2016 shook me to my very foundation. 2016 got me to a point where I couldn’t form words to pray. When I kneel to pray, I just cry and speak in tongues because I don’t know the words.

January – March.

The year started out very normal, the festivities and celebrations and general joyful mood. I remember reading the yearly reviews for 2015 and wondering why my life was so uneventful and hoping I would be able to write for this year. Boy! Only if I knew. I was looking forward to going for my service year and everything looked perfect, or close to it. I was also going to finally lose the remaining weight I had left to lose after the 20kg I lost in 2015. Spent my days going to the gym, running at the stadium and learning how to swim.

April.

I got posted to my preferred state. I was ecstatic, everything in my life was falling in place. I would go for my service year, start admission processes for my Masters in the UK, and leave Nigeria immediately after my service.

I got to NYSC camp on the 27th of April, 2016. Camp was just a blur for me. Made very few friends and just generally slept and ate a lot. Left camp in May.

May.

Dad got suspended indefinitely for suspicion of fraud at his office. We were all angry. How dare they? We were going to get the best lawyers and sue them for every penny they had. Daddy was indignant. But I was convinced that we were fine, we could afford it, they would realize their mistake and call him back. So it was kind of a mini vacation.

My grandmother fell ill. She was losing weight and stooling and had patches on her skin which were itchy. She went for a series of tests. Turned out she had a cancerous growth in her liver. She’s too old for surgery so she has to take a particular drug everyday for the next 6 months or so. It costs 100,000 naira for pack which lasts for 3 weeks.

My brother, who is a sickle cell patient, had a bad crisis. He couldn’t walk. He had to move about in a wheelchair. He was admitted in the hospital for almost one month.

I was not home so I had to find out late, we were broke. We had no money. Daddy didn’t save.

June.

The first Sunday in church, I kept asking God why so many things were going wrong at the same time.

I was just coming out of the bathroom one morning when my sister called to tell me how the police came with my dad to the house to search it. My father was a suspect and had been detained. I sat naked on the floor and was crying. I didn’t understand. My sister was crying on the phone, my mother also called crying on the phone. We didn’t have anyone to call. They finally released him after we paid bail.

I was still at my NYSC state. My brother was still sick, my grandmother was still sick. We didn’t have money.

My birthday came and it was very uneventful. My house was on fire, celebrating was the last thing on my mind. What had we done to deserve this?

July-August.

My father was being arrested every week and we had to bail him out every time. His lawyers were almost not helping matters. Or so we thought.

My mum called me and was screaming “your daddy had killed me ooo!” and when I asked what happened, turns out my father was guilty all along. They were stealing money. The question was, where was the money? How did he spend it? The company claimed that he and his cohorts stole about 200 million in all and they wanted them to return it all. From where?

The culprits claimed they didn’t steal that much. They claimed they took and shared only about 50 million amongst themselves but the company wanted all 200 million back.

Remember, we were broke. No money at all. My mother was running the house on her own.

September – November.

My parents’ marriage is failing. They’re always fighting. Dad is still doing the dance with the police and his former office. They sacked him and have reported him to EFCC. He’s always broke. I didn’t think I would start sending my daddy money so soon. My mum doesn’t know I send him money because she will get angry. The recession isn’t helping matters. My siblings have had to grow up faster because money hardly comes from the house so everyone is taking care of themselves.

I have been dreading the festivities because I don’t know what state I’ll meet the house.

There’s a hammer hanging over our heads.. My father might go to jail.

December.

I’m learning to lean on God and let him comfort and take care of me. I have cried so much this year. I used to think I was strong but this year broke me and it still looks so bleak. I really hope that there’s a light at the end of this tunnel.

The year had some good notes though:

I learnt forgiveness and unconditional love. Forgiving my dad wasn’t easy but love forgives all things.

I learnt how to pay my tithe(always been lackadaisical about it).

I still have the most amazing boyfriend.

I’ve lost about 12kg since the beginning of the year. Even though my fitfam is in fits and starts, I’m doing okay.

I learnt how to swim. Yaay!

I also decided to change my career path completely and have made plans in that regard. Hoping for the best.

I have read about a hundred books this year.

Oh, and I made up a plan to complete reading the Bible in 6 months. On my 3rd week.

I’m putting everything in God’s hands, and I know that he will take care of me and my family.

Believing in Joel 2: 23-27 and praying for a better 2017.

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A young woman that loves God, food, my family, my boyfriend, books and superheroes.