Happy Birthday To This Wonder Woman

 

I am very grateful to be hale and hearty on this occasion of my 42nd Birthday. The past has been glorious with some pains along the way. I am learning to embrace my present with gratitude and optimism, and I can say I am all geared up to make the future the best of them all.

I appreciate that life is full of surprises, some good, some not so good, and we cannot plan for all exigencies. I embrace life surprises with an open mind and a sense of adventure. I am just grateful to be alive to feel and experience all that life throws my way (and it has been throwing some lemons my way for some time now, there is only so much lemonade one can make with life’s lemons before screaming enough with the cliche).

This year, my birthday resolution is to leave in the past everything that does not grow me. Life is too precious to waste on those who do not deserve to be in my life. I am choosing to surround myself with people who look more like my future than my past.

It is time for me to learn the art of letting go, both in my professional and personal life. There is no point wishing to relive the past when there are still so many adventures to be had, memories to be made, places to explore, and many more ways to live and survive beyond the conventional or familiar.

I must learn to say out loud without shame that I am tired, fed up and done with a system and people that take so much from me and give so little back. It is OK to move away from it all without guilt or a sense of failure.

It is time for me to embrace the unfamiliar and let go of the familiar, its comforts and promises which no longer fulfil or nourish me.

Happy Birthday to me as I step up once again to be the Wonder Woman that I know I am.

Below are some pictures I took on my special day, and a video of my annual Birthday dance. Enjoy! 

Life isn’t always black and white, but on those occasions that it is, everything becomes much clearer and simply beautiful.

Just chilling;after all it’s my 42nd year on planet earth today. Happy with my past, contented with my present and embracing my future with gratitude. Don’t forget baby, leave everything that does not grow you in the past.

Below is a video of my annual birthday dance, which has become a sort of ritual now. Every birthday, I dance to a song of my choice and share with friends. This year, I chose to dance to another old school favourite of mine- ‘Baby boy’ by Beyonce featuring Sean Paul. Enjoy the video.

Brilliant BeatBoxer Beatboxing at London Pride, 2017!

This beatboxer got my hitherto dead ovaries coming alive and jumping for joy when I stumbled on his street performance at London Pride, 2017. He sure set the crowd on fire and he was a sheer pleasure to watch. Guy got moves, I sure loved his swag and accent.

After a bit of stalki… oops, sorry, digging for info, I finally learned he goes by the stage name MPFree.

Needless to say, I am now a fan of beatboxing. I’ve even started practising some beats at home. I should find out where he regularly gigs as it would be nice to take a few more notes from the expert. #LoveHappensHere.

Enjoy the video.

Seasons Come, Seasons Go

Seasons come, Seasons go

Not everyone can handle the flow

Some flourish, Some Perish

Lessons learned, Moments cherished

 

Winter comes with its cold claws

An excuse to cover the flaws

Or a reason to grow

Hibernating on the down low

 

Spring with its blooming beauty

Doesn’t always chase away the gloom

Cleansing nooks and crannies with its broom

As part of life’s annual duty

 

Summer comes blazing in glorious sunshine

It is the time to wine and dine

But not everyone gets bathed in its glow

As beauty also comes with its woes and blows

 

Autumn with its changing colours

Creeps in with its slippery Fall

For survival, we crawl or maul

A time to hang on to the collar

 

Every season throws its curves

Life isn’t always a fountain of pleasure

Amidst its pains, I find my treasures

Every moment to cherish, and to Love

Copyright © – Yemisi Ilesanmi

 

Let’s hang out on my YouTube Channel!

I haven’t been blogging or creating videos on my YouTube channel as much as I would love to. Sometimes, we need to take a backseat to avoid activism burn out. I’m happy to say I’m raring to go again!

I will be blogging more, and I plan to create more videos on my YouTube channel. If you are not a subscriber already, you should check out my channel and subscribe. 

YEMMYnisting is a space for me to share significant parts of my life with the public, comment on general issues, share my opinion and exchange ideas on happenings in the society.

My tagline is ‘Proudly Feminist, Proudly Bisexual and Proudly Atheist’. I make videos along these lines.
My videos touch a lot on Sexuality, Diversity, Atheism, Feminism and Race issues.

I identify as bisexual. I am from an ultra-homophobic / biphobic / transphobic environment. I use my videos to create awareness on sexual orientation and break the deafening silence on so called ‘taboo’ subjects.

I am the author of the advocacy book Freedom To Love For ALL: Homosexuality Is Not Un-African’. It is available in paperback and kindle on Amazon, I hope you will check it out and order your copy.

YEMMYnisting is also a place I talk about religion and my lack of belief in God(s).  Although I now reside in UK, I am an atheist from one of the most religious countries on planet earth, Nigeria.

