Day 21: The Disgrace Of Infertility In Africa

Infertility is a very hushed subject in our society.  From my observations in our society most times when the woman stays in marriage that is childless it’s usually the man who is probably facing infertility.  Us women are programmed to take it all in, the good, the bad the ugly so it’s highly likely that even when we are in very unfulfilling relationships we will stay on for the sake of love and to save face.  If the tables are turned and it’s the woman who is unable to conceive it’s a completely different ball game!

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Image from Pinterest

Today I’m going to share details of a highly controversial practice that used to be a part of our Zimbabwean culture a very long time ago.  It might still be happening now but I unfortunately don’t have those details so for now let me take you back in time…

Infertile Man 

After a couple had been married for close to a year and didn’t manage to conceive eyebrows started to be raised by family members.  Aunts would have been all up in the wife’s business by then and tried to find out what was going on.  Please note that this was a private matter and the husband was not aware of what was going on behind his back.  The aunt behind the crafty plan would ask the women to her to wipe off some sperm from their bed linen after they had sex so that elders could “examine” the strength it held.  It was after this examination that plans to find someone who could help with conceiving were made.  The aunt would approach the man in question’s younger brother and tell him about the pressing matter.  If there was no younger brother they would sit down with a trusted neighbour or relative and state their case.  The older brother was not to be a part of this as he is viewed as baba(father) and could not enter his siblings home to carry this out. If the parties agreed the woman would only meet up with the man during her ovulation days and try to conceive.  Most times it worked and a few months down the line the wife was pregnant and expecting a little bundle of joy.  Problem solved, happy woman, happy man!  There was never any mention of what transpired to finally get pregnant, it was a very private matter.  (Well now it isn’t!)

Think about it…The little brother steps in and people hi 5 the man!

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Image from Google

Infertile Woman

Her “condition” was an open discussion. (I have so much to say about this!)   The aunts and uncles would sit down with the couple and address the infertility subject.  They would approach the little sister to the wife in question.  If she agreed to stand in for her sister and try and give her uncle an heir a token of appreciation would be paid to the family and she would move in with the couple.  However, not all sisters agreed to this and in such cases the husband would get some of his lobola (stage 8- danga) back.  When this happened the husband was asked to marry a new wife so that he would be able to conceive and have his family name grow.  Back then most women stayed and took the role of first wife while a second wife was brought into the family and everyone lived happily ever after.

Think about this: The little sister steps in and people still look at the woman!!!

5 Facts About Infertility – extracted from www.owletcare.com

  1. Infertility is generally defined as not being able to conceive after one year (or more) of unprotected sex.
  2. Around one in eight couples struggle to become pregnant.
  3. Both men and women can contribute to infertility.
  4. There are various ways the infertility can be treated, including medicinesurgeryintrauterine insemination (IUI) or assisted reproductive technology such as in vitro fertilization (IVF). These methods aren’t always successful, and can be quite painful.
  5. Secondary infertility is real; you can still experience infertility in subsequent pregnancies even after previously successful, easy-to-conceive pregnancies.

Back to my rant on Female Infertility!  Why are men’s issues kept under lock and key, why must women’s flaws be laid out to bare for all and sundry to see?  This is NOT RIGHT AT AT ALL!  What makes men so special?  Why must we be the ones to be shamed???  Imagine how a woman felt.  She was already dealing with emotional issues, feeling like a failure and now she had to face a whole group of people blaming her for being infertile?  Do you have any idea what people especially relatives say about infertile women? From accusing them of having gone through several abortions to being called a witch!  Next thing she’s depressed and no one acknowledges depression; it’s too much for me to take in.  No man, this is not how things were supposed to be handled, women have feelings too!

That said, children are a gift and unfortunately not everyone gets to receive that gift.  That should not in any way bring tension into your marriage, when the time is right it will happen and if it doesn’t happen I believe there will always be something positive to bring fulfillment in both your lives.

What are your thoughts on the subject of infertility?  How is this topic handled in your society?  If I took you back in time would you agree to the practice that I just shared with you?

Today is day 21 of the #30DayAfriBlogger Challenge and our topic is My Thoughts On Infertility.  Feel free to join the conversation.

