It had a soul. 

Sunday started off quite well. Unusually, I woke up early, I wanted to attend the first service today. Normally, I attend the second service with my mum. We live in the suburbs of not a big yet famous town in our country. Our church is part of quite a big denomination in our country though not the biggest. Hmm… enough selfish comparison. 
So when I got up, first thing like any other person I did consult my phone what time it was. Of late I don’t set alarms they annoy me, and I most oftentimes knock my phone off from the top of the tiny wooden stool permanently placed beside my bed. That’s my phone’s bed by the way, I could say that’s where it sleeps. So it was about 7.30 am. Yeah, that’s my early for a Sunday, I don’t know what’s yours.

 So I was the second person to be up. First was my mum. Mum goes to sweep the compound as I start cooking tea. Dad and bro are not yet up. I sit in this weak chair placed in our kitchen, it has a small nail that is out of place. As I sit back to watch the tea cook, my leso got caught by the nail, that I didn’t know, so I proceed to move my bum on the sitting space to get comfortable. 

I was gifted this “Leso” by my late grandma, May she Rest In Peace. I love this “Leso”, I loved my grandmother, atleast I was lucky to find one of my two alive. This lady was a strong soul. It was in 2015, September when she left for heaven. It had been 3 days immediately after my birthday when she passed on. Last year’s birthday was quite lonely. Of course filled with her memories. See why this Leso is so important to me?? So as I moved to sit well, the tiny nail did the unforgivable. Yeah it did. My leso got ripped. A big tear. Well it might not be as big as you think, but being what it is to me, that small hole was really big. Get me??

 And I must admit I am mad at auto correct right now for writing “Lesotho” everytime I want to say “Leso” and I have to keep deleting the last three letters. Hmm by the way, what’s leso in English?? Anyway this kind of big scarf, that African ladies tie on their waists, it runs down to cover your clothing. It works as an apron. 

So I got mad at this kitchen chair or seat or whatever that thing is… clearly I am still mad. Come on! What did you do? Do you know what you just made imperfect? This is me talking to a seat. So I took the seat, and threw it out through the kitchen door. Yes, I did do that… it hit the concrete ground outside and I heard it make some noise. Like it was hurt. It was usually weak and squeaky. And that throw I gave it, that hit it got from the ground, that made it even weaker. And the squeak was that of a chair begging for mercy. Wait, where did I get that? I think that’s my first genuine smile today apart from the many fake ones I do to acknowledge that I’ve seen someone in church, usually accompanied by a nod.

 So I’m quite an empathetic soul. I followed this chair and I almost asked, are you hurt? I’m sorry okay? So when I lifted it, it was way weaker. Barely each piece holding on to the next through the now overly loose nail joints. I know it’s funny but I felt guilty, like I had hurt this chair, like it was actually feeling pain. I am still sorry by the way. 

So I looked back at the tea I was cooking. Yeah you’re right, it poured all over the cooker. I had a mess to clean. I had lost like half the sufuria (cooking pot). I started to question why I had even woken up. Dad passed by the kitchen.

“Are you burnt? What happened? Why did the milk boil till it poured?”  I was dumb for a moment. Tongue tied. 

“What happened to the seat?” I was so guilty, I almost felt like a criminal. But I managed to speak up. 

“The seat has a protruding nail.” I said.

 “So are you hurt?” 

“No I’m okay.”

 “Clean that up before your mum sees it” so I cleaned the mess, took another packet of milk, and started off again. I prepared tea, fried some eggs and we had breakfast. I quickly dashed and took a shower hastily prepared and left for church.

 We don’t live far from church. Less than ten minutes brisk walk. I met the usher at the entrance, he is tall, in spectacles and a bit elderly. Probably a retired civil servant, and now serving at the church as an elder. Ushers should be young, light to move around looking for seats. But this guy is dedicated to what he does. He is usually early, warm and welcoming. So he showed me in. I walked in by the right side aisle and got a good space at the highly coveted centre row.

 We sang a few choruses, worship songs and a hymn. Afterwards we sat to listen to announcements and later the sermon. So all I remember is Ephesians 1:1 atleast I remember the scripture. After that, my mind was carried away in thoughts. What was I thinking? And that’s not rhetoric as it’s mostly used. What was I thinking? And the answer is not “I knowwwwww” as it mostly is nowadays. So what was I thinking? You know do you? Haha, Yeah I guess you’re right… About that chair. 

