Friday Reflections

1.) Priscilla Chan took every single science class offered in high school, and when she ran out of classes to take, she created a cancer Biology class. Woah.

2.) See her husband's commencement speech at Harvard yesterday on helping others find their purpose.

3.) They are really inspiring. I love how they challenge each other and grow together. Fave.

4.) If panting could be felt easily through words, you'd hear my heart thumping against my chest right now and me breathing through my mouth. I just completed this workout.

5.) Whew

6.) I'm super thankful for life and for grace and for favor.

7.) Pray boldly.

8.) Match making is as awkward as you think it is. No, it's more awkward. It's not that in itself it's a terrible idea; no the problem is doing it without even bothering to figure out the "type" for the person(s) you are matchmaking.

9.) Anyway, it's memorial day weekend.

Have a great one!

On Hating the 4C Natural Hair Struggle

Today we are talking about the natural hair struggle. So you probably already know my hair story and if you don't well, here. I want to be frank about MY own hair struggles, which I assume is the same with other black girls or at least those with the same hair pattern as me. Mine is 4C according to the natural hair gurus. 4C is usually synonymous with coarse, annoyingly-tough, kinky, always matted and tangled hair. That's my hair. Some parts of my hair might look like 4B though. Or no, I'll put it this way: whenever I manage to tame the hair and make it look nice, people swear it's a 4B and not a 4C. So the lower you go, the fancier the "curls". That's all BS to me. But I'm no expert, which is why I am choosing to talk about MY hair.

My hair stresses me. To be fair, even when my hair was relaxed, it was hard to manage. I like my hair. I really do. But why do I have to pre-poo, wash, condition, deep condition, do oil treatments, mix gazillion oils together to get good hair? Why do I have to do so much to grow it, and then when it finally grows, I have to tuck the hair under protective styles to retain this length? What then is the point of the length if it's going to always be hidden in protective styles? In all honesty, I don't do as much as others, but I do a lot too. Except during really hectic weeks, I spend about three hours (or more) EVERY week deep conditioning, shampooing, pre-pooing yidi yada.

What's funny is I don't know how, when, and why I bought into the hype. If you read my hair story, you'd know that from childhood up till I finished secondary school (high school), I never permed my hair AND I was in boarding school. Being in boarding school meant there was barely time to shower, much less care for any stupid hair. I only washed it and conditioned whenever I was home, which was about once in three months or so. My mom used to buy me hair creams, shampoos, conditioners (which, by the way had minerals and sulphate and other chemicals millennials would never touch with a ten foot pole if their lives depended on it). Anyway, so I would never ever use these products she bought me, because I was the most lackadaisical, carefree teenager in this whole wide world. I just had no care in this world. So no I never moisturized my hair. But my hair was so freaking full and HUGE and long. The hair blossomed. I wish I had a picture from those days with my hair just in its afro state. But I don't. My hair was so much that my aunt always joked that I had too much hair so if hairdressers mistreated my hair (which they often did) I shouldn't bother. I never did bother anyway. So with no care, the hair still thrived. Lesson number one: GENES play a huge role in hair growth.

Now I'll be foolish to revert completely to my old ways as a teenager. Because what my body could tolerate then, it probably can't now. It's the same way we used to eat all kinds of rubbish as kids, and we'd be fine. But the older we become, the more noticeable that belly pooch is. Still, moderation is key. It doesn't help that these products are ridiculously expensive. I don't really mind that. It's the time that kills me. That, and water. I detest having water run from my head to my face so much, I was VERY close to chopping all of my hair off my last wash day. Now I know without a doubt that I prefer my hair without relaxers, I don't like it bone straight; I don't even blow it out. I like it coily. Not those weird "definition" YouTubers advise you to get by contorting your hair into many different pretzels. I mean, I like my hair as is. So relaxers are out of it. I wish it was more manageable and I wish it tangled  less. But I like it. So to not have to hate something I like so much, I have decided to ignore every stupid natural hair rule and just do me. It means not pouring water on my head every single week. It means just leaving my hair alone. It means doing protective styles I like.

