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At this point in time, in my life, I was facing a lot. I had just decided to move away from home and start a new job in the city which I felt was my calling.

Tough decision, but still I made it. They say there is never really a perfect time to do anything and I guess this was not perfect but it did serve me.

For me, it was a dream come true. But then just like any dream ever achieved, the thrill is always there for a short time.

The sense of achievement there and the jubilation spirit jumping up and down inside you, but soon enough it dies out and things are back to normal.

New challenges set in and you then find yourself setting new goals and getting back to work because they have to be achieved.

I guess that is why it is said that true joy and learning are always in the journey, and never in the destination.

Life In The City

And so here I was, in a new town, the capital city, gaping at the city lights, well not really gaping but taking time to mesmerize and appreciate its beauty, taking it all in, congratulating myself, and making new promises.

travelling

Apart from when I was in school, this would be the first time I was staying away from home, and part of me was scared, part of me was excited.

All I had with me was a suitcase, a carton box, my handbag, credit card, and some money that my mum was kind enough to set me off with. It was her way of saying she had blessed me and that I would start off well.

I then remember what came next. Barely 3 days after I had moved in, I was almost getting kicked out by the landlady because I had not paid the double deposit required.

I was getting short of cash and almost sleeping hungry. Purchasing what was required and the reality of how expensive everything was really got to me.

I appreciated the sacrifice my mother had made to take care of the three of us siblings, without ever complaining or letting us see the reality of our finances.

God bless her heart. Life was tough and for the first time in my life, I could see its harsh reality, something I had always just read in books to prepare myself but I realized, that had not been enough.

Broke and Lonely

I had relatives, but then that is all they were. When I say this, I don’t really mean it to hurt anyone, but the deep connection or the closeness one felt to other close relatives was never there.

For one, I found it hard to trust anyone, blame it on nature, or my inborn trait perhaps. I was used to being alone, and in my life, apart from my family, those who came into it always just left.

alone

I blamed it on myself most of the time, though there was something I could always do to prevent it or stop it, but at times I just thought to myself that maybe that is how it was destined to be.

After all, I was a loner, and as much as it is said that no man is an island, for me, I wondered if that applied to me too because let us face it, there is always an exception to every rule.

Life had not always been easy even in high school. I never quite fit in, much as I longed to. I had survived bipolar attacks twice, one while in school and another immediately after I had finished school.

This made me even more alienated. Who would want to associate with a girl who had gone ‘mad’ at one time? And I need not tell you of the cliché groups that one had to be in to be considered popular.

Or the clubs that really mattered like the Science club, Music club, Drama club, Journalism. The truth is I pitied myself a lot, and the misery could be felt, palpable and real.

If only I had the brains or the personality to really shine. I had the brains though. Hadn’t I made it to the national prestigious school?

I however thought that that moment had been a moment of luck. That others were smarter than me. I wish I had a moment of glory where I would be noticed.

mirror

 

Oh Wishes

A moment of fame where I would not lurk in the shadows that much, a moment where I would be recognized as a human being. I had looks, but then who did not?

At that moment I wished I was more confident and not shy, more extroverted, not the girl with the quiet voice who blushed at every curious look cast her way.

Or the girl who had the answers in class but would not raise her hand in class because she was too afraid that her answers were wrong. I wanted to be different, I needed to be different, I just did not know-how.

Was I always like this? No. I wondered what shattered me. Was it the adolescence stage? Known to be the most challenging stage in life?

Was it the experiences that made me cower and wither away?

I was a lone wolf even though it had been said that the strength of the wolf is in the pack! I was yet to find my pack. But then maybe I was not to fit in because I was meant to stand out. Only life would give me the answers.

That was then though. The past remains in the past, but my past kept gnawing at me every step I took. I had let go through counseling, I had healed, gained back my joy.

reflection

Hope

I was shy but no longer that shy, I could speak confidently and articulately, even passionately. I had a Bachelors in Psychology, something I was so proud of though at first, I had wanted to study medicine.

But then I had not gotten the passing grade. I loved it, the theories, the concepts, the lectures. It felt like I had been drinking in the cup of knowledge and I wanted even more.

I welcomed books and studying, and even though hard at times, I did not miss the lectures, I pushed through and it felt amazing.

At that moment in life, I had convinced myself that the dark past was long gone and that I would never live like that ever again.

And yet here I was. I was peeling off the scars again, though unknowingly. I wanted to fight it tooth and nail, grit and dirt, with every ounce of energy I had left, but then I could not.

It was as if I could do nothing to stop it, and I hated it. God, I hated it with all my might.

happy

Lessons

Behind the tough moment, is a valuable lesson that one is meant to learn. But then what of when it damages your spirit?

