I was beaten! She was raped! #IWD2016

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GBV

I was innocently watching a movie in what we called DS. Then I heard him shout my name,

‘Corrie!! Corrie!!’

It was a drunk voice. My then boyfriend.

I turned and due to the embarrassment I was avoiding to happen, I walked to where he stood.

Behind him were his women friends shouting,

‘Tebu muulize why she is cheating on you?'(Ask her why she is cheating on you).

What?

Before i could ask any question. He lifted me and hit me up against a wall.

Hit my tiny head on a wall. All i could feel was not pain. But shame and anger!

What did i do wrong? Was the the question I asked myself.

The women who were his entourage from the bar to the campus stood there. Refereeing what seemed like a JUSTIFIED act.

I really can’t recall what i asked him, but all I remember was trying to run away from him.

Everyone had stopped what they were doing. Even those who were busy making out underneath the maasai shukas stood and walked to where we were.

They stood. They stood as i got lifted for the second time and got hit against the wall again.

See this was not a new thing in campus. Men were always battering their women. It was a thing. I think to prove their manhood or something. Who knows!

Next to where had been made the ring for the fight, were the women hostels…My God you would see everyone peering through the curtains.

I could imagine what they were whispering,

‘Corrie anachapwa!’

‘That tiny ka dark girl who plays basketball and with a loud voice is being beaten. Come and see.’

I managed to run. And he was quick runner. I mean he played rugby and his role was this thing they call wing or something (the guy who runs on the sidelines-correct me if I’m wrong)

He grabbed me from the back and slapped me, a slap that made me stand. Now i felt pain, not the slap pain, but heart pain.

This is someone who claimed to love me. The crowd in campus was now growing.

Idle people. Standing. Witnessing and doing nothing.

His entourage of women still shouted.

‘Apate adabu!!’

And let me tell you, some of these ladies are my friends on Facebook. These are people who now comment on my Facebook status updates and send me inboxes as if our friendship was nurtured on apples, bananas and strawberries.

After he slapped me, all i could feel were hot tears of fear, anger and pain. I think seeing the huge crows gathering made him realise what he had done.

That’s when he said,

‘I thought you were cheating on me with him!’

As he pointed at the guy who was his friend and supposedly i had cheated on him with. I was shocked! Like seriously?

He thought? He had been told I was cheating on him. Why don’t people sit down and talk issues instead of listening and hitting?

The women in the bar (my now facebook friends smh) had for a long time not liked the idea of me being his girlfriend.

Maybe I was not cool enough. Maybe i was not pretty enough. Probably being a dark skin did not resonate with the idea of ‘perfect girlfriend’ they had envisioned for him. They just didn’t like me. And i knew it. But love is love. I chose to be with him because his friends did not define my feelings or his (at least i thought).

At that moment of pain, anger and bitterness i just looked at him and said something like ‘You should know better’.

He tried to console and talk to me but no. I just ran!!! At that moment i picked my phone and called my best friend Abba.

I can’t remember our conversation, but all i wanted was to talk to her.

FYI: I hold no grudge to these women. But we should be our sisters keepers. Good lawd!

You know gender based violence does not start with a slap, or a shove or being hit on the wall, no. It starts with some little signs.

Disrespect. Verbal abuse. There are so many signs but now these two are the ones that pop into my mind.

Did I see these signs? Yes i did. But i always told myself ‘Ahhh it’s just domestic issues. All couples have them’.

Little did I know that that would be the very first time I would be a victim to violence. Something I had only seen on TV, and a culture that had been groomed back in campus.

This is hard for me to write. I have opened up to only few friends of mine about this. Mostly because i thought something that happened 7 years ago was irrelevant. Also because I never wanted to burden those who love me with the idea that i went through this and worse.

But lately as i speak out against gender based violence i realise that If the shoe fits I should speak out.

GVB is not just violence in a relationship; It could also be rape.

My good friend, who I promised not to disclose her name because some members of her family don’t even know that she was raped.

She had left a club in Westlands, a little tipsy. She was with her friends. She really can’t recall much about that night, especially the point where she got into a strange man’s guy.

Her friends watched her as she got into this car. Next thing she remembers is sleeping on the ground outside some apartments in Nairobi surbabs. Her clothes torn. Watchmen towering over her and asking if she is dead or alive.

No one called the cops. No one bothered to call an ambulance. None of the watchmen bothered to do anything. They stood. I mean she could just be a whore who got had it bad with a wrong man! NKT!

That is how she lost her virginity. To a stranger. All she could think of is calling her parents.

One thing she told me was that she is grateful to her supporting parents who did not judge her. Took her to the hospital and thereafter a counselling process began.