If you feel the same frustration with your hair that I do, I understand. It doesn't help that societal definition and expectation of fine/pretty/beautiful hair is not necessarily ours, not even among the black community. Many people with our hair type genuinely think 4C hair is ugly and are disappointed about that. It's like, why would God make our own hair so...undesirable. If you type in Google: why is 4C hair so... the first word that pops out is ugly. That's why that Shea Moisture ad irritated me even more. If any group of women have hair struggles, it's definitely us black ones. But that's for another time. Anyway I think fussing too much over hair makes it more frustrating. Lesson number two: do you. Really, do you!

This may sound corny, but beauty is really in the eye of the beholder. It's your hair, love it as is. And if your preference is bone straight, get out and buy that relaxer now. Perm the hair, fix a weave...seriously, do your hair the way you prefer it, not as some other person defines it. At least that's my plan henceforth.



Invade My Privacy Tag

Tags are fun. Unfortunately, I don't have a Vlog so I tend to do mine here and not on YouTube

I found this on Berry Dakara's YouTube page today and thought, why not? Okay let's do this.

1. Did you wake up cranky?
Nope. I woke up very thankful actually.

2. Would you date an 18-year-old at your current age?
Lol. NO. God forbid.

3. Do you prefer to be friends with girls or boys?
Hmm I would say girls. Honestly, I don't think any sex is inherently better at being friends. I just said girls because a) I have more girl friends. b)I just happen to understand girls more, I think. I mean, I am a girl, after all.

4. Would you ever smile at a stranger?
Yea, why not?

5. Can you commit to one person?
Definitely. Beats committing to several people, in my opinion.

6. How do you look right now?
Lol. Not too good. I literally have a scarf on. It's a Sunday afternoon; don't judge me.

7. What exactly are you wearing right now?
Top, jeans, scarf, and socks.

8. How often do you listen to music?
Not too often. I'm not really a music person.

9. Do you wear jeans or sweats more?

10. Do you think your life will change dramatically before 2017?
I don't think so. But I always allow for God to work in my life.

11. Are you a social or an antisocial person?

12. If the person you like say they like someone else, what would you say?
Nothing really. Okay? I guess.

13. Are you good at hiding your feelings?
Lol yes

14. Can you drive a stick shift?
No :-(

15. Do you care if people talk badly about you?
I do to a certain point; at least depending on who the person is. After a while, I stop caring.

16. Are you going out of town soon?
If town is where you live, then I'm currently out of town.

17. When was the last time you cried?
I really can't remember.

18. Have you ever liked someone you didn't expect to?
YES hahaha.

19. If you could change your eyecolor? would you?
Eww eww eww. Never. Even If I have to wear contact lenses, it would not be colored.

20. Name something you have to do tomorrow?
Lol I'm on vacation so: watch West Wing?

This was not as interesting as my other tags like this and this but hey, it was fun nonetheless.

Friday Reflections

1.) Scandal's finale...what a twist, huh?! It was a good season though.

2.) Grey's on the other hand was very underwhelming. I'd advise they take a bow while the ovation is still loud.

3.) When Grey's does end..I will be extremely sad.

4.) Uncertainty...again. Pretty much my kryptonite.

5.) Hey! If God is for me, what can be against me? The answer is nada. Nothing.

6.) Why do female celebrities always use their husbands as managers, while the male celebrities hardly ever employ their wives as managers? Are women generally terrible managers?

7.) My struggle with my hair is sometimes overwhelming. Like why can't I just wake up, tszuj it up and be out the door? Why must I spend almost 3 hours pre-pooing, detangling, shampooing, deep conditioning ughhhh.

8.) I genuinely need an answer. I love my hair but it drives me crazy sometimes. I will talk more about this.

9.) Life is quite mysterious; someone can be here one minute and gone the next. I was really sorry to hear about the Nollywood actress Moji Olaiya who passed away this week. So sad.

