So, I haven't always known what I could or wanted to do with my life. For a long time I was confused and bemused over my inability to discover something new about myself, something I could call my own. I would sit and wait and hope something happened, to drag me into my path (then I'll probably take it from there, I thought), but it wasn't that simple.
It was in this state of mind that I wrote a note 'I sigh' about my One year National Youth Service Corp in Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria (That was the most difficult time of my life). When I posted this note on Facebook, I got help, divine help, from someone unexpected.
Ife Olatunji is a well of wisdom. He represents, to me, a sign bearer. He has not only found himself, he's willing to be a Barnabas (Son of encouragement). He sent me a note in reply to 'I Sigh'. Please read both notes below.
I sit there, doodling on the edges of my diary, my mind far away. The days seem to fly past, leaving no traces of satisfaction or fulfillment in the activities that trickle in.
Time has no measure, seconds sigh with emptiness.
I live in a fast paced hurry-up-can’t-slow-down world, yet all I do is watch the ticking of the clock (not literary though, that would be the height of uselessness). I need something, really. I wonder what exactly it is. A sense of purpose? Determination? A drive? Drive at what?
These faces that surround me, all fresh and smiley, do they have moments of sobriety, when they stop to ponder, to recount their steps and discover true meaning?
I lick my lips. They’re dry and chapped now. Thanks to this dry Jos weather. I love the cold though but not the dust and dryness.
Another Saturday will soon be over and all I’ve succeeded in doing is sit and ponder, scribble and doodle. Ha! My life.
I dream though, dreams of the future. Desire, achievement, success and the road to the top. I can dream. Ain’t paying nobody to do that.
I’ll get there. It won’t be long. I guess. I hope. I believe. Whatever, sha. But I know I need help. Need to get a grip, but how do I………
“Corper, how na?”
A voice jolts me out of my reverie, forcing me back to the reality of my surroundings.
I look up to see a remarkably white set of teeth set in an extremely dark skinned face smiling back at me. Ahmad. The security guy.
“Haba corper, you no chop today? You well so? This one wey your eye red like this?”
I look around the little eatery, hoping no one heard him. Then I smile my customized smile, sheepish but absolutely bogus.
Ahmad now knows me well. Thanks to his boisterous nature, He never fails to let everyone know that I’m a corper, serving my Father land. I happen to view this as a nebulous period of my life where I’m locked out of my past but not yet in my future.
Anyway, I smile at Ahmad, again.
“Thanks, Ahmad. I’ll be on my way now.”
He smiles his usual toothy smile. I pack my stuff and prepare to leave.
I guess I’ll take my thoughts back to my dingy room. I’ll lie in the darkness and keep pondering, wondering……
First, His analysis of my musings,
A satirical representation of a "loner's" musings and contemplations against the backdrop of the corpers' universe.
Her problem is not sloth or inertia but the burden of a heightened consciousness.
She is a seeker. Something in her reaches out for life, not life as it is but life as it ought to be.
For her, its not so much how fast a ladder is climbed but whether the ladder is leanin' against the 'right' wall.
Until she finds meaning n purpose, she sits and she waits... and sighs.
His full reply
Let me start by saying that Mind reading is not yet my forte. (I told him he was a mind reader)I wish it is. [Could use this gift on ‘Who wants to be a millionaire’]. *grins* But am not that evolved. My analysis, as it were, was a function of empathy. Yes, I am a loner of some sort myself.
I used to ask myself …
“Why has life burdened me so?”
“Why do my eyes see so far; if I was destined to remain obscure?”
“What am I to do with this acute sensitivity to the sights, sounds and sensations of the world around me; to the behavior of people, their follies and fetishes, suffering and nobility, their wisdom and intelligence?”
“Why am I so obsessed with the thoughts humans ask about themselves and their world; cause-effects relationships of various elements and their implications for human existence?”
“Why am I so ‘uncool’; having a preference for nerd-nesting with my rowdy bunch of geeks and poets, copywriters and songwriters, artists and wordites[Christians]?”
“Why cant I just be like my cool and trendy friends, watching and arguing over a bunch of adults running after a leather ball [soccer]?”
“Why do I have more books than clothes” [you don’t want to know d size of my library]
The questions are endless.
Sometimes I wonder if I was born this way, Or if circumstances made me this way.
I used to sit and stare and wait and sigh.
You asked me “if waiting and sighing makes sense”. ‘Why not attempt something’, you said?”
The answer is not so straightforward.
You see, human progression is not always linear. Would Joseph have thought that the plan and pathway from his father’s tent to the throne was meant to engage a pit and a prison?
Life is a potpourri of signals and stimuli. Some are green lights. Others are red flags. Interpretation and wisdom is the key to ‘making it’. Your consciousness is deep but your spirit has to be keen, sharp and on its toes; ready to make something out of what you have and where you are. Selah!
Another thing is that ‘rulership is a function of element’. The Eagle has the gene of a monarch… which only comes alive as long as it remains in its element: Air! If it tries manipulating other elements [water, fire, earth], … the monarch shall become a nonentity.
What has brought you the greatest fulfillment, compliments and peer regard? That’s a pointer to your element.
Your throne, Remi Sage, lies in your element. The written and spoken Word? Creative writing? Hmm? Something screams out of your writings and only you can hear it.
You might be working’ somewhere grand by societal standards. Or not so grand; the beautiful thing is that as long as you keep that inner bliss[your voice], your platform would be drawn to where you are. Do what you can wit what you have, where you are.
“Asiko n lo”, you might think. Your friends are in Mobil, MTN and Zenith Bank. I agree. Asiko n lo. BUT… the best house on your street today was not the first one to be built there. Was it? We have to FOLLOW THE COMPASS AND NOT THE CLOCK. Start small. Grow fast. Live the dream. Don’t bother on missing out on life. You won’t. Silent years would speak loudly.
You gotta learn how to create value from your proclivities. Its time to find your voice and be fully baptized into it. That’s the tool and vehicle that would deliver your prosperity – on a sustainable basis, that is.
FOCUS makes all d difference. Great is the future of THAT woman, who KNOWS ‘where she is going’ and has made ‘how to get there’, her ENTIRE course of study.
I discovered my element in 2002: the Word in its multi-dimensionality.
First it was the Logos of Christ: the complete works of Deity as it refers to human existence.
Then the words of men: written, spoken, sung, painted and performed.
Then my own words. Hmm… that’s for another day.
Am still evolving. No longer in hibernation.
Am not yet in the headlines. But am no longer on the sidelines.
The journey has begun.
Lets stop here 4 now... lest you pass out due to boredom.
What can I say? That note was timely.