May 9, 2017 (12:31am)

(as I’m waiting to enter the final livetalk chat for Public Health Biology)

Kendra seems to add some fatty rolls to her arms everyday. Grace seems to be sleeping a bit more and has been a lot less cranky during the day. I can’t wait to be able to go places with the both of them, to read stories and have random discussions about this weird world.

Some things that I worry about is the language development for Kendra. Our housegirl, Esther, is the quietest person I’ve ever met. I don’t want Kendra to be a submissive girl/woman. I want her to confident and strong and willing and able to talk to anyone, to be able to tell people how she feels, to have big discussions about big ideas. To know about math, physics, nature, cars, and politics. To be confident but also humble and willing to share her blessings. I need to be that sort of role model. A confident, intelligent and humble one – and also a vulnerable one. to know when to ask for help, when to tell people that I am not happy, and know why. And then make changes.

The interview for vipkid did not happen, nobody showed up in the online classroom. I emailed Sali and told them about the delays, asking Dr. Sali if I can prepare some presentation or training that I could provide. not really sure where the Nursing job will end up here in TZ, but we’ll see. Also, very interested to study and learn some French while I’m here.. and also buy motorcycle, that will make me feel a bit more fatherly, I believe. Hmmm….

Talking about male contraception with Dr. Barry Zirkin on livetalk – blahaaha



may 7, 2017

Kendra turned one month old today. we had planned on going to SeaCliff to have lunch with Salama and Charity but Kendra had not been feeling well the past two days. Grace and I went to aga Khan on friday at about 430am, Grace had gotten an infection and was shaking from feeling cold in the morning.. started on augmentin and we believe Kendra has been feeling a bit restless from the antibiotics, so we stayed home all day again.

over the past few days I’ve been noticing that her skin color has gotten a bit darker and that her personality is beginning to show; she knows what she wants and expects it to be done, she’s a bit demanding. I guess we’ll see how long that aspect of her lasts. Grace has been a very hovering and nervous parent so far. I’ve been a bit distant I believe and don’t know exactly why. Maybe because I’m very concerned about the future and trying to plan for it, my mind seems to be racing constantly over what the next 5 years should be like for us as a family… i’m beginning to feel that I’m missing out on bonding with Kendra now. I’ve written before about how I did not feel ready to be a parent, now I’m so concerned about the next few years and am not enjoying the time here right now. But, I am grateful for so many things: namely that my baby is healthy and gaining weight; we are financially doing fine even if I don’t have a job; I do have job offers and other potential things (Sali, VIPkid?). I get so inspired to be a better and smarter parent after looking through photos online of Jesse/Shaffer, etc.. Why have I always been so competitive (while at the same time pretty lazy)? I have always wanted to be the hero, I’ve had the sports jock syndrome for as long as I can remember. I remember playing football and imagining that Bo or Joe Montana was watching me and they were in awe. Look at me now — 33 years old, no job, with a kid. But, I still have this desire to be a great something??

One month ago I was screaming at nurses in AKH to do something about Grace’s dizziness and vomiting. I’m so glad that part of the journey is over with and everyone is ok. We have learned about the nonsense of other family members over the past few weeks, which makes my wanting to stay in Dar a little different. Now I’m almost always in the mood to head back to Connecticut, I sort of do not want to start over somewhere new again.. forget about making friends!!

Lastly, I felt so proud because I went into the bedroom when Kendra was crying, this just after I submitted another shitty assignment about RTI’s in Dar. Kendra was freaking out again and I took her to walk a bit in the living room. I sang a bit and carried her, put her on my chest. finally, I was singing “you were born in Dar es Salaam, tanzania…” and she feel asleep right in front of my eyes. I was holding her with my two hands on my knees and then transferred her to a pillow and then finally back to the bedroom.. too many mbu in the living room. I’m starting to feel as though I have a purpose and that if I take care of my other responsibilities – the most important one is to be a great father and just be there for my daughter, everything will get done eventually – whatever career trajectory I want to go on.. it will happen. But, the most important thing is to take care of business at home and make sure it is stable, interesting and happy environment for everyone. That’s what is most important.