The Startup Grind Douala brings Marvin Cole of OVAMBA wow


Some things make and get me so excited I may need to drink some coffee to calm down.

Wait up, it was last last year the first startup grind Douala event and yours truly was there big big time. Let me find that post lol

So, tomorrow again, I’ll just create time and show up men – they are bringing Marvin Cole of OVAMBA – I mean I love learning – and from people who have hustled and bustled to the top – this girl I am is already bouncing so much. My outfit is was hung out this morning for the sun to warm it up some lol

So, I’ll dash in an out the PTA of the 4 musketeers I now have lol, then a meeting from 2-4 pm, no blackman time is allowed cause am the one hosting, and then 5-8 pm Bano Palace (a chick one for that much)

Life is good, have a fantastic weekend everyone

Posted in Coaching and Therapy, Marie's Garden, Mental Health Advocacy, My Heroines

1st Globuntu Online Summit: I’ll be telling my story from breakdown 2 breakthrough

looking at all 10 storytellers, do I look like the typical  ‘Angry black woman’? hahaha

Hello world,

Another is week is here and we are starting a new month for real. Wow, the 9th month in this 2018 which just started like yesterday? And yet, I have so much to tell about this year, one which my spirit revealed to me was my year of Grace. Ah, it’s been Amazing Grace how sweet the sound…all along. Thank God really that I blog so much and have all my records as I progress – cause sometimes it could feel surreal what has happened or is planned by faith you know…

One of these plans, is to join a panel of 10 amazing storytellers to share my story of what I did when “Shit happened”, and I was near checking out altogether from this life.

Storyteller Marie Abanga

You could watch the Ted X by the amazing founder and host Ms Beatrice Achaleke – my boss lol, where she talked about what she did when “shit happened” in her own life. Needless to say Beatrice is my heroine, have worked with her from my most tender age and we are related by much more than blood. Here is the introductory post I did of her several years ago hahaha.


Now therefore, anyone who believes like Iyanla Vanzart once asserted that:

“When you stand and share your story in an empowering way, your story will heal you and your story will heal somebody else.”

Will rush to book one of the few remaining early bird tickets before they are all picked up…click right here and sign-up cause am so excited to get to tell my story on this beautiful platform offered by the Globuntu Academy for Happy Minds. I will forever be grateful to and for Beatrice.

While at it, maybe you would love to check out the Facebook event page or look out for the Globuntu Academy for Happy Minds?

Posted in Coaching and Training, Marie's Garden, Mental Health Advocacy

And this is how it’s all being going down: P’s Night; LLC & co

I knew I was going to have a blast…I visualized one…I wasn’t disappointed…

I left my city of Douala with the very first bus I could find, having stayed up late at Barakah’s all white and glam Prisoner’s night (P’s Night).

With BB herself

I got to Yaounde and had some serious running around to do before heading for the LLC venue. I know I am a super organized chap and had already visualized all of that, so zoom zoom zoom here we came and hurray…just in time for the opening…

2 good days of networking, learning, sharing all in Amazing and Abundant Grace at the Leading Ladies Conference (LLC)…

And I did buy my copy hurray

I mean I am good to go on that vacation (hadn’t I even started?) and then show up two weeks later with GUSTO…

Dear gentle readers and followers, it has been one thrilling first half of 2018 gone and so much Grace has been involved… let me go rest my fingers and brain at least as much as feasible, and then see you by Grace come July 23rd. I will probably share more about the conference and all I learnt and felt on my return, I hope and sure imagine you understand my frame of body and mind at the moment hahaha

Posted in Coaching and Therapy, Marie's Garden, Mental Health Advocacy

A video shoot, a huge hug, some vaseline & soulful sharing make my weekend


Hello world, this past week was a difficult one for me with anxiety rearing such an ugly head again zut…but good I had a plan and then hmm some natural remedy on the dreaded day made me relax near 360°.

On friday I travelled for my late cousin’s corps removal from the mortuary and wake keep (and his demise had simply left me numb to this whole life v death thing). I had arranged with another cousin who has a studio in the same city to shoot my brief video for my mental health coaching services.

