This blog was created to serve as an inspiration to all who read aspire, to love and to live a life of purpose.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

A Hax Letter: Signs Laced in Actions Part II

Remember the "Pay Attention" post from May? It was the Signs Laced in Action letter about how the actions of your significant other tells you all you need to know about how they regard you, or don't. I came across this Dear Carolyn letter on The Washington Post today that screams the same message.

Again, the truth lies in what s/he does and not in what s/he says, does not say.

Hi, Carolyn:
My boyfriend and I are in our early 30s and have been in a serious relationship for two years.
He is choosing not to go on a vacation with my family. I am incredibly hurt and angry about this. He says he can’t afford it, but this makes no sense considering his income and expenses. The trip is three months away and the costs are minimal. It would only require him to take two days off, which he’s said he could do.
I have explained to him how important it is to me that he attends. My family is very important to me, and thus far in our relationship I have cut back on a lot of family time because he doesn’t seem to enjoy it. We have been on two trips with his family, including a two-week overseas trip, and spend quite a bit of other time with them.
He’s just not getting how important family is to me and how much I want him to be a part of that. He keeps saying it’s about the money and won’t give me any other explanation. It’s also not about traveling, because he enjoys it. He’s never been too excited about the family functions we do attend, but when I ask he says he has no problem being around them.
Is this something I should just get over and go without him, or is it a sign of bigger problems?
Who’s “just not getting” whom?
He has told you through his demeanor, actions and choices over two years that he doesn’t embrace your family as his own. He also has told you it’s not the idea of family he resists, since he’s tight with his; it’s just that he won’t rally for yours. He is even, quite clearly, comfortable with receiving your extra effort to embrace and spend time with his family while giving you no such effort in return.
Again — this isn’t me saying this stuff, it’s your boyfriend. There’s no message to interpret, there are just days, dollars and results. The one thing you haven’t yet acquired as proof of his lack of interest in embracing your family is his admission of this to your face.
If you think it’s a good use of your time to wait for the confession before you believe what the circumstantial evidence is telling you, then go on your trip solo and keep waiting for him to say the words.
Obviously, though, I don’t think it is. Instead, it’s time to figure out just what you’d do if he did finally confess.
Would you go back with a fresh round of pleading? If you hit the same wall, then what?
Would you resign yourself to having to “cut back on a lot of family time” as a sad but reasonable price for someone you otherwise feel lucky to have at your side?
Would your idea of a “reasonable price” be more along the lines of restoring your lost family time and just leaving your man at home? In perpetuity?
Or would you decide this one life vision — where your companion is an eager addition to your family, instead of an alternative to it — is nonnegotiable, and break up with this guy?
Whatever it is, that’s your next step.
You already said what your answers are and I'd quote you on them.
1. " I have explained to him how important it is to me that he attends. My family is very important to me, and thus far in our relationship I have cut back on a lot of family time because he doesn’t seem to enjoy it."  You told him how important it is to you and he still won't budge. Wouldn't you want to be with someone who loves you enough to sacrifice their time (even when they don't want to) to do things you enjoy, for e.g. spend time with people who have played an important role in your life?
2. " He keeps saying it’s about the money and won’t give me any other explanation. " He seems to be "done" talking about it. If I were you, I'd offer to pay the expenses and see what he says. If he still doesn't budge, you have the confirmation you seem to need to convince you that he just doesn't want to go.

Two cents, literally :-)

Stay Inspired....

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Keep Swimming: Candlelight for Talia Joy

Talia Joy. The name was everywhere today...on Instagram, on Facebook, on Twitter, on BBM. Then the described as angelic. I just had to know who this little angel was. So I asked my best friend, then I found her Instagram page, then her Facebook page, then her videos.....and it went on and on and on. The more I read, the more I wanted to know and the more I knew, the more inspired I was.

For those of you who didn't know like me, you need to hear her'll renew your outlook on life and inspire you to be more appreciative of your daily dose of life.

Born in 1999, Talia Joy Castellano was diagnosed with neuroblatoma, a form of nerve cancer in 2007. Over the past 6 years, she has beat it and relapsed a couple of times, constantly fighting, "swimming", as she calls it. When she was first diagnosed, she discovered make-up through her mom's friend who is a cancer survivor and decided to use it as her "wig", a way to distract people from her bald head. She said she became "fascinated" with it because it gave her confidence. She became so good at it, that she started making You-tube tutorials which went viral, drawing the attention of Ellen Degeneres who brought her on her show early this year. Ellen also made her an honorary Covergirl, garnering her millions more of views and support, even from other celebrities such as Justin Bieber and Kendall Jenner.

