Do you have a story… ? 

Do you have a story of courage & bravery overcoming an illness or accident that required major or life changing surgery? 

We’d love to hear it and share it on our brand new blog ‘Life After Surgery…’

Submissions are open, please email lifeaftersurgery@yahoo.com for further information.
#storytelling #writer #lifeaftersurgery #healing #transformation #creativewriting #theraphy #blogging #blogger #overcommer #bloggingcommunity #writersofinstagram

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‘When healing yourself isn’t enough…’

In September, I had a total hysterectomy with bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy which was the total removal of my uterus and cervix, however, during the procedure, it was discovered I had endometriosis, a condition where cells like ones in the lining of the womb are found elsewhere in the body. Neither I or my surgeon knew I had this and it resulted in the removal of my left ovary and fallopian tube.

I first discovered I had gynae problems after miscarrying in 2015, the same day I got a positive result, was the same day I began bleeding. Deep down I knew this was probably my last ever pregnancy and it was more difficult because I was with someone who I wanted to have a child with. I felt like a failure, this wasn’t the first time I questioned my fertility, I could get pregnant, I just couldn’t carry and there was always a plausible reason, my age, defective eggs and stress. I spoke candidly to my doctor, who for the first time delved into my gynae background ‘Had I miscarried in the past?’, YES, ‘Were my periods heavy?’, YES, ‘Painful?’, YES, ‘Problematic?’, YES, ‘Something doesn’t feel right’, she said, as she referred me to the gynaecologist. I nodded in agreement, something didn’t.

For the first time, I went through my, family history, pregnancies, painful periods, and all that stuff ‘down there’ as my mum likes to say. Answering the gynaecologist’s questions made me realise that despite doing tons of spiritual work; steaming an assortment of herbs for optimum womb muliebrity, attending courses on releasing womb trauma, kegel breathing, tapping into my pussy power, I had never had a full physical gynae check-up. Hearing the words ‘you have fibroids’ stung liked I’d been slapped in the face. Both my mum and maternal aunt had fibroids, as did my six parental aunties of which three have had hysterectomies and more worryingly my parental grandmother died at 36 of cervical cancer and we hadn’t even touched on cousins and siblings. Tests revealed multiple fibroids spread across my womb including one measuring 4cm on my left side. A range of treatments was discussed and I initially went for gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogues, to trick my body into a menopausal state, starving and hopefully shrinking the fibroids. However, due to my consciousness and many spiritual awakenings, I felt it would be best to heal myself naturally. I changed my diet and drank lots of green juices and bathed in selected yoni herbs. I maintained the mantra that as a Woman of Colour, I wasn’t going down the route of big pharma or early surgery, NO! And for a year or so I was good, life was hectic but my ‘down there’ was ok.

However, over time my periods got progressively worse, for the first three days, the pain was excruciating and I flooded and leaked everywhere I sat. I read or heard somewhere that sanitary protection could also be a problem, so I opted for a healthy and spiritually conscious moon cup. I drank Yogi Woman’s Tea and listened to carefully selected womb music. My bathroom gave Azealia Banks a run for her money when I tried to take the thing out, I could have easily slain several goats and possibly a chicken with the amount of blood splatter left behind. So, I went back to the paracetamol, Always Finesse and Tampax Super plus with a sense of shame, although I wasn’t sure if it was internal or external. I used mainstream products because they were cheap and accessible. Natural health products, unfortunately, were not as accessible and somewhat time-consuming. Had I had the luxury of living in Bali, with endless resources then maybe there would be no issue but I didn’t. Buying regular products meant avidly defending myself against my natural moon cup, napkin, sponge wearing sisters. Clearly, I was of ‘little faith’. In the Black Community, our wombs are our everything, they’re how we identify ourselves as women, we give birth to creation; we are GOD and we are either having children or priming our wombs for conception to produce the fruit of the Black Love union. Sometimes, I’d get this knot in my stomach, as a head-wrapped, twenty-something sister preached away at me with her perfect complexion, perfect teeth, perfect locs and perfect womb. I was becoming resentful bitter and extremely…angry.

