The last seven years of my life have been marked by indecision, being overly-cautious and what, at the time, I naively called poking holes at life. I have been a jack of six trades and a master at none. I have engaged in one long meaningless and abusive relationship to a lady who loved me more than I knew but whom I only loved because of the longevity of the relationship and the ties I had with her family. By objective assessment, both parties were equally deserving of the blame.
I honestly didn’t see how we would blossom if not for the blissful moments that came from my interaction with her family. It is bad enough that ours had such shaky foundations- worse when the peripheral offers more stability than the mainstay. We got into the relationship in the spontaneity of youth. She was a good friend to my then high school crush. She was supposed to be a leeway to that crush. I blew up the possibility of a union with the latter because of arrogance, stupidity, and myopia.
In my silent moments, the moments of deep introspection of my deeds and misdeeds, I knew that it would take more than work for the relationship with my ex to work. But I stayed. I held on because I didn’t want to start all over. I believed that there were no fairy tales: all relationships were bound to undergo crests and falls before eventually plateauing into the bland and banal. We had fallen in and out of love so many times that we settled on settling for the bare minimum. Even that mundane task was taxing.
Ours degenerated into a competition that had us competing on who could hurt the other more. We didn’t know we were doing it at the time. I said some really hurtful things to my ex. Words that might have broken her more than the STI contracted from her did me. Waking up to a painful swollen testicle should have been a wake-up call. I guess she was breaking my balls for breaking her heart. Later she confessed to cheating- emotionally, not physically. But you can’t argue with lab results. Not when it feels like an invisible person is squeezing your balls so hard you’d think you are in Nyayo torture chambers. I want to blame her for that but I can’t. I can’t think of a reason. I don’t know why. Even though she is the one to blame.
I was a keeper for a while. There were days you’d have thought that I was on steroids. Days when my reactions were as swift as De Gea’s, my decision-making on point as Cech’s and my distribution as accurate as Neuer’s. But those days were few and far between. Even so, their scarcity never stopped me from waking up at least thrice a week to train with Junior, my trainer, or Hilla, my teammate. Those days showed me that discipline pays and consistency rewards. My teammates didn’t say it out loud, but I always felt that it was on their minds: “Why is he trying too hard?” Not that I was on the verge of being an addict but football kept me away from the brown bottle and from vodka; it kept me from rolling joints and chewing “cud”. It kept me on the straight and narrow. (It’s no shock to me that I have since slipped but I’m trying.)
I was introduced to freelance writing. I got paid well and received good reviews but it made me lofty, beaming with pride and puffed up with arrogance because I had, until then, been a below average performer in all areas of my life. Including my sex life. I had finally chanced at something I was good at. So much so that I felt that writing was innate and I didn’t need to work hard. I felt entitled to getting new jobs. And I got a number but in my haughtiness, I thought I was good enough while in truth, I had barely scratched the surface. I lost all the jobs and got scathing reviews that tarnished the goods ones I had.
I have written a few fairly good creative non-fiction articles that appealed to a few people who tell me I should take the art seriously. I hope not to drop the ball.
I signed up to study engineering against my will. I loved it at first. The love faded away and was channelled to other pursuits which I also didn’t take up. I burned all the bridges that would have elevated me financially. I quit internships without notice and didn’t feel bad about it because I thought I wouldn’t need them. I have now learned -the hard way- that even the best marksman can’t count on two birds perched on a tree. And I wasn’t the best marksman.
I have tried coding. End of story.
I want to stop watching porn. I want to stop jerking off. I hope to suppress the urge of getting laid and the thrill of casual sex. I am weak. I pray that my mornings and silent moments be less despondent and gloomy even when I’m reclusive. I want to help my father. I want to live healthier. I want to love deeper. To read and travel more. To be more frugal. I pray that as I enter the next stage of my life I may be more truthful and honest. Be guided by the true north that once led me. I am broken and I’m just but trying to glue the pieces together. The cracks are still visible and you may fault me for that, but this is what I have become. I have learned that the wisdom of old still stands: jack of all trades, MASTER OF NONE.
This is what I have come to, lost but on the path to finding self.