Last Spring, Talia also developed pre-luekemia in her bone marrow as her cancer progressed. She stayed strong and most importantly POSITIVE, having said in one of her videos, “It’s not like I’m happy or something, it’s that I face reality and I’m truthful but I believe that I can fight it and I believe that I can beat the crap out of cancer.”
 According to her, "Having cancer has been a gift yet a horrible, horrible, terrifying thing. But I've gotten so many benefits from it...Having a Youtube channel and having to inspire people and having people look up to me and explaining to you guys how I love and adore makeup, using it as my wig and having so much self-confidence to go out to the grocery store without a wig... it's just amazing."

Today, barely 4 hours ago, her Facebook page "Angels for Talia" read, 

"#‎prayfortalia‬ It is with a heavy heart that we share with all of you that Talia has earned her wings at 11:22am. Please lift her beautiful soul, her beautiful light to heaven and please send your love and prayers to her family during this most difficult time. God speed little one, may you be free from pain and suffering, may your soul feel the light and love that you brought to so many of us on this Earth during the short time you were her with us. We will miss you more than you will ever know baby girl."

Cancer did not win. No more suffering for her. No more pain. Just freedom. Just Peace.

Its inspiring how many lives this little girl touched, in just 6 years. If you read the millions of tributes to her, she will be remembered as the 13 year-old Make-Up guru who inspired people to keep on swimming no matter what.

Take the time to read about her and watch her videos.  HERE are some of her videos as published on The Huffington Post. Please do take a moment to say a prayer for her family as they mourn the loss of this beautiful angel.

Keep Swimming....
Stay Inspired....

Dear NwaVic, To Tell or Not to Tell: I Cheated, I'm Not Sure Why

Dear NwaVic,

I'm wallowing in guilt. I've been in a serious relationship with my boyfriend for the past 3 years. We are happy and he has said he sees a future with me. In fact, I highly suspect he'll propose on my birthday next month. Last week, I went to California for my friend's wedding. My boyfriend couldn't go because his friend was also getting married that weekend in Virginia. I drank too much at the wedding and lost my judgment. Fast forward to 5am sunday morning when I woke up in bed with one of the groomsmen and 3 missed calls from my boyfriend. I love my boyfriend and I can't understand why I did this to him. Now I'm not sure if I should tell him or not. Please help.


Dear Shameful,

Thank you writing This is serious and I had to scratch my head for a bit. Hmm are you sure you actually slept with the groomsman since you said just "woke up" next to him? Maybe you should ask him exactly how you got there. If you did sleep with him, your body should've and would've told you.

This is the thing; I think the first step is to figure out why you did what you did.

Women cheat for a number of reasons. Some cheat because they are missing passion or something else in the relationship. Some cheat because they get bored in the relationship.  Some cheat for revenge. Some cheat because they secretly desire to explore their options and don't want to be monogamous until they've decided there's nothing better out there. Some cheat just because they have an unquenchable desire to be sexual with more that one person. Some cheat just for fun; the excitement of a new fling can be intoxicating.

Then there's the most plausible reason for your cheating, some cheat because they are human, AND acted irresponsibly by putting themselves in a bad situation. How? you may ask. You drank too much when you knew you didn't have a friend or boyfriend with you to keep tabs on you. You must've been attracted to this groomsman or half-hoped for it to happen to allow yourself be this wasted. (Unless he drugged you). No one is exempt from being attracted to someone else, even after they've been married for years and are head over heels in love with their significant other. It's what you do with it, that counts.

After you've sorted out the "why", you'll know if you're likely to be a repeat offender.

Next, you have to weigh your options in black and white. I wish I could tell you what to do but you know yourself, your relationship and boyfriend more than I do so I'll paint both the bright and gloomy pictures for both.

First option: You tell him and you tell him why. The bright side is that a solid relationship is built on honesty and understanding. The gloomy part is that you have to be prepared to accept that after you tell him, there may be no relationship at all.  Won't he be hurt? He might even break up with you, right? And if he stays, won't it dent your "closeness" and trust?