  1. The video shoot went so well and he has promised to do the ‘mixing and all’ this coming week so that I get the final video before the week runs out. Am glad the mortuary was at 2 pm and we finished by noon. When I got to the house and all were getting ready to leave for the mortuary, there issue of who was to stay behind and receive mourners came up – of course I quickly offered to do so (sparing myself some very emotional stimulation – I recall colapsing when I saw my brother’s corpse);
  2. I was introduced later in the evening to a mourner and she asked me if she could give me a hug. She was looking at me like she couldn’t believe I was the one standing infront of her. She said: “Oh Marie Abanga you are so strong, your write ups have been helping me so much, I really am so grateful” and all that while hugging me hugely. I sure needed and appreciated that huge hug. I told her she was also stronger now that she could read all I write and feel that for herself. All she needed do was find a way to show and share her own strength. Guess her name people? Favour;
  3. I spent the night at one of my adopted daughter’s and in the morning I realized I didn’t bring rubbing oil with me. Buea the mountain city is very cold for one like me (with rhumatoid arthritis) and so I always stay wrapped up and look forward to putting so much oil on me. I was therefore full of glee when she told me she only had vaseline. I mean only? That stuff keeps you warm and glowing I don’t care about the smell, price or whatever. I haven’t used vaseline since returning to Cameroon because Douala where I live is really warm and I have ‘palm kernel ‘ oil (even more cheaper and foul smelling than vaseline lol – but keeps warm and makes glow) for when I travel to Buea. That vaseline made me remember my Belgium era because of course out there I used only vaseline in abundance. I was so grateful to use vaseline again;
  4. On my way back I stopped at Limbe to check on my cousin (yes I have so so many cousins lol) who lost his dad. He was also my class mate in secondary school so I had rallied some batch mates to visit him together yesterday morning. Well, his phone had a problem and although we gathered as planned, we couldn’t get to him to know where exactly he was. The others left after an hour and I stayed at their down beach residence to read and enjoy some breeze. Just before leaving, I decided to try one last time and bam – he picked up (had just gotten a new battery he said). We sat and shared much gist for 2 good hours – I had never spent as much time with him – just the two of us and oh my how much soul sharing we did.

All in all, I am having a cool weekend thanks to the above memories and the joy of being alive. I wish us all many memories like these which make life lovely amidst any head and heartaches.

Have a calm sunday

p.s: currently reading a book called Love Life Walk by Steve Fugate and I mean I can’t do that book any justice. If you haven’t heard about him, maybe you could listen to this recent podcast of his?

Posted in Coaching and Therapy, Marie's Garden, Mental Health Advocacy, Poetry

I Sing it’s Okay for your listening and why not dancing please…

My dearest Dyane encourage me with her suggestion when I shared the poem, and I got inspired sooner than later. My 3 muskets were my excited audience. Ella had gone out. The Microphone was a ruined shower head lol.

Here is the Youtube clip for the office mode activated playback:

Happy weekend all, I go to spend a few hours by the sea in Limbe to renergize me some yuppie.

Posted in Guest Posts, Journey to Coaching, Marie's Garden

Confronting my Fears 1: The Ashley Rose Series!

Hello world, the post I am resurrecting is three years old (Dec 2013). It definitely qualifies as a guest post, and so while waiting for submissions as I had gently begged for last week; let me start somewhere:

Introducing My Garden last month, I had said I would eventually expose the “roses” of my friends in my precious garden, especially if he or she had a Rose to his or her name.

My friend Ashley Rose,Ashley Rosegave me a series of “roses” to expose in my garden for this month of December and I am sure examining and appreciating them will surely help us in our wrap up of this year and our resolutions for a hopefully better new year.

Here below is the first of the “roses” in the Ashley Rose series:

” Facing fears can be a very difficult thing to do. Even though fear stands for false evidence appearing real, the fears can be more real than one can imagine. I was diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder four years ago. Within this disorder, I have faced being completely terrified of snakes and other things such as bridges which I discuss in a following article. I first became frightened of snakes when I was 12 years old. I was walking through a small field when I saw a small black snake slither across my path. I quickly ran the other way and struggled with dreams of snakes for at least 15 years. Confronting this fear was really hard but very liberating.

Watch tapes of snakes: So I knew this was something that I wanted to tackle because I did not want this fear overtaking my life anymore. I was told by a counselor that “You create what you most fear.” So I knew from that moment that my biggest fear was being stuck in a jungle and an anaconda swallowing me whole. The likelihood of me ending up in a jungle in the middle of Georgia seems very unlikely, but you can never be too sure. So with all of that being said, I made the decision to watch tapes of snakes. At first, it gave me goose bumps all over and I thought I was going to die. But, I continued watching the snakes until I felt calm and at peace.

Limited Exposure to snakes: I went to the Atlanta Zoo and looked at the snakes in their enclosures. For the most part, the snakes looked like they were sleeping, but I did not stare at them for long. I was with my nephew who insisted on banging every snake enclosure; which caused me to panic. My worst fear was that the snake would become so enraged that it would bust out of the enclosure and attack everyone. Of course this psychotic nightmare that I made up in my head did not come true. The snakes were not even bothered. They seemed to be engaged with just resting.

