USA or Canada? Where should I have my baby?

Since I had my second child, the most common question I have gotten from people who are familiar with my first experience is “which experience is better? USA or Canada?” or something like “Are they the same?” to which I answer, they both have their pros and cons

Left to me, I wanted to have my children in the same country, preferably USA, but my visa expired a few months before my due date, and I couldn’t get an early interview date. A lot of other things happened along the way (which I will try to summarise in a later blog post cos it is enough to fill a book), that kept blocking my decision to travel to the US. Almost three months after having my baby now, I still hadn’t gone for my interview, having missed two opportunities to go for interview before I went to Canada. But don’t let me get ahead of myself, as these things will be revealed later.

So to the meat of this post. I know there’s currently a lot of controversy and fear around having your child abroad, with Trump tightening up systems around illegal and legal immigration, causing Nigerians to panic and run to other countries like Canada. But the truth is that having your children abroad for the sole reason of citizenship is

From betrayals to victory - My rollercoster life lately

A lot has been going on of recent. I've had to deal with betrayal and disappointment from a staff, and this really shook me. Anyway, as life requires, I had to move on, and move on fast. This required immediate hiring of new staff, temporarily dropping out of the gym and facing business restructuring head on. This is still in the works, as it is a busy period for us at African Naturalistas

We have been preparing for several events at work, Beauty West Africa, Naijabrandchick, and Afro Hair and Culture Festival. For the past few weeks, we had been getting ready for Beauty West Africa. It was three-day exhibition of beauty brands all over the world at Landmark Events Centre.

I had the opportunity of exhibiting and speaking at one of the panel sessions. My own session was on "Developing Global Positioning for African/Ethnic Brands –How Do We Build Strategic Partnerships to fast track our Beauty Business?"

Mama, we made it! Lol.

With my fellow panelists

Introducing African Naturalistas on Day 1

With the Medplus and NAFDAC team

One of the major highlights for me was winning the SME Exhibitors award, organized by Lanre Olusola and Compass Global Consulting. I had been very exhausted the first night of the event, and wrote my pitch with sleepy eyes just as I was about to go to bed. I then took about twenty minutes the next morning to practice it before starting another vigorous day of exhibition, selling and speaking on my panel. I basically didn’t have time to prepare they way the typical me would prepare for any competition. That’s why I was very glad I won.

With The Catalyst himself, Lanre Olusola, Tokubo Chiedu of compass global, Femi Niyi of PTF orchid

The 4 SME Exhibitor winners (African Naturalistas, Afro by Nature, KL's Naturals, Bare Naturals)

All in all Beauty West Africa was a good event for me, and my eyes opened to so many things. I'm glad I was part of it.

Our stand at the event

I will be in Abuja in two weeks time for the Naijabrandchick tradefair. Where are my Abuja people? Please holla at me if you will be in Abuja on December 7, 2019, so we can hook up.

Where have all the Bloggers gone to?

If you are a member of the old time Blogsville community, and haven't blogged in about two years, I have most likely unfollowed you in my blogger dashboard. It's not you, it's me, lol.

I just got tired of having so many redundant blogs and urls in my dashboard. It seemed my dashboard was really populated, when in reality, it was totally empty. I even clicked in Ginger's blog url, and the domain was expired, and up for sale. I was like "mogbe, see what I have been carrying in my backyard." I carried all these URLs, being reluctant let go, and unwilling to accept that life happens, and I should just move on. Anyway, I have now accepted my reality, and officially dismantled Blogsville in my mind. I miss you all, Toin, HoneyDame, Cherrywine, Geebee, Didi, MsJB, Naija Mum in London, Naija Bachelor, Beautifull, Okeoghene, Sykik, Unveiling Gold, etc

If you were mentioned above, and plan to come back to blogging late, please let me have your URL in the comment section, so I can refollow.

In the meantime, since you have all moved to Instagram or facebook, please add me @hattylolla on IG so I can follow back, and we can continue our fellowship there.

Atilola Moronfolu in Rio Poetry Slam 2019

Hello beautiful people. How are we all doing? I am glad to announce and inform you all that this week, I will be taking part in the Rio Poetry Slam happening live in Rio de Janerioa, Brazil, which is a part of the larger FLUP Literary festival. This is my second time slamming at the Rio Poetry Slam, my first time being in 2014. I was quite surprised and very happy when I was called back, to be honest.

Because of the theme of this year's festival, this edition of the slam will have 16 (8 previous slammers and 8 current slammers) black female poets from different countries slamming, and I will be representing Nigeria. I am so looking forward to the experience.

I got my invitation to the slam a couple of days after delivering my baby. Funny enough, I didn't even think twice before I agreed, thereby setting my husband up for mummy duties without his knowledge, lol. I'm glad for a supportive husband though, if not, OYO (On Your Own) would have been my case. After he was informed,

Homeschooling your Children. Yay or Nay?