10.) Oh people are tacky. Can you imagine someone posted a picture of her corpse. T A C K Y. Disrespectful and just...girl, bye.

If I gave a Commencement Speech

It's sort of a coincidence and also not a coincidence at all that this post will bear some semblance with graduation speeches. I first got the inspiration for this before graduations began, and then pushed it/postponed it/forgot about it/life happened and I was like well, what better time than now?

It also might be a little bit contradictory to what you would hear a commencement speaker say. I actually love listening to commencement speeches. Think of some of the greatest ones: arguably the most famous one by Steve Jobs in 2005 at Stanford; the one by Barack Obama at Howard last year; J.K. Rowling at Harvard; John Legend at UPENN in 2014; Shonda Rhimes' return to her alma mater Dartmouth; Oprah at Harvard in 2013; Jim Carrey; and of course most recently, Will Ferrell at USC.
I have not only watched them, I have written about some of them. And some of these are my absolute favorite. They all charge you, albeit with different methods, to strive to become a better you. And that's absolutely amazing. But sometimes as with other aspects of life, they place too much burden on these young graduates to: follow their hearts, find themselves, change the world, find their passions, find what you love, not settle for anything less than the absolute best. All of which are great advice if they weren't so...vague. I like Adam Grant's analysis best, too much or too little of everything is never good. I am and have always been averse to such vague, pithy sayings that sometimes paralyze people into inaction instead of motivating them. See for instance, the myth of a dream job.

"People often say this or that person has not yet found himself. But the self is not what someone finds, it's something one creates." - Thomas Szasz

If I was ever to give a commencement speech it would go something like:

People are often bugged down with finding their passion, and waiting to hear from their heart as if beneath them lies the answer and secrets to all of earth. Yet nothing is more false. As I have often mentioned, there are some very few people born with an innate desire and longing for one particular thing. From the moment these ones entered this world, they KNEW without a doubt what they would become and have worked towards it since then. The rest of us are not so lucky. The majority of us have to pull ourselves by our bootstraps; work hard, grab opportunities when they come along, and trust God's grace. In other words, we really are just winging it.

So let's dissect some of these popular sayings, shall we?

Follow your heart.

Don't. I mean of course listen to your intuition. Trust your guts, whatever that means for you. But like my pastor recently mentioned, "just because feelings are real doesn't mean they are right." He further said, "God's definition of man's heart isn't very trustworthy".
"The heart of man is desperately WICKED."
"The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?" (NIV)
Yeah, you don't want that guiding you. We as human beings are so bloody fickle and we fluctuate so much, that it's not very reliable to just make life-altering decisions based on how you feel. Seriously this one works for career as much as it does romance. I would instead pray hard and trust God's will to be done. While doing that, I will remain practical and make decisions based on my circumstances and situation. You can't and probably shouldn't quit your job and travel if you can't afford it. Even God said to count your cost before building. That being said, faith is not rational, but there is a peace that surpasses human understanding. So while you shouldn't be unrealistically idealistic, you still need to trust that peace you feel. But don't sit around waiting for your heart to talk to you, please. In the words of my fictional shero, Cristina Yang, hearts are organs with a main job of pumping blood and supplying the body with oxygen; they don't talk.

Change the world.

Oh Honey! You can not. You are not God. Can you do your absolute best to contribute to a better world? Best believe that. But can you, lil ol' you singlehandedly change this crazy, crazy world? NO. It's simply impossible. Do your best, but refrain from inflating your ego so much that you begin to think your work is what would change this world for the best. No.

Find your passion.