Touching a snake: So I went to an animal show and tell presentation, which is similar to Jack Hanna when he goes on Maury; that is where I confronted my fear head on. There was this gorgeous yellow patterned python that was named Chiquita like the bananas. She was huge, but when I looked her in the eyes, I saw such a gentle creature. Of course I was leery of touching her head because I did not want her to even get a taste of me. But, I did touch her body and it was smooth and I was so in awe of her beauty. I asked myself why I am so scared of something so beautiful.

I would not say that I am 100% healed of my fear of snakes, but I no longer panic when I am faced with them in my presence. I think that facing fears can run so deep that it can takes years to fully overcome. I think my next goal would be to hold a snake, but I am not sure if I will ever build up the strength to. I am content and proud with my journey of facing my fear of snakes.”

I hope we liked it, look forward to series 2, let’s not hesitate to leave our comments and not fail to share…

Posted in Marie's Garden

My Personal Prayer


Hello my e-family, in my last post on our source of Peace, I promised to share my personal prayer with you all. It is simply personal because I crafted it, but oh it’s a prayer out of inspiration which any of us can use just like we use David’s or Solomon’s. if even just one person is inspired or motivated by my journey and prayer, then sharing it all and undertaking the journey with such stubborn and passionate faith is worth it.

I’ll share my leagcy eventually lest we not start thinking that Marie is looking forward to leave this world just yet 🙂

Here we go:

Jesuit Spiritual Retreat Center Douala

Friday 28th October 2016


Dear Lord, today and always, please grant me the serenity and discernment to choose what better leads to your deepening your life within me. May I hold myself in balance at all times, ever aware and fully conscious of your marvelous masterpiece of creation in me.

You search me and you know me, you love me and you forgive me, you need me and you lead; all I ask is for the Grace to always seek to know and do your will in every circumstance with total gratitude.

May I be able to always put on your armor, to generously be an inspiration and motivation to those you put on my path, with my experiences in your everlasting and merciful way.

Counting on Mary’s intercession, to thee I lift up my prayers in Jesus’ name Amen.

Posted in Book Reviews

Book Review: Secrets in Big Sky Country: A Memoir by Mandy Smith

Innocence abused to the most extreme...
Innocence abused to the most extreme…

Big Secrets which Hurt, Hunt and Haunt until Revealed

I was gripped as I turned the pages. Could this be real life? That a child, no siblings actually, be so abused in different and daunting proportions to the extent that one has to commit suicide? That the author is first of all ‘groomed’ to think it’s special love from ‘daddy’, and that her own mother turns both a blind eye and a lends nothing but a deaf ear to her daughter’s groans?That it gets so bad that when Mandy’s disoriented life leads her to a shabby existence resulting to a rape, and that she nontheless wants to keep her baby, those same parents connive with the doctor to ‘steal’ her baby and up the innocent soul for adoption. Another big hurtful secret which hunts and haunts until Mandy can keep it to herself no more. Her relationship with her daughter can only but take its toll but the ultimate grace is in Mandy’s work to be a tireless advocate of child abuse. Those terrible things which happen to people, makes them victims, leaves them so traumatised and ‘unjustly’ so ashamed, and nearly ‘ruins’ their whole existence unless they brave it to Deal and Heal with and from it all. And this too could be an Everest of its own. This memoir is not for the faint of heart although written in very familial prose. It gets my 5 star and unreserved recommendation.

About the Author and her work

Sometimes these lovely pets are truly far better than 'human animals/beings'
Sometimes these lovely pets are truly far better than ‘human animals/beings’

Mandy Smith was born and raised in Montana, aka “Big Sky Country.” It took five decades for her to find the courage to step out from that closet of shame and reveal what had been hiding in plain sight–familial sex abuse and its ensuing aftermath.

Mandy resides in Portland, Oregon, and is an advocate for child abuse prevention and adult survivors of childhood sex abuse.

“Secrets in Big Sky Country” was a finalist in the 2014 She Writes Press Discovery Memoir Contest, and was listed as BEST OF THE BEST 2015 Books at the book review blog: “It’s Either Sadness or Euphoria.” She used to blog over here

P.S I bought this memoir on January 13th this year, as part of a dozen or so pre birthday treats. I was planning to read many of them on my birthday weekend. Here is the comment I left on Mandy’s blog regarding her memoir: I had read the memoir starting on the 16th at 16 pm on a bus back to Douala, and yes didn’t sleep until I finished same.

