Showing posts from 2020

Sad times

    If was in Kenya, I'd have attended 3 burials this week. Then I learnt of a fourth death this morning and was shattered. We're overflowing in this boat, thanks to the Grim Reaper,  and don't have the words to capture the heartbreak and pain experienced this year. Sabstone, Nikki, Captain, Sam, Kinuthia, Uncle Mbugua, Isabella, Muciru, Ken, Anne, tens of  friends/relatives of friends and acquaintances. May they rest in peace May God comfort their loved ones May they find strength and support systems to navigate their loss May we who've been left behind be grateful to be alive May we live May we extend grace and love to those who are mourning

Covid life

    It was in March when WhatsApp flooded with Covid-19 videos and conspiracy theories. The good old days when we all thought Africans were immune and Madagascar's Covid-Organics   gave us a sliver of hope. Once upon a time. With roughly 7 weeks left in 2020, many of us are heavy laden from the pandemic and wondering where time went. I resumed work  yesterday after  being in self isolation for 10 days. 4 out of 10 colleagues tested positive 2 weeks ago. Thankfully, none of them had serious symptoms. It was tough and now, fear and anxiety are hanging around the office. I know tens of people who've died since April , 2 being close relatives and it's hard to be optimistic of the coming days. Especially when many, including myself, are flouting the Covid guidelines- sanitise, wear a mask, social distance. I yoyo between paranoia, despair, gratitude and yolo-phoria. How are you holding up?

Motherhood penalty

  Of course I've heard of it. The theory that there's a price mothers pay in the the workplace for well, being mothers. I'd never thought of it till recently. My daughter and nephew came home after schools were closed in Mid March and I'm the sole parent. Five and a half months later, they travelled to  Kenya and are now staying with my sister and her family in Mombasa. In the five weeks they've been away, I have attended a 3 day off site team retreat and visited 2 branches for 5 days. I am typing this from a hotel room, on a 3 day field visit to a 3rd branch. The only way I am able to travel this extensively and for long periods is because I no longer have care giving duties. I'm lucky that my remuneration isn't directly tied to these field trips. Millions of working mothers aren't and have to make difficult choices. My heart aches for all of us.

Shame and Love

 I finally admitted to myself and the world that I want love. Which was harder than expected. And this gem of a post made me realise one of the important reasons why. The dominant residue feeling from my past romantic relationships is/ was shame. She hit the multiple nails ob the head for me and my girls. Tonnes of shame have been lifted off our shoulders  Here's some of the Bull's eyes: One of the saddest things about growing up in our culture is that we’re taught to associate unrequited feelings with shame But when situations get murky and confusing, women are usually the ones who helpfully soak up all the ambient shame in the room. So stop soaking up all of the ambient shame in the room. Picture it rolling off you onto the floor. It doesn’t belong to you, so it can’t stick. If you want to love and be loved, the very best thing you can do is to stop looking for feedback from others about how lovable or shameful you are, and build your own religion around how you dese

Wanted: Love

    April -June 2020, Kampala had a 9 week Covid -19 Lockdown. I walked, baked and basked in my thoughts. Hadn't realised how much of a distraction work is. When I didn't have much of it, was gifted with time to take a look at the woman in the mirror. I love her: is ecstatic of who she is and how she has shaped and being shaped by her  journey. She is happy with her choices, proud of the inner and outer life she has cultivated. She now realises wanting romantic love is neither a weakness nor a far fetched dream. She's human and desires to experience life in all it's fullness. Her choices of love and lovers in the past are a testament of her faith and courage. The lessons: good, bad and ugly are an integral part of the rich tapestry of her life. And without knowing how and when the next love will be, she has promised to show up; scars be damned.

The weekend

  It's Sunday 1446hrs. This weekend I've finished reading Love works , started re-reading The Prophet , done yoga, gone for a 1hr walk, whittled the tabs on my phone from 50 to 14, read and listened to poetry, drank wine, caught up with family, slept and napped to my heart's content and had an enjoyable didn't-want-to-end whisky date. All things that brought me joy and fed my soul. Guess what I'm feeling now? Guilt. Crazy, right? I'm feeling guilty that I haven't done any work related stuff. When I prioritise and feed into me, the residue feeling is guilt When I focus on work, to the detriment of my health and happiness, the feeling is accomplishment. Obviously, I have a lot to learn ,unlearn and relearn. In case this happens to you as well, you're not alone. We shall overcome. Remember, we're all a work in progress.

Quora Gems

 Every so often I come across gems on Quora . Here's one that I shared with a friend in July last year. Can't find the original post and it's worth preserving and sharing How do you learn to love yourself in order to overcome being needy in relationships and have healthy relationships? There is a developmental concept in child psychology called object permanence . It’s the understanding that objects in the world continue to exist even if we cannot see or hear or touch or smell them. All healthy humans develop this understanding within the first two years of their lives. This is the entire concept behind the game of peek-a-boo. It’s funny for toddlers because when you hide your face behind your hands, the child literally thinks you have disappeared. You’ve ceased to exist. (1895 Painting by Georgios Lakovidis) We grow to realize that the world does not function that way.Even if I cannot see the building across from my house, I know it’s there. I wouldn’t feel the need

Solar Podcast

I enjoy podcasts. Here's me talking to Distributing Solar about my work.