How can a worthless squeaky and weak chair occupy my mind this much. Hmm! I need a life! Right?? Oh my God! What’s wrong with me… I called it names right now. It’s never going to forgive me. This chair. I’m not sure whether I should say that it has been running in my mind all through the church sermon. I mean is that possible? Can a chair run?  Well, I know for a fact though that it has been sitting in my mind, I can’t help but think that I over reacted. It didn’t really deserve such a harsh treatment. It was just a small nail and not the whole chair that did me wrong. I don’t like how I dealt with it, and I am not proud. 

I can’t wait till the end of the service. I really wanted to get home and check on that chair. Is it better now? I had taken it up and put it against the kitchen wall from outside so it would be supported and rest as it recovers. I still felt sorry. After what seemed like roughly 40 minutes, the sermon was over. The service was coming to an end. So we did our rounds to take our offerings to the front, After which we shared The Grace. The long awaited time was here, my heart was like “Thank you Jesus.” I didn’t stick around to say hi to fellow churchmates I was in a hurry. Or I’d like to think I was.  
So I got home met my parents leaving for the second service. I made my way straight to the kitchen opened the door and the chair was not there. I asked my brother about it. Yes he didn’t go to church, and I don’t know how he managed to get away with it. So he told me that chair had been moved to the store near the garage since it was weak, and it was to be replaced. 

“What? why? But we can still fix that one…it’s just the small nail, and….” my brother got worried, because since when do I fight for old and weak chairs? I don’t get it myself but since today. I do. So I moved the chair back to the kitchen and decided to wait for Dad to come from church so we could fix it. I owed it to that chair. I had to. Fight for it! When he came we did it. We fixed the chair. The small nail was hit back in. I thought we literally hit the nail on the head. Or did we? 

So the chair stood back in its place, firm and strong. I want to say stronger than ever buuuuut… nope. I think it was strongest when it was still a tree. When it was alive. When it was free. When it didn’t have to bear people’s weight. That’s when it was strongest. The youthful years of this chair. It was time to swallow my pride. How I had handled it that morning, now I needed it. Who needs a seat in the kitchen? The lazy one? No I wouldn’t call me lazy just because I like to sit back as food cooks. 

So I learned a lesson. An important one for that matter. Though I look at that chair and smile. Feeling like I saved its life. I’m not sure it will ever get itself to forgive me. And if it does, it won’t forget. Because I just hurt it when it was weak and helpless. I wasn’t patient with it. I thought I was the only thing that mattered. With my leso. Did it really feel all this things? Enough with chair matters though. 

Sometimes, we act without giving it a thought. We interact with people, whom we have no idea about. Maybe they are weak, maybe they feel worthless, at their life’s worst points. People may wrong us a little sometimes, like the nail, but we got to correct them gently and if possible, with love. When we get angry at people we are focusing on the wrong things. It could be something , that can be fixed. If I didn’t start dealing with the seat when my precious leso got ripped, the tea I was cooking wouldn’t have poured. I had to clean it, plus use another packet of milk. Maybe if I didn’t get that mad, I couldn’t have had to. 

I had also caused the seat to be put aside. If this was a person, maybe they could have lost their job for just a small mistake. Maybe we could sort it between us. Be kind, regardless of what is thrown against you. Small or big. It won’t cost.

When people wrong us, sometimes we need to think about them, it’s not always about yourself. Maybe you could help them fix it. And help both of you. Don’t be so fast to rant insults, don’t be so fast to get angry. Take your time and think about them. You have no idea of their situation. Why are they bitter? Maybe they have been hurt over time. They have had enough, and they’re tired. And don’t forget, you might still need them later despite. Take your time and learn, take your time and help a soul. 

This way, you’ll be proud of how you handled it. You’ll be happy and feel a sense of satisfaction that you helped a soul. I look at our kitchen seat today and smile. It did teach me something. I believe there is always something to learn, even in the smallest situations. Look at me and this seat.  Now I can deal better with people who wrong me. I am grateful to this chair. I hope you learn something too. 

It had a soul. 



How wrong. 

Tired. Do you ever get tired of being yourself? Yeah, I know… How does someone get tired of being themselves. Well, first of all you should be happy you’re yourself… know how many people struggle to be themselves… others who don’t even know themselves in the first place. So, let’s not deviate from the main story… I’ll ask again ” Do you ever get tired of being yourself ?? “. 