Dear Mandy, I don’t have the nerves to click like on this one. I finished your memoir in 24 hours. I thought I loved writing reviews. Hmm what do I write here? I’ll gradually work over it. Thanks for sharing, hope you get to heal and deal which ever way with all those stuffs, sorry for Cliff, oh my …

But When I read a post on Mandy’s blog then that it was her last post for the blog as it was, I knew I had to pull myself once more together and attempt a beffiting review…

Posted in Marie's Garden, Media Gallery, My Memoirs

All four are free for four days…

What’s the Worst Case Scenario…

Dear World, starting from my most recent publication above, to my Mea Culpa below:

My Unconventional Loves...
My Mea Culpa

Or wadding through my literary garden reading my brother’s journey :

or my resilience journey: all will be free for four days on kindle amazon.

Get your free kinlde appps; for those who don’t even know how to go about it, you need to download those apps before you can read any e-book On.

I leave us all with this excerpt from the afterword of my fourth memoir:

In my writings, I have come to transcend boundaries to the me I thought was long ‘dead’. That little troubled but hyper kid nicknamed ayo, that turbulent teenager fondly called by some ‘ayobebe’, ‘radicaux’, ‘zam zam’, that battered, tattered but not shattered woman and wife, that ‘guilt stricken‘ mother, that transformed young, dynamic, disciplined and dedicated lady with a new ‘soif’ for life. If I didn’t start writing my journeys down, starting with that first and most unconventional work in which I never spared my reputation even for a second, I wouldn’t be at the stage I am today. I mean seriously, I feel good. At my age, it’s one of those marvels and several people tell me I am very lucky.

From the 18th to the 21st of January 2016, get them four for free 🙂 Share this with all your networks, reading is so therapeutic too and it has taken me roaming and roving over and again 🙂

Thank you very much
Thank you very much

I now head off to the magical city of Kribi, had to be for a colleague’s wedding but am deviating to a me-treat ahead of my b-day. Kribi here I come, people see you on Monday 🙂

Warming up for Hawaii and the carribeans for my big 4 - if I get there :)
Warming up for Hawaii and the carribeans for my big 4 – if I get there 🙂




Posted in Mental Health Advocacy

Mummy goes on air this Saturday to share and advocate for Epilepsy and Mental Health


Dear all, I am so so happy, that on no other week but this Holy one (for my Christian peep I wish you merry), mummy goes on air to share her pain, her love and her hope. How I wish I were back home to go with her?

For mums in here, who have lost a dear one to this ‘havoc’ called mental illness and the prevailing ‘shabby’ to say the least system, you must have felt very mixed emotions about it all. Probably you ventilated from shock, denial, hatred, then gradually woke up to reality and its enormity.

Mummy, as you go on air tomorrow on dear Amy Banda’s show called ‘Monuments’ & ‘Views, Voices & Visions’, remember to dress with love. You know all those of us who look up to you, and all those other mothers and families going through same and even worse, without even the least idea of what to make or do anymore. You are a Monument, your views matter so much on this subject, let your voice be heard loud and clear, and fearlessly share the vision you have for your son’s centre and mental health in general.

On behalf of myself and surely other mental health consumers, I want to thank you for wearing this amour – with Love; I also want to thank dear Amy for scheduling you. I have such high hopes for Amy and her show, and in you my rock of a mum!

Dear Gaby my love, if you can hear me: You know beyond measure how grateful I am for you. You who couldn’t advocate for yourself, you who couldn’t share your story, you who had such a signature smile, let your spirit smile us through as we  fearlessly and couragoeusly advocate for others and myself (mental health consumers)…

P.S This is the sequel. She did and she said it was grade. See how faboulous they all were?

Amy, a guest, and Mummy
Amy, a guest, and Mummy

Here is what Mum shared on her Facebook page after the programme:

How can death give birth to hope and life? How does a mother mourn the death of her only son with hope rather than a disaster? How could Mother Mary see Jesus killed but did not fight back? Is it because she knew that he would rise after 3 days? I have found the strength to bear the demise of my son after accompanying him through years of suffering in the stations of the cross during this lenten station. Infact, I wept at the 4th, 13th & 14th stations more than any other ones.
Today is Holy Saturday and the Easter vigil will come to restore hope.I started my vigil with a visit to LTM TV where AMY BANDA, myself and other guests discussed mental health issues and the plight of the victims, my son having been one of them. The hope that Petit Papa’s demise will bring, is the contribution that his foundation and center will bring to epileptics and mental health patients’ upliftment and healing. The book was launched, the work has started with the center under construction and the result of the baseline studies from Lebialem is coming in. The “Handbook of Epilepsy for teachers” is about to be published and the campaign against the stigma, rejection and abuse of epileptics and the mentally ill continued today at LTM.
Can we now conclude that death can give birth to hope and life and that a mother can mourn with hope? To God be the glory!!!!