2015 was quite a year. If I were to write all I want to write about the year here, you guys would leave half way. Even this is long as it is but please bear with me. Today, I highlight some of the moments and some lessons as well. Enjoy.
I had a conversation with my mum where we agreed that I would go back to study Law as a second degree. Not masters. Second degree. I wasn’t very excited about it at that point but it was to be one of the best decisions ever. Work resumed after the Christmas break and I hit the ground running. Funny how I thought the first week was tough. If only I knew what was coming. Also started a new series on the blog (face palm) and I enjoyed writing it in the course of the month. Went to Ibadan for a friend’s book reading and finally met Yemi Ajala (who I think is a truly wonderful person). It was a lot of fun.
I learned this month how absolutely priceless it is, to have people who really value you. I had been dealing with chaos resulting from pressure at work combined with working on scripts and my blog on the side and one evening, I just shut down. Turned off all my devices in an attempt to find some peace and was pretty much off grid for about 12 hours. I woke up the next morning to discover that a certain young man had left his house at about 4 or 5am to look for me because himself and another young man were worried about my ‘disappearance’. It was not in my nature to go off grid like that. That man remains my realest MVP.
I got a promotion at the office. Was made a supervisor. Better pay but brethren, the responsibilities ehn. Hehe. I found myself working late hours to keep things together and weekends too. Consequently, my writing suffered and that, dear friends, is the reason I never got to finish Damage Control. Forgive me please. The work was intense. I remember putting this in my journal
“So I’m back to that point where I realize that 24 hours aren’t really enough. Sigh. Precious Jesus.”
February was pretty much all work and almost no chill. I compiled a list of schools I wanted to apply to for my degree and sent out applications through an agent.
March was err a bit of drama in the beginning that I was trying to unlook but that drama would come to catch up with me the following month. One of my movies premiered on Africa Magic and I was really excited. The feedback I got was quite good. I got another writing offer which I had to turn down because I would simply have been unable to deliver in the time requested. I started slipping out in March. The moods were awful and I was still drowning in work.
My choice school offered me admission in the middle of the month and I was really excited and really anticipating the new experience.
Ah. April was a really good month. My brother and I got our own apartment and moved out. I had the best birthday ever. Fully turned up at the beach with friends. Got the best birthday present (a bunch of letters) from a very special person that really warmed my heart. Letters are the way to this lady’s heart, I tell you. Well, that, and some other things.
My cousin got married the weekend after my birthday and we went to PH to turn up. April was a month of plenty groove. Was really good. And then the drama that I talked about. For those of you on Nigerian twitter, you remember those hashtags and memes that were trending one time? “I was in my house when trailer came to jam me” abi? Aha. It happened to me o. But that experience made me realize that maturity truly isn’t a function of age and emotional intelligence is a very vital asset that everyone needs when dealing with people.
What did I do? I simply shutdown the contractor that was responsible for the trailer and life went on.
Work got better. I think I found a way to deal with the pressure without going mental. I went on leave and went to spend some time with dad and it was really great. My sister and I treated him to a surprise dinner on his birthday and it was so lovely to see him happy. Oh, the road trip I took up north was the longest I had ever taken in my life. Many thanks to fuel scarcity. Naija we hail thee.
My brother got a new job and I was mad happy for him. But he had to be out of town on training for about a year and that sucked. Anyone who knows me well will know how I am with Bubu. My realest ride or die.
I learned this month that being impulsive is a double-edged sword that can take you through some of life’s greatest experiences or lead you to silly mistakes. June had me acting on impulse a lot. And to be quite honest, some of the things I did then, I would take back in a heartbeat if I could. Or maybe not. Because life is a learning process. And I usually like to say I have no regrets. Everything I ever did or didn’t do has helped in shaping the woman I am today. Not perfect, still a work in progress, but a woman I am learning to love still.
July was mum’s birthday. I travelled to go see her and managed to successfully pull a surprise birthday for her with plenty help from her staff at the office and my siblings who kept tracking her like monitoring spirits. LOL. It brought joy to my heart to see mum so happy and shed tears of joy. I took her out to dinner later that night and we spent the next few days catching up. (Ps. Mum is the realest gist buddy ever).
Handed in my resignation letter and it felt a little weird thinking that I would soon have to leave the amazing team I worked with behind.
Finally left the office (they didn’t want me to go o. I ended up staying 3 weeks longer but I was happy to.) Great hangout with close friends at the beach as the date of my departure loomed closer. It was one of the highlights of the month.
I finally saw one of my movies on Africa Magic with my parents and I cannot put to words the amount of pride they expressed and how that made me feel. Nothing beats having parents who are supportive of your dreams, encourage you through humble beginnings and cheer you on when the glory days begin to emerge.