Her siblings don’t know about it. And she preferred for it to be that way.

Some might say ‘Ohh Nairobi women dress in a slutty way and it is easy for men to prey on them!!’

For crying out loud, there are some men who rape 1 month, one year old babies! Did their diapers turn the men on!! No alibi should be used for such issues jameni!

Gender based violence and rape are issues that many would laugh about or choose to judge according to their preference. Take the case of Morris, the now laughable Mollis case.

Take the recent case of Senator of Bungoma Wetangula being beaten by his wife and them fighting; Quite laughable according to social media judges.

Take the case of Nairobi Women representative being slapped by Nairobi governor. They say she deserved it because she took her ‘kimbelembele’ there.

Many videos circulate social media- and if it is a woman being beaten the question is always ‘What did she do WRONG?’

If it’s a man being beaten it’s a case of ‘He is WEAK!’

It’s sad how we have cultured such a society.

I’m not a mother yet, but I can imagine if a son is brought up in an abusive family,

‘The only way to make a woman listen to you is by beating her!’

A daughter brought up in an abusive family.

‘Its okay for a man to beat me up, because he knows best. I mean he provides for the family!’

I’m not saying that this is the case but it is indeed what we are cropping.

Some social media updates and comments make me sad, because one would ‘assume’ that our generation should know best because we are ‘learned’ or something.

No man or woman should be abused or raped. No man or woman should be discriminated against.

Some people tell me, Corrie, you don’t know these things, until you get married that’s when you learn to vumilia. You vumilia because you have children. You stay with the man because of your kids. So I wonder. Is it better to be separated or to have your kids go through the mental torture of a husband or wife who when he/she comes home they run to the kitchen or bedroom and pretend to be busy; So that they can just have some peace and avoid the home scuffles. But I’m not married, what do I know. You married people and counselors tell me.

Call me arrogant, strong, opinionated or full of shit, but no, I AINT staying with a man who abuses or mistreats me. Whether a boyfriend, a date or whatever. No!! And I sure as hell will not have friends be it men or women, who beat up their spouses or people they are in a relationship with. Ziiii!!!

No one deserves to be beaten or abused. Is it that serious? Is that the only way to solve issues?

Tomorrow we commemorate the International women’s day with the theme dubbed Pledge For Parity #IWD2016.

This change cannot happen overnight but it starts from one individual to create that conversation. I know as Kenyans we have so much shit going on with out leaders and our system is going to the dogs sigh, but let’s take a moment and be our own ambassadors.

This is to the men who champion against GVB. This is to the women who do not disrespect or beat up their men.

This is to the human beings who choose to stand up for what is right.

Till it happens to you

My fear: Being at the mercy of anyone in any situation! That is the worst place to be. 

 

YALI

Chasing Success.Husbands and Babies.

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Woman success
For a 29 year old, what defines you is success, dating, marriage or better yet kids. Because they say that once you hit the big 3-0 it will be difficult to get kids. Medically-I have been told this so many times. Maybe I should start caring.

At least that’s what the society tells you. Recently I met with a friend of my dad in Nakumatt;

‘Mwende how are you?

Fine.

‘How is work?

It’s fine

‘Where do you work this days?’ -You would always think when someone asks how work is, they actually know where you work, ohh well.

I’m in Public Relations. Doing gigs here and there.

‘So are you married?

Well I saw this coming.

No I am not.

‘Do you have any kids?’

No i do not.

‘Muda hauishi wa kupata mtoto?’ (Isn’t time for getting a kid running out?)

Wait! Hold up! What I’m I supposed to say here? I just stared at him …trying to fake a smile but I couldn’t.

God Speed. That is all i could say.

‘Haya say hi to mum and dad for me.’

Sawa.

This is just but an example of the many conversations I have with people…especially those who have not seen me for a while.

Others ask if i have moved out of my parents house and if so, if i live with a man smh; others ask if there is a man in my life who they should start praying for. (You should meet some of my mums friends).

I get the obsession with marriage and dating and having kids, especially for a 29 year old. I want to one day get married and have kids.

I want to walk down the aisle while Tenth Avenue North’s Beloved is playing in the background.

I want my father to hold my right hand and my mother the left as they walk towards the church minister and later hand me over to my man. I want to spend late nights catching up on NBA with my man, or playing some word game. Hell I want to steal his books from his library and read them in the toilet whenever he craves for some literature.

I want all this. The silly. The scary. The challenges. The success. I want.

However i can not stop everything in my world to plan for a wedding/marriage in my head because the society does not think its ‘right’ for a 29 year old to chase paper and not have a man or kids to add to her medical cover beneficiaries.

