Don’t worry, be happy!

This week has been very busy and I have not had the time to sit and write…okay that’s just an excuse for being a slacker especially since we had one day off (Happy Independence Nigeria!!)) and we have a long weekend ahead woohooo! As most bloggers/creative people, I believe I am in my season of having a ‘writers’ block’, you know that time that you can’t figure out what to write or the right words can’t seem to get to your fingers from your brain…what I’m trying to say is that I am sorry for dulling this week (I guess I should have said so from the start)

2014 has been an amazing year so far, almost all my friends (male and female) have gotten engaged with some getting married and I am usually the first one to scream for joy and post pictures on all social networking sites I can think of including picking the perfect hashtag for the wedding (because obviously ‘hashtaging’ is the new black). To show support, I have actually spent quite a bit buying aso-ebi this year despite my rant and I still have 5 more to buy before the year is over (that’s if no one else gets engaged this long weekend and sets their date in December). But the real highlight of my year so far was last weekend when I got the news of the engagement of a friend who means a lot to me.

It is a highlight because a few years ago we became closer to encourage each other in this journey of life. Through ups, downs, heartaches and my occasional mood swings, we still found a way to encourage each other and found solace in our relationship with God. Even though we hardly see each other we have successfully built a bond like sisters that some days I attempt dodging her so she doesn’t sense that something may be wrong with me….but this post is not about her (I’m yet to figure out what it is about actually)

Recently, a friend of mine said ‘It’s amazing how you celebrate the happiness of your friends…it’s rare’ those weren’t his exact words but it went something like that and I realized that I had spent almost 5 minutes gushing about my friend’s engagement, what an amazing guy she was getting married to and how excited I was. Again this is not about the engagement or my friend.

After that statement, I realised that it is actually rare for women to celebrate their fellow women especially single ones when their friends get engaged. There’s always that moment of silence after the good news, that period of ‘Why not me God?’ or the ‘Na wa o’ which often leads to some form of animosity and subtle jealousy at the engaged friend. If not managed right, it could lead to an obvious rivalry which leads to backbiting and remarks on the size of the rock, the authenticity of the diamonds to analysing the husband to be and finally evaluating the wedding if it was a great one or just average or quite recently, if it was a ‘money miss road wedding.’

I guess what I am trying to say is that we women need to learn to encourage each other and be happy for one another. Whether it is a promotion at a job or owning a successful business or getting married to their life partner, it is important that we learn to celebrate one another and be genuinely happy not looking for loopholes and reasons to downplay the happiness of the other. It doesn’t matter if the man she is getting married to is your taste or not, all that should matter is that she is happy. And if you happen to be a bridesmaid, please don’t whine about what you are going to wear and how it doesn’t suit your body type, it’s not about you, it’s about your friend the bride-to-be so suck it up and be happy in the most horrendous looking way you could ever be.

At the end of the day, the institution of marriage is not a competition, no one is taking attendance of who comes first and who finishes last. Forget the pressure, forget the ticking biological clock, dance your behind off at every wedding and enjoy each day of being single because you won’t be for long.

Love

P.s – You should see my friend’s rock sha…dang! it’s blinging!! And I promise to be back with a bang next week 🙂

Oh and this weekend be sure to check out the stage play MYOPIA by Chidinma Uzodike, which will be staged on the 5th of October 2014 at Swiss International, D’Palms Airport, Ajao Estate, Off International Airport road.

MYOPIA, is about a young girl’s determination to overcome family and societal discrimination against the female gender.

MYOPIA, is about a young girl’s determination to overcome family and societal discrimination against the female gender.

Do you see Single in Gidi on the printed backdrop? 🙂

We’ve got mail: He won’t marry me until I lose weight

I don’t seem to get emails a lot but when I do I get very excited…(sad I know). Anyway here is an email from Miss Jay and as usual she needs our thoughts and input

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dear miss gidi

Hello Miss Gidi,

I really like your blog and that you come across as a very strong and opinionated woman in this our Lagos that can bring you down. I have a concern and I would like to share it with you and other readers of your blog.

I’m 29, Igbo and the first girl out of four daughters that my parents have, my parents live in Imo but I live in Lagos with 2 of my sisters while the last one is in University. In the last year, my younger sisters have gotten engaged but my parents have refused they get married before me which has brought a lot of quarrel in the family. I have tried to convince my parents to let them get married but that has not been successful because they consider it to be a disgrace on the family. I know you are probably wondering how this is possible in 2014 but this is my reality.

