Of Abortions And Victims

LOL. I am laughing because I wanted to start this post by saying I would resume blogging more frequently, but then I remembered that was the exact same way I started the last post, which was ages ago. So, let's just go with the flow. Shall we?

My post is going to be slightly controversial, but then again, is there something that isn't these days? About three to four weeks ago, some girls were rescued by the Nigerian army from a Sambisa  forest in Borno state, Nigeria. These girls were reportedly NOT the same girls from Chibok that had been missing for over a year. Now, from what I know, apart from the Chibok girls, no other children were declared abducted. Therefore, these children were not only missing, they were not even searched for. Thankfully, the good people of the Nigerian army found them. I'll be honest, I have not been particularly following that story, or any other, for that matter. One thing was for sure however, MANY of these girls were visibly pregnant. That means they were sexually abused while in hostage. I woke up yesterday morning and saw some tweets on Twitter that just did not sit well with me. Let's just say I was really confused.

They were tweets about whether or not these girls should have an abortion. From what I could deduce, it seemed like some people had called for the government to insist on a mandatory termination of the pregnancies. Some others thought that abortion is a sin and therefore should never be allowed, no matter the circumstance. In most cases, when I argue with certain people, I don't really care about their stance on the issue being discussed; my main focus is usually HOW they back that stance up; the reasons they give for their positions. It's a free world after all, and in most cases you are entitled to your opinion.

I thought and thought about this issue all morning yesterday, and I wondered, am I simply conforming or is this how I truly feel about this situation? Because honestly, people shove so many ideas down our throats these days, and conforming to the world has never been easier. But no, that's not what this was. This is not a prochoice or pro-life argument either. This is me being genuinely confused. Abortion is illegal in Nigeria, except when performed to save the life of the woman. But you and I know that we all know people who regularly have abortions. There are at least 760,000 abortions EVERY YEAR in Nigeria (Al Jazeera, 2013). But we are not here for statistics. Hypothetically (and this is a very unfounded assumption), one in every 10 persons arguing on Twitter yesterday knows someone who has had an abortion at some point or the other. Hypothetically.

I am a very black or white person, but I ask, is this not a grey area? Folks on Twitter said these pregnant victims should not be allowed to have an abortion because it is evil, a sin, and just wrong. I understand their argument. My confusion, however, stems from several questions I have: these girls, who were raped, assaulted, and left to starve, should they not be allowed to make these huge decisions themselves, of course with the help of their parents? On of the girls said, she was used as a sex machine throughout the abduction. I just wonder if the victims go ahead to have these children, what happens next? From the moment those kids were abducted, each one of them had her childhood snatched from her. How do you explain to a teenager who is probably already angry with the entire universe that it's not bad enough that she was traumatized, she is going to have to live with the product of that trauma for the rest of her life? Who is going to do these telling and explaining to the victims? How can people who I am sure are suffering from immense PTSD raise children successfully? Just ponder on these questions carefully.

While you are at it, if you were in the position of these girls, can you honestly say that given the same circumstances, you would in fact preserve the child? Actually, there is no way for you or I to understand what these children have gone through. Except of course you were randomly taken from your parents as a teenager by hostile men, and assaulted endlessly. If not, maybe we all should take a step back and keep quiet. None of us has a say in this.

My argument isn't really about what's right or wrong. It's not about whether abortion is right or wrong. In fact, my point is that this is not the time for such an argument. My point is that this is a very unusual circumstance and should be treated as such. We can't just go on social media, and harangue others about what is right or wrong in something we know absolutely nothing about. After all, even Jesus said, let he who has never sinned cast the first stones. The most important aspect of this decision should be those girls. They have suffered enough, and I think that whatever decision is made, it must be in their best interest.


P.S:
Nigeria begins with a brand new administration, headed by the General Buhari tomorrow. Gidddyyyyyyyyyyy! Expectant!!!!! Hopeful!!!!

Here's to change.
Here's to new beginnings.
Here's to a new Nigeria.

Cheers,
I

The Carousel Never Stops Turning

The end of April/beginning of May has been a whirlwind, so much that I just had to take a step back to figure out my priorities. Now that that's over, I may be back to my regular scheduling of blogging. Blogging really does help; sorta therapeutic.