Hello beautiful people. How are we all doing? To all the parents and potential parents... have you ever considered homeschooling as an option for educating your children or future children???

As a single lady, I always liked the idea of homeschooling, and kept the option open. When I got married, I discussed this with my husband and we decided we would go for it if there were other parents we could network with to pull it through together. As our first son started to approach schooling age, the enormity of that decision started staring at me in the face.

Eventually, it became time to start school and I was still unsure. I did some school rounds, decided on a school, but later backtracked because I believed the school fees was too much for a child that young (I mean, he’s just turning two. Why pay so much? It’s not that serious). I considered the homeschooling thing again,

How I got my writing groove back

For almost three years now, I have had issues with my creativity and writing. If you have been a consistent follower or reader of this blog, you should be able to testify as to the change in my write ups.

I have not been able to write creatively for sometime. I have not written my usual witty, comedy, tragedy posts in years. I have written very few spoken word poems, and it was because I couldn't get away with it, as they were paid jobs, in which I had to deliver.

Thankfully, I knew when my problem started, and the factors that triggered this unfortunate circumstance. I noticed that as soon as I got married and moved out of my parents house, something changed in the way my mind was working. I moved from a very big house to a tiny two bedroom flat in a high brow area in Lagos. If only I had known the effect of this, I wouldn't have agreed when me and my fiance-turned-husband were looking for a place to stay. It was a big compound with several blocks of flats, and ours was just a tiny flat amongst other tiny flats. I never felt like I was at home, neither did I feel a sense of ownership. But worst of all, even though the house wasn't small for my husband and I to occupy physically, the space was too small for my brain to operate.

Immediately we moved, my creativity moved, spontaneous ideas ceased, I became increasingly sad, and sometimes depressed. I just couldn't write again. My personal blog and African Naturalistas blog were greatly affected. Before this, I never knew the correlation between space/dimensions/comfort and creativity/inspiration.

Thankfully, we have moved out of that place, most especially because we outgrew it in just over two years, though my mind had outgrown it from Day 1. We are now in a far bigger place, with a wide space I can solely call mine. My mind is free to roam, just like my hands are free to plant. My creativity is back, and my family and I are more settled.

Thank God. I will be writing again. I'm so happy.

Yes, you are a man! No, I will not serve you!

Last month, I attended a digital marketing training organised by a bank, at Sheraton hotel. At the end of the training, there was a buffet.

While serving myself fruit salad, a young guy dropped his plate in front of me, smiled at me lightly, and walked away to serve himself another type of dessert. I was confused so I asked him “what?” He said “serve please.”

I was so shocked and mumbled “no” just because I assumed he must have thought I was a waiter, even though I wasn’t dressed like one, and it was a serve yourself buffet. He then drew out a long “plsssss” and laced it with a patronizing smile. In my mind, I was like “you can’t be serious. So you even know I’m not a waiter.”

My BBC Interview - Hair Loss in women and the several causes

Hello beautiful people. Earlier this year, as a Trichology Practitioner, I had the privilege of being interviewed by BBC World about Hair loss and the several factors that cause them. This is a section of the interview. Watch, learn, and enjoy.

The Vain Body Journal: Sixteen types of women you find in the gym

A year ago, I gave up on home workouts, and signed up at the gym. Even though I am not much of a gym buddy, I am very observant, and I am writing this funny fitness post from what the few things I observed. Read, enjoy, and share.

1. The oppressors
These ones have a banging body, and they know they have a banging body. They walk into the gym with confidence, with shoulders up, aware of both male and female eyes on them, and they love it. They came to oppress, and the more eyes that ogle them, the more accomplished they feel.

2.The snap back gang
These ones just had a baby, and are desperate to get their pre pregnancy shape and weight back. It doesn’t matter how their health is affected. Whenever they remember their days of past glory, it inspires them the more. Who cares about breast milk supply or a crying baby? They are the ones who will come to the gym with a new born baby. And if they have more than one child, they hire one nanny for every additional child they have. They will come to the gym with their whole entourage if that’s what it takes.

3. The club bangers
We know Nigerians love to party but these ones take dancing to the next level. They constantly have headphones on, dance while walking round the gym, dance on the treadmill. And when the class instructor is dishing out steps, they turn it to dance. Instead of them to do a side step, they do salsa. Instead of squatting, they twerk. Na so so dance full their head

4. The husband searchers
These ones come to the gym, claiming to lose weight but you never find them in the cardio section. They always loiter around the strength section where they believe the strong eligible bachelors are, yet they don’t lay a finger on the machines. They are always smiling and shining teeth with the men there, praying someone takes their phone number.

5. The gold diggers
They are similar to the husband searchers but they are always shaking bum bum up and down, and are more intentional with their search. They only want the big boiz who can fund their lifestyle, and not some broke yahoo boy wannabe who doesn’t mind spending the entire day at the gym

6. The "I too knows"
These ones get to class first, and are always in front. Their goal is to nail every single move of the instructor to the tooth. Mistakes send them to depression. If this were school, they would be called efiko

7. The single-minded ones
These ones came to the gym for just one thing... to be fit. All other things are distractions. They don’t mingle with people, they don’t joke, and definitely don’t shake bum bum up and down. They are focused on their goal, come into the gym at a particular time, workout, attend class, and get out.

