ARTICLES BY ABIGAIL BATIMENA


OH WHAT A GREAT FEELING TO LET IT OUT
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Sefenya Asantewaa have been friends for a long time. They were from very poor homes so their highest level of education was Senior High. Infact they count themselves lucky because they were the first Senior High school graduates from their families. 

After school, they did not even dream of furthering their education, to them it was if no use so they decided to learn a trade. Sefenya decided to be a Seamstress whilst Asantewaa decided to be a Hairdresser. They managed to gather some money and bought a big shop, divided it into two and started working since they didn’t want to be seperated.

Nii and Sefenya met and  months later, got  married. Few months later, Asantewaa and Gameli also  got married. Gameli started putting pressure on Asantewaa to give birth. To make matters worse, his family members started blaming her for not having a child. She was called all sorts of names and anytime she fought back Gameli would physically assault her. Eventually, she had no option than to report him to their elder at church since he was one of the junior pastors at church.

When all attempts to make the marriage work failed, she started blaming herself for everything and would apologise at the least provocation even if it wasn’t her fault. She also stopped the frequent reports because she became ashamed of herself.

Sefenya on the other hand also did not have it easy at home. Things were not going on well. Their finances dropped just seven months into their marriage. Nii started blaming her. According to him, his pastor revealed to him that his wife was the cause of his problems. He was given some directions, all of which proved futile.

Unlike Asantewaa, Sefenya decided not  to tell anyone about what she was going through, not even Asantewaa. To Asantewaa, she and Nii had the best of marriages. They would pretend to be the best couple whenever Asantewaa was around but immediately she left, things went back to its state.

Few months later, Asantewaa became the talk of the church. Everything she told the elder at church in confidentiality became the topic of discussion in the church. Apparently, the elder she confided in confided in his wife who also told another elder’s wife and this became a disaster. She couldn’t go out because she became the talk of the church. She always locked herself up in her room. The church she felt was the safest place for her betrayed her and she diddn’t know who to turn to. Few months later, she was found dead in her room.

We all go through different stages in life; some we feel are heavier than  us but who do we pour out our problems to?. Who we confide in is very important. Before you confide in someone, ask yourself these questions "Do I trust this person? What is the relationship between that person and I? Does the person also confide in me? Letting out your burdens to people is good but the best feeling is when we talk to people we trust. Trust is very key.

At a point in my life, I didn’t trust anyone with my problems. I just couldn't stand the thought of people laughing at me behind my back; meanwhile I needed someone to desperately talk to. It took the words of someone to actually convince me to let it out and oh! what a great burden that was lifted up my shoulders.

So yes it’ good to talk; it’s good to let it out. I tell you carrying that burden all alone won’t do you any good, trust me. You wouldn’t know, maybe someone might be going through similar situation. When you let it out, you open doors of solutions.

Sefenya became restless. She was growing lean. She was burdened with her problems and all she needed was someone to talk to but who can she trust? She witnessed how her only friend confided in a trusted person  but became the talk of the town. Eventually, she ended the marriage but not before letting it out.

So my dear help yourself out, take that risk and unburden yourself but before you do so, know whom you talk to.





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HELL YEAHH IT’S NORMAL TO BE ANGRY BUT...
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During the first semester of my first year at the University of Ghana,a roommate did something that made me quite furious.I cannot recall what exactly happened but I remember being soo angry that I threatened her with a knife.Yes! I did.The other roommates were quite surprised I must say but Felicia was just laughing,probably because she knew I couldn’t have stabbed her or do anything with the knife.It was just to scare her.My elder sister also made me soo angry one day that I threw a kitchen stool(which was the closest object near me) at her.

In the first instance,there was no action but there was an action in the second instance just that the victim was not hurt.
Anger is part of every human being.Anger is not bad;It only reveals the human aspect of you.Imagine an ordinary person getting angry,this is no news.But if a celebrity exchanges words with another person in public or even when you witness two celebrities fighting in public,it becomes news.Why?Because these are people we expect to be "perfect in all circumstances.

We hold them in high esteem so much that the least thing that goes wrong,we express our disappointment at their conduct.But you know what ,that only goes a long way to prove that before they became public figures,they were human beings first and so getting angry publicly is just an instance that shows their human nature.