I turn 30 in September. Is it scary? Yes. I always thought growing up was all about getting money, travelling and just having fun with family and friends.

BUT it’s responsibilities and responsibilities. Someone once asked, ‘How can you claim to have responsibilities yet you are single and have no kids?’

I thought of the arrogance in such utterance but i chose not to delve into that argument. Do responsibilities come with a command of children and spouses?

You decide!

‘You are too aggressive. Use that energy to look for a husband, get a boyfriend and make him your husband!’ This is something you would hear in this century.

A friend who is married once told me;

‘Corrie you are too choosy with men. You know its good that you are hardworking and growing into your career but you will scare men away!’

I laughed and said. ‘Please let them run I’m sure there are women who will chase them, but that race is just not for me.’

Why would a man be intimidated by a woman who is trying to do her best so as to make her now-and future life better if not best?

Isn’t that supposed to be impressive? Or a plus of some sort to a courtship thing? If you are lazy, you can’t get a man, if you are hardworking, apparently you will scare the man away.

Does it get lonely? Yes it does? Will that prompt me to chase love so as to fill this gap no. God speed.

See lately i have learnt so much about God’s will. It’s the best. In His best timing.

Someone else once told me(yes i know i need to get rid of such people in my life), that I am not ‘out there?’ So i wondered whether I should go and stand outside Thika Road Mall with a huge sign saying ‘SINGLE’.

Or whether i should consistently frequent clubs so that i can get the man of my dreams. Natives here i come!

‘Corrie you go for so many networking events. Don’t you get potential boyfriends and husbands?’

Okay let me just make this clear, I go for business events to network so that i shape my career. If I do meet someone who is interested in dating me well and good; if not, well and good too.

Us girls always get carried away the moment a guy asks us out, and we suddenly picture how our babies will look like, where we will live the type of tissue we will be buy and of course debate on the best toothpaste. All these thoughts in one date. Well I used to be like that until I learnt of God’s will. So all I do is live and let be. Desperation will lead to a short term relationship and long term strings of heartbreaks.

It is never that serious.

Doctor friends please explain to me the birth cycle and age limit of getting children. Amakove please break it down for me.

Then again you want a good man/woman do you have the qualities of the man/woman you want? I hardly find people who write ‘lazy’ in their prayer requests for a man/woman.

I’m Corrie. I am beautiful. I have a couple of pimples on my forehead. I am hardworking. I’m 29 turning 30 this year. Sometimes I am a lady, most times I am me.
This 29 and a HALF year old chooses to do her!  Do you! God Speed!

Believing in the Unknown

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FAITH 2

Believing in the Unknown
Having confidence that it will be known
That your own will be grown
Shown through the failure and success
Moulded through love
Nurtured through life

 
How can the unknown be fulfilling
Filling the emptiness
Casting out doubts
Leaving Hope
Living in you

Indescribable but desirable
Letting go, letting be
A will left to the one and only
Prophesy of an Amen
His will be done

 

 
Faith. That’s what it is.

A letter to my Blog

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Miss writer

Dear Mwende.co.ke

It’s me. Yes I know…I am sorry.

My attention has been dedicated to other platforms and I see the last time we touched base(yes i did use this word) was in June.

Pole for neglecting you. But here is the thing…i feel like we really have lost connection.

I feel like you no longer entice me the way you did. You no longer draw me and mix me with ideas. You sit there. Stare. Waiting to see me ink you.

Well it’s not like I have tried hard to get your attention. I no longer publicise you. I no longer make you feel important.

Remember when we started this relationship? Good days huh?

When all I would do is crave to put words on you. All I would think about was you.

The feeling of that magical tingly connection that would make my hands itch with words to write.

The adrenaline rush of having to share you with the world. The fear of messing up.

The shade of bliss and perfection that would tide over me each time i fantacised about us.

Remember when emotions would drain me and your blank pages would be my shoulders?

Remember when the world would be so heavy on me and you would let me rant to you?

Oh well, I am sorry for neglecting you. Got some side dish businesses with magazines and somehow felt a little bit sweet.

Some years back, i made it a routine to cuddle and open up to you each week…I became lazy and priorities changed.

I’m back. I hope to make this relationship less complicated.

I hope to make you my number one just like what  Bikozulu and Chanyando have done with their site love. Their relationship has grown. I hope they don’t make you jealous whenever you all converge to talk about your love lives

No I don’t have commitment issues…I just became a little bit greedy. But now I am back.

That tingly feeling is back. But even when it fades I will strive to make us work.

With Love

MissWriter