8. The baffers
They have the most beautiful gym wear and trainers. They match it up with interesting accessories like the sport hat, head band, ankle braces, knee braces, hand bands, water bottles, etc. Their sports wear game is tight because they have invested heavily in it, and they are peppering everyone with it by showing off

9. The networkers 
These are more interested in striking profitable relationships than keeping fit. The come ready with their business cards, marketing pitch and product catalog. They talk with people but are strategic about it. If your portfolio seems attractive to them, they position themselves next to you in the weights section and stylishly strike a conversation with you.

10. The gossips
These ones know the stories of everyone in the gym. They know the car everyone drives, where everyone lives, who is eyeing who in the strength section, who does more cardio than strength, who hasn’t dropped 1kg after 7.5 months at the gym, etc. No matter how much of “the single-minded ones” you think you are, they got something on you, and they will share this juicy information amongst themselves

11. The self deceivers
These ones will spend 5 hours at the gym, burning 1000 calories, and head straight into to mega chicken afterwards to down 2500 calories in form of two loaves of milk bread and 3 bottles of chilled coke

12. The envy of the class
These are by far the best students in class. The instructor always uses them as example and motivation. They are the instructors’ best friends because they are evidence that he’s doing a good job. They partner with the instructor for doubles and everyone just wished they could be like them in class

13. The last resort
These ones are desperate to lose weight, either as a result of health complications, constant complaints from their husbands, or a sudden awakening to the fact that if they don’t change their unhealthy habits, it would lead to an unpleasant end. They always ask questions and are very attentive. They might not be “the envy of the class” or “the I too knows”, but they always make an effort

14. The class monitor
They are always on correction mode, pointing out everyone’s flaws in class during routines. They let you know how you are not bending well, how your back is not straight, your knee is not touching your chin, etc. Instead of them to concentrate on their own routines, they are bent on cherrypicking the flaws of others

15. The lazy ones
They have this constant mindset that they are too heavy to lift their feet off the ground, hence they don’t push themselves. If the instructor tells them to bend and raise hands, they will stand and throw hand. They can’t touch their toes, can’t raise their hands, can’t jump, can’t bend, can’t do anything. The only reason you know they are not paralyzed is that as soon as the instructor gives 2 minutes break, they join the club bangers gang and start doing zanku. It makes you wonder why they even bother coming to the gym in the first place

16. The groupies
They don’t do anything on their own. They are always in groups, skipping in groups, doing jumping jacks in group, doing HIIT in groups, etc. They find encouragement to continue with their fitness journey only when they team up with people of like minds. You never find these ones doing things like treadmills or ellipticals because those are solo exercises. And of course, they never attend classes since it will mean having to listen to the instructor, along with everyone else, and putting their groupie goals on a hold

Do you go to the gym? Is there any type of women that I haven't mentioned? Please, let's know in the comment section

The Vain Body Journal: How gyming while pregnant saved my life

As you might know if you are a follower of this blog, I work out regularly, even since my single days.

After I got married and became pregnant with my first child, I continued working out. At about 6 weeks pregnant, morning sickness kicked in full time and I was feeling terribly nauseous. I had been doing water therapy since 2011 but after about 2 or 3 occasions of vomiting the water, I gave up on water therapy and on working out. My mornings were filled with lying in bed and feeling depressed and resentful of my husband for not experiencing the same pain I was experiencing. Some weeks later, I was hit with red degeneration of fibroid which kept coming and going until my first trimester was over

If only I had known

I resumed workouts lightly when I was 35 weeks pregnant, and continued till I delivered

Then I resumed workout 2 weeks postpartum, in form of running. By the time I came back to Nigeria, it was hard to continue because I needed to adapt to my new life.

For about 9 months, I kept jumping off and on my workout radar. It was very hard to be consistent and motivated. So I tried controlling my diet and making sure I eat healthy.

One day, I looked at my hands and thighs, and just disliked myself. I hated what I saw so much that it almost made me puke. I wasn’t fat or big but my body wasn’t toned, and my thighs and arms were full and flabby. Immediately, I sent my husband a Whatsapp message saying “I’m signing up for the gym tomorrow.” With a tone of finality. He told me not to stress too much and that he doesn’t have a problem with the way I looked. I told him I wasn’t happy with myself, and that’s what mattered. When it comes to a woman’s postpartum body, everyone has different opinions, but ultimately, I must come to the point where I am confident in the body I carry.

Prior to this period, I had never registered at a gym before. I did all my own workout routines, as a single lady and after I got married, at home. I assumed gym was a waste of money for me since I was disciplined enough to do my own workouts. But now, I had to admit that this new phase of my life required a different approach.

