Month: October 2013

I Don’t Like Me

 

© Rae Dosoo 2013

Rae Dosoo asserts the moral right to be identified as the author of this work

All rights reserved. No part of this can be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without the prior permission of Rae Dosoo.

I don’t like me

She looks at herself in the mirror

Tears run down her face, wetting her silk shirt

Wishing she was beautiful,

Wishing someone would like her,

Wishing she had self-confidence,

Wishing she hadn’t lost her self-esteem,

She screams, She shouts and says ‘I don’t like me’

 

Every day after school

She runs to the mirror

Not much to look at, Unbeautiful, loathsome,

Grotesque, Unsightly, Repugnant is all she sees

She screams, She shouts and says ‘I don’t like me’

 

Thoughts run through her mind

One voice tells her she is damn ugly

Once voice tells her, look at that hideous horrid button nose

You for sure aren’t pretty

One voice tells her look at those enormous lips,

You for sure are repulsive

Her mum tells her at least she’s pretty for a dark skinned girl,

Amy from school asks why her hips are so big

Whilst changing for P.E

She quickly covers herself up

But then Megan catches her

And laughs you’ve got extraordinarily big bumcheeks girl

And sniggers with the rest of her friends

She runs to the corner, crying, hating herself

‘I don’t like me’

 

She runs to the mirror

Screaming ‘I don’t like me’

She sees her nose,

She wishes she didn’t have that hook, She wishes it wasn’t so long

She wishes her friends didn’t call her Pinocchio

She wishes her friends didn’t ask her why she is so skinny

Calling her anorexic

They ask her ‘Don’t you eat?’

If only they knew, the food she forces down herself

She eats, eats and eats some more

But the weight just doesn’t come on

She wishes that she had curves like Dominique

Or a big bum like her colleague at work

 

She runs to the mirror

She screams ‘I don’t like me’

She is frightened of her own image

She is scared to look at herself for more than five seconds

Her husband tells her to jump on the treadmill

He threatens her with the door and points that’s where you’ll be going

He calls her names, potbellied, bulky, pudgy and he thinks its endearing

She screams, holding her skin ‘I don’t like me’

She screams, cutting her skin ‘I’m fat and no one loves me’

She screams, burning her skin ‘I don’t like me’

 

There’s one man, Ladies

Who thinks you’re absolutely beautiful

He says this is my girl and he will never stop loving you

This man is called Jesus

You think you don’t fit in

But Beautiful girl, you have your own thing going on

You are unique

You are fearfully and wonderfully created

Look yourself in the mirror girl

Tell yourself each morning that you are beautiful

 

And not only does he like you, he adores you

He loves each and every freckle, He loves your dimples

He loves those eyebrows, as bushy and close as they may seem

He loves you regardless of your size- skinny, curvy or plus size

He loves that and every bit of you

Love yourself, Love you and Love all of you

 

She looks at herself in the mirror

She sees herself

Beauty and Loveliness,

Graceful, Gorgeous and Marvellous

Is what she sees

She tells herself ‘I am beautiful’

She smiles ‘I really do like me’

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Turkey & EU restart membership talks

 

The EU has agreed to resume membership talks with Turkey. It has been more than three years since there has been negotiations. The restart of talks is an attempt to boost the prospect of democratic reforms and human rights in Turkey. There is a fear that the country is moving towards autocracy under the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

In an 2013 Progress report, the Commission criticised Turkey’s law enforcement in dealing with protests. However, there has been praise for the Turkish Prime Minister. The commission recognised the country’s promising judicial reforms and increased rights for the Kurds. Nonetheless, some EU states continue to criticise Turkey’s crackdown on anti-government protests. Germany and France along with others are opposed to Turkey joining the EU.

Relations between the EU and Turkey has been frosty recently. This is due to some members of the Turkish government arguing that the EU is in decline and Turkey is  on the rise as a key regional and economic power.

Although, there has been unease with the restart of negotiations, Lithuania has congratulated Turkey. Lithuania currently holds the EU Presidency. Linas Linkevicius, the foreign minister said that the negotiating process was long overdue.

