In less than six months I broke more mugs than I ever broke in the last twenty-one years of my existence in this terrain of accidents. I broke the latest today. In the morning. Accident. Of course.
Actually, I don’t have a rich history with broken mugs. I do with plates and glasses. For obvious reasons. You can’t be breaking everything in an African home with a Kenyan mother even though all they’d tell you if you broke one thing is “vunja yote” (break them all).
I broke my first one while trying to clean it. It was slippery. Accident. Again. What other possible explanation would you give? It was my favorite. A shade of blue. My favorite color. A random gift from church. Treasured. From an anonymous source. Maybe that’s why it was easier to get over it.
My second one was another accident. I can’t remember exactly how it happened but I only broke the handle. No biggie. Right? Sure. A new toothbrush holder. Or so I thought. I threw it away when I was moving out. No biggie. Less injury, less pain, less memory.
I broke my third this week. Now at home, my mum’s. Another accident. More anticipated. I guess. On transit; it had no handle. I probably completed someone’s mission. See, I had full and actual grip on the rest of the mugs and cups. Quite a number. More than ten. What a bizarre? What was I doing with more than ten mugs on my hands? Well, you only understand that when you are the only girl in the house.
“Bro, I broke a mug today.” I announced the legendary act in an African home. Kenyan home.
“Which one?” He asked.
“The one that had no handle.” I explained.
“No biggie. Mum is the only one who uses it anyway.” He responded.
“But why would anybody be using a mug without a handle anyway?” I protested. Against no one. Of course!
Case closed. No biggie.
Today, I began my own mission. First thing in the morning, I broke another mug. Just the handle, you know. No biggie. Another accident. Least anticipated. Actually, I knew something was broken because of the sound of the impact it made on the floor. I still don’t understand how the whole thing wasn’t smashed to pieces. Second chances? Maybe. I must admit, I feel a lot worse about it. It was my last mug. I mean, the last one untouched. Unbruised. Unbroken. Favorite, by default. I’m keeping it. I still need a mug for routine you know. Considering my caffeine intake. And with the rising awareness on cancer; plastic cups are not an option.
Is it true? That you don’t realize it until it’s too late? Is it true that you only know you love her when you let her go? That you only hit the road when you are missing home? I still can’t believe that I had to break four mugs in less than six months to realize Christopher Martin was actually right. Is right.
We all have broken mugs in our lives. I don’t know about yours but clearly, Chris Martin’s was a girl. Is a girl. Mine are accidents, no biggies. That’s the point. The question is, could I be more careful? Could I have prevented them accidents? I don’t know.
What are you willing to keep that’s broken? Coz, am going to be using a mug without a handle. When a few days ago, doing so made no sense to my brother and I. sooner, I might have to pack it and move out with it because it’s all I got. A few weeks ago, mugs without handles belonged to the dustbins. Perfect landlord, right!?
But what really are your broken mugs? Trust? Friendships? Relationships? Self-esteem? Bad grades? A dying patient? A car in your garage? Whatever it is; I hope you don’t break your last. And if you do, I hope you realize it is your last. Sometimes, we lose things without knowing. Other times, we know when it’s too late. Many times, we don’t realize we already lost them. Why? Because all the time it wasn’t a big deal.