Second option: You don't tell him. This can work only if you're sure you have quit the affair as a one-nightstand/mistake and won't do it again. The bright side? You spare his feelings and maintain your relationship, at least on his part. Because on your part, it'll never be the same, right? Some say the punishment of cheating on someone you love is living with the guilt and that telling them will only hurt them. The gloomy side? Can you live with it? Won't you continue to wallow in guilt? Also, isn't there the possibility that someone saw you leave with him and may tell? If he finds out one day, won't he be mad at you for cheating AND hiding it from him? Also, won't carrying such a secret by yourself can dent your transparency in the relationship?

Lastly, what would you want him to do if he were in your shoes? When you find the answer to these questions, as only you could, you'll find the answer to your dilemma. Whatever you do, the most important step is to be honest with yourself.

Best of Luck!


*Email with any issues, concerns, questions, suggestions for a prompt and neutral response/advice. :-)

Monday, July 8, 2013

Standing Still: The Story of an Unorthodox Igbo Girl

I’ve been struggling for a while about whether this post can find a place in this space. In the wake of the recent “win” for the gay community in California, I figured, it could. This letter isn’t a typical “Dear NwaVic” letter because the writer doesn’t need my advice. It's important for me to make it clear that neither my opinion nor my values matter here. She just wants the world to know her “journey”….to know that her struggle is real and that she’d be “straight/normal” if she could. So, I decided to give her a forum. Here you go:

Dear NwaVic:
         I knew “something” was “wrong” with me early. The earliest memory I remember is when my mom made me join ballet and brownies and I was very upset because I wanted to join boy scouts and karate club instead. I’ve always hated dresses. My mom would give me nightgowns but I preferred to wear my brother’s pajamas. I was about eight when I first had any kind of attraction. I noticed a girl. 
At that age I didn't even know what sex was, but I was drawn to her. 
She looked like Angelina Jolie and she had the most amazing mouth
 and eyes. 
 Funny thing is, it never felt was all so innocent

. All this time, I didn't even know what I was doing or feeling. It was like an instinct


By the time I was nine, I had another girl crush


It was a pretty girl from delta in my 5th grade class

. Nothing happened between us but I suffered in silence. 

Then I moved on to secondary school and guys started to notice me despite my flat chest. 

 I had no interest in boys yet. But I found myself crushing on the senior girls
. I thought their bodies were amazing, and I found myself wishing I could just hold their hand

. But I thought the feeling was nothing...just normal


Even when I grew older and girls started noticing me too, and hitting on me

, I was so clueless and naïve. 

One time, my brother fell for this one girl, who unfortunately was more interested in me

. She gave me a Valentine's Day present. 

And like the good sister I was, I lied about it, because i didn't want to hurt his feelings

. One of the hardest things I've ever had to do. 
I said it was from some guy; hid the card and gave him the goodies


I was thirteen when I started to realize I seemed to be the only one in this predicament

 because I realized (consciously this time unlike before) that I started liking girls too while everyone I knew around me liked boys. I tried to fit in so I started “liking” boys because that seemed like the "normal" thing to do

. I even dated one

. Then another. I was in jss3 (9th grade) and he was in ss3

 (12th grade) at the time. I couldn't even bring myself to kiss him.  I always just froze

. We dated a year and never even as much as kissed. But with girls, I would fantasize about kissing them all the time. Even though it came to me much easier, I suppressed it. 

Until my ss2 (11th grade), when a new student was assigned to my hostel. The second she walked into my room, everything changed

. We hit it off instantly. We'd talk for hours, sometimes late into the night, and we were quite close

. At this point, I had resigned to being “normal”. Sometimes, girls would act all shy around me. They’d often say things like "feels like there's really a boy here", "I wish you were a guy, I would totally date you"

, and "you'd be the perfect guy". 

But I just thought it was because I was a tomboy, so I'd just laugh about it

 and not even think twice on it. 

 But this girl, the way she looked at me

. Sometimes, I swear it was like I was the only person in the room

. And she was so gorgeous, mixed race, pretty as heck. 

But we were friends, even though I was insanely attracted to her

, I figured I could ignore it like I'd been doing all those years

 and never have to worry about it. Even when I’d catch her stealing glances at me. Till one night, I went to the balcony to watch the rain

 and she came out and joined me. I didn't even know she was awake because everyone was sleeping. We started talking, my back was to the wall, and then somehow she ends up leaning against me. I freaked me out and went off. The next day, we had fallen asleep talking. She woke me up and kissed me. 