Fast forward to 2017 and I wake up on a Saturday morning with pain on my left side, wincing around, I collapse on my bedroom floor. Fifteen hours, two x-rays, a series of blood tests and lots of prodding later, I’m told it wasn’t surgical, I was constipated (laugh here). This most likely due to a gynaecological ‘issue’, caused by fibroids. A scan revealed that my largest fibroid had grown from 4 cm to 6.7 and two more had developed measuring 5 cm each. They were all on my left side, causing constipation and anaemia. I was referred to my GP. I remember walking into her surgery and bursting into tears, that defeated feeling overwhelmed me, ‘how had the fibroids grown? Why were more developing?‘. I did everything right, I ate right, I meditated, I yoni steamed my soul away, I did yoni rituals to clear out all that bad energy, I did the nine sacred gateways, I even sat in baths of herbs and hope, praying that they would magically rectify years of unknown damage and trauma. My GP suggested that surgery would be in my best interest and as she booked my surgical consultation I felt that familiar kick of defeat. I’d listened to lectures and theories on why Black women were the targets for this DIS-EASE and how we could heal ourselves and our wombs; from Dr Jewel Pookum, Queen Afua to the awesome Dr Delbert Blair.

I knew that the truth was linked to our collective consciousness, diet and clearing of historical trauma passed down from generation to generation. Having been on just about every Hotep committee going I knew the causes of destruction of the Black woman and her womb; sexual abuse, rape, abandonment, sickness, oppression, discrimination, processed foods, lack of spirituality to white supremacy and all the whacky conspiracy theories including the robbing of our body parts for research purposes on why we are so enduring and magical. My mental chatter was singing like a Gospel Choir ‘NO! don’t let these wypipo, steal your body parts, this is the westernized way of doing things, you CAN heal yourself where you won’t even need the operation’. I spoke to a few friends and they immediately prescribed, Milk thistle supplements, a raw vegan diet, regular use of Dong Quai and Black Cohosh, with orders that I must not give into these White doctors, as ‘what did they really know about ‘us melaninated Black Women?’. Shame sat like a perched monkey on my shoulder for even considering something like surgery, so, I did a new moon ritual and manifested a pain-free vision for myself. My next period was even more vicious than the last, this time I spoke to my aunties, who were like ‘Sara, do what is right for you!’.

My consultation was bleak, my womb was the size of someone at sixteen weeks gestation. I gathered that when my hairdresser gave me a ‘congratulations you’re expecting’ salutation. My consultant and I talked through options, I kept saying I just want the cycle that I was now living in to stop. No more bloodbaths, with bits of my insides floating around, looking like a scene from Carrie. And I wanted to wear white with confidence, with no fear I might leave a sigil of my holiness behind, and as it was likely that the fibroids had created fertility issues, there was no physical reason for me to keep the…sac. I began to disassociate myself from my womb, I felt betrayed. I had my surgery scheduled for late November, I planned to mentally and emotionally prepare for it by coming offline and cleansing. Honestly, I’d been harbouring stuff for years and it just so happened that it took up residency in my womb and when it outgrew it, it took over my other reproductive organs, killing my hopes & dreams softly from inside. I’d accepted and acknowledged, the past for the hundredth, hundredth time but still, I was stuck. I got a call from my surgeon, ‘Sara’ he said, ‘I have a cancellation and I would like to get you in as soon as possible’. I put the phone down not really knowing what I just agreed I got a call from my surgeon, But I knew enough was enough, I knew this wasn’t just a physical operation something spiritual was going on too. I couldn’t fix or fight away, this was transformational healing, me surrendering and letting go of control and allowing the universe to do what it needed to do. I woke up from the operation, feeling liberated, free, unashamed and untangled, I don’t mind if I’m judged for surgery I did was right for me.

 

The Art of Ghosting with Susan Obehioye

MercyfulGrace

​To those of you who think it’s ok to be VERY BLUNT and without tact.Just know one thing. When people start avoiding you. Please don’t make a fuss.

Yes it’s fine to be blunt .. but sometimes think about how the other person would feel. Apply wisdom in communicating especially when it’s a sensitive subject.
I will give you a few examples …. I had a friend who felt she could give out criticism so easily.

But hated it when she got it as good as she gave it.One day I just realised I didn’t need to deal with all her… “I tell it as it is”.
Oh and another friend who felt she could just say it straight to me or anyone if she was not happy and would not expect you to stand up for yourself.

I made jenny’s hair! Jenny was naughty so I cut all her…

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Leigh Anne Tuohy, Racism, and the White Saviour Complex

Excellent article exposing White Saviour complex and narcissism.