One other great advantage of subscribing to my YouTube channel is that you get to hang out with me as I do my Dancexercise. I do love dancing, I can’t sing to save my life, but I’d sing and dance any day to get an endorphin rush. Also, it’s a great way to get fit, hence why I call it Dancexercise.

And speaking of getting fit, in my quest for endorphin rush, I found myself in the gym. The side effects included turning into a gym bunny. I shall be sharing some of my fitness videos, workouts, and tips with you.

Your constructive comments and suggestions are welcomed. If there are issues you’d like me to speak on or a song you’d like me to dance to in my dancexercise videos, please feel free to let me know.

I appreciate diverse views; however, I have zero tolerance for hate comments. Hate speech will get you banned.

You can also have more of me on

Twitter

Facebook

Instagram

Google+.

Subscribe and let’s go on a logical ride to fun destinations. Thanks!

The First Time I Realised I was Black

I didn’t know I was black until I relocated to the UK in 2009 at the ripe old age of 34, before then, I thought I was just a human being.

Settling down in the UK, I quickly realised my skin colour mattered. It matters a lot.

I relocated to the UK in 2009 to study for my Post graduate degree in Law, specialising in Gender, Sexuality and Human rights.  Even though I had contemplated my gender, sexuality, globalisation and the catastrophic effects of unbridled capitalism, I had not given my skin colour much thought.

From the overt racism, which I encountered from the University Surgery GP, the subtle racism of some of my white lecturers (who ironically taught equality classes), the white co-workers who turned their noses up at my African accent, to the ‘behind the back’ racist stab by the white, female principal officer in my workplace, which cost me a much needed, very good job offer, I quickly realised that my skin colour mattered. [Read more…]

Just another random guy telling a woman what to do with her body

So, another guy decided to tell me what he wants me to do with my body to please his eyes. Never mind that i hardlyScreen-Shot-2014-10-29-at-11.09.03-AM knew him. Never mind that the few interactions i had with him on social media were about him as an African-American reaching out because he wanted a better understanding on some issues especially as it affects Africa and Africans. Never mind that i treated him with utmost respect, taking time to answer his questions and i thought the respect was mutual. But alas, he was just another man who refused to understand that telling a woman what to do with her body, to please their ‘manly gaze’, is just totally wrong.

Well, he decided to express his displeasure with my weight loss. He sent messages to my Facebook inbox , starting with a disgusted face sticker, cos well, words weren’t enough to express just how disgusted he was that i lost my ‘meaty’ figure! [Read more…]

Does taking gym selfies or posting several pics on Facebook translates to Narcissism?

When my dear Facebook friend all the way from America sent me a link in my inbox with the message “London, we have a problem.”, I opened the link with a bit of trepidation and was confronted with a shady headline Study Finds That People Who Post Gym Selfies Have A Psychological Problem “

The article went on to postulate about some dubious research it never linked to. The  article reads

Some people have to let the whole world know that they have been to the gym by means of Facebook posts normally accompanied by a selfie. It turns this could by due to an underlying psychological problem which causes them to become obsessed with taking selfies.

In a study conducted at Brunel University is was discovered that people who constantly brag about fitness tend to show narcissistic traits  – This is a term for the psychological disorder where people gain pleasure from self admiration. This behavior usually results  annoying vein posts such as “sun’s out, guns out” all over your timeline, the intention is to boost their own ego with comments and likes.

 I call bullshit on this. [Read more…]

Baby, You Are Beautiful – Dance Video

Some of us know we are.

Some of us don’t believe we are.

Some of us let society tell us otherwise.

Beauty comes in different colours, shapes and sizes.

Baby, You Are Beautiful.  Snapshot_20160515_252

What makes you beautiful is Not

Because you don’t know you are beautiful,

But because you simply are.

Do you; with or without make-up

Rock you; whatever your body size, shape or ability.

Celebrate your body; even if the society says you shouldn’t.

Flaunt these curves; even if they claim you aren’t beach ready.

Embrace and shower your body with Love.

Cos baby, You are You.

And Baby,

You Are Beautiful.

Background Music by One Direction – What Makes You Beautiful

Snapshot_20160515_176 Snapshot_20160515_88

Online Dating: Serving up Choices and Confusion

Dating in this generation has a whole new meaning. It is all about choice or rather the illusion of choice, leading to confusion, pain, and a life wasted on swiping profiles for the next hit. This Facebook note by a Facebook friend, got me thinking about dating. As a single woman, i must say, i agree totally with his take on it. In this age of online dating, it is all about the illusion of choice and the uncertainty that comes with it. dating

Back when i was a teenager growing up in Nigeria, 20 something years ago, dating was not even a thing. You were either in a relationship with someone or you were not. It was straight to the relationship phase. Boy meets girl, boy likes girl, boy asks girl, “Will you be my girlfriend?”, if girl likes boy, she plays coquettish long enough to not appear desperate, then says yes, and bingo, they are in a relationship. No dating as it is known today, no testing the waters, that was done at the ‘eyeing her/him up’ stage. The courtship stage did not normally involve alone time together. Maybe time with friends and families where you both sussed each other out, until one of you makes the move. [Read more…]

Planned Parenthood Clinic Shooting: Religious Assholes, Vile Politicians and Dipshit Media

In between the religions assholes causing havoc and the vile politicians eager to drop bombs on civilians, it is a CU5oEefUYAAkYmHwonder WW3 has not been officially declared!