MaKupsy 2017

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Day 18: Sex Education

Sex posts are one of my favourite things to blog about but today I won’t take you on an erotica journey, sadly for you.  Today’s challenge requires us to write about sex on the first date but I’m taking this opportunity to reshare a post I wrote 2 years ago.  Let’s talk sex education.  Are you taking steps in educating your children about sex or you are hoping they will remain virgins till the world comes to an end?  Remember you are responsible for how they perceive a lot of things, sex included, don’t wait for someone else to feed them with false information.  Today’s read will take you less than 10 minutes to enjoy, grab some popcorn it’s about to get real!

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Image from Google

You know that talk a child gets just before they enter their adolescent stage?  Well, I got that talk, the only difference was that mine was a very scary version.  You see, in our culture back then most parents were not very comfortable talking about sex with their children.  That job was left to the aunt but with people moving far and wide in the end your mother was left to do all the work and boy did she do a shoddy job of it.  In order to stop me from indulging in any sex her plan was to tell me stories that would stop me from even dreaming about having sex. (they worked for a while though)  I remember the day my mother sat me down to tell me how I should not have sex before I was married.  Mind you she didn’t even use the word sex; I am still to remember what term she used but I just concluded she meant sex.  She told me that if I got too close to a boy or even let him touch any part of my body her back would break.  THE HORROR!!  I didn’t even date anyone during my teen years because I was obviously scared shitless.  Why would I want a boy anywhere near me?  So that my mother’s back breaks??  That was definitely going to happen on my watch, I love my mother too much to cause her any harm!

And so I sailed through my teen years until one day a boy I fancied started writing me letters.  I was obviously excited and kept this my little secret.  I remember going for a walk with him one afternoon and then before we said goodbye he kissed me!  OH MY FREAKING GOSH!!  I was terrified!  I ran all the way home, locked myself in the bathroom and kept looking in the mirror to check if my parents would be able to tell if I had been kissed.  I was miserable for the rest of the day and when they came back from work I acted normal but my heart was pounding so hard I felt like it was going to jump right out of my throat.  The next morning and the weeks to come I woke up worried thinking my mother’s back would surely break after that kiss!  But of course nothing happened and years later I started dating, I even had sex (protected of course) and no one’s back ever broke, like ever!

I had to learn about sex through school mates and talks the women who would occasionally come to school and talk about not allowing anyone to touch your body.  They didn’t actually say anything about safe sex or contraceptives and the whole shebang.  And so I had to read about most of the things in books and or overhear my sisters talk about condoms then I figured that’s what you were supposed to use.  To be honest that was the only form of contraceptive I knew of; that and abstaining.  I still feel that my mother could have done a better job of informing me about sex and not have me wonder and seek answers from outside sources.  She did a very good job of letting me think that sex was a very bad thing not to be talked about, had or enjoyed because something terrible would happen to you.  At the same time I don’t blame her because she grew up in a time where such talks were unheard of.

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Image from Google

I asked a few friends around me to tell me how their “birds and the bees” talk when they were younger and this is the feedback I got:

“Ahh, I don’t remember being told anything by my mum.  She just told me no boys before finishing school.”

“She gave me the finer details about sex when I was around 16.  Even told me how people have sex so that little boys wouldn’t trick me with the don’t worry it isn’t sex line.”

“She never said anything.”

“I had sex figured out from my teacher.”

“We never had the talk she just said if you get pregnant don’t ever come back home.”

“Stay away from sex because you will get pregnant!  If a boy tells you he loves you run for your life!”

I am happy and sad at the same time with this kind of feedback.  Happy because it shows that I wasn’t alone in being told ridiculous things in the name of no sex before your time.  Sad because we were not given enough information about what sex really was even though we were still too young to understand it.  At least one person out of all my friends actually got to know what sex was the rest of us have to figure it out by ourselves!

When my daughter gets to adolescent stage I will sit down with her and we will have an honest and open talk about sex and not hide anything from her so that she knows how to protect herself and be aware of the on goings of her body.  I won’t scare her or tell her any lies because I want her to know she can come to me and talk about anything at anytime.

A fellow Blogger www.conscious2conscience.wordpress.com taking part in the #30DayAfriBlogger Challenge shared these sentiments;

Media will have us telling our kids too much too soon but I’m a firm believer in things being age appropriate and in parenting instincts.  When your child asks you what sex is ask them what they already know, ask why they want to know, and then take it from there.

