An Unbearably Intense Feeling of Loss

My super cheerful mom, Koné Fanta (Teeyah)

The cruel reality about losing my mother is that right after her death was when I needed her the most.

Teeyah, my super cheerful mother, died just two days after turning 60. 

Over the years, she endured excruciating pain but fought through like a champion, until Monday (06/10/2019) when this lone light in my life was blown off by the winds of death, leaving a vacancy that will NEVER, EVER be filled:  Continue reading “An Unbearably Intense Feeling of Loss”

The Daylight Robbery that Women Commit

 A couple recently broke up because, according to the boyfriend, his girl stole his iPhone 6, an allegation never denied by the young lady. She remorselessly admitted to stealing the mobile phone, which costs nearly $800 in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, to rent a flat for her mom. According to her, this boyfriend of hers happens to be a hard-to-spend type and so, stealing his phone was the only way to get what she wanted. Was her approach to solving this financial crisis of hers the right way to go?  Continue reading “The Daylight Robbery that Women Commit”

African Prints: Timeless Beauties

 Deep yellow, blue, pink, or red fabrics sold per yard, African textiles are distinctive for their bold patterns and bubbly colors. These timeless beauties are expressly infused with the rich history and culture of Africa, especially West Africa where the chicest of these prints have continued to dominate the textile industry for decades. In fact, these all-time  classic prints are currently experiencing a HUGE resurgence in popularity and I can’t help but go with the flow.
Continue reading “African Prints: Timeless Beauties”

Côte d’Ivoire’s Ethnic Conflict Flares Anew

Several homes of the Dioulas were set ablaze

Several homes, businesses and vehicles belonging to members of Côte d’Ivoire’s Dioula ethnic group were randomly set ablaze in a new ethnic-based violence that rocked the country’s far west on Monday, April 1, 2019.

Ben-Hounien, a densely populated city in western Côte d’Ivoire, was engulfed in flames after a Yacouba motorbike rider ‘accidentally’ drove his bike into a parked truck belonging to a Dioula, sustaining severe head injuries. He eventually died of his injuries. Continue reading “Côte d’Ivoire’s Ethnic Conflict Flares Anew”

Tackling Mental Illness in Jails

 Welcome to the maiden edition of MirrorIt, a new series that focuses on strategic nonprofit and association management. For today’s edition I am sharing key findings of a 2017 desk-review I conducted on the National Association of Counties and its “Stepping Up” Project.

 The National Association of Counties (NACo) is a national powerhouse for thousands of local county officials collectively advocating transformational solutions for their constituents. NACo’s members are its greatest strength. This is why since  its founding in 1935, the trade association  has remained unrelenting in the pursuit of its mission which focuses on amplifying the voices of 3,069 county authorities with whom it has developed a powerful emotional connection over the years. In essence, NACo seeks to shape and sharpen members’ ability to lead effectively while focusing on exploring results-driven strategies to issues being experienced by member counties. Continue reading “Tackling Mental Illness in Jails”

Babysitters: Curse or Cure?

It’s dangerous to keep a lazy, ‘don’t-care’ babysitter around

Monique showed up at my house last Wednesday, visibly upset. She had gone to pick up her son from a babysitter who also happens to be a good friend of hers. To her surprise, her 12-month-old was drowning in his own urine. The child had been dropped off earlier that morning, along with a handbag stuffed with change of clothes, extra diapers, and wipes. But Monique came back to see her son’s clothes drenched.

“This is the fourth time. I’ve talked to her but she still does it. How can an infant spend the entire day without being changed? I make sure to stuff his diaper bag whenever I’m dropping him off,” she explained, with bloodshot eyes. Continue reading “Babysitters: Curse or Cure?”

“Me Time” is Still Possible

It is OK to pay attention to our own needs sometimes (Photo Credit: Mousso d’Afrika)

 Are you a mother wondering what has become of your “me time”? You are not alone. I have been asking myself this question for nearly three years now. And there are a million other mothers out there that are grappling with similar question: “where’s my ‘me time’?”

In the world of motherhood, “me time” is that special kid-free, stress-free, self-pampering moment that every mother deserves here and there. It is all about making self-care a priority, in addition to being a mother. And in as much as this may sound ridiculous, it is OK to pay attention to our own needs sometimes.  Having yourself a “me time” doesn’t make you a self-centered mom. Besides, everyone needs a “me time”. Continue reading ““Me Time” is Still Possible”