I was out when I briefly saw the headlines for the Colorado shooting today; apparently, three people, including a police officer, have been confirmed dead and many more injured.

The shooter, now identified as Robert Lewis Dear, is a 57-year-old white man from North Carolina.

According to reports

“Lt. Catherine Buckley of the Colorado Springs Police Department said the gunman, described as wearing a long coat and armed with a rifle, gave up after officers inside the building shouted at him. He previously had been firing at police who entered the facility.

Buckley also said the unidentified man had brought “items” with him inside the building and left some outside, meaning officers had to make sure they were not “any kind of devices.”

“The man apparently began his deadly spree at the Planned Parenthood building, although it was not clear if his motive was related to the organization.

“We don’t have any information on this individual’s mentality, or his ideas or ideology,” Buckley said.

Interesting how they are not eager to jump to conclusions about this shooter’s ideas and ideology. This is white cis [Read more…]

Winter might be upon us but nothing is going to take away my sunshine; let’s dance!

What better way to herald a new month than to dance away the pains, sorrows, regrets, betrayals, dashed hopes and disappointments of the past month. What does not kill us makes us stronger.

As I wrote in my poem: ‘Chin Up and Weather the Storm’

Life dishes out its mixture of pain and pleasureSnapshot_20151028_24

With pressure, we appreciate more our treasures

Stricken down, rise up and look beyond the snares

This too shall pass for nothing stays the same

When it is all falling apart, just stay strong

Chin up and weather the storm!

Winter might be upon us but nothing is going to take away my sunshine.

As Albert Camus said-

In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back.

Nothing lifts my spirits better than good music and the liberty to dance to my favourite tunes whenever I feel like. Music and dance are the choice flavour of my body and soul!

Here is to all Survivors; keep surviving and live life the best you can. Enjoy my dance video!

 

My Birthday Dance and Musings: Already Loving my 40s!

I am grateful for four amazing decades on planet earth. I am eagerly looking forward to new challenges and more20150816_141924 resised ftb jpg amazing experiences in the coming years!

I am especially looking forward to starting a new job as a union organiser with one of the largest trade unions in UK. I missed being a full time trade unionist and I am so looking forward to working with union activists and organising workers again!

I started working for the labour movement in my early twenties and with the responsibility of fighting for workers’ rights came many opportunities to see the world from different angles. The views can be very depressing especially when it comes to class stratification, oppression, exploitation of labour, crass capitalism and its uneven division of wealth built on the backs of the long-suffering majority who toil every day to earn a living wage but never get to enjoy the wealth created by their labour. However, sometimes the view can be very exhilarating, especially when the voiceless find their voices through union organising, and against all odds, conquer to achieve great successes, fuelled by strength in unity and propelled by hope in a better tomorrow, while demanding for a better today. The last few years of my 30s were pretty challenging, mostly due to having to start afresh in a new, unfamiliar environment as a single parent with a teenage son who was about to enrol in college. I did not plan to be an immigrant in UK or anywhere else, but sometimes, even though we have our life already neatly planned, circumstances beyond our control could force us to depart from our schedule.

Leaving behind a comfortable life and job security to start afresh in a strange land was not an easy decision to make. [Read more…]

Five Assumptions We Should Avoid Making

I was working out at my gym when two gym regulars decided to strike up a conversation with me.

Gym regular (Male) – You have lost a lot of weight

Gym regular (Female) -Yeah, I told her so too.

Me – Oh, yeah, thanks, the hard work is showing.

Gym regular (Male) – I am sure your husband will be happy

Me – I don’t have a husband. I am single

Gym Regulars – What, you mean you are single? [Read more…]

I Am Beautiful and I know It

It is so cringeworthy when people tell me i am beautiful and I accept it at face value with a nod to my own beauty but as a reward they want me to grovel at their feet or expect I say something self-devaluing like  “Oh no, you are just being nice, I am not all that.” Of course, i am all that and much more too, thanks for the observation!

I woke up this morning to this awesome video by Daysha Edewi titled “What If I Knew I Was Beautiful”. My fb friend had commented on the video on Facebook and tagged me and I went, “OMG, this video is so me!” [Read more…]