What was your first sex talk like?  Who told you about the ins and outs of sex?

©MaKupsy 2017

Day 14: Depression In Pregnancy

I was miserable from the very day I found out I was pregnant.  I was at my oldest sister’s place for the weekend and after telling her I had missed my period we decided to do the next best thing.  I think I took the pregnancy test close to 10 times before accepting that I was pregnant.  I remember the day like it was yesterday.  I later went to see the general doctor and I was informed that I was nearly a month pregnant.  The water works that followed continued till months after I gave birth, it was a disaster.

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Image from Pinterest

Imagine going through pregnancy with someone who keeps telling you that he doesn’t want you but the child you are carrying.  That’s what I had to endure for a whole 9 months.  I never got any special treatment, we were together yes but if I am very honest I with myself I went through everything on my own.  I went for doctors appointments on my own, I didn’t have any maternity wear, I didn’t get any back or foot rubs, I didn’t even get any pregnancy photo shoots like the ones I see when I go through photos of people that are expecting and I spent most of my days alone because the father of my child worked out of town and I only saw him on weekends when he came home.  I wasn’t going to work at the time and didn’t have any money to indulge on my cravings but thankfully food wise I loved traditional food so my mother would send through different fruits and vegetables as often as she could.  I was a moving body of hormones and I cried almost every single day.  This is round about the time I asked my Doctor friend if slitting my wrists would lead to instant death…  I didn’t realise it then but I was depressed and what was happening inside me was only magnified by what was going on in a relationship where I was clearly unloved.

My little girl was born on the 17th of September.  You would think it would be the happiest day of my life right? I cried for hours after I found out that I had given birth to a baby girl.  I thought to myself, she is going to experience what life as a black woman is like, go through all the sorts of unimaginable mental issues because to be honest being a woman and a black woman for that is not easy.

Back home with a new born baby life was difficult.  I was trying to figure out what was wrong and boy did she cry.  She cried all the time and so did I.  I didn’t leave the house for nearly 2 weeks.  I never used to cook for myself and lived on juice and water.  The only time I got up was to go and wash my daughter’s clothes, give her a bath and take care of her every need.  I remember I never used to sleep much the first few days because I was scared I would fall asleep and roll over her and suffocate her in her sleep.  It was all too much to take in.  My cousin came to visit a few weeks later and found me in bed with my daughter, curtains closed the house an absolute mess and she couldn’t believe how much weight I had lost.  For someone who had recently given birth I had lost close to 15kgs.  She took over and only then did I finally give myself a proper bath, change into decent clothes and took a walk outside for the first time after giving birth.  She was heaven sent!  She stayed with me for nearly a month until I was back on my feet again and functioning normally.

I didn’t go through depression only.  I went through pre and post natal depression!  Those who have gone through pregnancy know that pregnancy alone is already overwhelming now couple that with depression.

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Image from Pinterest

It was a rough journey for me and this is the major reason why I don’t want to get pregnant again.  I don’t want to go through it with someone who doesn’t want to be completely involved in the process.  I want to be with someone who will pamper and baby me throughout the entire time.  Pregnancy is a miracle on it’s own and should be celebrated with love not sadness.  The image above shows what I want if ever I get to decide on having another baby.  It has to be all or nothing at all.  A man who will adore both me and the child I will be carrying will make pregnancy feel like a dream.

In our culture depression is not recognised and unfortunately for me I only got to find out that’s what I was going through then years after the incident.  Perhaps if I had known earlier I could have taken steps to better my situation?  I will never know…

Researchers say that some of the triggers of depression during pregnancy include:

  • Relationship problems
  • Family or personal history of depression
  • Stressful life events
  • History of abuse or trauma
  • Previous pregnancy loss

Mental health is something that our culture needs to start acknowledging because it affects men, women, children alike and the more we ignore it the more people go through difficult situations without having anyone to turn to.  My advice to women in unhealthy relationships is first talk things through to find a compromise but if all else fails it’s perfectly fine to leave.  Your emotional well being is one of the most important aspects in your life that needs to be handled with tender loving care.