The next day, I signed up for the gym and in two weeks, I was toned everywhere and back to my pre pregnancy size. A month later, my son was 1 year old, and six weeks after I started working out at the gym, I found out I was one month pregnant. I did not do any pregnancy test but my period was regular enough for me to know that if I miss it, I must be pregnant. It meant I was pregnant 2 weeks after I started gyming.

When I found out I was pregnant, I resolved to do things differently this time around. So when the morning sickness hit at 6 weeks pregnant, I continued going to the gym. My stomach was as flat as a drawing board but my I was not alright at all. I was sick, depressed and very tired but I kept up with my intense workouts. In fact, the only time I felt like a human being and was actually happy was when I was working out. As soon as I leave the gym, the sickness and depression came back full force. It confirmed to me that working out was really beneficial, even in sickness

Also the second time around, I never stopped my water therapy. I drank my 1.5L dutifully every morning no matter how funny my tongue tasted

... and I never had red degeneration of fibroid, thereby saving my life and saving my baby’s life. This wasn’t a surprise to me as I had prayed against it and had enough fluid in my body to guard against it.

I kept working out all through my first trimester. A few times, I felt really tired and dizzy and had to lie down on the bench in the changing room. Apart from that, there were no serious incidents.I pushed and pushed myself because I knew that if I could see it through till the end of the first trimester, I will be the one to reap the benefits. And if I gave up in the first trimester, it would be very hard for me to resume in the second trimester

It wasn’t until I was about 4 months pregnant that my stomach started showing and my gym colleagues knew I was pregnant. By then, I was already in second trimester and my energy had tripled.

I did heavy and intense workouts till 32 weeks. I didn’t go all the way to 40 weeks like I planned because I didn’t want to be too fit and have my baby come out before my trip or on the plane since I had a little hitch in my travel plans, and had to stay in Nigeria longer than expected.

View this post on Instagram

Guess how many weeks pregnant i was here? .. Don't mind my serious face. I was having mad fun, .. All through my pregnancy, I worked out heavily, till almost the end, when I had to start mentally and physically preoare for my trip .. I did everything I could do, heavy skips, super circuits, treadmills, curcuit selection, zumba, spinning .. This was me at 30 weeks ( I know I don't look it) at an intensive zumba class, following my instructor @sandraosaigbovo .. I'm glad I was able to keep fit all through my pregnancy journey and even lost weight in third trimester, though that was not the goal. I believe I inspired many ladies at the gym cos they always told me that they kept going on with their fitness journey because of a heavily pregnant lady like me could do it, who were they to give up? The guys at the gym just always looked at me and my growing stomach in awe πŸ˜€ .. I travelled at almost 39 weeks, and looked about 25-28 weeks pregnant, if at all, that i wasn't even asked for fit to fly or medical report. .. The downside of this is that my husband always called me “strong pregnant woman” so I couldn’t even form “damsel in distress” πŸ˜” .. What is your opinion about heavy workouts while pregnant? Yay or nay? #pregnancy #pregnantlife #fitpregnancyjourney #fitpregnancy #pregnantbelly #rebellingagainstculture #mumofboys #twoundertwo #mumoftwo #30weekspregnant
A post shared by (@hattylolla) on

Above is me at 30 weeks pregnant

I was very fit throughout my pregnancy, and didn’t gain a single weight apart from baby weight. In fact, I lost body weight in my third trimester.

My delivery was uneventful. I healed pretty fast, in about 3 days. I snapped back pretty fast, in about 2 weeks. Although my stomach is not completely flat as I am 9 weeks postpartum but it is a million times flatter than what it was at 4 months postpartum in my first pregnancy. In fact, everyone says I don’t look like I just had a baby.

View this post on Instagram

And that was how we resumed gym at 6 weeks postpartum 😁. Was challenging the first day, but the body quickly got the message . It’s okay if you want to give your body some months to rest after pregnancy, cos as they say “it just pushed out a whole human being πŸ™„”. Also it’s okay if you are in the “quick snap back” category. Do whatever you want to do, and don’t let anyone make you feel bad for your choice, as long as your health is not jeopardized . As for me, I’m in the “snap back immediately” category, cos that’s what makes ME happy, and that’s what I will do. I don’t have a big body or a big stomach, so this is not the time for me to start fitting into society’s expectations of what a new mummy’s body should look like . Beach body, here we come 😁. #fitness #sixweekspostpartum #fitmom #rebellingagainstculture #healthylifestyle #momofboys #momoftwo
A post shared by (@hattylolla) on

Above is me at 6 weeks postpartum

My baby is very strong and came out as an athlete, lol. His shoulders and neck have been very strong even as a newborn. He had been lifting himself since 4 weeks and people are attributing it my workout, lol

I resumed gym at 6 weeks postpartum and I have been consistent. To be honest, I could have resumed the next week if I wanted to because I didn’t feel like someone who went through labour. I’m working on regaining my core and restoring it to pre pregnancy.

