The enormous blessing of being single

Hello people, hope you are all doing well? I'm traditionally married now, and it was a success. We thank God. This post below is the final post I wrote as a single lady, and it's gaining massive read and shares all over the internet (I just heard it's even on Linda Ikeji, lol). Please read and share your opinions about it in the comment section.

I’m getting married tomorrow!

But that is not what this article is about because in as much as marriage is a good thing, and I am looking forward to what that phase holds in store for me, I am not under the illusion that my life would suddenly transform from that of dystopia to a life of utopia.

You see, almost all my friends are married, and I have asked most of them few months or years after marriage, that “Which is better, being single or being married?”

It is interesting to note that not a single one of them has been able to tell me conclusively that being married is better than being single. They all respond with the familiar lines of “It’s different. Marriage is good but it comes with its responsibilities. They all have their pros and cons.”

I’ve been single for all my life. Yes, it might not be a lengthy period of time in some people’s eyes, but it is far longer time than I intended to be single, especially considering the fact that I graduated at the age of 21, and have been financially independent since then.

And I would like to say something that an average young girl might never get to hear.

Oh gosh, I was forced to kiss a man + When does married sex become legitimate?

Hello people, what’s happening to everyone? Hope we are all good? So part 1 of the climax of journey to marriage happened last week. I’m still so excited, but it’s all surreal for me. I don’t think reality has dawned on me yet, lol.

We had to do a registry wedding because we are not doing a church wedding, since we opted for a destination wedding, though we have 2 officiating ministers following us outside Nigeria for the blessing.

Our experience at the registry was somewhat mixed. Getting married at the registry is not stressfull at all, though it is a mad cash cow out there, with everyone looking for ways to milk money out of you. At the end of the day, it was a success, and we thank God for that

Here are a few pictures from the event

I think soft colours look good on me.

The church and its lack of appreciation for Talents

When it comes to talent and its expressions, we all know that there’s a thin line between work and ministry. There has also always been the age old argument of whether people should charge for ministry work, or even be paid for it. One now begins to wonder why this argument comes up when it has to do with the church parting with money, cos it never comes up in the cooperate organisations.

Something happened to me, which made me think long and hard about this topic.

When it comes to my spoken word career, it is both ministry and work for me. Spoken word is the work I do, by which I use to minister directly to people. Unlike people like Janette…ikz and Ezekiel, I am not a Christian spoken word artist. I am a Christian who is a spoken word artist, and they are entirely different.

Just like a Christian who is an accountant, he is first a Christian before he is an accountant. Even when he stops being an accountant, he will keep being a Christian. He is expected to shine the light of Christ in his accountancy profession.

So even though I am not a Christian spoken word artist, it is always evident in my message that I am a Christian, because naturally, my values will be reflected in my message. Also, I organise spoken word and rap concerts that are Christian and kingdom driven, because that is my mandate for now. I also teach spoken word in church. I don’t train my students to become Christian spoken word artists, I simply train them to be spoken word artists. Whether they want to use their skill for evangelism, entertainment or social transformation, it is for them to determine. My own job ends at skills transference.

Because of my kind of message, I get invited to perform at all kinds of event… all kinds. The only kind I haven’t performed at yet is a funeral, and I am up for the challenge whenever it comes.
When I get invited, I state my fees, they pay, I rehearse and rehearse and rehearse. I perform and it ends… mostly in that cycle. If I don’t like the fees, I negotiate upwards or recommend someone else. On very few occasions, I perform for free.

So last week, based on the recommendation of a pastor, a lady invited me to perform at a church departmental end of the year party. I stated my fees, and we reached an agreement.

In the course of the next week, she ran into some personal issues, and some other woman took over. This person didn’t reach out to me on time, so I cancelled out the program from my schedule. Two days to the event, she called, and I made an allusion to the fact that I had almost changed my mind since I didn’t hear from her. We talked a bit more, and I agreed to come even though I’ll be under too much rehearsal pressure. I asked how far with the agreement for my fees, and she was like "what fees?"

She asked for the amount, and then I shouldn’t worry because she was under the impression that I was just coming to ‘bless them’. To say I was shocked was an understatement?

What if I had started working on their piece, which ideally, I should have cos she called 2 days to the event?

She didn’t even try to negotiate me down, or use the usual ‘please come down for us, it is the work of God, church has too many expenses’ line. She just expected me to come and do it for free.

She expected me to invest my time, my sweat, my brain, my saliva, and energy, fuel… for free.

Can you see something wrong with this thinking? And here is my reply for her and other church people who think this way. If you are one of them, please make sure you read well and well enough.

“First of all, I am not coming to bless you. I am coming to work, to do a job. In the process of my work, you will become blessed. If I am coming to sow, I know that's what I'm doing. If I'm coming to work, I know that's what I'm doing. You are not the one that will tell me to sow. I choose to sow when I want.”

When church ministries act this way, and don't want to pay, I don't take them seriously, and I don't go. It is not because I'm mean, greedy or I can't afford to do it for free. It is because in most cases, those people don’t really appreciate you, your art, the work you do, and the time you invest into churning out excellence. The value they place on you can be equated to how hairdressers treat hair lice.

I mean, they paid the caterer, decorator and other service providers, so why shouldn't I get paid? Is my work less important than theirs? Do you know how much intellectual work goes into creating an average piece, talk less of a good one?

Did they ask the caterer to bless them with their food? Of course not. They paid her because they understood the value of good food. No wonder the church loses its talent every day because the secular world never treats talents like this.

When the woman dropped, I didn’t feel bad. I was only sad because she was referred by someone I respect, and if that pastor should ever ask me, I will just show him this blog post.

Merit list into the school of death

I lost a friend two months ago. Well, a former friend and colleague… we used to be close, but not at the time of his death. We lived close to each other, and he took me to work and back home everyday before I got my own car. Eventually, I resigned, and one way or the other, we were no more close the way we used to be.

When I got the news of his death, the first thing I asked was what everyone always asked. “How did he die?”

My friend slumped while jogging.

Well, life sucks, and some things are not unusual

It is not unusual for young people to die
It is not unusual for a friend to die
It is not even ususual for people to slump while jogging.

What hit me the most was “Why kelechi?”

I mean he was one of the most jovial, fun-loving, life-living people I ever met. The only time you see him with a straight face was when he was very sucked into his laptop, working. He was tall, light, always bouncing, smiling, and laughing. When it came to radiance, this guy could compete with sunshine itself.

So I thought to myself, it is not fair.

Why didn’t death take someone else, someone that didn’t love or appreciate life, couldn’t live life to the maximum, maybe someone who is always gloomy… who couldn’t appreciate that health he had, perhaps someone that even wanted to commit suicide?

This should be the merit list death should use if it want to admit people into its school

All I am saying is that if death is roaming around, trying to rip people’s lives off, there are some people it has no business touching, and Kelechi Umelo is one of them.

Life sucks many times
But death sucks so much more.