Thursday, September 3, 2015

Yes ,Thank you




I’m recovering from a long sickness. It has a name too. It’s called:
-The NO Thank you plague-
You know, that person that says no to everything you offer them. It’s burning hot and you say:
Hey, come in for a drink?
 -No thank you-
Whatever you like,please
-I’m fine-
 And you wish to hit them hard with a piece of tile because they are obviously very dehydrated.

About the age of 6, I started to say -no thanks I’m fine- to everything and everyone. But I had reasons. 
Asking for something was usually followed by a barrage of
 -Where do you see the money ? Shall I pay for an education or for a toy?-
I stopped asking and decided I wouldn’t take it when it was offered.

The second theory was; inborn hard headedness.
“I’m an independent woman, and don’t insult me by offering me things. I don’t want your things. Keep them. And I don’t need your help. I’m super woman. I have strong legs and can multitask. So I paid for meals and drinks.
The other reason was self esteem issues. “I don’t want to trouble anyone. I’ll just sit here reading this Surgeon’s diary and be completely invisible.”
But on looking deeper I think the three theories were hinged on something utterly poisonous inside:
Theory number 1.  Not knowing how to time my requests, and using the wrong tone.
After an outing:
‘I want a wire bicycle.’
Of course I didn’t get it


Theory no 2.  Self independence. In other words selfishness. Thinking I am content and complete not needing anything from anyone simply translates to: I don’t want anything from you, so don’t need anything from me OK?

Theory no.3 Being illegitimate I’ve worn this like a religious vest to torture myself. I closed myself off to people that loved and were willing to assist me. By not wanting to cause anyone any trouble, and “ I’m better off away from everyone so everyone can breath…” I held back love and spooned it out in small doses to some whom I felt were worth it. And completely refused to give it to anyone that didn’t reach the mark.
It is only through the eyes of genuine friends I’ve been able to really see myself as I’ve been. Obstinate, bitter, selfish.

 By putting myself in situations where my, self assumed worth is non-existent, the rough edges are getting less edgy. Like the job I had as a maid in a Somali homestead. They paid me Ksh 66 everyday. I cleaned, scrubbed, brushed, dusted, drugged around furniture, washed  and swept. For six weeks.
 For six weeks I was just the cleaning  lady, sometimes they gave me black tea.

No thank you is still the first response that comes to mind.
-Will you come for the party?-
No, I can’t make it
-Oh, you have plans?-
No, I just remembered I don’t, see you Saturday night, thanks.
In the last, 5, 6 years I have accepted, money(cringe), a holiday(cringe), an expensive gadget(cringe),  dinner(cringe) ,  clothes(cringe).  

My life is now getting less walled in, less private and positively less complicated.

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