Turkey has been an associate member of the EU since 1963. Turkey met the last condition in 2005. However the negotiations froze over concerns of tensions with Cyprus which is an EU member, freedom of speech and democracy, treatment of religious minorities and judicial reform. During this time, other countries such as Serbia and Croatia have become members of the EU.

Angela Merkel has argued that Turkey should settle for a ‘special relationship’ instead of full membership. The reforms Erdogan unveiled is said to have persuaded Merkel to resume negotiations.

Don’t Need This Relation…Ship

 

© Rae Dosoo 2013

Rae Dosoo asserts the moral right to be identified as the author of this work

All rights reserved. No part of this can be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without the prior permission of Rae Dosoo.

Don’t need this Relation…Ship

“I don’t need this Relation…Ship

The ship sunk a long, long, long time ago

The ship has been under water for a long time now

There is no way it could be pulled back to the surface now

I am in denial, I must admit, I do not want to hear it

I know I am suffocating

I don’t need this Relation…Ship

Why am I holding on?

Why am I holding on?

Why am I holding on?

It does seems safer than jumping into unknown waters

And drowning

And gasping for air

Sinking…Sinking…Sinking…

Slowly

Screaming for help

 

And…

 

I don’t know how to swim on my own

So I hold onto it

I grab onto it

I clinch towards it

I clench towards it

Even though there is nothing to hold onto anymore

I don’t need this Relation…Ship

This Relation…Ship… Ship

Can’t imagine myself without it

I saved my all, I invested my all, I GAVE IT MY ALLLL!

I travelled so far for this…ship

This ship….

To throw it all away

To leave this ship

To throw all this away, like it meant nothing in the first place

Would rip my already fragile fragmented-heart

It feels like the Ship cut into my heart

And threw it on the Deck

Picked it up again and played it with it

It toyed with it,

Then squeezed it, smashed it, shredded it

Before handing it back to me again”

 

It was a cruise before,

Champagnes clicks, The Sunday shopping trips,

Sunny Honeymoon Phase

She described herself as The Luckiest Girl in the World

She asked where they were going

She asked the question ‘Where is this cruise taking us?’

Water flooded in

The smiles turned into frowns

The promises turned into disappointments

The once smooth skin turned into scars

The love yous turned into  I hate yous

Girlfriends called, screaming frantically for her to get off

She sees the lifeboats

However she turns around

And ignores the lifeboats

That will save her from this Relation….Ship

She says to herself ‘I don’t need this Relation…ship’

But why, oh why is she clinging onto it?

“The memories of the once good times

Floods in my mind every time

Every time I am ready to jump into the lifeboat

It just breaks this heart into pieces, time…after time…

I am surprised that it is still pumping

Because it feels like my world is deflating

I don’t need this Relation…Ship

I don’t deserve this Battered…Ship

I don’t deserve this Broken…Ship

I don’t deserve this Sad…Ship

I don’t deserve this Cheating…Ship

I don’t deserve this Dishonest…Ship

I don’t deserve to be in this disaster of a ship”

 

You don’t need this Relation…Ship

Great Women of The Bible Challenge-Hannah

Hannah- The woman of prayer

Bible Reference- 1 Samuel 1, 1 Samuel 2

Family Background- Hannah was married to a man called Elkanah (who was the son of of Jeroham, the son of Elihu, the son of Tohu, the son of Zuph who was an Ephraimite). The Bible says her husband was from Ramathaim, a Zuphite from the hill country of Ephraim. Elkanah had another wife called Peninnah who had children, Hannah had none. Hannah was Elkanah’s favourite wife. Hannah later gave birth to Samuel, three other sons and two daughters.

Name Meaning- Hannah in Hebrew means favour or grace

Who is Hannah?

Hannah, is one of the most famous characters of the Old Testament. Like many others in the Bible, she was barren.  At that time, not being unable to conceive was considered shameful.