The Belle Jar

Leigh Anne “That Nice Woman Sandra Bullock Played In The Blind Side” Tuohy recently posted the following picture and caption on her Facebook and Instagram accounts:

10513495_789847224421069_4829368822853743530_n

We see what we want! It’s the gospel truth! These two were literally huddled over in a corner table nose to nose and the person with me said “I bet they are up to no good” well you know me… I walked over, told them to scoot over. After 10 seconds of dead silence I said so whats happening at this table? I get nothing.. I then explained it was my store and they should spill it… They showed me their phones and they were texting friends trying to scrape up $3.00 each for the high school basketball game! Well they left with smiles, money for popcorn and bus fare. We have to STOP judging people and assuming and pigeon holing people!…

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Exhibit B is one man’s desire to exhibit racism and the rise of Neo Liberalism

Photo: Mike PeoplePictures
Photo: Mike PeoplePictures

Usually, I can put pen to paper about most subjects, especially those I feel really passionate about. However, I literally haven’t been able to write about Exhibit B because it was simply too overwhelming. I wish in this moment that I could intellectualize and do word gymnastics about the whole Exhibit B experience but I can’t so I will just write as though I am having a conversation with you, and hopefully, you will see why it was so important and why we must continue the right against racism in all mediums. I couldn’t make sense of the hostility towards us as protesters, I felt like those in favour were shouting “what is wrong with you?”, the issue was me or us we “misunderstood” we “didn’t get it”we needed to see it experience it”.  Now Bailey laments over the images published…erm, mate you had YouTube video’s going back a year ago, but like Kermit, that is none of my business! All I do know is 43,000 people (The UK and France petitions combined) totally understand that Exhibit B was pure indulgence in the massaging of white conscience. As with institutional oppression, the  victims became the victimized, not Bailey’s desire to chain and shackle Black People in cages, masquerading as anti-racist art. We were the issue, with our “pro-censorship”, “anti-freedom of speech” selves. “Trying to still the voice of Black (unemployed) actors” and silencing “a world renowned artist” whose art was “incredibly important” as to who this work is important to? is still a BIG QUESTION!!!! We were “a hysterical unruly mob”, yet  in July just one month before #boycottthehumanzoo, the Fringe Festival cancelled an Israeli show due to boycotts, they were not called “an unruly mob” or “violent protesters” no, it was pleasantly reported about, like business as usual… moving on.

Anti-racism protesters lock arms outside the Vaults in London in opposition to ‘Exhibit B’. 23 September 2014. Photograph: © Thabo Jaiyesimi.
Anti-racism protesters lock arms outside the Vaults in London in opposition to ‘Exhibit B’. 23 September 2014. Photograph: © Thabo Jaiyesimi.

Yes we were successful in our protest, it was the Barbican that decided to cancel the show not the protesters, we simply exercised our human right to protest, and protest we did! We did loudly and proudly with our spirituality and our drums, we called on our ancestors, in unity, it was a beautiful experience. Not one arrest, no criminal damage, we let our disgust and offence be known, and I would most definitely do it again. Oh yes the mainstream media tried to make out we were “violent angry thugs”, the Barbican decided the reasons they cancelled were due to public safety, which was a lie. No worries we came, we conquered and that was good enough for us…but it did not stop there. Suddenly we now had to defend ourselves against the new racist the Neo-Liberal, and trust me the Neo-Liberal can be both Black and White, the person who snipes and declares “they (us) don’t speak for me”.  a well known author who proudly hold an MBE called the supporters “Disciples of Sara Myers”, the 23,000 people who signed the petition in the UK simply did not have their own mind to see racism for what racism is? Really? I think the for the most part, many saw that unnatural desire to flaunt white privilege in the face of others,  like the Emperor with his new clothes were willing to say openly “he has no clothes on” Those Neo-liberals defending Exhibit B were those who had vested interests and ladder kickers who did not want us to upset the status quo, but that is what we came to do and that is what we did.