Hallo July

One of the things that June has taught me is to own and seize my joy when it is found. Which is harder than it sounds when surrounded by such pain and dismay. Still we rise   Dad was a florist and would bring fresh uncut flowers home every week. I have fond memories of arranging them and during Lockdown, I promised myself to start buying them when I could. Such a small price for a huge load of happiness. I taught Kami and Andrew to bake and on the #DayoftheAfricanChild2020, came home to this yummy home made bread. My heart was bursting at the seams with joy.  I love food and is grateful to live in fertile Uganda, one of the few African countries without food insecurity. At (almost)every corner there's a fresh foods vendor, one of the many blessings I'm counting today. Here's a prayer for you and me (by Grace R Biamah) May the weather be sane, diseases be gone, children be manageable work be sensible, fun be plentiful and life be en

9 weeks

We resumed work last week after being in Lockdown for 9 weeks. It’s been a tough season and glad some light is flickering ahead; hopefully the end of this tunnel. Our core business is solar installations which means  the restrictions on movement put the company on hold. April was notable tough, we generated zero revenue. Here’s a few lessons I’ve learnt: i) The importance of a cheering squad -I’ve had a number of friends, partners, mentors, family holding my hand and encouraging me . They’ve shared resources, opportunities, information, laughter and most importantly hope. They lightened my load immeasurably and I’m grateful for them. ii) Hard decisions are mostly hard in my head. Making tough choices  was easier than I’d anticipated. We managed to reduce our monthly expenses by 54%. The conversations and negotiations that’d have had me breaking in hives in early March were surprisingly easier when I had no choice. iii) Tough seasons are learning

May 2020

George's 1st anniversary is on Monday Nikki died yesterday. And in these Covid -19 times, we're walking on death shells. What to do? We hurt, we grieve, we mourn We regret texts not returned and phone calls un-answered We remember conversations and moments We struggle to say goodbye and to believe this is it. Surely, this cannot be it. We need one more day, one more time To savor the friendship and bask in their presence To see, to touch, to feel Death, your sting f**king hurts


Today, I'm grateful for - Online workshops and yoga classes - Long walks - Amina - Fridge - Hot meals - Photos and phones that store them -  Internet, Data and hot spotting - Soap - WhatsApp and Insight Timer - Hope - Leftovers - Oven - Food in the house and money to buy it - Online banking - Aha moments - Bracelets - 14 years olds who can do chores - Birthdays - Nephews and nieces - WhatsApp groups - Memories  - Saturdays - Life, health and well being - Jokes - Laughter - The Sun - Clothes - Electricity


Yesterday morning I learnt my friend Sabstone from Malawi passed away from high blood pressure. I had  fooled myself that after George and Mum's deaths, any other would be easier. Ha! Been drowning  in tears and memories. Reminded me of a conversation I had with Mum, there's no 'small' death. It all hurts Rest well Sabstone, you will be missed

Day 5

I had a call with a friend today, we were checking on each other and she asked how I'm holding up. I'm well, today is Day 5 of the lockdown in Uganda . In the last few weeks, it's become clear how interconnected humanity is and also how fragile. The rising figures of Covid-19 infections and deaths are hitting close to home. Two years ago I started a meditation practice, using Insight Timer app. I highly recommend both, the practice and app. At distressing times as these, it's grounding, comforting and helps shift the focus to the here and now. The second thing that's working for me is realising how little is in my control and doing what I possibly can about it. I can wash my hands, reach out to my family and friends, read, check in with my colleagues etc And for now, that is good enough. How are you holding up?


The last time I paid this much attention to my body was in 2015 when  recovering from malaria. And of course, what you pay attention to grows, right? I'm hearing a lot of  moans, cracks and crinks. They say black don't crack and whereas my face is easily 5-10 years younger, the bones and joints are on schedule. Maybe it's time I revisited my fitness goals. Hard to believe there was a time I was practicing Aikido 3-4 hours a week. Oh, if I could turn back the hands of time *whistles away 

IWD 2020

I celebrate my Mum this Women's  day. One of the gifts she bestowed on me was the love of reading. On my loss and grief journey, I'm struggling to read. To remind myself of the joy and pleasure of getting engrossed in a book, let me share my best reads of 2019 1) The body is not an apology -Sonya Renee Taylor 2) One day in December - Josie Silver 3) Master's tools -Audre Lorde 4) The courage to be disliked -Ichiro Kishimi and Fumikato Koga 5) Milk and Honey -Rupi Kaur 6) Long shot -Kennedy Ryan 7) How to have difficult conversations -Stone, Patton and Heen 8) When breath becomes air -Paul Kalanithi 9) Manchester Happened -Jeniffer Makumbi 10) We real cool -Bell Hooks Bonus 11) Refresh -Satya Nadella 12) The hard thing about hard things -Ben Horowitz 13)The healing power of herbs -Tina Sams

It shall be well

The scariest thing in my life 2 weeks ago was spending time alone at my mother's house. Not surprisingly, I had an easier and waaay better time than I expected. Even in her absence , it is still my mother's house and I felt safe and loved there. I was also surrounded by family, a comforting and welcome presence. Monday is here; bringing with it new fears and it helps to remind myself 'It's not as bad as you think' Someway, somehow, this will be resolved. This is a pebble, not a boulder, on my path. It shall be well. P.s -Any pointers on how not to overthink are also welcome.


Time really does heal that I can now type the subject without breaking down. Mum was diagonised with Stage IV  rectal cancer in July last year and passed away 5 months later  on 17th December. The days after are a blur, of tasks and visitors, tears and a constant hum of pain in the background. 2019 Christmas was the first without Mum and George - we all unlocked a new  level of pain that day. I'm trudging along , realised  fighting  the tears is a losing battle and when they show  up in public I find a corner or bathroom . This Saturday will be my first time to go home since returning to Kampala last month. Wambui, my sis, was there last week and she couldn't stand it for more than 2 days. Please say a prayer for me. I need it