So out there you’re silent, not the one to go starting stories making everyone laugh and with no time everyone likes you. Not the one to respond and engage in every strangers conversation, some and most are just brushed of with a smile. 

You have a lot to say… but you listen, to everyone and silently respond within yourself without talking …silently. You will smile to agree, to disagree, to affirm, out of shock, to laugh, to total nonsense, to intelligence, to humour….etc. But that’s not who you are. You’re not an ignorant person.

 In your mind, you respond to each of it, you hear and see every bit of what’s happening. The problem is, you have locked up your own voice. You feel like it’s a waste of energy to have a chit chat with everyone and anyone you come across. The kind not to talk a lot because it’s just not your thing. But in your mind?? In your head?? In your brain?? What’s going on?? 

You’re tired of being yourself, because you’ve seen a lot, you’ve heard enough. Don’t you hate it that you’re too observant, too attentive you notice almost everything but it won’t leave your mouth. Sometimes you could do something or say something but because you avoid a lot with your shut mouth people might suffer just because you feel like you were not born to talk too much.So How wrong  is this??  Things have happened things which you feel like you could have said something but you’re there taking care not to talk too much. But you said it right? You solved it so well in your mind, but actualizing it did not happen.  You want to yell ” I told you so!!!” But you don’t get the honours and pride to do that. Why? It was all in your own world. Do you realise this could be wrong?? But How wrong ?? Is it wrong enough for you to speak up?? Not yet? Yeah I thought so too. 

So sit back, watch people (forgive my language) do foolish and dumb stuff, fall into stupid traps, be treated as trash … Why? Because “can’t they see?? I’m I supposed to see for them?? Can’t they speak?? How could they accept that?? That’s a very dumb act….” that’s all going on in your little head. But maybe you’re wrong. How  wrong ?? Of course you don’t see it. For once you don’t see see something right?? I thought you notice everything… 

Maybe enlightenment is what they need. From who? “Pleaaase not me.” Scared you in your little head. Likely to brush that off with a smile too right??  Hah! Takes us back… Who wasn’t born not to talk much again??  
So is it right to see people suffer, to see people oppress others just because it doesn’t concern you. How wrong.  

How  wrong is it not to speak up for people. It feels like it’s non of your business and that you should mind your business. Deep down though, deep down you know it hurts to watch and know a lot and why a lot happens the way it does. But you want to keep your hands clean. “Don’t get into that mess” you keep warning yourself. 

So you’re there, practising in your head…you don’t talk too much so this talking calls for practice hah!  ” NO! It shouldn’t be that way because…argh” you cut yourself short..” it doesn’t concern me anyway, and no one hired me to speak for them so, stay clean stay safe just shut up!” Is that wrong? How wrong ? What did I do wrong? But I just resolved not to walk into trouble. 

Introverts, this is for you. We don’t get out to social places so often, because most of us have built their own comfortable worlds in their own space, but when we do, we notice almost everything, as well as avoid everything as much as we can. So, How  wrong . How wrong could we be?? Is it just okay to watch from a distance? Let people solve their own problems??  Why I’m I even writting this? Its not even my problem right?? 

 How wrong is it not to speak up, to just shut up. To know and do nothing about it. 

How wrong.

Can I ??

Can I say, Hey, you’re cute. Hey, you’re handsome. Hey I like your beards. I do like the way you talk. Can I say all that and not look like I’m trying to hit on you?? Because hey, I’m not hitting on you. I just appreciate beauty whenever I see it. That I like your height, no I’m not flirting. I mean just that. 

N when I talk to you first, I’m not trying to be noticed, no. I’m just trynna have a conversation. And it’s just that . Can I do that without you thinking I’m leading you on or something? Can I ?? 

If I let you have something of mine, I’m just being nice. Can I be nice? Can I be genuinely nice. Most obviously you’ll think it’s because I need something from you. No!!! Please can I just be nice and go?? 

So I’m just a happy person. Likely to smile a lot at people. Can I smile at you for no reason?? Can I?? Please let me smile. Don’t think I have chosen you to smile at. Don’t think there’s anything behind the smile… I’m smiling because I’m just happy okay? 

Hey, you have something on your shirt. How did I notice?? No, I wasn’t staring. I have just happened to see it, n since I’m nice, can I tell you??