Set Fire To The Rain by Adele played throughout the time I was in labour, a whole 17 hours of it!

Thankfully my experience with pre and post natal depression is all in the past now and I’m healthy, happy and living my best life!

Have you experienced depression before, if yes how did you deal with it?

©MaKupsy 2017

Day 9: Beauty Has No Skin Tone

I didn’t know the term for it was colourism.  I just remember my mother giving my older sister a very strong lecture after she came home to visit and we could barely recognise her.  She hadn’t been home for over a month and it looked like she had gone from a brown skinned girl straight to “yellow bone”.  That wasn’t the term used back then but you get what I mean right?  Whatever product she was using only worked for her face so the rest of her body was dark and her face as bright as the morning sun.  She tried to defend herself and claim that she wasn’t using anything but my mother knew better.  Thankfully my sister listened and stopped using the product and was back to being chocolate skinned like the rest of the family.

I took this extract from my friend Tina’s blog; www.lifewithdimples.wordpress.com

I went to a lovely wedding a few months ago. I was sitting there enjoying myself when I overheard two ladies talking to each other. “Iiiiii ende akazviwanira kamukadzi kake kakanaka wena, katsvuku tsvuku futi, kaFanta chaiko!” Translation: “Ooo, he has really found himself a beautiful wife! She is light skinned too, just like Fanta!” They went on to discuss how her being light skinned was a relief as the groom was dark and so her genes would make sure the children wouldn’t be as dark as their father. I chuckled to myself and found it quite amusing that black people still actually thought like that. The more I thought about it though, the more I realised that colourism is a real cancer in our society which does not seem to be going anywhere anytime soon. In fact, it seems to be getting worse.

Methinks colourism affects almost every black person.  From young to old, men and women; somehow, somewhere the effects of colourism are there.  We have not yet embraced our magic.  There is a message that was drilled into our heads that being black is a sin, being black is dirty, being black is ugly, being black is of no value.  The stereotype message is that white is beautiful.  Think all things black people term as “the best”, believe me there is some whiteness associated with it.  It can be the school you decide your child to attend(so that they can get an accent), the area you decide to stay(because black neighbourhoods have too much noise), the hairstyle you choose to wear(so that your hair is straighter and close to the ideal “good hair”); the list is endless…

I took some time to watch this video and you should too.  You will be amazed at what children have to say about colourism.

I believe we still have a very long way to go where colourism is concerned.  Children are exposed to different messages that come in the form of toys, music, cartoons and other different forms of media that leave them believing that light skin is beauty.  However, as a parent I believe it is mostly my duty to raise a daughter who loves herself just the way she is.  Her complexion should not be used as a measure of her beauty.  I will continue to teach her to love herself loud and proud.  It took me a whole 30 years to finally realise that I didn’t need to conform to most of the standards set out by society and I have been the happiest person ever since! The advantage that my daughter has is that I’m on a mission to promote the magic of being black and she is very much a part of the movement and she doesn’t even know it!

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Photo Credit: @AmmaraBrown (Twitter)

“Beauty has no skin tone.”

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Photo Credit: @NyashaChidavaenziChoga (Facebook)

“Colour is the skin of the world.”

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Photo Credit: @_the_dimpled_one (Twitter)

“The best foundation you can ever wear is healthy glowing skin.”

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MaKupsy

“Black women are made of brown sugar, honey, cocoa and gold.”

What have been your experiences with colourism?  I know this is a very intrusive topic but I know there are a lot of stories to share on this.  I would love to hear from you.

©MaKupsy 2017

 

I Found My Purpose

I never really wanted a lot of things badly enough.  I could like something alright but really want and need it was a different story.  I went through the greater part of my life having a luke warm attitude towards a lot of things until one fateful day.  The day I went for my regular medical examinations and hopped on the scale to reveal how I had gone from being fat to obese was a life changing moment.  It was at that very moment that I decided I was going to do everything in my power to do something about the excess weight I was carrying around.  I was 85kgs and NOT pregnant.  Why is this important to note?  Well, when I was full term and a few days before giving birth to my baby girl I was 85kgs so you can imagine the horror!  It was time to get up and do something!

I was 85kgs and NOT pregnant.

