May ‘20

Writing May’s monthly gratitude list was difficult. My anger loathed the process of finding joy through thanksgiving. However, I encouraged myself to lean on Alex Elle’s prompt to accommodate dualities by “looking at the the things that hurt, heal and challenge us with a different/dual lens” and come up with at least 10 highlights from May.

  1. Three of my sisters finished their degree, IGCSE exams and first year of university respectively! Virtual learning is not easy and I am so proud of how they worked with such discipline and consistency to achieve this in the middle of a pandemic!
Us after the Africa Day Benefit Concert! 🔥🔥🔥

2. Reading and discussing Chapter 5: OUR BODIES, OURSELVES : Reproductive Rights of Feminism is for Everybody by Bell Hooks with my Feminist theory book club. We are on chapter 7 and every discussion is so so so good but that one especially was so liberating!

3. Getting clearer direction for this Chebet Naserian blog. I moved from the stories, reflections and reviews of an Afrikan Womxn : People, Travel, Art and Temple Work to Laying out my temple work and love for people as an Afrikan Womxn. This was made possible by long discussions with my sister friends and many reflections. It was such a freeing moment that also saw to May being my most consistent blogging month yet!

4. Giving myself permission to get angry. I stifle my anger and have it come out as passive aggression and anxiety. That is why this was such a freeing realisation that I could get angry not just at systems of oppression but also at their manifestations in my personal life. Feeling the anger allowed me to move to action in instances where I had learnt to stay silent and just soldier on.

5. Access to and time to read and reflect on racism, classism and sexism. Work that was often relegated to the sidelines is now at the centre of my purpose. It did not have to take another harrowing murder of a black person caught on camera to bring us to this point. Nevertheless I am grateful for all the work that is available to help me unlearn the ways in which I am complicit to the very same systems that cause me more harm than good.

6. The conversations with my sister friends which have also been my lifeline. I feel so blessed that I have people to have deep meaningful conversations with. People who hold space for me. People who enrich my life with the depth of their wisdom. People who share their lives with me as I do with them.

7. My Afrika Day photo shoot and the joy that came with creating content for that week. It was in that moment that I knew I don’t want to ever stop creating such affirming authentic vulnerable content ever again. I am going to fight for this dream, whatever forms it takes.

8. The birthdays of my three favourite mamas. my gogo, my Aunty and my sister friend. Reflecting on the ways they have contributed to my welfare was awesome. I wish them long life and good health. I am also more encouraged than ever to be the joy in their lives that they are in mine.

9. We shaved my baby bro’s hair for the first time and had a name blessing ceremony. That was pretty special. He also turned 5 months and he just gets more adorable by the day! Aaaaah!

Of course he is already a chocolate addict, what do you mean?😏

10. Celebrating Mother’s Day. This has been the most time I have spent with my mothers. Every day I get to truly see them for the brilliant women that they are and oh what a beautiful sight to behold! More on that on this post.

Oof! That was hard but also easy. Easy because counting blessings is a process that multiplies itself. Hard because what I really want to be grateful for at the end of the day is the end of systemic racism, sexism and classism. Because ultimately all these little joys do not have their full meaning against the continued injustice. May June add to not only my personal gratitude list but also the world’s.

I know it might be too late to say this but I think you get why this took a week longer🙃

Happy New Month!