What of when it sucks your enthusiasm and strength out leaving you frail and doubtful? What of when you cannot see the light in the future because you are in a pit hole and you keep sinking deeper with every fight you put up?

I was drowning in self-pity yet again, my strong foundation of what I had made of myself since that time was now shaky.

My firm foundation was no more. I did not know whether to pray or to meditate. I felt it was all too much. Coming to the city made me face all these feelings once again.

An important lesson though was that it must have been offset by something. You see something about life is that it does not just happen.

It happens for a reason. For what reason was this? This I was set to find out for it is only in finding out the cause of this that I would find a solution.

This is what I chose to believe though. I found answers when I leaned on others, books mostly for I did not always open up easily to people.

I was born to win, to conquer, to fall but still pick myself up when I did. To learn, to fear but still act in spite of fear. Though at times, every once in a while, the fear would overtake me and I would act in fear and you know what?

That was still okay because I was human. Why try to be perfect when it is inhuman to be so? Why think in black and white when in reality, most things are in grey?

thinking

No One Is Perfect

Life is never perfect, humans are never perfect for they were never created to be and that was okay.

And so I decided that I would laugh my head off whenever I made a mistake instead of beating myself up about how it could ever be different.

I decided that there was nothing called failure, but just life trying to show you that that was not the way and that there was a better way to do it!

When that happened, I would kiss its feet and say thank you with gladness and true enthusiasm. So what if I was not perfect?

If I fell down and lost my way every once in a while? If life turned out to be different from what I dreamed it to be?

I knew one thing. Perfectionism led to frustration when overwhelming. It made me feel like a failure even when I really was not.

I now knew what these feelings were meant to teach me. It was okay to make mistakes, it was okay to not attain goals sometimes.

It Is Ok

To be imperfect was okay, it was okay to be lazy once in a while, to sleep half the day off and eat junk food then feel too lazy to exercise.

To not make my bed, wash the dishes, or scrub the floor and toilet. It was okay to cry and not know what to do. To make wrong decisions in a relationship.

It was okay to feel misunderstood and to feel disliked. To not fit in at times, to be quiet and shy and unpopular. Undisciplined sometimes even though all the motivation blogs stressed the opposite.

It was okay to not achieve some dreams. Never does it make you any less of a person. Do you know why? Because I was enough, and you are too, you do not have to prove anything to anyone, because you yourself are enough.

enough

As I wrote these words one thing popped into my mind. I asked myself. Was it then okay to be ordinary and not extraordinary?

Is It Really Okay?

Was it okay to not want to be Oprah or Tyra Banks, a few of the well-known successful women of our time? But then I got the answers almost immediately.

They are portrayed as perfect in the limelight, yet they are not. Having struggles just like you and I. They also are aware that there are things they could do better, but then maybe they are okay with that.

Maybe they are okay with what they have accomplished, maybe that is what makes them, them, and me, me. A famous quote then made its way into my mind.

Look up to no one, and look down on no one, for each is unique, and each person is fighting a fight you know nothing of like I did.

To the world, I wore this façade look, that all was well and perfect, yet inside, it was not. I was hurting and so is every person you see walking down the street. We each have struggles that we keep to ourselves.

For the first time in a long time, I found peace. I had done a lot of mistakes. There are tons of stuff I felt I could improve on.

But then self-forgiveness is what I needed most. I was not perfect but then I was worthy. I was not rich and prosperous to provide for my family, and as much as I desired to be, I knew I would get there.

After all like I said, the real joy is in the journey and not the destination. I wanted to improve my life. To impact people’s lives, I wanted joy, peace, and prosperity, I desired to give and receive love.

Conclusion

Yet I now knew one secret that I did not know during the previous dark periods. All I had to do was take that first step up the staircase to where I wanted to go.

I had taken that staircase already. What I had to do was to be brave enough to keep taking the steps up that staircase, at my own pace, fast or slow, I was still making that journey.

At times it would be important to look back and commend myself for going all that journey but right now, all I had to do was focus on the present.

I am a conqueror, and I will not accept defeat. You are too. We cannot live behind a mask. When too tired I will seek a friend to hold my hand and help me through for no one is ever strong enough to walk alone all through.

Deep inside I know everyone was born to win, to thrive, to make an impact, and be somebody. The question is do you choose to be that? The only difference between winning and losing is in the choices we make.

The greatest gift of all is love. Self-love surpasses all, for, with self-love and forgiveness, you will always give yourself another chance to try again and again and again.

So long as there is a new day, then there is always a new beginning to start afresh. I was learning how to be my best, and I hope that through this, you also will.