I’m glad I chose to do things differently the second time around. I’m glad I pushed myself. I definitely reaped the benefits.

The gym saved my life because

  • It saved me and my baby’s life from red degeneration of fibroid 
  • The daily boost of oxytocin helped me mentally, emotionally and physically
  • I maintained my weight all through
  • I had a hitch free delivery
  • I snapped back immediately after delivery
  • My baby’s bones are very strong

Did you work out while pregnant? If not, are you open to the idea of doing it? What is your general opinion on working out while pregnant?

P.S: I will not advise anyone to workout heavily while pregnant if you have not been doing it before pregnancy. I was able to keep up that lifestyle because it was what my body was already used to. This is also what doctors and fitness experts will advise you. If in doubt, please consult your doctor.

Who said motherhood isn’t easy?

Hi people. How are we all doing? Sorry I skipped blogging for two weeks. I moved back home, and everything was in disarray cos we moved houses. I am basically just settling in, and it has been hectic with two under two. The tail end of last week was the peak of exhaustion because we were burying my grandmother and celebrating her exit in grand style. It was my experience that inspired the writeup below

You wake up with swollen breasts, then quickly pump before the baby wakes up.

No, You cannot feed my Child!

What is it with Nigerians and their lack of understanding of boundaries? When we were children, our parents constantly drummed into our ears not to collect food from strangers, so you would assume that in today’s world, strangers with good intentions would respect themselves and not even give your children food without the parents’ permission.

My first son is at that age where he’s too old of a toddler to sit in one spot, yet too young to understand instructions like “don’t collect food from strangers.” Because of this, I’m having to do extra monitoring because of some people who just don’t know better.

Earlier this year, I went to the passport office to renew my passport. In the room where I was to capture, my 17 month old son was running around freely and I was awaiting my turn, while monitoring him with my eyes in the very small room. I looked away for about for about a minute, and he had walked towards one of the officers, who was eating small chops, and she inserted puff puff into his mouth just as I turned my head back towards him.

Twenty minus one ways my pregnancy journeys were different

I discovered I was pregnant in September 2018. I missed my period, and that was it. Unlike my first pregnancy, this was intentional on my path. There was unprotected sex, and the period was unsafe, and it happened. You remember when our parents used to lie to us that if a man dare looks at you, you will get pregnant, I am that person. My initial plan was to start trying in October 2018, but decided to start in September because I was too eager, and to get a head start in case September didn’t work out. I have only had unprotected sex in an unsafe period only once in my life, and I have been pregnant twice. So it is safe to say, I need to stay away from men as from today, lol.

After getting pregnant, I expected many things to go the same way my last pregnancy went, except the red degeneration of fibroid of course. I was quite surprised when a lot of things went differently. Looking at it with a bird’s eye view now, I believe this pregnancy was better for me than the previous one. I’m not exactly sure why, but one thing I know is that I was far more active this pregnancy, and went to gym, did treadmills, skips, and hard core work outs well over 30 weeks of my pregnancy.

Below are the similarities and differences I noticed in my two pregnancy journeys. Some of them took me by surprise, but most were pleasant.

Call me Mum of Boys: Two Under Two

Hello Beautiful people. It's been a minute since I last blogged. I took an unintentional break because I was concerting a lot of spiritiual and physical energy in other areas of  my life. A lot has happened in the past few months, scratch that, in the past one year, the most significant of them being that I had a new addition to my family six days ago, on the 18th of June, 2019. One thing I can say is that this boy is a warrior, and a victorious one at that. I honestly believe that if he is shot now, the bullet will deflect from his skin, lol. That is why he is called Lyon.

I currently do not have official pictures of him, so you will help me manage the ones below. In my usual fashion, if you know me, you will know that I will be doing a series on his journey soon. The story is actually more spiritual than physical, so if you are in a phase of believing for something, that looks like it is not forthcoming after such a long time, you want to stay tuned. Don't worry, you won't be waiting for too long, as you will be hearing from me before you can finish saying the word LYON.


Two under Two

A completely honest post: The downside of marriage and motherhood

I interviewed some very smart young ladies over the phone this past weekend. I asked them for feedback over the shortcomings they have noticed on my business page. While their answers were very revealing to me, what struck me was the fact that majority of the trends in my life that I am currently not satisfied with was largely due to my fault.

I have been complaining of less productivity, declining results, etc. But as I traced the timeline in my head, I realised that this negative trend started when I got married, and later started growing my family. It is not that I became lazier or laid back, but I completely ditched some important aspects of my business, and outsourced what I couldn't ditch to people. Outsourcing is not bad, but I didn't occasionally supervise the outsourced areas. And I also realised that the parts I ditched should never have been ditched in the first place, at least, not for so long. This is because this is actually the engine that ran the entire business, something I was completely oblivious of.