This one has been turning heads since forever. We are typically a mesh of many several things. I for instance, love a good book, I love politics, I love enlightening debates, I love to write, I'm intrigued by people's minds, I love listening to personal stories, I also wonder a lot about how a child is formed in the womb, but I also like pretty dresses, but I also wonder how extremely difficult brain surgeries are, I'm one of the most curious persons I know, and of course I like social justice. And these are just SOME of the things I like.  I don't have a passion; I'm interested in so many things, it makes me dizzy just to think about them. Most people are. The God that made us is a helluva creative one. People (and I used to be this way too) get so worried if they don't find their passions, they would wither and die a slow death. Is it easier to do what you already enjoy? I think so. But you can also find something you are remotely interested in and work your ass off, so much it becomes a passion. If you look at some of my favorite things, you find I could have been a psychologist, news anchor, teacher, doctor, fashion designer, author etc. All of which I probably could excel in. That's how life is: God gives us an array of choices. Pick one and run with it.

Be yourself.

This one is tricky. Of course genuineness is always appreciated. But the truth is, sometime you sucks. You might have a terrible character, suffer a great deal from low self-esteem, be lazy, be hateful and vile, be incredibly selfish, know nothing. In these cases do NOT be yourself. Learn to be better. Do better. Be a better person; spouse; child; sibling; relative; friend; employee; boss; citizen. Be better.

So that's my advice: Be flexible. I don't care if Jesus himself told you what exactly to do in life, be flexible about achieving it. Be open to Option B always! If you look closely at Jobs' speech, there is a pattern: he tried different things, failed at several points; and kept DOING. And the best part of his speech, I think, is the emphasis on not being able to connect the dots looking forward, but only by looking backwards. It never ever makes sense looking forward. Now interpretations of this post will vary. You should put in mind though that I mostly wrote this as a person of faith; a person who keeps God center in her life. Not everyone is this way and I sorta understand. The fundamentals are the same however. There is a mystery to life, and you need this mystery; it's a part of life. You need not worry about figuring everything out; also a staple of life. It's a lie that everything works out for everyone; it doesn't. But if it doesn't, it's seldom because they didn't receive a blazing light from heaven displaying instructions on how to live. Life is just weird like that sometimes, in that you can do everything right and still get it wrong. I'm sorry about that. But as you will find out, human beings are wired to weather storms and come out strong. We have an extraordinary amount of resilience in us. Always remember that. Remember also, that to have a remarkable career is to work remarkably hard. Please, please, please do not let this detract you from dreaming big. No. Dream big, just remember to wake up and actually do.



Friday Reflections

1.) The last two episodes of Law and Order SVU pretty much ripped their plots from headlines, I mean with a good spin on them though. Only if life imitated art and *cough cough* and people suffered consequences for sexual harassment their actions.

2.) Queen of Katwe!! Wonderful performance by Lupita Nyongo'o and David Oyelowo.

3.) Sally Yates for all the  brilliant women who have had to stand before incompetent, misogynistic bullies, who think they can intimidate women. Hers is a lesson: be prepared and know your shit.

4.) Sometimes I'm working or sleeping or in a serious situation, then I remember ajeku iya loje and burst into raucous laughter. Then I pause and wonder who Nigeria offended to get the leadership we currently have.

5.) Nevertheless, she persisted.

6.) I honestly believe if someone's nudes are leaked and you actually view it, you are part of the problem :-)

7.) "Fear based repentance makes us hate ourselves, Jesus-based repentance makes us love ourselves." - Michael Giroux

On Resisting Gender-Based Violence

I honestly did not want to put out anything today. I've had such a long week and day, that I just want to curl up in a ball and re-watch episodes of West Wing on Netflix.

But I needed to talk about this, albeit briefly. And not to keep talking about gender as this isn't a gender based blog or anything, but this is now pandemic everywhere. It's domestic violence. Domestic violence has of course always been in existence. But current news suggest that for every step we take forward, we are taking another five backwards.

Mercy Aigbe's skull was bashed and she has been giving interviews explaining how her husband constantly pummeled her. There are also tons of pictures detailing the extreme physical abuse she went through, to in her words "keep her marriage".

Today, news broke that a South African babe was murdered and then set on fire by her boyfriend. Another was stabbed by her fiancé in Abuja. Yet another in the U.S embarked on a killing spree mission (although he thankfully was only able to take one life before taking his) in the name of his girlfriend.

Are these men mad?

