital where she was examined

    The girl’s mother never came to the hospital

    But instead waited @ home as if nothing had happened.

     

    The mother never spoke about the incident and when she did

    It was only to criticise the child for being out at that time

    The mother failed to realise how that child needed help emotionally

    And the child failed to realise the mother felt guilty for the crime?!

     

    The child gradually found a way to disregarded what happened

    By not allowing herself to be frightened by men

    But her plan was to allow men to from now on do with her what they wanted

    Which as you can imagine meant she wasn’t respected by them.

     

    She basically allowed herself to feel nothing

    When being intimate with a man

    And that proved to work for a while

    Until she realised they didn’t give a dam.

     

     

    As time and life went on and the girl independence’s grew

    She learnt the hard way of what not to do

    She slowly learnt to gain a man’s trust and respect

    And tried not to give away herself in fear that they’d be crude

     

    It was a journey that she battled

    With unfortunately no support or guidance

    She’s redeemed her ways and mentality

    And now feels more acceptance.

     

    Regardless of whose fault the incident in the park

    She now is fearless, confident and loves men

    She successfully learnt to not let her experience deter her

    From being appreciated, respected and adored by them.

     

    Addiction

     

    I neva thought through all my obsessions

    I’d come across one I couldn’t control

    To feel dependant on something is neva a good thing

    An I’m slowly watching myself dig a deeper hole

     

    I started because of the company I kept

    Who were constantly on it every minute

    And  now I’m the addict, disgusted with myself

    Watching a good life slowly diminish

     

    I’ve come to a point where I can admit

    I have a problem and need assistance

    But I’m not yet able to realise time’s running out

    And I just keep giving in to resistance

     

    I’ve got no support and no way of getting

    A fresh start which is what I really need

    So to aid my depression the vicious circle continues

    And I use more while my heart silently bleeds

     

    Now when something’s broken, you can always fix it

    And a broken heart in time can be mended

     But when your heart bleeds, u lose vital emotional nutrients

    That makes you able to leave everyone you know affected.

     

    From I open my eyes in the mourning

    My first thought is to get that hit

    And throughout the day my wants steadily remains

    And I never manage to get sick of it

     

    I’m so hooked I’ll literally force hold my bodily functions

    To remain intact while I make my next hit..

    Even when I feel my  bladder letting loose and wanting to be relived

    I still can’t move until I’ve made my sh*t

     

    When I’m out I’m ok and I can forget my need

    And any need I have can be replaced with nicotine for a while

    But when I’m at home I gotta always get my smoke

    So much so that if I don’t’ have it I can become vile.

     

    If I’m honest I’m actually worried about the person I’ll be

    When I finally put down the smoke and fight my problem

    because I use it to help keep me calm, collected and in control

    Without it I fear I’ll come across issues without being able to solve them

     

    I’ve built up a serious dependency

    And I actually now believe I can do anything when I’m high

    So I’m yet to get to a stage where my health and well-being are paramount

    So until then I’m left just watching life pass me by

     

    I remember I used to make fun of junkies

    An say how that’d neva b me

    Now I’m the one building blunts and smoking pipes

    Someone tell me how to break free….. someone please help me….

     

    © 2011 All rights reserved.
    No republication of this material, in any form or medium, is permitted without express permission of the author


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