Ever since I got married and started building a family, my creativity has been on the decline. Sometimes, I look at old articles and quotes, and ask "was I really the one who wrote these things? Where is my former brain?" It's like since I left my parents' house, my brain has shut down. After I had my son in 2017, I have been under constant pressure (self-imposed), I hardly smile, I can't remember when last I genuinely laughed, my level of productivity has declined, taking my income along with it. I like to think that I've been able to balance motherhood, marriage, and business, but if I am not producing as much result as I used to, then the balance is just an illusion. The truth is I haven't yet found a rhythm that works for me, like I had in my single days. It's like the world is moving forward, while I am receding

Please, if anyone reading this has gone through, or is going through what I am currently going through, let me know in the comment section. If you are already out of it, how were you able to free your mind from being held back.

P.S: I am talking about lack of, or decline in productivity and results, as a result of change in marital status or motherhood, not marital pressure in itself

Death gives no hoot about your plans!

On Friday Morning, as I was just about stepping out of the our for my daily business, I got a call from my brother that my maternal grandmother had just passed. Honestly, I was shocked, and this caused me to scream and then start crying loudly. She was my last surviving relative, and she raised me for the first two years of my existence on earth.

I was quite close to her, but I recently started withdrawing from her, because I just couldn't handle her deteriorating state well. At the age of 81 going on 82, we had to forcefully move her from her house to my house (the one I lived with my original nuclear family) so she could be well looked after.

She died at 84 going on 85, with her mind very intact, but her body getting weaker by the day. I didn't go to the house this year to see her. The last time I went to the house was December 30th, for our annual party. I went to her room, greeted her, hugged her, and left after about 5 minutes. I promised to see her again before leaving, but I didn't. This is not a note of regret, but a statement of the facts. Before this, I have never dealt with gradual loss. Every other close loss I've suffered were sudden. If you have been following this blog for a while, you will know my dad was shot and killed by armed robbers at 47, and my cousin was hit by a driver who was texting while driving, while cousin was changing his tire.

Dear Pastor's Wife, It takes both parties to make marriage work

Last week, I saw a flyer on Instagram, where a pastor's wife was calling for women to pray and fast for their husbands for 31 days (all through the month of March). I did not like the feeling the flyer generated in me.

I wanted to like the idea and the thought for calling for a prayer watch, but I did not, and I didn't like that I didn't like the idea... at all. Imagine if everyone is good, and you want to be good also, but you keep being bad, and you don't like the fact that you are bad. You know you should be good, but there's something about this 'good' that doesn't sit well with you... that's exactly how I felt.

I feel every woman should pray for her husband, because under normal circumstances, if it is well for your husband, it would be well for you too. They should also pray for their children. It is normal for most religious women to pray for their entire households, because there's something about a woman's heart that is always drawn towards her home, and its well-being. And for Christian women who are not very prayerful, but desire to be, or ones just struggling with their prayer lives, which is quite common, this special call for 'prayers for husbands' would most likely encourage them to catch the prayer train.

However, the question is... where are the men? Are they praying for their wives?

Elections 2019: My voting experience - The Good, The Sad, and The Lessons

My marked thumb to indicate I had voted

Hello everyone, how was your weekend? How did the elections go in your area? Did you vote?

My area was very peaceful. Yes, there were loads of people, but that was the only unpleasant part. As we proceeded to our polling unit, it struck me how people were having different experiences trying to cas their votes at their polling units. At mine, we had tents, chairs, people taking and calling numbers and names with megaphones, all in an orderly manner. The estate's management and resident volunteers went through great lengths to make sure that the whole thing was conducted well. A former classmate of mine said this was also the case in his estate, only that their estate shared packs of rice and smoothies to all voters. All INEC officials were just doing in my estate was accreditation, and handling of ballot papers. They arrived late though (around 10.30am when some voters had been there since 6.00am).

My experience was the complete opposite of some other people's. Some got to their polling units at 11am, and both INEC officials and residents were confused as to what to do to organise themselves. After sometime, it would occur to someone to take numbers, and eventually, they would find their way through the chaos, and eventually vote. I even saw a video where some ballot boxes and papers were scattered on thr ground, and burnt, but I cannot ascertain the authenticity of the video, when it comes to date, time, and location, though it was rumoured to be on Saturday at Okota.

Seeing these contrasts, I came to a conclusion that an environment is basically shaped by the kinds of people in that environment. It is no wonder some parents will pull an arm and a tooth to make sure their children are raised in specific types of neighbourhoods, even though it is not very convenient for them.

Your Passion is BULLCRAP if...

Hello beautiful people, how are we doing? If you are in Nigeria, I hope you have recovered from last week’s heartbreak. No, I am not talking about Valentine ’s Day, lol. I’m talking about the elections that were supposed to hold on Saturday, February 16th. My heart goes out especially everyone who made unimaginable sacrifices to make sure they could vote last Saturday, such as travelling across the country, shutting down businesses, sleeping in terrible environments, travelling in from outside Nigeria, etc. Please, don’t give up or get tired. We will prevail in the end.

