Happy World Poetry day part 5: thesarcasticbanterist

Hi everyone

So we are at day five of this post once a day celebration. And day *insert number here* of social and physical distancing / quarantine. So here is something different you can feast on. Bio below….

Hi people of the internets! I’m thesarcasticbanterist. I’m both moody and bubbly depending on who you ask. I live in the grey with occasional dips in black or white. I love writing. To me it’s like taking a chaotic bunch of wool and knitting an intricate sweater. Check out my blog if you are so inclined.

freshinkandpapyrus@wordpress.com

Every so often I look back at some of my most impactful friendships. In self reflection you can’t help but remember the people who either hurt you and left a dent or people you hurt to the point of pushing them away.

This is a draft of a letter I wrote to a friend once. A depressed friend. I’m not a psychologist. I didn’t know how to separate myself from a situation. I just soaked it all in like a sponge until I couldn’t tell myself apart from her problems. I had to learn to navigate depression from the seat of a friend. Mental health awareness is only in its infancy. Awareness on how to be the friend of a depressed person is only in its conception if being considered at all. Nobody talks about the resentment and guilt. It’s not trendy right now. I’m still learning but I’ve come such a long way. What I’ve learned is that sometimes compassion is a skill. An active process. It’s not always an automatic switch even if you love them.

‘There are few things I truly hate. One of them being words left unsaid between friends. I realise you may have a limited quota of things to care about at the moment. And I may not be in that list. Fair enough. You’ve said you hadn’t truly felt comfortable opening up to me but you did to some extent. I should’ve considered that a privelage. How many people can say we express even a fraction of our truest selves to. I can count on maybe one hand. I didn’t mean to undermine your suffering. But I can see how my actions reflected that. It is now that I realise something I’ve known but never truly appreciated as true, there’s a big difference between caring about someone and showing that you care about someone. I assure you you never stopped being one of my best friends. A person I deeply respected even if I fell short of showing it in recent times. I’ve been the worst example of a friend by allowing something as ugly as frustration and anger to soil something as pure as compassion. Five years is a long time. Or maybe it isn’t. It’s all perspective I guess. In a couple of decades you might not even remember my name. It was hard. Sometimes the person in front of me seemed locked away somewhere unreachable and in trying to get to you with the smallest chisel. Nobody denies your strength but being strong also means being able to admit when you are weak. . In my desperate attempt to change your mindset I set myself up for disappointment. But I want you to know that the world is not out to get you. There are people who do love you and want to see you do well. More importantly I hope you stop looking for love in all the wrong places. ‘

Thank you for your responses and love on this series. You amaze me daily.

Xxx

Mutheu wa Sumbi

Happy Poetry Day. Part 3.

The Artist I am featuring today is:

Jairus Ong’etta.

He is a spoken word artist, actor and writer.He is the first ever Mr. Albinism Kenya as well as the founder of the contemporary mime group, Mime Kenya. His poetry skills have given him platforms to showcase his dexterity with words, which has led him to being part of the Zebra Poetry Film Festival in Münster, Germany.
He’s taken part at the TEDx event (Buruburu) as a speaker _
He has won the Kenyatta University’s Poet of The Year Award amongst others.
Last year his short film MISFIT, got a silver dhow award at the Zanzibar International Film festival.

His goal in life is to use his art to radiate hope and heal hearts around the world.

I don’t want to imagine

I think of those mornings that invite dark days. when sunlight rains and drenches you of pain, past.

When the rays blindfold you to let you see your castle crumble and the seas allow you to watch your peace of mind being carried away by the waves

I hear of trees in the Amazon whistling away dirges

of spoons scooping from feeble plates

when you see life losing its breathe

When fake oxygen chokes your lungs and_

of wishes in form of horses that not even the rich can ride

of love spelled as H A.T.E

when the second hand on the clock decides to tick faster

when the rooster crows at noon

Of flowing blood forced to break it’s banks

to rob lives,
to paint disaster

of cracks rebuilding walls

of sleepless nights begging for dreams

loud voices unheard

of wrong teachings in form of songs replayed on our stereos

I don’t want to imagine saying Amen before making a prayer

those limps and staggers of a sober mind

of lambs roaring

once rolling wheels, now motionless tyres in the
hands of a mob burning a mugler.

when justice says neigh but the I’s have it.

genuine cries but viewed as childish temper tantrums best ignored

when green shouts move but red doesn’t even have have the strength to say stop

So i paint my thoughts colorless

pull these triggers and shoot away stereotypes

collabo with the shooting stars in the music of light

when Kenya will embrace truth and see the potential energy lying all over

maybe we should replace oxygen with inert gases if that’s the way to breathe out brightness.

cause if my thermometer is going to measure the same temperatures then I don’t want to imagine

His social media:

Fb/Twitter/Instagram
@jairusongetta

Stick around for more awesome Features.

