I never thought my life would amount to anything. When I ran away to Mombasa to commit suicide I was done with life. 16 was my end. When that matatu hit me in town that May 5th 2005, I couldn’t believe I came out with no fracture, no blood clot. As hard as my head hit a metal rail I woke up in that hospital with it whole.
I see how people celebrate my depth; the words I speak or my writings. But most of you don’t know I’m living a borrowed life. You don’t know how cold those nights left me storying with prostitutes in Koinange Street. My only family at the time. The days I couldn’t stand the sight of my mother’s blood and tears when daddy came home a monster. The days I started writing poetry because I was wishing my dead sister would be alive to help me cry. I can’t be shallow even if I want to.
I’m quiet. When you’re a child of war you talk only when it’s necessary. You only get into arguments worth dying for. So long did it take me to find myself. The people who got hurt in the process I can barely count. Out here, everything is working to separate you from peace, from God. You meet human beings who act like they’ve got it together by how carelessly they afford to talk to you but when they’re alone, they’re dying to heal from their insecurities. They’re afraid to tell the world of their weaknesses. They boast of their knowledge and wouldn’t care to listen to your point of view without judgement.
But what is there to hide? The innocent children dying in Syria have not wronged anyone. They don’t know nothing about nuclear weapons. Their lives are in shambles. They can’t hide that. The children born in war in Central African Republic and DRC cannot hide their nakedness. They do not know a life of lies. But it’s easy to hide when the system gives you an illusion that you’ve been educated. You can argue in English and relay half truths to yourself because you have a job to keep and people to please. You don’t even live for yourself. You don’t live for anything.
And people tell you being expressive about your struggles is too emotional. But they’re dying with things to say. They want to tell their stories and be heard. Be understood.
I learnt there is nothing to lose for accepting who I am. For telling the world how I see God. Narrating my brokenness. If you look at this earth from afar, if you get away from it staring into space, the wonder that hits will remind you how small we are, yet so magical, so profound. We can meet each other’s souls and love. Being a follower of Jesus Christ has taught me being right is not the answer to this world’s problems, but putting people first. Before my needs. Before my understanding of things.
We come from very different places. Our ways are strange and mysterious. Our stories are what make us.
Standing from here looking back, it’s impossible I came this far. I can’t explain why God has kept me for this long. But you know, I’m thankful for all I’ve got as imperfect as I am. My two feet carry me to everywhere I wish to go. I’ve got little hair on my head but at least I’ve got a head. One that thinks for itself and makes conscious decisions. Not all of us come out of war alive. Some don’t heal from their insecurities.
I stopped arguing with people about God. I discovered how wrong it was, like mocking Him. You can’t explain to anyone what kind of Light you’ve got inside you if they can’t see your soul. There’s no point. It’s a place I wish for all humanity. All this mystery that engulfs us in the shape of a planet is enough not to get us fighting over anything. There’s only much we can ever say we understand of this place.
As tough as life continuously becomes, it’s different for those who have found their power and are using it to improve others; to teach and heal. For those whose lives are their best piece of art more than anything human beings have ever invented.
If you’ve been to the end
You never come back the same
From the mere fact that
You never thought you’d return.