I have been carrying you on my mind for a few days now so I thought I’d check on you.
Tell me, how are you doing since your first tweet?
Did your mother get well or is she still in hospital? In what ward is she so we may visit? How are the nurses treating her? I hope she gets better sooner. How are you guys managing to pay the bills? Yes, yes I know that the health care system in Kenya is as broken as our spirits and bills can really shoot over the roof often despite the poor services. Please let us know what we can do to help. No one should bear such a heavy load alone. I am really sorry that most of us have become quite apathetic, myopic and disinterested in changing the system but you know what, one day– may be one day– Kenya will change and things will get better. But hey, really honestly sorry about your mother. I hope you and family are coping.
Also, I was thinking of how your friend who got cancer is doing. How have they been since the first chemo cycle? How many times have you prayed for them today? I hope you did and that the gods listened. I truly do wish them the best. I know this is hard for you but take it step by step. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Find ways of being supportive of your friend. I mean very practical ways beyond “my thoughts and prayers are with you”. Ask your friend what they need you to do for them even if they say “just to be left alone”. If they want to be left alone, please do; it’s a hard time for them too and they do need time and space to process but keep going back without making them feel harassed. It helps. A lot.
And then there was the story with your landlord. Is that sorted? How many months do you owe now? Did you try negotiating with them at least? Eish, landlords can be such a nightmare sometimes. Anyway, I hope that you can get your work situation sorted sooner so that this unnecessary stress is off your plate. My friend (from what he calls Umoja III) tells me that some landlords are so ruthless that on day three after the first warning about rent arrears, they can even organise to have your roof (literally) taken off. By day four, he tells me, the landlord will move into your marital bed. I laughed when he told me but it’s really not funny especially with these unpredictable rains! Nairobi is so rough man. Mi narudi ocha, wacha ikae. But hey, I’m here if you need help.
By the way, do you remember Lucy from your primary school days? She used to play netball and at some point she left for a diplomatic thingy with her parents to Guinea Konakry. I met her on Saturday and she spoke of you very, very fondly. I told her that I had never met you but that we followed each other on twitter for a while till I said something you didn’t agree with. Of course I didn’t mention that you unfollowed and blocked me. I mean, why would I do that to you? I have kind of learnt to not shame people especially if I really don’t know them well. So, I didn’t want Lucy to walk away thinking that you are an intolerant asshole or that you are a prejudiced prick (excuse my language but hey, that’s what people will call you on the internet if you disagree). You know people can be mean even without thinking of how hard life is for all of us. We need to protect each other against this dangerous world especially online where all of us are at risk of being cyber-bullied.
Sorry I went on a tangent but in fact, what I wanted to also tell you is that a very good friend of mine and a huge part of my chosen family, Binyavanga Wainaina has been quite ill in the last one month. Of course you know that. A lot of us have been in a lot of pain just watching a friend and brother go through such a tough time and the uncertainty that comes with illness. Aren’t we all just dealing with so much?
So, I was wondering about your tweet. How did such a hateful message make you feel? Did it taste like ice cream with caramel topping or like overchewed sugarcane that only hurts your gums? I am trying to understand your pain and anger. When you walked past the woman who sits outside Barclay’s with a manilla paper explaining her burns did you ask her if she was ‘straight’? Have you ever asked your favourite Premier League football player if he is gay? When you used that brilliant James Baldwin quote on your Facebook did you know he was gay?
Please help me understand who first taught you to not be compassionate. Tell me why kindsight isn’t a word or why you won’t go to Kenyatta National Hospital because some of us non-religious, ass-eating, penis-sucking, anal-fucking, and mostly asexual human beings have paid taxes to subsidise government funding. Tell me where you’ll be sitting in heaven so that I don’t pay my ticket.
But above all, please let me know when you need assistance. I will definitely come through and I will remember to not contradict your worldview also known as the absolute truth.
I hope everything works alright for you and yours.
Yours in the struggle,
Decolonising & ancestral venerating certified gayist and chief lesbianist.
Categories: Africa Christianity Depression Empathy Hate Crimes Heteronormativity Homophobia Human Rights Hypocrisy Kenya LGBTI Nairobi Nigeria normativity oppression Pain Patrirachy politics Priviledge Queer Religion Religious Nationalism Sexism Uncategorized Violence
i like to think of myself as a stubborn non-human organism experiencing existential nightmares as though i were human. after numerous almost-failed attempts at long-form, i now call myself a poet (which i use as an excuse to be cynical about life).