I belong to a WhatsApp group of my former classmates in University. For some time now, nothing serious or life-changing happens on that group. The only thing worthy of note on that group is that one lady terrorises us with political broadcasts, mainly highlighting her anti-Buhari sentiments, and how bad the country is. It is really annoying because the group consists of all kinds of people with different political leanings, but this lady doesn’t display social media etiquette, so I guess it doesn’t matter to her.  Most of her broadcasts are ignored by everyone on this group, but I can guess people are always inwardly rolling their eyes when she posts. As for me, I just wished she would know better and stop. 99% of what she forwards can’t be verified, and are inflammatory.

This morning, this lady put up an online voting poll where people where voting for their preferred candidates, indicating that Buhari was going to lose, and Atiku would win overwhelmingly. A friend of mine replied her saying, social media polls can’t be taken with a pinch of salt because most people on social media don’t have PVCs, and many of the voting population are on the streets, not on social media.

Imagine my shock when she responded saying, even she doesn’t have a PVC.

Let's get real: Why you should or shouldn't keep your maiden name

In last week's blog post, I mentioned the controversy generated by my instastory about women having to take their husbands' surname upon marriage. What Chimamanda was saying was that a woman should have a choice to keep her maiden name or take her husband's surname.

What I mentioned in my instastory was that many people talking about why a woman must take her husband's surname do not even have an idea about where this tradition came from. Since this is a blog post, I will just write a comprehensive opinion here.

Firstly, anyone who knows me knows I didn't take my husband's surname after marriage. As of now, I still bear my maiden name. I don't know about tomorrow, things might change, but I strongly doubt that they would. When I got married, most people started asking for my new surname, so they could "properly" address me. And when I told them I don't have one, I got varied reactions from "Why???" "How could you?" "You just want to be a rebel." Not in those exact words, but along those lines. But one thing every single person who raised an eyebrow couldn't tell me was why I HAD to change my surname. They didn't even understand the culture behind it

Is it for religious reasons? Pardon my ignorance, but I am not currently aware of any religion that says a woman must take her husband's surname upon marriage.

Shoes that don't fit, the Miracles of Spinning, Wasting our Votes, et al

Hello beautiful people. How are we all doing? 2019 is going well, so far so good. We thank God. Been hitting our goals bit by bit.

I feel like doing one of those random thought interesting posts today.

Last weekend, I read Chimamanda's book, Dear Ijeawele. I agreed with most of the points raised in the book, and wrote my thoughts on some of them in my Instastory (yeah, I'm trying to up my game on IG. I hope I don't get tired of it again.) While most people agreed with me, some, namely two guys disagreed with me on the issue of women having to take their husbands' surnames after marriage. I'm sure more than two guys disagreed, but only two communicated their diagreement with me via DM. I will write more about this in my next blog post. Make sure to look out for it, as it will be a very interesting and enlightening one. And you can already tell that I won't be joining the bandwagon here. After all, we are Rebelling Against Culture. Have you read this Chimamanda's book?

What's with toddlers' obsession with adult shoes? My son has been wearing his dad's shoes of late, and he's so enthralled with it. It is interesting how we want to fit into bigger shoes, but we really cannot handle bigger responsibilities. If you have child(ren), please let us know in the comment section if they were ever obesessed with wearing adult shoes.

I attended spinning classes in my gym last Friday, for the first time ever. Gosh, it was one of the hardest things I ever did. I mean, I look at my wrist watch, it is 9.55am, twenty minutes later, I look at it, it is still 9.55am.

A Tale of two Husbands

Sometime last year, I wrote about distorted feminism and its danger, all of which I still stand by. You can read the post here, if you missed it

I have noticed that some women get very angry and insulting when they hear strong successful married women say something like “I thank my husband for allowing me follow my dreams, achieving my purpose, etc...”. These women get very bitter and blame these successful married women for painting a picture that for you to be successful and married, you must be submissive and subservient to the point where your husband must “allow” you.

As a strong and strong-willed woman who has been on both sides of the divide myself, I understand both parties but I see the lack of understanding in the path of the people who are getting raving mad and bitter about these statements

First, let’s get something straight. Marriage is not compulsory. Your married or single status should your choice but if you get married, some realities will hit you wherever you are in the world, no matter your religious inclinations, whether you are a strong and ambitious woman, beautiful full time housewife, or a lazy couch potato with servants at your beck and call. Marriage will slap you with its own bittersweet realities, and let you understand that the union is not about one party

The person you marry can ruin your destiny for life to the extent where it would be hard for you to recover easily, or can build you up to the point of unimaginable success. Marriage is a yoke, and if you are yoked to a dead weight, it’s only a matter of time before you start decaying yourself and you will produce nothing but maggots.

In many cases, it is not like these husbands set out to pull their wives down or to build them up, but their lack of availability of support is major determinant here. It’s ultimately what will determine whether a married woman smoothly achieved her goal or not.