With no money to subscribe for gym membership I was left to my own devices.  I decided running would be my best bet since it was free and all I needed was myself.  The first days were hard and I power walked through most of the distances I had set out for myself.  After weeks  of pushing myself I eventually ran for longer without stopping and I got all the motivation to keep going…I haven’t stopped running since.

I did not have much information to work with when it came to my eating habits so I simply worked with what other people were trying out.  I remember waking up in the middle of the night and sending a message to my friend telling her how hunger was stopping me from sleeping.  I had adopted a diet where I ate a very heavy breakfast, sometimes it even had sadza, a heavy-ish lunch and close to nothing but a glass of water and fruit for supper.  The scale was not moving, I was unhappy, I was hungry.  It was only after reading an article on the internet that I realised that I was doing myself more harm than good and started learning the art of preparing healthy balanced meals.  That was one of the best things that ever happened to me!

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I am going to be the first NikeWoman from Zimbabwe 🙂

Running got much more fun.  I had set out distances to try out and each time I managed to run through them.  My goal was to run 10K and if I could do that I would have officially accomplished the biggest goal in my life.  It did happen and it was just as I had pictured it.  From thereon I started challenging myself to run not just longer but faster and the hobby slowly became an addiction.  When I started I showcased my fitness journey on social media.  I knew I would have no choice but to show up come rain(in every sense of the word) or shine because my followers would be expecting to see my progress.

I switched things up and added Zumba, Yoga, NRC Workouts, Aerobics, Swimming and Tennis.  I realised that running alone was going to get boring at some point so the more activities I included the better variety to choose from.  I was bubbly, stronger, happier, fit and lean.  I did all this from the comfort of my home and never had to part with a single dime to reach my desired goal.  I have bumped into friends from College who can’t believe I haven’t changed at all because I am physically the same person.  If only they knew how much change that has taken place mentally as well.  I am a completely different person now.

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With family and social media followers starting to compliment on my progress I felt the need to to work harder.  When I realised the impact my journey had on people around me I created a WhatsApp group which has turned into a movement termed #RunWithFitnessBae.  At the beginning of the year it was trending because of a Fitness Challenge I had planned and organised.  The movement has participants from different parts of the world but mostly Africa.  I have taken the movement from WhatsApp to Facebook, Blogging and Instagram.  As it stands I am currently the only Zimbabwean Fitness Blogger and I create fresh content each week!

It brings me so much joy to know that even though my fitness journey was mainly pushed by a case of depression; the fruits that have come from it have actually created a passion and purpose that I could have never imagined.  I have managed to inspire people across the globe; especially mothers, to exercise and get back to their pre-pregnancy bodies.  Those who have come into contact with me have become better not only physically but emotionally as well.

I am a woman on a mission to make the most of every opportunity life throws at me.  I believe everyone can exercise for the body that they want and if you can not afford the gym there is no excuse not to get fit.  I am a living example of what park runs can do for you.  I am currently 74kgs and I have never had to part with a single dollar to lose weight.  I have been through it all, the fad diets, the hoping for miracle weight loss, the drinking fruit juice all day but at the end of the day what I have learnt is that you have to eat right, exercise and be patient.  The results will come, just make small changes everyday and you will be amazed at what your body can do.

If you would like to talk to someone about weight loss or weight management then I am the person for you.  If you would like to be a part of the current Winter Challenge feel free to join us, all the more competition for the team.

Never give up on what you truly want, it’s not everyday that people get to find out what it is that fires their soul!

I found my purpose.  The one thing that makes me get up in the morning and look forward to starting the day.  The one thing I dream of, the one thing I get excited talking about, the one thing that keeps me up at night writing up ideas and chewing up my data while I do research on the internet.  The one thing that I can’t live without.  I think, eat, dream, live fitness.  I am Fitness Bae.

I have a series coming up on Tuesday 18 July, be sure to log onto my Fitness Blog and subscribe.

