The lack today could be the bounty tomorrow!

I had a classmate who was always brought out of school assembly for late payment of fees or no fees at all. Canned. Beaten. Made jest of. I would feel so sorry for her and worry about her parents. I was never close to her and couldn’t ask about them. I had my own struggles and just concentrated on my studies.

Few years later, I met her in my University. We became close. She looked frailer than we were in secondary school. She could hardly afford to pay her fees. Ours was a Federal university and our fees were relatively cheap, but she struggled year in, year out.

Sometimes, she would come perch in my room for a few weeks before she could sort out accommodation the University provided. She also did some side jobs; frying akara, selling extension weaves, laundry for her hostel mates and lecturers, running errands, cooking and all sorts.

While staying with me, she confessed that things had been tough for her parents since her father lost all his savings. Her mum had never been working as her father was responsible for all their financial needs.

They lost their house, they lost all they had, but for her father’s decision not to take she and her younger brother to a public secondary school, they’d have been forced to withdraw. They lived from hand to mouth and where I could help, I assisted her with money and foodstuff.

In our third year in school, after we returned from ASUU break, I never heard from her. All attempts to reach her on the number I had failed. I moved on and prayed for her anytime her thoughts came to mind.

Fast forward to few years later. Somebody messages me on Facebook asking if I remember her. She introduces herself and voila, it’s my old friend. We shared and talked. She told me how she eventually had to drop out of school because her father died and her mum followed shortly after.

Few months after her parent’s death, she received a call from one of her father’s old friend and classmate. He had been searching for her and her younger brother a long time upon hearing the death of his friend and wife. Her father had paid his fees when he was wealthy and was looking for them to say thank you, and help where he could. In his words, her father had been helped offset all his debts and it was only recipocatory to extend same help to his children, especially at a time they needed it.

Guess what?

This man sponsored she and her brother to study in the UK for their first and second degree. Afterwards, she got a job with a UK startup company and runs the Nigerian office. Her brother graduated tops in his class and he’s currently a basketballer.

When I was studying in the UK, we hooked up to meet and she had changed. She looked better. Everything she had gone through was in the past. The difference was really clear. Fresh. Sweet. Beautiful. She was oozing the good life.

I also visited her in Nigeria and she has done so well for herself. She drives her own car, lives in her own house in one of the highbrow estates in Abuja and runs a business on the side. She told me this is even a fragment of what she has. I was happy and amazed.

She shared a lot about the maltreatment she received from her parents’ relatives, the sufferings she and her brother went through and all sorts. Admist tears she said, “Omoby. Look at me. Remember when I used to come and beg you for garri and cubes of maggi. This is my house. I’m comfortable. I’m living my dreams. I’m happy. I’m content.”

We both cried and shared. She shared with me of how she was mocked and looked down upon, how people didn’t want to be her friend. How she was almost harassed by some of her dad’s friends when she went to them for help.

One thing I’m grateful for is that; I never looked down on her when she was at the bottom. I offered help where I could. I’m really happy to see how far she’s come. It’s almost unbelievable to realise that somebody in need yesterday is in plenty today.

My friend’s words were, “Omoby, if you ever need anything and I mean anything, please do not hesitate to tell me. You were there when we had nothing. I’d do my best to help wherever you need it”.

There’s one thing I would never do; to look down on anyone. The popular saying that no condition is permanent is really true.

A person who’s poor today may be in a better place tomorrow.

At that time, I didn’t help her because I wanted to get anything from her, I helped her because it was in my capacity to do. I had more and I could share. I lived in my own apartment in school and this was somebody who needed a place to stay. I’ve known too well not to look down on anyone; these are values my siblings and I grew up with.

In life, don’t you ever look down on anyone. The one who has nothing today could be in bounty tomorrow. And vice versa. Do not mock anyone of today’s lack. Tables could turn. That it’s a lack today doesn’t mean it would be same tomorrow or next. Or next year.

Please don’t look down on yourself either. If you have nothing today, this doesn’t mean you’ll not have it tomorrow. You shouldn’t give up on yourself. All it takes is God’s hand of favour to turn things around for you. And this could happen in a twinkle of an eye.

If you’re that person who makes jest of people’s lack because you have in bounty, you’ll be shocked when tables turn. If you think that it’s okay to mock a person’s sufferings or think that’s the end of their life, you’re very unwise.

What is it you have that the Lord hasn’t given you? Why would you make jest of another because they lack what you have? What would you take away from this world when you go? Nothing. Not your houses. Not your money. Not your gold. Not your investments. Not your accessories. Not your children. Nothing. You’ll leave empty.

Anytime I remember how life turned for my friend, I stand in awe of God and it has further reinforced my belief not to mock anyone for whatever they lack today.

Life is very unpredictable.

The 8 Categories of People you should be wary of when deciding whether to relocate or not.

I attended a training sometime ago in Lagos. During the break session, we all went to have lunch at the dinning room.

Unfortunately, my laptop was having issues and I could not enjoy the meal as much as I would have loved to. While I was having a hard time trying to understand what could be wrong, something else caught my attention that made me put my worries on hold.

One of the facilitators of the training and a female staff were both having discussion and the crux of their discussion got my ears on alert. You know, anywhere I hear “relocation”, my ears are always at attention. I just want to know your thoughts and judge your patriotism😆. If you are having a hard time making a decision, I am very kind to let you into my inner room, make you know about my plans and encourage you. On the other hand, if you badmouth relocating, I keep my mouth shut and just move away.