Xxx Mutheu wa Sumbi

Heal.

One of the most beautiful things has to be those sweet smiles you share with yourself.
Smiling at the blue sky, or your phone.
At a private joke.
At how awesome you are.

Remember those smiles when you are down.
When you look in the mirror and don’t like what you see, remember that there is more to you than your image.

I am starting to accept that the highs and lows don’t matter as much as what I think about myself.

No matter how much weight I gain or lose, how I do my hair, what I wear, how I speak, where I am…

I matter. Amidst the chaos, difficulty, boredom and stickiness of healing from something I don’t understand. I am hopeful.

Because once in a while I look up, and feel the corners of my mouth rising up to a slight smile, and I remember just how beautiful I am.

❤️

Meh…

This is what love sick really means

You are lying in bed at 4:20pm.
It’s hot outside, or atleast warm ish.
The room is cold and you are covered in three blankets, wearing a beanie and a black dress. With a black jersey.

You don’t know why you decided to wear all black today.
Or why your stomach hurts and Taking a shit hurts.
Maybe it’s the drugs your taking.
It’s now 4:21 and you haven’t gotten to the point yet.

You miss how he kisses you.
You miss how he was always there when you woke up and when you fell back asleep.

You miss watching him work on some engineering stuff you don’t understand.

You miss misunderstanding him.

You miss the silence, cause you never had to tell him what’s wrong. What to do, how to make something, what you needed. He always knew.

37 days left.
And it’s 4:23.
And you miss him.

So much it’s making your tummy hurt.

Depression

The simple title is misleading…this is not a simple problem. In our generation its a shared struggle. Whether caused by self awareness,  genetics,  socialization…who knows? But what  is the solution?

That is something that’s  been weighing  me down these days.

I am a problem solver. So in an attempt to solve this problem (depression) for me, my family, friends and even strangers (cause im that ambitious), i started reaching out to friends.

This morning a friend reached out to me with this. His name is George Okuro.

 

My battle with depression. At first I was in denial, thinking that well no man suffers from that stuff. Was it even real or just a social construct for people with social issues and then calling it a disease so that they can hide behind the fancy terms it is given by the medical people? It began as feelings of emptiness that came and went when they pleased. The little things people said would get to me. As time went on the emptiness I felt inside increased. My days became routinely boring. It was a cycle of wakeup, eat, sleep, think and think even more. The emptiness ate away my personality and changed me in a way that only those who had known me since the beginning could only notice. I wanted to be left alone. People drained the little energy I had. Funny enough at the same time being alone hurt as much as being with people. I felt so alone in a world so full of people. A darkness ate away the inner parts of my being. Things that used to be my source of trouble became my source of pain. One of the things that made it worse were the people around me. They noticed the sudden emptiness I had and called it an affinity for attention. I could only hide behind my humour but that too began to fade away. People began to call it being cold yet it was just the sadness tearing me from the inside. Most of my days I felt like crying but the pride of a man held me up. Growing up in a world that has stereotypes where men cannot cry meant even though I had secluded myself my inner self told itself it would not shed a single tear. But somehow bundling all these emotions inside made them even bigger. The constant thinking and worrying drain my energy. Sleeping was no longer a cure and that’s when I knew, it wasn’t my body that was tired but it was my soul. I had fallen into a hole I never saw myself escaping from. All hope and faith were lost. The little voices in my head always repeated the same statements, “No one loves you and no one cares. If they did they would have saved you by now”. Explaining it to people never seemed like an option.  They would only ask a simple but yet complex question. Why? It was not a matter of why. I myself did not have the answer to that question so how was I supposed to tell someone else. The other thing that made it worse was that growing in a society and culture that believed in the non-existence of such psychological diseases it was harder to call for help. At my lowest point I felt and thought all hope was lost. I had nothing to live for. I contemplated suicide. But how would that help me? It was simply running away from a problem. I thought about how the people I would have left behind would feel. But the thought of having to end all this pain and sadness was comforting. Life itself lost meaning. Everyday tasks became burdens. I tried to find meaning in a world full of chaos. You would think that it’s easy to explain that level of sadness to someone. Where you are just empty and lost each and every day you live. Well it’s not. I was lost in a world of negative emotions and I thought I could never swim out. But in all of this pain came something beautiful. Writing made it all better. I could create a reality where I could express my pain and emotions without being judged by anyone. All those thoughts crushing in m had where turned to ink. I can’t say I am a good writer but those are my feelings and emotions. They are representatives of what I feel deep inside. Now it’s not that I have overcome it. Everyday it’s a constant battle. It’s only a matter of choosing if you want to walk through it right there or just shelve it for later. You can never learn to live with it.”