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©MaKupsy 2017

 

The Single Independent Mother

I have some saving tips from a single mother who is in her 40’s.  I think everyone will benefit from this post and I took this pretty seriously because she clearly has more years experience on raising a child single-handedly.  Take out your pen and paper…

  1. Cut your hair, imagine the amount of money you are spending on hairdos that you could be saving for better use for you and your child.
  2. Live within your means.
  3. Do not compare yourself with people who are married, they have a double income you only have one, stay in your lane.
  4. Save some money each month, it doesn’t matter how little, trust me it will go a long way.
  5. Do not buy on credit, especially clothes, save to pay everything with cash.
  6. Take a lunchbox to work with healthy home made meals or sandwiches.
  7. Make friends with women in a similar situation who understand your struggles better.
  8. Do what works for you, do not try to please anyone.
  9. Set targets for yourself and make sure you reach them, it might take time but eventually you will get there.
  10. Learn how to sew, simple things like replacing a button and hemming your pants will go a long way for your pocket.

If you live by most of these rules you might actually get round to going for that holiday you have been dying for!

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Photo Credit : @summer_rose_ (Instagram)

©MaKupsy 2017

Children Need Outdoor Play Too!

I realised last weekend that the only activity I manage to do with Miss Kupsy when I go home for the weekend in Marondera is go and grab a bite.  We usually settle for pizza and icecream because that is the ONLY take out place in the whole town.  When I bring her to Harare that is a completely different case because the options of things to do are countless.

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Image from Google

However, today my main concern is the lack of outdoor play areas for children in my hometown.  When I was growing up there was a functional swimming pool, a video game centre, a movie house, a tennis court, a basketball court and a park which actually had swings, slides the works!  Ask me what has happened to these play areas?  Well, the swimming pool since stopped working years ago, the video game centre is not used for that anymore, I am still to find out what is going on there, the movie house was turned into a bar, the tennis court now has people setting up stalls to sell second hand clothes, the basketball court is being used as an area to line laundry and the park… oh well; just another dump in town with no swings at all and a lot of litter.

It annoys me that whoever is responsible for town planning does not take the children in the community into consideration.  Where in the world are they supposed to play?  I mean, they can’t possibly stay indoors all day long, or play on the streets or around their house till kingdom come.  They obviously get tired just like everyone else and need a break and need to socialise with children their age.  And if you ask me this should be something that can be done without having to fork out a lot of money if any at all.  Imagine if all they are going to be exposed to is eating unhealthy take out?  I can just picture a whole bunch of adults suffering for weight issues in the near future…

The following points are (based on Wardle, 1996-2003) describe the main reasons why outdoor play is critical for the healthy development of young children.  I took a few points from the article.

Physical Exercise Children need to develop large motor and small motor skills and cardiovascular endurance.

Enjoyment of the Outdoors Outdoor play is one of the things that characterize childhood. And as Lord Nuffield once said, the best preparation for adulthood is to have a full and enjoyable childhood.

Learning about the World Outdoor play enables young children to learn lots and lots and lots of things about the world. How does ice feel and sound? Can sticks stand up in sand? How do plants grow? How does mud feel?

Learning about Self and the Environment To learn about their own physical and emotional capabilities, children must push their limits. Health Everyone who works with young children in early childhood programs and schools knows how quickly bacteria and viruses spread in these environments. One way to reduce the spread of infection is through lots and lots of fresh air.

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Definitely NOT in Marondera

Then you wonder why I am thoroughly upset with Marondera Town Council?  Do you see all those benefits of outdoor fun for children? It seems those in the powers that be do not have children as a part of their programme because if they did surely there would be at least ONE play area where children can just have a grand time.

Miss Kupsy loves the outdoors and I feel bad that the only open space she has to play is at home.  I hope someone addresses this  issue and something is done about it.  When I think back to my own childhood, some of their fondest memories are of outdoor places and activities I got up to (I will never forget the first time I fell off a tree trying to climb to the top) I hope Miss Kupsy and all the other children in the community do not get deprived of that opportunity. All children have the right to basic childhood needs…jumping, running, climbing, swinging, racing, yelling, rolling, hiding, and making a big mess,it is what childhood is all about!

©MaKupsy 2017

Issa Birthday!

The month of April is the month where all the self motivators; fearless spirits and beautiful minds were born.  – FitnessBae®

If there is anyone who looks forward to their birthday it has to be me!  I love celebrating my big day in any way that brings a smile on my face.  I am one of those individuals who will go out and buy herself a gift because I learnt from a birthday many years ago that if you don’t make your day special on your own no one else will.  This year I already got myself a new phone and I might just throw in a pair of quality running shoes in the mix and I will bug my Husby(he is my friend not my husband but still call him Husby, strange I know!) for perhaps a sports watch and I know he will tell me I should go and jump over a cliff.  LOL

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The past year has taught me many different lessons but today I will share two of them with you.

