It’s Sunday. Sunday we preach, or rather, we used to preach when we were in tiptop shape. It has taken me days to build up to this post. Sometimes I think I will come up with a strict schedule, like Kariuki does at Kisauti, you know, drop a post, say, every Sunday. He drops his every Wednesday without fail. Also, his e-book is out, that’s how driven he is. He is that serious. I could do that, you know, write regularly and everyone expects the post at a certain time of day, so that if I miss out, I am accountable. I really could do that. It builds a great culture of discipline and passion cultivation. But I don’t. Why?

Well, today, like I said, is Sunday. And Sunday I preach. For a long time, I have not done so. For a long time, I have not done anything right to my spiritual self. I have not been growing. I have found myself in this routine of sorts every Sunday. I struggle to wake up, I make tea for everyone, do dishes (if I feel like), go back to bed again, wake up again, take a bath, go to church, teach Sunday school, scream my heart out at a 100 below-six-years-old kids then get out wondering why I feel drained. Scratch that. I always know exactly why I am drained. I am not supposed to teach every single Sunday without getting a break to recharge. For a long time, we had many teachers in my class, teachers that would teach on schedule, but along the way, things fell apart and became a matter of begging people to teach. I thought I could do it. I thought it would be selfish of me to just act like everyone else and jump ship, so I didn’t. I hang in there.

Let’s get one thing straight. I’m still stuck in teenage. I still delight in books written for teenagers and young adults. Why? Because teenagers in the US do things we only start doing when we’re in our 20s here. Or let me just speak for myself. They do things I am not even doing yet myself.

Why am I thinking this now, of all times? Two of the few books I couldn’t put down this year are specifically written for young adults. One was Paper Towns by John Green. I found it to be mostly stupid but I couldn’t stop reading all the same. The other is the one I just finished a few minutes ago: All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven. I bought it last Sunday, while I was browsing through TBC, quite impressed at how they’d stepped up their stock-recent-books game. Why did I buy it? Because it had been rubberstamped by the Guardian as the next The Fault in Our Stars.

I don’t know about you but I can shed tears very easily. Very very easily. I will cry over every movie that is good enough. I will cry when a child sings a song in church or in Sunday school and does not even know the words but keeps on singing very joyfully. I will cry when I see someone in pain or difficult situation. Like a few days ago when friends of our family lost a beloved daughter. I sat at their living room listening to the stories from her friends and family and just couldn’t hold back my tears. I had a headache that night.

This Sunday, I found myself crying on a Metrotrans bus. We were just making that turn around Globe roundabout (can I still call it that?) and I saw him. I saw the little boy coiled into a ball near the huge metal pipe that straddles the Nairobi river.

By Miriam Jerotich

Four years ago, I lost my childhood friend. She was twenty. She wore a wedding dress to her funeral; a poignant reminder of one of her cherished dreams. I don’t remember what I wore on the night that I was told we had lost her. I don’t remember the day itself; what I ate, what I was, what I thought before I woke into her absence. I remember falling on my knees and crouching to my ankles. I remember the ache that began gnawing deep inside me, its manifestation in the way I scratched my legs till they bled, a vestigial habit that I would slip into when I did not get what I want, in this case, her healing.