I’ve been dating my current boyfriend for about 5 years now and he has said he wants to marry me. He’s a nice guy but has a bad temper which has led to a few quarrels, he never hits me because I will never tolerate it but sometimes he makes me feel bad about myself through his words because he says the meanest things without thinking. I used to complain a lot but I have gotten used to it now and I just ignore him when he says some things because he may not mean them.

About a year ago, when I brought up the issue of marriage, he said the reason why he has not proposed was because I was fat. That became the beginning of our problems and now he is always quick to call me fat whenever we have an issue. For my birthday he bought a dress 2 sizes smaller (I am a UK 14 now) and said I have until December to be that size before he proposes.

To be honest, I have tried all the diets and none of them seem to work. When I lose weight, our relationship flourishes, then he would call me beautiful names and take me out to hang out with his friends and family but when I add anything back, he gets upset and starts avoiding taking me out. I wasn’t always this big, I was a size 10 when we started dating but taking birth control pills has contributed to my weight gain over the years.

Sometimes I am unhappy because it’s not like he’s exactly an Idris Elba himself, he has developed a pot belly but has the audacity to tell me to lose weight or he won’t marry me after all these years.

I know this may seem like too much but I don’t know what to do and I can’t start from scratch again in the dating world.

Help

Miss Jay

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Usually I have a response but this time I asked for Miss Jay’s permission to publish her email on the blog without telling her my opinion. To be honest, it is a tough one and I can somewhat relate to her situation but I want to know what you think of her man asking her to lose weight before proposing or do you think there is more to it ?

Use the comment box below and let’s discuss 🙂 

If you want to reach out to me or share your own story on the blog, you can send an email to singleingidi@yahoo.com or follow SingleinGidi on Facebook, twitter and instagram 

MY ASO-EBI RANT

We are barely through with the first quarter of 2014 and I now have a total of 10 weddings to attend…not 1, not 2 but 10; make that 9 because I attended the first one last weekend (that’s a whole different story). Before you think I am the wedding Grinch, let me state that I am actually very happy for all my friends that are getting married and I am also tapping into the ‘anointing’ of finding love and the happily ever after that comes with it. However, with weddings come expenses not just on the family but also on the friends of the couple like having to buy the wedding aso-ebi.

It would be unfair to assume everyone knows what the aso-ebi is so let me explain myself. Aso-Ebi is a Yoruba term, which literally translates to family cloth, as Aso means “cloth” and Ebi means “family.” Traditionally, aso-ebi was the fabric which members of the same family wore to identify themselves at events such as weddings and other ceremonies.  At a wedding, for example, members of the groom’s family would wear a particular aso-ebi fabric, while members of the bride’s family wore a different one. Through the years, the aso-ebi tradition has now become something for both friends and family and has spread across all tribes in Nigeria and maybe Africa.

Honestly, I don’t have a problem with buying aso-ebi but I have a problem with the pricing of these fabrics and the differentiation of non-asoebi wearers at any wedding.  In most cases, the family of the couple significantly increase the price of these fabrics with the motive of covering the wedding costs but where do you draw the line from adequate pricing to pure exploitation. Then at the weddings, non-asoebi wearers are treated as the rebellious friends with their presence almost insignificant to the big day

In the past, couples would be buried in gifts of all shapes and sizes but these days friends almost forget to bring gifts for the couple due to many reasons, one of them being the amount of money they may have spent prior to the wedding itself. As a friend of the bride, you are either paying for the bridal shower, or the bridesmaid’s dress or the often overpriced aso-ebi.  I mean after you may have spent a minimum 50,000 naira for a friend’s wedding, what else do you want to buy for them again? Call me cheap but mehn a lady works hard for her money and some of these things are over budget. Let’s not even talk about getting a make-up artist because these days amateur make-up does not cut it, getting new shoes, having your hair done or gele tied by a professional, or requesting custom-made jewellery to match your outfit. The total cost of only being a guest seems to be increasing with each wedding. If I had to spend 50,000 per wedding and with a total of 10 weddings in 2014, I am looking at almost 500,000 naira on just looking good at weddings that are not mine… that’s someone’s yearly salary o.

Gift for the bride’s first meal for her husband maybe?

I often wonder why there is so much hype about having aso-ebi or buying the aso-ebi of a friend when in most cases, the outfit is worn only once and left in the wardrobe for many months to years. Most times, I ask for the colours of the wedding and strategically get an outfit in that colour so I can always repeat it at a later date but the problem with that is when I get to these weddings, I am never identified as a friend of the couple and end up hustling for everything including small chops (imagine!)

On that note, even though I do not totally agree with the aso-ebi hype and overpricing, I am willing to buy if and when the aso-ebis make sense and to support my friend getting married. I must admit though, they make wedding pictures look really nice and rich.