The first lesson is that life is too short to hope and wish that good things will come your way.  If you want something you have to go out there and get it yourself.  Yes, you have heard this line before but trust me, it’s true.  I want my Fitness Bae Brand to grow in a very big way and because of that I am working over time to make it happen.  I don’t do it half halfheartedly, I give it my 110% attention and that is the reason why you see me at events in and around town.  I want to continue to learn how to be a better person and how to make my brand locally, regionally and some day internationally recognised.  I am doing everything in my power to be visible in a world full of so many creatives but I know that some day soon my hard work will pay off.

The second lesson is that you can’t change a human being.  I am dead serious about this one.  A human being who can change is a human being who wants to change on their own.  I remember having this conversation over a bottle of wine a few weeks ago with a friend of mine.  We talked about how most women get into relationships and want to change someone from the way they dress, talk, heck; even how they walk!  We both concluded that people are not projects and it is not anyone’s job to try and change them into a completely different person.  I am personally guilty of this and in the past I have tried to change a partner into my specifications and that went downhill pretty fast.  The long and the short of it is that if you love someone you have to take them as they are and learn to live with both their good and bad side, no one is perfect darling.

I am thankful for all the wonderful friends that surround me who contribute to my sanity; without them I would probably be in a very dark place.  Thank you to everyone who sent Voice Notes, Birthday Wishes, the early morning phone calls; I am in filled with nothing but warm fuzzy feelings.  One of the messages I received this morning got me all teary eyed and officially made my birthday extra special.

Happy Birthday love!
You are at the top of my list for people I have met on Twitter, not Malawian, that I can actually call a friend.
Today on your birthday I want you to celebrate you: the beautiful person that you are- you love people and you love serving people.
This year has all things falling into place for you (still waiting for the abs -though you are already goals to me 😏😉)
So am wishing you all the strength, positivity & energy required to see you through this year-living your dream & kicking ass while at it!

May God shock you with what He will do to and with your life. May you remain open, available & teachable.

Happy 21st birthday Ma Kupsy😏

A happy birthday to PineappleTinaKuda and Simba, Issa Celebration!

©MaKupsy 2017

I Am NOT Broody

Miss Kupsy has been on my case for a baby sister since last year in January.  I blame her friends.  No actually, I blame the mothers.  They are busy manufacturing little people and putting my little girl under unnecessary pressure.  She now feels lonely because her friends have playmates and she is all alone.

 

I have a million reasons why I don’t want to have another baby yet though and some of the reasons may sound petty but are a really big deal for me.  For one, I don’t have a car and trust me moving about with a child with public transport is a real nightmare and I would not want to go through that with two children!  Until I buy myself a car having another baby is out of the question.  I once wrote about not wanting to have another baby but I guess time does change your mind right; you can read more of my reasons from here.

However; I never thought about procreating until recently when I realised I am all she has.  If I was to drop dead today who would be there for her.  Yes, my family is there but what about a sibling she can call on when life happens?  I am not getting any younger and it would be ideal to have her and her sibling with a reasonable age gap so that at least that would keep them close.  (I can only hope)  

After typing this out I realised that maybe just maybe I don’t want to have another baby after all.  I relived my labour experience and it’s a done deal. It’s not happening.  I really am not broody for real and I was just enjoying the idea of Miss Kupsy having a playmate but I am not willing to do it, no thank you.  Somehow I thought if I wrote it down I would convince myself to try for another one but it didn’t work. She will be fine, I am going to make a lot of money and make sure she has a fulfilling life she will never want for a sibling.  Labour is not a fun place to be!  What was I even smoking??

©MaKupsy 2017

 

 

A Man’s View On The Single Mother

In a thousand words, I will touch a potentially sensitive subject in modern day Zimbabwe. This subject is about, single mothers whom we as Zimbabwean society have called M1’s or M2’s. The 1 or 2 suffix being the number of children they have. M1 is basically mother of one, but in Zimbabwe it generally points only to single mothers. However, a married mother of one is not referred to by that label.