I moved to Scotland to resume school and I remember all the love that flowed from my friends in the wake of my departure. Seun’s tweets had me positively embarrassed and waiting for the ground to swallow me up. And then a very special person wrote me something on Instagram that took me forever to recover from. Completely blush-worthy and overwhelming.
Eloho wrote me the loveliest missive. I read it often and it’s one of the best parting gifts I got.
I didn’t take too long to adjust to the weather or make new friends either. Lovely flatmates and super amazing classmates who are running the same class of degree as I am. We’re only 7 and getting to know them has been great. Classes commenced and they were easier than I’d anticipated.
Went to the gymnastics tryouts and I learned that you cannot teach an old dog new tricks. It was not my calling biko. So I shone my teeth politely when the girl asked if I would be signing up with them.
The chaos returned towards the end of the month. I was dealing with so many things on the inside and figuring them out was a major hassle. But this marked the beginning of my journey to self-discovery.
Matriculation dinner. Was good fun. A classmate who works at a theatre here had us go see a theatre performance (Dirty Dancing) and it was absolutely amazing.
One of the things Eloho said to me in her missive was “isolation brings depression”. October had a lot of rough days but I made it through. Somehow. I was oscillating a lot between the moods and it was frustrating because it was not something I could share or was willing to share anyways. But somehow, I made it through the month.
I was able to re-connect with a very close friend I had lost touch with and I can’t even express how much those chats gave me life. They were sometimes just random, mundane conversations. But they gave me life. Bless your heart Olarry.
I made a discovery about myself and mistakes I had made in a relationship 5 years ago. I didn’t even realize what I had done at the time until the truth resurfaced to hit me full in the face. Be careful how you treat people. What goes around really does come around.
In the midst of all the chaos and what-nots, there was mister C. Mister C was a trailer load of happiness that I was sometimes afraid to indulge in. And that was only because I was afraid it wouldn’t last. But he was consistent. Laughter, support, hope, trust, consistency. Mister C brought all that to the table.
Took some practice exams and didn’t do very well in two of them. Humbling moments that opened me up to more knowledge.
More questions than answers. Occasional chaos but still I made it through. And then it was crunch time for studying. 15 hours on some days, 9 on some others, exams were looming and I was determined to not be taken unawares.
Went to see a Christmas Pantomime of Peter Pan. It was grand! The Donald Trump shades killed me. And all the singing made it really dope. It was a lot of fun.
As I write this, I am 15 hours from my first exam but I can’t sleep. My sleep patterns have been distorted and I’m just here hoping and praying that all the effort I have put in, alongside my friends would pay off. Everyone has worked really, really hard.
Studying Isaiah 40-45 helped me through a number of rough nights. And there was TD Jakes as well.
I learned some more lessons about personal discipline this month. And I’m still learning. To not overestimate your resolve as a person because sometimes, we shock ourselves.
I am thankful for amazing people in my life who were a solid support system, some of them without even realizing it. People who were never far from me, even if I was several thousand miles away. Because quite honestly, the only reason I made it out of some of the mazes I went through was because there were people walking me through it. And for the most part, they had no idea that was what they were doing.
December also came with a major miracle for my dad. When I spoke to him over the phone that day, my heart was practically bursting with joy and gratitude. Gratitude for his resilience and unbroken spirit.
The most important lesson I learned this year would be to live your life without constantly seeking validation. I never thought I was that kind of person who sought validation or approval. I thought I was solid. But a few experiences this year taught me different and I am gradually working on that- being my own person.
I also learned the importance of choosing happiness. But beside that was the lesson that sometimes, life’s choices do not come in black and white. But choose anyway. Make your peace with your choices and be unapologetically happy. Laugh as often as you can. Laugh.
There was also the lesson of staying in the process. Do not measure yourself with anyone. Go through your process and make a steady climb to the top. You go dey alright finally.
As I write this concluding part, I am done with my exams and I am drained from the entire process. Drained but happy that it’s over. And happy that I made it through with my squad (Bridget, Arielle, Erin and Eildh.) Love you guys!
So I say a prayer for you dear readers. May 2016 be kind to you. May you find the required drive to live your dreams and indulge your passions, to build your strengths and manage your weakness. May peace never elude you and in your moments of conflict, may you always find calm to the storm. Most importantly, may laughter never be far from you. Because laughter is music, medicine and food for the soul.
As usual, this was long. Because I talk too much. But thank you for reading. And hope you enjoy the new series I’ve got in store for you guys. Stick with me in 2016. I’ve got really good stuff planned for the blog.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.