Photo: Facebook
Photo: Facebook

The success of the campaign against Exhibit B was not in our protesting alone, it was in our unity, our unity was about our collective struggle, the years of systematic structural  and institutional racism, over and over again, angry at being told  what racism is and is not, by those who are unwilling to accept it, when we challenge it, to repeatedly tell us “it’s not racist” but when asked what is racism is, they cannot answer, they cannot find the words to express it because its alien to them, they disconnected from it,  so they resort to “you are uneducated”you misunderstand”…basically love, “you are the problem”. Well, I tell you this, if it feels like racism, then it is racism! And Exhibit B felt racist, so therefore, it is. I cannot give Brett Bailey much air time. He is a white privileged man who cannot face his critics head on, but prefers to hide behind Black People, using them to tell his supposed anti-racist story, in chains and shackles. He gets dramatic in his pontificating of anti-racism, breaks down on social media, laments on how important his work is for breaking down barriers, then turns around and watches from the safety of his hotel room, as Black women and men get beaten and tear gassed by  fascist french police…but hey he say’s “the show goes on”. He is disgusting the most vilest of men I have ever had the displeasure of knowing exists, he is the new breed of racist the Neo-Liberal and this racist is most proficient in racism. If you are preaching an anti-racist message and you see real life people (not actors) experience the brutality and humiliation you claim to be about breaking down and all you can say is “…And I wish I knew that the man or woman who shed blood on the tarmac of St Denis on Friday night for what he or she stood for is okay”. but stand determined in your RIGHT that YOUR show must go on, the show that thousands of people have petitioned against, shed blood for, stood up for, and not even consider standing down…then I see you, we see you and our ancestors see you.

Photo: Thabo Jaiyesimis
Photo: Thabo Jaiyesimis

After seeing the pictures and videos of the protest in France. I’m heartbroken,  I see that is not about art, this is about Power, White Power and White Privilege and its arrogance and pompousness, we don’t think its racist and we are going to show. This show is being backed by governmental officials and leading academics, the petition was started by John Mullen, Historian at Val de Marne University, an academic who is now being insulted in the press. Why? Because he gets’s that this provocative exhibition is neither unique or brave and that putting black people in cages and having white people look at them, then dressing it up with fancy arty farty words is just pseudo quasi-intellectual babble trying to hide the monster that is it. I had the honor of being asked to take part in a director’s Q & A of  the documentary  “Concerning Violence” directed by Swedish, Göran Hugo Olsson. The contrast between his work and that of Bailey’s are poles apart, here we have a man who openly welcomes criticism of his work, doesn’t shy away from those difficult or challenging questions, who is totally aware of his own White Privilege, yet aims to tell a story of Black liberation with sensitivity working with some of our great leaders in freedom fighting, such as Angela Davis in “The Black Power Mixtape”, it is us who tell the story, he simply directs it, records it, shows it and in a world where White Supremacy doesn’t want to Black narrative or voice heard, I have to respect him using his own privilege to platform our voice. 

10636150_10152586520486775_973032485051712076_nYou might say he is doing exactly the same thing “telling our narrative” …No, he’s not. He’s not relishing in enslavement, he’s not dancing in delight in the pain and suffering of millions of people. No, on the contrary, he uses archive footage and the beautiful voice of Ms. Lauryen Hill, as a backdrop for the excellent work of Frantz Fanon, to demonstrate Afrikan resistance to colonialism. It is there where, Bailey fails so miserably he sees our resistance as a “misunderstanding about his work” not realizing he is doing the very thing, he preaches that he is against. He hell bent on projecting his own fantasy onto us and if we object it is because we are “fascists with dreadlocks”.

Photo: Thabo Jaiyesimi
French Protesters. Photo: Thabo Jaiyesimi

I stand with solidarity with France in their right to protest against Exhibit B. Brett Bailey must not be allowed to idly get away with his unnatural desire to play out his perverse deviant sexual fantasy of racist bondage and call it art, to want men and women to be turned on by their own guilty masturbation in their voyeuristic delight in Black pain and suffering by “gazing” at the horrors of the atrocities of times past, whilst completely ignoring the pain and suffering going on right under their noses. If Exhibit B is the champion and flagship of free speech, you can keep it, to date a staggering 43,000 people have spoken out against it and that wipes out all of those in support of it. What about their right to speak out, aren’t they being silenced? I would rather stand silent, if my speech impinges on another’s right to  liberty, free from  social injustice, discrimination and oppression. I want to see a life where we all have equal equality. A life where free speech is not just extended to those with power and with money, or those who colour is a token to an elite and privileged club. No I would rather say NOTHING AT ALL, if it cost my free speech is the beating of Black people in 2014, let my free speech that cost a nation of people their rights, die with me.