Yearly, Hannah and her husband went to worship  the Lord at Shiloh. The Bible says ‘Year after Year’ , which suggests Hannah and her family went frequently to worship the Lord. The Bible describes Elkanah’s love for Hannah, as he would give her double portion to sacrifice because of his love for her. His other wife, Peninnah reminded her of her sorrows constantly. The Bible says she provoked her until she wept and would not eat. Her husband reminded her that he loved her by asking her why she wept, was sad and that his love was more than ten sons.

Hannah, was in the house of the Lord  praying and weeping bitterly. She made a vow to God, that if he gave her a son she would give him to God for all of his life.  She continued to pray and Eli, the priest observed her mouth. She was praying so intently that her mouth moved without words coming out. Eli thought she was drunk. Hannah told Eli, that she was pouring out her heart to God. Eli, moved by Hannah’s pain told her to go and that God will give her what she has asked for.

Afterwards, Hannah and her husband went back to their home at Ramnah, they slept together and she became pregnant. She gave birth to a son, called Samuel. She named Samuel, ‘Because I asked the Lord for him’.

Hannah had made a promise to God, to give him back for God’s service. Hannah kept her promise. She gave her son to Eli, where her child was trained in ministering and priesthood.

God honoured Hannah for keeping her promise. She gave birth to three more sons and two daughters. Hannah’s son Samuel, grew up to be the last Judge for Israel, a prophet and counselled Israel’s first two Kings (Saul and David).

Why is Hannah great?

Hannah, is one of the most well known women of the bible.  She was the mother of Samuel, who himself was a great man of God. I believe Hannah is great for several reasons: she was perseverant, had extraordinary faith, she kept her promises, prayerful and lead a godly life.

Hannah was perseverant, she never gave up on God. She continued to pray day and night and never lost hope. She prayed year after year and was frequently at the house of God. She prayed until people thought she was drunk. It reminds of when Paul, said that we should pray without ceasing. This is what Hannah did and God answered her prayers.

Hannah had extraordinary faith, it was a peculiar type of faith. To be  praying for the same thing year after year  is incredible. Especially, when her rival wife Peninnah was poking fun at her constantly. Yet, her hope in God remained. True to her name, she walked in grace and did not retaliate. Even though God had shut her womb, she opened up her heart even more to God. As Eli told her to go home, notice how she went and was no more weeping. She believed that God had answered her prayers.

I admire Hannah for keeping her promise: to  give her child back to God. Remember this was her first child that she had prayed for many years. The sacrifice that she made, blessed her even more. She was rewarded, Hannah and her husband gave birth to five more children.

Hannah was a praying woman. She prayed without ceasing. Even though what she had asked for did not come immediately, she continued in prayer. Even though she was barren, she still believed and through her pain she found refuge in prayer. She took her worries to God even when she was sorrowful. In 1 Samuel 2, it gives us Hannah’s prayer. She gives thanksgiving for God’s goodness.

What can we learn from Hannah?

The lessons I believe we can learn from Hannah is to never give up. Hannah never gave up and pressed on in faith.  She never doubted God’s abilities. After years and years of waiting on God, her prayer life remained constant even though her rival wife irritated her. Many of us would give up, but Hannah didn’t.  Hannah teaches us to never give up, to remain prayerful, to lead a godly life, to have faith and to stay perseverant.

Stay Blessed

x

I Am Not My Hair

© Rae Dosoo 2013

Rae Dosoo asserts the moral right to be identified as the author of this work

All rights reserved. No part of this can be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without the prior permission of Rae Dosoo.

I am not my hair

Let us sit my friends and discuss our hair

Introduce yourself Natural, Relaxed, Braids, Bantu, Weave and Shaved Edges.

Hey, how are you doing?

I wear natural hair

All of a sudden I’ve been given a title, Naturalista

Not that I don’t embrace it

I love it, I love it and I love all of me

There is a political movement attached to it

There is a natural allegiance

#teamnatural, that’s what they call it

The anthem is ‘Naturalista….if not go home’

Let me tell you, I am happy to be natural

But don’t the stereotypes get on your nerves?

Automatically you’re labelled a free spirited black hippie

Do you take meat and dairy they ask?