So if you're a Grey's Anatomy fan, you would already know where I am going from the title of this post. If I got a dollar for every time that  phrase was mentioned in the two-hour episode of last Thursday, I'd have gone on this vacation now. For the rest of you non-Grey's fans, even if you live under the rock, you must know that two weeks ago, a major character was killed off the show. It sparked an outrage among fans, so much that some really jobless person started a petition to bring the character back. Some ninety thousand other jobless fellows actually signed the petition but that's a story for another day. Shonda Rhimes and her work ethics are also stories for another day. Anyway, the two-hour episode of last week was meant to show us how Meredith handled the death of her husband and father of her two (well, now three) children.

See, it irritates me when folks go "Oh get over yourselves. In real life death does not annouce itself, it just comes. Tragedies happen all the time..." HONEY, if I wanted to experience real life happenings, I don't need a T.V show for that. All I need to do is turn on the 11pm news or take a good look around me. Why do you think we watch T.V shows? We need to escape our realities once in a while. Let me tell you, life is messed up. We all know that. But for one person to lose her mother, sister, step-mother, one of her best-friends, her husband, be on a plane that crashed, drown, have her hand on a bomb in a chest cavity... in the space of 11 years is on a new LOW. I mean it was bad enough a neurosurgeon had to die while he was saving other people's lives, but to now find out after his death that the wife was pregnant? Shonda Rhimes is the real dark and twisty person, not Meredith. Still, life does happen.

So, what does the expression "The Carousel Never Stops Turning" mean? In the most basic form, it was a proverb the main character's mother, Ellis Grey used to explain  that life always goes on. Even when we lose the most important people in our lives, the carousel still keeps turning. A carousel is like a merry-go-round type thingy used in amusement parks.

The more I pondered on that sentence, the more sense it made to me. The recent demise of one half of a power couple I GREATLY admired, Sheryl Sandberg and Dave Goldberg just reiterated the meaning of the expression to me. Dave passed away very suddenly last week, while on vacation in Mexico. That and some other recent unfortunate happenings I can't really talk about here have convinced me how fragile life is. But besides the untimely demise of people, the more tragic situation is the loved ones they leave behind. They wouldn't know how to continue with life normally. I mean, they would want to, but then they would remember the emptiness a loved one left behind. It is indeed, in the words of Ellen Pompeo, learning to move on in the face of the impossible. I really empathize with people mourning because the world doesn't care to stop for just a millisecond, just because they are mourning a deep loss. The world just keeps moving, and going about its business like nothing happened.

This might even serve as a wake up call to the rest of us. While we struggle to achieve the optimal, it's always wise to remember to take a minute for ourselves. Whatever that may mean; relaxing, sleeping, laughing, hanging out, watching t.v...whatever at all. Because if we work ourselves to death, life moves on, unfortunately. Yes, you are the best at that job, but if you are not around, you will be replaced. It's just life. There's hardly anyone to blame for this carousel that won't just stop turning. However, the fact that "life goes on" does not mean the person mourning should ultimately fly back to normal. There's no timeline to this. Some people get up the next morning, wash their faces and get back to "normal". Some others never actually stop mourning; a part of them is gone forever. There are some who are in between, time heals their wounds, and they eventually get back. Whichever one it is, it is very valid. People should respect them for these. I couldn't believe my sight when I saw people complaining that Sheryl had not made a speech or announced what exactly killed her husband. There are wolves on cyberspace guys, animals in human form, I tell you. Some others were just pissed she's rich. Therefore, she should be able to hire nannies and enough help. There are insane people behind computers guys, insane. Anyway, to Sheryl and every other person mourning the death of a loved one, your feelings are valid. Only God can grant you the fortitude to bear this irreplaceable loss.  You are never alone. God is with you. And oh, if it helps, (and this is silly) but the last two episodes of Grey's did show how Meredith demonstrated strength in the face of the impossible. You don't even have to be mourning to be inspired by the strength. It was a HUGE reminder to me that, THIS TOO SHALL PASS. This can be anything.

To life.

To loss.

and

To love.

Because I can not possibly dedicate this post to anyone in particular,

I dedicate this post to everyone who has at one point or the other lost a dear one.

Remember,

You are not alone.

Love,
I