A practical case is that of two women, married for 8 years with 3 young children with the last child under two, at the height of their career or business. They are at a very demanding phase of their lives where they have to constantly move within and outside the country.

Now imagine woman A, with a husband who is stable, present and supportive. He understands that the phase woman A is currently is temporary, and is always filling in the gap for her. Even when her second child took ill in her absence, he bridged the gap and didn’t alarm her with the seriousness of the situation because she had to concentrate on a life changing presentation she was preparing for

Then imagine Woman B, same situation as Woman A but while her husband has not really determined in heart to ruin her or bring her down, he’s insecure and threatened by her rise so he doesn’t lift a finger to help or support. When she want to travel, she has to beg her mum (who is slowly getting tired of these requests) to take in her three energetic kids because her husband is no-go area, and that’s after she has made sure that his food for the next one week is well-arranged and properly-labelled in the freezer so he can just insert them into the microwave and eat. And when her own child took ill in her absence, she had to fly back home immediately to sort it out because her mother can’t handle the running around in addition to her arthritis and the other grandchildren. Because of this, she couldn’t prepare well for her life changing presentation, did a sloppy job lost an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity

While woman A is soaring high, woman B is constantly wondering if all the hassle is worth it. She’s constantly choosing between her kids and her career, and failing at both, while her husband watches on, and carries on with his life as usual. After a while, woman B takes a less demanding career, not necessarily with lesser pay but with lesser demands and not really challenging or fuelling her ambition, but at least, now she’s more present at home with the kids.

Woman A continues to rise, while woman B declines. Now these two women are friends and follow each other’s stories. Twenty years later, woman A clearly sees the difference between their lives, understands that a major determinant for this difference was not lack of intelligence or opportunities, but the husbands they married. She publicly thanks her husband for his support and “allowing her be the woman she always wanted to be” and every distorted feminist goes raving mad. They don’t understand that it’s not like she’s telling you that for you to be successful, you need your husband’s permission, but the fact is that your husband’s actions or inactions makes a difference. All he needs to do is withdraw the hand of support, and everything comes tumbling down. That’s why it’s a YOKE.

We might argue that woman B should have left her husband since he wasn’t supporting her, but the truth is that it wouldn’t have made her situation better. She would still have been running around to have it all together.

So let’s not be quick to batter these women who are strong and successful, and “thanking their husbands”. There’s so much behind the scenes that we don’t understand. The truth is that a woman’s mind is always wired towards the home, so if her home isn’t right, her mind will not be settled in other areas, even if she appears successful on the outside

When these women say their best decision is that they married the right men, and they believe every young woman now should be very intentional in the decision of who they choose to marry, please take their words for it. Honestly, twitter activism is very far from reality.

I will really love to hear what you have to say about this. If you have your or other people’s experiences to share, please enlighten us. Also feel free to add to or disagree with any point in this post.

Help: My Child doesn't listen to me

Happy New Year beautiful people. How are we all doing? Yes, I am back... and better. I am actually excited to be back, because I know that my blog is taking a new shape, :). Not necessarily in outlook but in the spirit of it.

I have decided that it will be more open, honest, authentic, like you are gisting with your friend thing. All these formalities, commercialism, etc. happening in the blog world nowadays is just so tiring. I need some of the old breeze and need to laugh more. Speaking of which I can count how many times I actually laughed in 2018. Apart from the gists with my husband, everything was just so serious serious, and stressful. I need my life to be refreshed, gosh.

Anyway, if you have been following this blog, you can guess that my son is now well over one year old. He is currently my only child, and mehn, he has a mind of his own. I don't know if this is how all one year olds are (I strongly doubt), but he keeps on doing the things I tell him not to do, and going to the corners I tell him not to go. I don't know what to do about it again o. I have shouted, begged, scolded, spanked lightly, spanked strongly, yet no progress. He clearly understands that I don't want him doing those things, yet he does that very thing.

Sometimes, he monitors me as I watch him, and once my eyes are off him, off he zooms to the very thing I warned him against. Like how can this one year old have enough sense to be monitoring me?

Sometimes, he goes to pick what I warned him against picking, from where I warned him against reach. Once he sees me, he runs as fast as he can from me, with the 'treasure'. Other times, he just walks up to me, and offers the 'treasure' back, like "sorry I took your stuff, you can have it back."

So here are the areas I need help, especially from experienced African Mothers (I don't want any Oyinbo solution that will tell me things like "lovingly find a distraction for your son, offer an alternative, etc. Those things are not working for this level of headiness, abeg).

Number 1. Is it all one year olds that have these kind of behaviour, or are some gentle, calm, and obedient? I need to know so I can decide what attributes to start praying for in my next child.

Number 2. If you have ever handled a one year old with similar traits, please, let me know how you effectively dealt with this issue. I'm not asking for a dummy, quiet, or calm child. I just want an obedient one year old, who does what I tell him to do, and doesn't do what I tell him not to do. Abi is that too much to ask for?

Now waiting for your responses.