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Image from Google

Once again our plastic republic has put these women in a category, so that they can treat them differently or judge them. Automatically if I were to have a relationship with an “M1’, my friends  and family would discourage me from so doing and speak so much evils about the group. Family may dis-own me. Yes, we have seen this happen. The question is; are they really less worthy than single girls with no children? Do childless girls necessarily make better wives than single mothers? I ask because a lot of girls in modern Zimbabwe are already indulging in sex outside marriage, they just haven’t got pregnant yet. They might escape it before marriage too but many are also doing it. So, society is going to condemn the ones that made a mistake one-day and got pregnant?

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Image from Google

In modern Zimbabwe, a girl not having a child is not consistent with her being decent and Holy. Having a child does not make her evil either.  Have you ever thought that  an “M1” you condemn so much has done less damage than the “K1”. What do I mean by “K1”? “K1”- is a term I am using to say “Killer Of One”. While society and families are dumping garbage talk on the strong queens that decided to keep their babies, despite their fathers bailing out, there are those that seem not to have children because they did abortions. So Mr. I Judge M1’s before you go around judging single mothers and feeling special about your girlfriend not having a child. I want to tell you that in modern Zimbabwe, there is a possibility of your girl having had an abortion at one time especially if you found her already sexually active. (I am not saying she had one either, but it’s possible)

So here’s scenario 1; Janet is having a sexual relationship with Jack, they conceive a baby. Jack doesn’t want in, he tells her to abort. She aborts the child, so by the time I meet Janet; she’s not an M1 to me. I have no idea what happened. Deep inside only she knows what happened. She doesn’t hope to do it again, but she could do it again.

Scenario 2: Alice is dating Jack, they conceive a baby. Jack doesn’t want in, he tells her to abort. She refuses to abort and Jack says he wants nothing to do with the baby or her. He says uncalculated cruel statements like, “Kana ariwangu murutse undipe,” (If the child is mine, vomit him/her and give me). She is hurt but keeps her baby. I meet that girl and think she has an amazing personality (you must have an amazing personality to keep your child in a judgmental society).

However society will not agree that she is amazing because she has a baby. Society will try and make me see Janet and say, “Why don’t you choose Janet instead? Do you not see that Alice is an M1?” The decision making is made harder for me now, because society is armed with daggers. There’s also a father out there whose child I have to carry the cross for. Let me say, to all those man, that have taken this load upon then, may there be increase in your daily work. To the men that refuse to sustain their own seed and further pressure our queens, if the law does not catch up with you, may you lose out on all the money you refuse to pay for the welfare of your child.

“Did you just curse them Michael?”  Oh so someone is going to see the evil in my curse to them, but they do not see the evil in society making girls that kept their children feel unworthy?

I applaud all the women that are the mothers and fathers of their children but hang on, work hard and have changed their perspective of life. Except for a few single mothers, those are some of the most hardworking women I’ve known. The family throws piles or verbal rot onto them daily behind closed doors. They silently cry and wake up knowing no one else seems to love their children and only they can go out there to get bread for the children. They have drama with the father over taking care of his own child in some instances; they still take that torture, get up and work hard.

This plastic society pressures girls that are already pregnant, to opt for “K1”. She is going to pay an unethical doctor large sums of money with the aid of the father, who is not ashamed to perform this act. They destroy that child’s life. Now all the activists that support abortion, hide behind the “what if she was raped” excuse, yet the average abortion happening in Zimbabwe is a product of sex given by consent. No matter how many daggers society will stab you with for having that child out of wedlock don’t be pressured to take your child’s life. Life is at conception. The only proven way to escape the trouble is abstinence before marriage, which most of you ridicule. It holds no regrets though in this type of society.

If there is a single mother in your immediate community whom you have been holding judgmental daggers to, may that attitude change from henceforth. In fact go an extra mile in appreciating her to compensate for the life sentence she has been given by society and her own relatives. If you’re a man and you think she’s a good woman, regardless her past, marry her.

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Image from Google

Let’s have this conversation on Twitter, follow me @Mcpotar

You can also check out my website www.mcpotar.com

 

©MaKupsy 2017