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I wondered why I was not feeling all the happiness I was meant to be feeling. I couldn’t find the time to love me, there was so much love around me, I was giving love, I was receiving a lot of love but I was not giving me love. I don’t have many memories from the end of 2017; I had my daughter and took up a job when she was 7 weeks old. I needed to do that because besides needing to make money, I was searching for myself outside being a mother. I didn’t know that was why I was doing it then but in retrospect, I realize that I was afraid of losing myself.

By this year, I had gotten into doing things, mothering, wifing, sistering, employeeing, daughtering and everything but being kind to myself. It took me a while to say “bia, this girl, don’t kill yourself by yourself, this life na one”. At some point, I had to embrace myself, admit to myself that I was not the same person and fall in love with my colourful life. I was holding on to the past and mourning something less than what I have. Lol. Imagine craving the past when the present is so so beautiful, I was missing out.

Before I went on twitter with the crazy captions, I was already at home telling myself beautiful things about me, I was so committed to not losing my confidence or my joy because I did not feel in control of where my life was going. I affirmed myself back to happiness. I don’t always feel great so I learned to talk myself out of my self-deprecation.

I stepped out and did things I could not imagine just because I finally accepted to myself that I could, did I fail? Yes, many times. Failure does not worry me anymore, in fact I am more likely to fail than win but right now, I am certain, I will keep trying, I want to keep trying, to wake up every day and do things, to live and laugh, every day.

All my babies are growing. My daughter is getting tall, Alhaji is sure she will tower above me by the time she’s 6, I am 5”6 so that is worrying lol. Our other baby, Sanitary Aid is getting bigger, it’s touching lives, the lives are touching lives, and we have learned so much since we started. Every time I see one person donate pads through us, other organizations or on their own, I feel new excitement, its happening, we are talking periods and we are looking out for the vulnerable. I wanted to start a mobile library this year, it didn’t happen but I bought a bus for the library, so next year? Let’s see.

Asking for help is so important, I did a lot of that this year, I asked for days off, time off, assistance, support, collaboration everything, I was asking left right and centre and it gave me time to breathe. My new friend visited me a few weeks ago and as she was leaving, she said “I have always worried that you take care of everybody so who takes care of you, but now, I have come and I have seen that you are in good hands”. It was a passing statement but it made me smile. When they say, “it takes a village…”, everything takes a village, I don’t think I would have come this far alone and I really hope my team in love and life are willing to continue this journey with me. I am grateful for my family, my family’s family and my friends.

I see things now, I pick my flaws like project, plan and follow through on making them better, and it’s hard. This year made me conscious of the people around me, fiercely protective of my space but eternally grateful for the life I now have. I never dreamed of this life, I did not even know I could have it.

I have cried this year, I have laughed and laughed, I have cried while laughing and laughed while crying, if I could change anything, it would be the pace, to make my testimonies come sooner but when it is your time, it is your time and now is my time.

In the end, 2018 was my year; every year is my year really. So here is to conscious growth and deliberate happiness, to 2019, my year.

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