Anger is normal but anger management  is the most difficult aspect of it;It takes quite a lot of energy and time to manage it.Some people are naturally good at managing their anger;others very bad.Let me tell you this;it’s normal to be angry,at least you are able to let out your opinions,maybe in a not soo good manner but hey! you let it out and that is what matters.Some people do not have the privilege of voicing out publicly and so end up bitter all the time.

Growing up,I was quite hot tempered.I remember anytime my sisters threatened to beat me,I would reply them "say we would fight,don’t tell me you will beat me" and true to my words too,I fight.Well,they end up beating me but I also made sure I at least gave them a mark they never forget.At least when they see the mark,they would remember they fought with me.I was always considered rude,arrogant and proud because I could tell them things to their face.I must admit the manner I which I always said them was not pleasant but that was the only way I could bring it out.

Now I look at myself and I must admit I have learnt to handle issues in a more matured way.I still say things as they are though but in a more matured way now.I now listen more before I react.The things I did back then in a way pushed me away from my sisters because they could not tell me when I was on the wrong path because well,they feared how I would react.

Anger is normal but bear in mind that if you are the type that gets angry at the least provocation,it can push a lot of people,especially the good ones away from you.What do you do during your leisure time?Do that when you are angry;it helps you to ponder over the issues very well before you react.I love listening to music so the best thing I do is to walk out with my phone and ear piece.Now this gives me time to reflect on the whole scenario.

Reflecting on the issue helps me to deal with it in a more matured way.I have friends who make me laugh a lot so at other times too,I call them so I can laugh.I become calm after talking to them.

Remember life is too short to be angry over certain issues you have no control over.When you are angry,just know that what lies ahead of you is bigger than the mood you are in.Dont let anger destroy the type of person you are.Ofcourse it is normal but learn to manage it so you don't  lose focus of your journey in life.




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A FORGIVING SPIRIT
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Aseye grew up with both parents but along the line,her parents had to divorce because her mum caught her dad cheating on her.She stayed with her mum for sometime but her mum also fell ill mysteriously and died so Aseye had no option than  to stay with her. He also got married along the line.Her mum has been her rock ever since she was born  so her death was a big blow to her.

The idea of staying with her dad and step mum was not a pleasant one but she had no choice.She hated her dad soo much because she felt he was the cause of her problems.To make matters worse,her step mum molested her all the time.She was treated like a slave in her dad’s house.She grew up bitter at her dad.Then one day,as she was lying on her bed thinking about all the good times she shared with her mum, she decided to listen to her radio which kept her company most of the time.She heard a story that changed her life.

A lady recounted how she was molested and abused by two people she considered family.She grew up soo bitter that she became wayward.She started smoking,drinking and she was always seen in the company of very dangerous people.Initially,she felt she was doing that to forget all that she had been through but little did she know she was rather harming herself.Then one day,a guy randomly called her in town and told one thing that changed her life.With his hand on her shoulder,he said"Stop punishing yourself and let go.You are causing more harm than good to yourself.You are not punishing your abusers;you are punishing yourself.Forgive and let go;you will find peace."

These were the exact words from the person.She turned but did not see anyone.She became scared and nervous."Who could that be?,she thought to herself.She could swear she saw and felt someone talking to her.She had goosebumps all over her and  all of a sudden, decided to go straight home. That day when she got home,she threw herself on the bed and all she heard herself saying was "God I let go.From now onwards,I choose to forgive,I choose to let go,I choose to make myself and my soul happy". Once she declared that,she started living a healthy and happy life.Aseye started crying uncontrollably.She was touched by the lady’s story and promised to forgive her dad and step mum .Since that day,things started changing in her life.

Have you ever been in a situation that you feel you cannot forgive the people who hurt you because of the magnitude of hurt?My dear I’m here to tell you this;Forgiveness is essential and healthy for your body,mind and soul.When you learn to forgive and let go easily,you nurture your whole being such that things don’t hurt you anymore;you learn to move on irrespective of the things you go through or the magnitude of hurt people put you through.

When you forgive,you unburden yourself of many troubles.When you keep hurt in you for a long time,you burden yourself with soo many problems that you forget to you come first above all things. In most cases,it can be equated to heavy loads or burdens that you have to carry on your head;just imagine the kind of load your neck would have to carry.But when you learn to forgive easily,at least your neck wouldn’t have to go through the punishment of carrying all that heavy load;think about it.