 That night changed my life’s course. It was like fireworks had gone off in my body. After that night, I just avoided her. 

I couldn't look her in the face or talk to her. I would hide when I saw her coming. I was just trying to make sense of it

. She was the first girl to get me to put down my walls.
This couldn’t be right. I was scared of who I would become. It felt like I was losing my defenses. 

Every time I looked at her, I would feel them crumbling down

. For the first time, I couldn't suppress it. I was so confused. 

Needless to say, she terrified me

 because I was drawn to her. 

She finally confronted me about it, and I tried telling her it was a mistake, and that we should put it behind us. She just looked at me calmly the whole time until I finished my long speech then she said, “well it wasn’t a mistake for me”. 

There are few moments in my life that have made me as speechless as that one.
I knew I was lost from that point on, because not only did she make me feel things I'd never experienced before, I had feelings for her

, which had never really happened to me. We dated secretly till I graduated. 

 We were like a real couple

, arguments and all. She was like my best friend, and lover rolled into one

. When I was away from her it was like torture…like a painful emptiness I couldn't explain, especially when we went home for the holidays. 

I couldn't wait for school to start, so I could come back to her.  And for the first time, in my life I couldn't tell my brother who I was in love with. I had to suffer in silence until we got back, and as soon as I saw her, I felt complete again. 

Anyways, it wasn’t till I got to university, that I first heard anything about what being gay was. The whole time I never know there was even a word for anything I was doing

 and I was so confused, because I'd felt that way my whole life, for as long as I could remember. 

So to hear it was a "sin" and hear all these horrible, derogatory things about it was like a gun to my heart

. I know I didn't make myself that way

. How could it be wrong, when it was pretty much the most normal and genuine thing I'd ever felt? 

Regardless, I tried dating guys in an attempt to do the right thing and figure out my confusion.
In my attempt to become “normal” again, I had sex with a guy a few times, but it was horrible

 and I ended up feeling even worse than I did before

. I felt like it wasn't working

 and there was something wrong with me. The spark just wasn't there, despite the amount of times I tried. 

Unlike with girls, being with guys took so much effort. I believed I was going to hell and I hated myself. I fasted and prayed like crazy...never prayed so much in my life

 for God to take the gay away. But I still found myself thinking about it all the time, even when I was with my boyfriend, at the time. It affected me so badly, because I didn't really have anyone to talk to about it at the time, so I had to deal with it on my own

I was afraid, scared and confused

. Why would God make me a certain way, and others another way? Why would he put something in me that he knew would send me to hell

 and refuse to remove it from me even as hard as I prayed and cried and begged

 him to? I didn't understand it because its not like I was influenced by the stereotypical "causes of homosexuality"; I didn't attend an all girl's school and I didn't grow up with older brothers to inspire me to want to be like them. In fact, my father wasn't even around when I was growing up. 

         In my attempt to make sense of it all, since being the way I am is a sin, I considered marrying a man  but then I don't trust that I won't be adulterous, which in itself a sin. In fact, even if I never act on it, merely being attracted to girls and thinking about adultery would be a sin, right? Because that would mean I'm committing a sin in my heart. Even if I married a man who accepted me the way I am and allowed me to step out, that'll be a sin according to the Bible. So, why torture myself and a husband for the rest of my life and still be sinning? I was really confused and depressed. I developed sleeping problems and a bad eating disorder

. My depression started affecting my school work

Thank God for my good friend who I eventually opened up to. She helped me see

 that there was nothing wrong with me. I was just different, and that's okay. 

The problem was, that up until that point, I'd never really thought about it that way. 

I was acting out of fear and panic. But then I sat down and really did some thinking back to my childhood and to everything I'd ever really known. I started to put the pieces together

. I then began to see that the signs were already there, from the day that I could walk

. Some kids do have a very strong sense of who they are, even at a very young age

. But society, culture and all these things played a huge part in my case, so I didn't figure myself out until much later. 

 Eventually I came out to my brother who accepted me. But I can’t say the same for my mother and sister. 

I’ve really been through a lot with this “burden”. There were days when I thought I would never see through the darkness, but even today, I find my strength in learning to let go day by day, and most importantly to accept myself.

Stay Inspired.....