I hope this helps someone. And even if it doesn’t. Mental health matters….matter.

 

*Ivy Mutheu Sumbi

All things new

A first draft...

I have never been more sure

Sure of what i want, who i want in my life
Sure of myself
I know who i am

I could tell you story after story about how dark it was. The intensity of a black so deep i was blind. I was mute, even when i would speak. I was the definition of lost. And God brought me out. Thats what id prefer to talk about.

You see there is this emence peace you have when you realize that God has your back. He literally pulled me about of a pit of darkness so black that i couldnt recognize myself. I lost memories ,he showed mercy. The God who knows all drew me out of my mind’s deep waters and showed me a mirror.

And in that mirror i saw him. And through his eyes i saw myself. And i was happy. I was accomplished. I was at peace.

So i took a step, reached out my hand and he held it. Forever the shade upon my right hand. He lead me through the valley. He removed the scales form my eyes and i could see that there were people around me who cared. They took my left hand.
We walked together.
Now i am everything i saw in that mirror.

Be still and know that He is God. He will be exhalted in the heavens and the earth. And only he can make all things new.

💜

Ivy

Exposed.

​Isaiah 61:3 (KJV)  To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.

I remember being there. In that room. All alone. Yes, i was living alone. But in that moment i felt more than alone, more than lonely. I went to my knees. I didnt pray. I was crying. I remember saying, to no one in particular.

 “Whats wrong with me?”

I dug myself into a hole so deep. I dont even know how it happened. You stopped talking to me, all of you, all at once. I ate lunch by myself. Then went to an empty house by myself. I studied alone. Went to church alone. Went shopping on my own. I went out on my own.

These things didnt bother me until a few months ago. It was then that i realized what i thought was the truth. 

They dont care. They never cared about you.”

So i believed that i was alone. So i became what i believed. I spent my birthday alone. I didnt think i needed to remind you about the day i was born. I didnt think i was that insignificant that you would forget. I didnt think you would forget. You forgot.

I forgot that it doesnt matter whether you remember me. It matters that God does.

A month after my birthday. I hit rock bottom. I know why they call it that now. It is a cold place and no one ever knows you are there until you call out. I called out. I did it twice. I did it in the wrong way.

I lit myself on fire to send a smoke signal. I jumped into the ocean to prove I couldnt swim. 

I am glad and I am blessed. The people around me heard my whispers and the screams in my head. They told me what to do. I followed their lead. I climed out of the pit. They were the rungs on the ladder. Every hug, every smile, every day i saw anyone i knew make an effort. It is because of you that i am still alive.

God used you.

Jesus came to give us beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for the oil of mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.
When my heart was so heavy that i couldnt breathe. I couldnt get out of bed. I couldnt bathe.I couldnt eat. I couldnt clean. I couldnt.
You got me up. God got me up. I am not ashamed to say it. I was depressed. I dont care if you read this or not. I am not writing this for likes or comments or attention. 

I am writing this for anyone who is where i was. I want you to keep screaming. Dont set yourself on fire. Just give me your hand. Whisper in my ear and i will do what i can to get you help.

GOD WILL GIVE YOU BEAUTY FOR ASHES.

Reach out.

I dont know you, but i love you.

Ivy.