It takes a matured mind to forgive and a more matured person to forget and let go totally.It is not easy,I know that but when you have that notion in mind, you will never take that step.Is it that serious that you find it difficult to forgive?I understand it so take all the time and think about it but remember,our time on earth is limited so why waste that brief moment on what people are putting you through when you can relax over some good wine and movie?The more you think about it,the more you feel the need not to forgive.
 
Forgiveness is healthy for the soul so remember to feed your body,mind and soul with positive things only. Also, remember not to let the sun rise on your anger; do not wake up to a new day with the burdens of yesterday. It is a new day after all,so why enter into it with the burdens of yesterday?A new day requires a new and positive attitude,devoid of all negativities.


CHARLEY THE HUSTLE IS REAL
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Its 5:00am;taking a walk on the busy streets of Accra,Kantamanto to precise. I took my time to walk;it’s 5:00am so why rush to buy stuff when most shops would not have opened in the first place."Hey Madam,here be Accra oo.E no be your area wey you dey take your time walk like na you buy am.Walk fast make make I pass".Well I didn’t even have the time to defend myself and within the twinkle of an eye,he had vanished into thin air.

"Thief oo thief.My money has been stolen,my money has been stolen" was what I heard next.I turned to look at the direction of the of the shout and it was a woman with a baby strapped at her back.She was crying uncontrollably.She had come to buy some stuff for her children.The thief was already gone."Oh it is going to be ok.How much was stolen?" were questions that were coming from all angles. She mentioned the amount and funny enough,all the women told her one thing:" God is in control" but not until they chastised her for being careless.Didn’t she know she was coming to Accra?,one woman asked.

Another woman told her"Accra  dier when you are coming here,you put your money in your pant or brassier;that is the only place it can be safe".Within some few minutes,they all went back to their stuffs.They pitied her but they also had mouths to feed.The only thing they can do is to sympathise with her.They cannot be dashing money to everyone who claims she has been robbed.I turned to look at the woman and obviously,she looked lost but hey,life goes on.

A pastor was seen leading praises and worship and the women joined.Some were seen praying and thanking God for seeing them through the night. I was thinking about how religious we are as Ghanaians when all of a sudden ,I felt a tap on my shoulder"Fine girl,won’t you buy jeans?I have different colours and really nice tops as well".I ignored him and continued walking.

"Agoo ee,agoo ee" was the next thing I heard.Before I could turn to look at the direction of the noise,I was hit slightly with a truck.He did not even wait to apologize;he just continued screaming "agoo ee,agoo ee".Surprised at his actions,I heard another shout" hey move,move,move.Madam this be Accra oo so make you walk fast.This no be your house" What is wrong with these people?I thought to myself.So you hit someone with your truck,did not wait to render an apology and just continue your journey as if nothing happened?

"2 2gh,2 2gh,monyie nu low,montor no high" was the next thing I heard.A couple of ladies were gathered there,very beautiful ones I must say.Wow!! I thought to myself.These were ladies one would consider high class you know.Those types of ladies that you would have to look at twice when you meet them in town.And here they were busily fighting over the clothes.Where have I been all these years?I’m really missing good things.And Oh!the clothes were great,very beautiful.They can be likened to the types of clothes sold in shops or boutiques.

"3y3 ntos,bebree 3gh" was the next thing I heard.I turned and there was a woman with her baby on her laps busily sucking her mother’s breast.As the baby was sucking,she was also attending to customers.Then it dawned on me;women are very strong people and can multi task at the same time but why are they always considered the weaker sex?.Majority of the sellers I saw were women and the type of work they were doing baffled me.

Well,I finished buying what I was looking for and I also bought anything that was lower than 5gh.When in Rome,do what Romans do anaa".I couldn’t be left out of the fun you know. As I was going home,I was thankful for just one thing:I arrived home safely,well except for the small bruises that truck driver inflicted on me.I looked around,was marvelled at how busy everypne in town looked and then it dawned on me; "CHARLEY,THE HUSTLE IS REAL".



The writer holds a Degree in English and Theatre Arts from the University of Ghana.

Email:Abigailbatimena@gmail.com

Telephone number:0240670507

The writer holds a Degree in English and Theatre Arts from the University of Ghana.

E-mail:Abigailbatimena@gmail.com

Telephone number:0240670507



Written by Abigail Batimena
The writer holds a Degree in English and Theatre Arts from the University of Ghana.
Email address:Abigailbatimena@gmail.com
Telephone number:0240670507