Because I'm sick of telling women to leave, run, blah blah. First of all, statistics show that doesn't really help. Even after some women leave the abusive situation, the men still come after them to finish off what they started.

So I ask again: are these people mad?

Because it's high time we addressed the perpetrators of these heinous acts. If your partner is getting on your nerves, how about YOU leave? Instead of beating the poor woman eh? After all, these same raggedy men are able to control themselves when stopped by the police and are able to comport themselves when their bosses are irritating them. Or do you hear of men beating their bosses out of anger? How can you not extend the same self control to your wives/girlfriends?

I think the problem is mostly fundamental. Many men were raised with such entitlement that they can't bear the thought of  women not being subservient to them. While some people get high from excellence or a movie or whatever, some others need women to cower to get such high. So please start to teach your sons to use their words, not their fists, and to be kind and respectful.

Now we might be past all that for the grown men out there who are going about beating people. And the other grown ones who when they hear and see domestic abuse first think to ask the idiotic question: but what did she do? Or was she nagging him? Or of course he was angry

All of you in the category above need to get your behind hauled off to jails to deal with your match. As you can tell, I'm in no mood to sing kumbaya today. So we need the rule of law and good criminal justice systems to arrest violent domestic partners. No joke. People are out here committing murders and damaging skulls. At the very least, they should rot in jail for it.

Enough with the begging and pleading and "lobbying" for equality or against violence against women. It is actually being demanded now. No joke. Get in 2017 or be left behind.

Love, and solidarity,


P.S: Knowing myself, I will be back on this topic again when I have carefully formulated my thoughts. For now I just wanted to express my anger and disgust for the perpetrators; and my pity and love for the victims.

On Male Authorities and the Gender Inequality Problem

I remember having a conversation a while ago with a friend, who is back in Nigeria. I don't remember specifics of this conversation, and I'm not bothered enough to think about it. I'm pretty sure though that it hovered around U.S. politics. We were debating (or so I thought), and going back and forth on an issue. And before I could say Haagen Dazs, I was being accused of having "issues with male authority." Me? Moi? Èmi?


If this was a sitcom, the narrator would say: It was at this moment Ife realized a fact of life. As a woman, no matter how smart you are, someday, some guy would definitely mansplain to you, without forgetting to patronize you in the process. To be honest, I don't necessarily care that a person has a dissenting opinion from mine. I like to think I can disagree with you/engage in a healthy debate, and not resort to absurd accusations, and also still remain friends. But to so carelessly dismiss my opinion and call me "sentimental" even after giving you objective facts is confusing. To not even for a second consider I could, you know be able to reason objectively, without my hormones interjecting. As if women don't know have brains to think; we are strictly controlled by our feelings. To be so condescending; so disrespectful; so dismissive of what I had to say.  Now that's just rude. Had I been a man, there is NO way this person would have called my argument "sentimental". I remember having to explain that I wasn't just spouting off things off the top of my head: in fact, I had to explain that I had worked with/studied some of these things. Nope, he conspicuously ignored all of that. So to say I have issues with male authority because I disagreed with you, thereby implying you are some sort of authority is just...nonsensical at best, and outright misogyny at worst. How does the ordinary virtue of being a man make you an authority over me or anyone else for that matter? HOW? How can you believe that you are inherently superior to/better than someone else, either because of your sex or race?

Woah. Misogyny. Ife, how did we get here? I will tell you.

I remember saying misogyny and sexual assault aren't trivial issues to be just swept aside. To which, this so called male authority responded that they were no issues to him in any way. It was at this point, I think, that I went crazy. I remember being so furious, I was probably hyperventilating. What?!

And because I find that when you are quiet in the presence of bullies; when you don't give them a rebuttal, you are enabling them. So school them instead. Of course this will come with the risk of being called angry or accused of having issues with male authority or whatever else rocks their boats. Do it anyway. Because for every such man who merely thinks women are lesser creatures than men, there is another who actually acts as though men are inherently better. So no I have no problem with male authority. I just have a problem with rape apologists, sexual assault, misogyny, and gender inequality.