Quite the contrary Relaxed

 

They meet you and already have their hands covering their noses

Expecting you to be smelly and hairy

Then they have the nerve to smile,

And say oh my gosh, I loveeee your perfume!

Walking through the street, playing the guitar and singing kumbaya

With your nose stuck in a Maya Angelou book

Is what they see, when they see me, but when I see me, I see ME, I know ME

Spoken word poetry,

A girl with natural hair is expected to listen to Neo-Soul

I am not my hair

I repeat, I am not my hair

And no I am not hating on my favourites, Jill Scott, D’ Angelo, Maxwell,

Lauryn Hill, India Arie and Marsha Ambrosius

But please can’t a natural hair girl get a break?

I do listen to Hip Hop and Rock too you know

I am not my hair, I am not my hair and I am not my hair!

 

Yes, my hair is my crowning glory

Getting our hair done can make us feel ever so special

We hold our hair strands ever so dear,

We cling to our hair when the scissors cut it,

Screaming ‘Oh my gosh, why did I cut so much off my hair’

We love running our hands through it or yelling at him

‘Don’t touch my hair!’

We love it when it blows in the wind

Or when we wash it and it feels ever so clean

My friend, I do understand the argument,

That hair can be a part of your personality

I know it can be a way of expressing your character

But does it define you?

I will leave that to you

 

I told you I am not my hair,

They assume I am a political activist

Against this, Against this, Against this

For that, For that, For that

Let me stick my fist in the air

They think I wear dashikis and always putting up a peace sign

They think Natural hair is ‘bad’ and relaxed hair is ‘good’

Who allowed you to govern and to rule?

Who gave you the mandate to decide the morality of hair?

Is this a joke?

Is this the deepest philosophical question we can ask ourselves?

What is good hair?

Let me tell you it is neither natural nor relaxed hair

It is called healthy hair

 

I wear bantu knots

They think I am going to chase them with spears

And that I wear tribal prints across my face

*Yawn*, *Yawn*, *Yawn*

Let me sit myself on this chair my friends

‘Are you tired’?

Yes I am tired my relaxed sister, I am tired

I am not my hair

 

I wear braids,

Sometimes Senegalese, sometimes Marley twists, sometimes Ghana braids

Apparently! It’s not sexy and it’s unattractive

Apparently! It’s unkempt and not tidy

Who cares, I am not your expectation

I am not my hair

 

My hair, my sisters, I cut the edges

*Gasps* *Gasps*

‘Why did you cut your hair?’

Don’t worry Bantu, Relaxed, Natural, Weave and Braids I get that all the time

Do not EVEN get me started!

Aunties asking why you shaved it off,

Are you really a Christian?

Calling me a devilish Ragamuffin

Let me tell you

Please, Please, Please

Am I a rebel because I cut my HAIR?

I am not my hair

 

Weave. Weave. Weave. Oh, Oh, The controversy

The debates. The questions.

I brought it.

It’s on my head. I wear it. I own it. It’s my hair

No questions asked please.

Hands to the face!

No, I do not wish to be European nor do I hate my ‘blackness’

So what if I wish to flick my 24 inch weave in the wind?

So what if I wish to wear Peruvian, Brazilian and Malaysian?

It does not mean I wish to be Caucasian

I proudly wave both my union flag and the

Red, Yellow, Green with the Black star in the middle

And oh yes…I do have hair underneath here

Is there a problem that I like to wear weave

Isn’t it on my own head, my sisters?

Please do not despise me

I am not my hair

 

I relax my hair

My friends, they consider it the worst of all-chemically processed hair

What works for you, works for you,

What works for me, works for me

Please do not condemn me Natural

So what if I like my hair silky, straight and that it is easier for me?

Isn’t it my own head, my sisters?

Am I not a Queen?

Can’t I be called a ‘Relaxista’?

I am not allowed a title because I choose creamy crack over juices and berries

plus the coconut oil and other minerals you throw at me

Okay, call me unhealthy, call it unhealthy, call MY HAIR unhealthy

I AM NOT my hair, I AM NOT who YOU declare me to be,

I have more pressuring issues than what is placed on my hair

 

I am not my hair!