Forgiving Self

Back in high school I had a mathematics book nicely covered by a plastic wrap, underneath was a magazine. The latter had a nice drawing of a well-rounded lady with a huge round load on her head. But the mama was beautiful in every African aspect; I wonder how it got to be on this particular subject. Maths and I were co wives we had put up with each other since primary and the relationship wasn’t getting any better.

The O-levels exams were getting closer and my maths teacher  then, Mr Mulwa bore the burden  and asked why it was all well with the subjects except this one for finding x and y. He offered to tutor me every evening for free. Daudi wuod  Jesse would be a foreign alphabet in my result slip few months later when the results came out.

Maybe I just didn’t like solving problems maths was full of the latter.

My baba had tried few months before he went to be with his other baba, but it bore no fruits. I remember I couldn’t find the solution of some number plus some other number and he felt like I was playing games with him. On lifting his kiboko I was already wailing and flying towards Nyamkok’s house- yes my Dana, my late grandma couldn’t allow such insanity in her home. Chwado nyathi nikech kwano yawa jowadu “you don’t spank a child because of maths”.

The maths effect was felt almost immediately. I was one point shy from calling myself a government sponsored university student. Private University option was not for my kind of chaps then.

Years later when I went back (Yes this was round 2) working in the flower farms of Naivasha I could have a rough conversation with myself amidst harvesting the runner beans.  I would tear myself apart mercilessly, I would call me names, say mean things to me. I would remember the shock on my Indian boss’s face when she discovered that I was adorning a maternity dress yet she was planning to surprise me with a university education before leaving the country. As a foreigner she couldn’t do much, her house help was already someone’s wife, even though she thought scrubbing floors and washing dishes should have never been my portion. Ooh I cried  and called myself mijinga for many years, I saw myself as a failure, my heart finalized that I couldn’t be trusted with anything good since I spoiled my chance of stepping into the mowed lawns of Kenyatta university. Ooh how I had gone there like twice to just enjoy the scenery and the sweet aroma of books….. machos. But si we know the heart is deceitful.

You see, I had a way of drooling over universities those days, I had registered and gotten admission letter to KU, UON, Kenya Polytechnic then and Daystar in a span of 5yrs, I had applied like 4 times to KMTC and got a calling letter from Tenwek Medical Training College  while bending my back away in the horticulture farms of Naivasha.

I remember Mr. Langat the farm controller beaming with so much joy, congratulating me yet I knew well there was no chums, I was only applying bila mpango. Haven’t you done window shopping just to make yourself future promises?

Several times I hung around the gates of Utalii college and even spoke french with the receptionist to make them believe I would in future be using terms like flambé, julienne, parboil et all, and proudly announce to those around me that I trained in the reputable institution.

Yes, it seems I worshipped this school thing.

Yaani Mathematics made me not update my Facebook profile info with “Went to Kenyatta University” awuoro.

I am sorry for misleading you with the school nonsense, back to the subject. You might as well see how I never forgave Emily for failing in maths making babies even after missing a free sponsorship yet girls her age were busy pacing the streets of Nairobi on stilettos and nice long hair..

By the way am long healed from the stupid pressure.

I know there are deeper vices we have struggled or currently we’re struggling to forgive ourselves, maybe I also can only share the lighter ones. There are some filth we can’t even voice lest we keep disinfecting and sanitizing the entire day. We have held ourselves hostage for a crime committed years ago, for infidelity done years back, abortion done years back, for masturbation done  every night, for random sex we exposed ourselves to, for lies we lived with as part of us,  for secrets best known to us.

We’ve walked in slavery and served our former mistakes/sins without pay but emotional pain, bitterness and anger to self and everything around us.

And mistakes are witty, they will unashamedly glare at us even when we’re dusting them off till we learn to  pile the lot at the feet of Jesus. He promised us life in abundance; I believe that abundance cometh not with guilt, emotional pain nor unforgiveness to self.

Up until last year I got to learn about extending Grace to others, then, since I am a melanchol and I overanalyze things, something clicked.

“But am I gracious to self-first”  Naaaa I had never been. You see if you keep pinning yourself down because you terribly erred in the past. You can never extend grace or in simple terms forgive another. The same pressure you enforce on your poor self you’ll serve them, the filthy adjectives you apportion yourself you’ll also dish out to them.

How terrible it is for those in the same environment with the species too hard on themselves! How painful for their spouses😞, how life threatening for their juniors!

Forgiving self in paramount; it’s a daily dose for every individual. Be easy with yourself my friend, we adorn the label of FORGIVEN so forgive you. God first loved us even before we bumped into that sin/mistake. Let’s choose to acknowledge the sin/ mistake, disassociate it with us by dislodging the filthy Lot at the feet of Him who feels, understands and is loving us unconditionally.

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