Anyway, that was just a story I remembered and wanted to share. I find that people usually prefer silence; they'd want you to be subservient, to cower. Nah. With that said, I should probably head on to the main reason for this post. I found some tweets, which really demonstrate why everyone should be feminists.

Look and carefully read every one of those tweets and tell me there is no problem. Go ahead.

Love, and some equality,


Friday Reflections

1.) Check out this babe on fireeeeee. Lol. And I really love that she's Nigerian too.

2.) Perhaps I need to procrastinate in order for me to put out good work. Yes whatever makes me sleep at night.

3.) My awkwardness increases by about 100% around kids; I just don't know what to do with them. It doesn't help that I know nothing about cartoons/animated movies. The other day, I had to Google Dory.

4.) There is a brand new (not really though) couple; both of them are the latest Nigeria's sweethearts. Banky and Adesua...from a movie to reality. They almost literally broke the internet. It was HUGE. I gotta say, I'm like the most cynical human being, and even I was incredibly sentimental and excited for them when I heard.

5.) Well kept secret, plus it does seem genuine. I wish them well.

6.) "A stormy marriage and a svelte proposal in one week lol. Life is really a pot of beans." Someone made this comment this on a BellaNaija post on another celebrity's recently failed marriage. Life is truly usually an amalgamation of such contrasting realities. Well, I also wish Mercy Aigbe well.

7.) Ours is a culture of silence. Everything has to be hush hush, and the younger generation never learns anything except the silence that is passed onto us. So I'm glad she spoke out. If he (or SHE) is pummeling you; you have every right to fight for your life. Run. Leave. Survive.

8.) The more I find God, the more certain I am that I need Him.

9.)  [Almost] relieved. Certainly incredibly joyful to have crossed another hurdle. Progress is beautiful.

10.) UGH these men; I'm still irritated.

11.) Thankfully, we talk about the systemic oppression of black people in this country a lot. What is seldom talked about is the stereotyping of and blatant discrimination against Africans (or African immigrants) by African Americans.

On Praying and Resisting

When I woke up this morning, I decided to blog about prayer and praying. I was going to say praying has never been so important than it is now. And it really doesn't matter if it doesn't feel like nothing is happening afterward. You just have to trust God's timing. Sometimes He answers really quickly, sometimes with a pace that surprises us. Other times He takes longer than we expect. But:

"...the four living beings and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp, and they held gold bowls filled with incense, which are the prayers of God's people." - Revelation 5: 8

Do you know what an incense is? It's a substance that is burned for the sweet smell it produces. Our prayers literally produce sweet smells to God. Imagine that? It releases smoke to God, so it doesn't go unnoticed. It's amazing. So I was gonna encourage you to pray, pray, and keep praying.

And then I found out today was National Day of Prayer. Great coincidence, I thought.

And then I found that the old, white men in Congress (House) have repealed Obamacare. So yeah, on the national day of prayer (whatever the H E double hockey-sticks that means), they yanked healthcare from millions of people. And now with the new healthcare law they want, if it succeeds tons of people with pre-existing conditions would be denied healthcare. Think about babies who are born with health defects permanently denied insurance for something they had no control over. Think about rape victims who have to choose between reporting the rape and forfeiting insurance, and keeping quiet so they can continually get insurance. And of course, women, poor people, and black people will probably bear the brunt of this. I mean, a C-SECTION is a pre-existing condition.


I have seen horror stories on social media all day of people with cancer, HIV, and other health conditions basically horrified by how much debt they would have to incur if that bill passes in the Senate as well. And guess what, Congressmen are celebrating this "victory" in the white house now.

It's sorta, kinda monstrous.

So yeah, it was discouraging.

On the national day of prayer, many have to rethink their fates regarding healthcare.

What a great coincidence, I thought.

Ultimately, I will have to go back to my own advice in the first three paragraphs of this post: praying and trusting God. AND come 2018,  I will be VOTING THEM OUT! 😊

Yours in resistance,