So this day, I put my worries away and listened. The man was worried about the challenges of relocating. He is an experienced professional in his field and had heard lots of sour stories about those who come here to work menial jobs. He desired a second chance for his family but was really confused.

Perhaps this are your fears too.

The lady he was talking to, apparently hoping she would be able to calm his fears, stated by confirming the stories he heard and how it is true people do menial jobs. She said she knew many professionals who have left their high flying jobs in Nigeria to take up silly jobs here. She went further to say that this country is not as beautiful as others claim to be. Everybody is taxed, life is really hard and how many people are in serious debts. In fact, she even knew one or two who died from terminal diseases here, she knew people who were depressed because of the private culture lived here. She went further to tell him not to relocate because ‘home’, which she meant as Nigeria would always be home.

When I heard “home”, you know like the lines many patriotic Nigerians use, I knew I wanted to know her thoughts on this. True to my curiosity, the facilitator was also interested in same and inquired further.

“Home? But home is where you make home, isn’t it?”. He said curiously.

She went on to say that Nigerians living here are depressed, missing their families and many of them still return back to their homes after everything. She told him she did not understand why he wants to start all over again in a place several others are retiring to go to. It was just safer to stay.

Lunch was now over and we had to go back to class.

I kept all I had heard inside me, set it aside in my brain to accommodate lessons for my training.

After the session, I met the facilitator and told him I needed to speak with him. I confessed and apologized for eavesdropping on his conversation earlier in the day but I heard everything and I wanted him to take the lady’s opinion with a pinch of salt. 😂🤣

He was surprised. His eyes shone in shock. He didn’t expect this.

He asked why. I told him I am getting a second option and as we speak, my application is in process. I told him everyone’s reality is different and all she said does not have to be his. I told him it is true there would be initial teething challenges, but nothing can be compared to living a better life here.

Then I inquired about this lady.

She had spent all her life living here. Infact, she is a citizen of Canada.
She has previous work experience in some big companies in Canada and America.
She returned back to Nigeria, got a job with a top international company in Lagos and earns seven digits monthly.

She has two options. She is both a Canadian and a Nigerian. If Nigeria scatters today, babe would pick her bag and move without a bother.

She is privileged. She enjoys the benefits of both countries; Nigerian and Canada (even though I do not get to see what benefit I enjoy as a Nigerian)😐🙄.

I told him this and I would tell you too.

1. Be careful of those who tell you not to leave. Some of them have made money in their prime, fed fat, enjoyed the benefit of a developed country and just wanna retire back to Nigeria.

The same reason they left for a country that gave them the opportunity to maximise their potentials, and wanna retire back to Nigeria is the same reason you should think of going to a country that enables you to maximize your potentials while still in your prime so that someday, you’ll retire successfully too.

2. Be careful of people who already hold dual citizenship and tell you not to relocate. They have two options. If a war is declared in Nigeria tomorrow, they are safe while you are not. The Canadian or American government would secure them. You think Buhari knows you? Better use your own head.😜🤣

3. I have seen posts of those advocating “home is home’, “I love Nigeria”, “I die in Nigeria”…come to my inbox ask me how to relocate. Know that many people are closest hypocrites. They secretly spend millions to have their kids abroad, all their children school abroad, yet tell you not to relocate. The culture in Nigeria encourages people to hide information from others. They’d never let you know what they do. Never think that the person who chants “I love my country, Nigeria” , “Nigeria would be great again” isn’t doing something to better themselves. It’s their way of hiding the truth from you. I have signed an oath of confidentiality since I started this ministry, you for see proof yourself.🤐🙄

4. Reality is that some people are very uncomfortable with taking risks. They are not bad people. They are just those who would just do nothing even if you bring a pen to them to sign their citizenship. They seem very comfortable in their comfort zone and can’t imagine doing anything that takes them out out of it. If you allow their unbothered attitude to decide your fate, who is open to taking risks, you are on your own. Na you go wear your shoe. Na you the shoe go pinch.

5. This category are quite special. They’ve tried to relocate and failed. They have accepted their fate and even believed that the ‘miracle door of the abroad’ is forever closed on them, that their destiny and the abroad aren’t compatible, two parallel lines that can never meet. Thus, they’ve come up with the illusion that Nigeria is working for them. Maybe it is, maybe it is not, but what they are really trying to do is to console themselves in their own misery. Somehow, because they have tried something and failed, they look for ways to justify their sorrows. While I sympathize with them, please be careful of this kind of people. Don’t let them rub their misery on you. Be extremely discerning.

6. Some other people just wanna come here on holidays and return back. They have stakes in government. They have good business ties. They are making millions maybe even billions in naira. They have secured jobs. Life seems good. They have enough money to live a comfortable life in Nigeria, be their own local, state and federal government. You wey get great potential, age dey your side but no get money to even buy data, dey listen to them…continu.🤣

7. I really like this kind of people. Many religious sanctimonious Nigerians sit pretty on this table. This lots believe that God must come down from heaven and appear to them in a vision before they take this step. They would use the Bible to manipulate others into thinking God would never forgive you for relocating…and immediately you get here, God has closed his door of provision over your life.

They say you must fast and wait upon the Lord for forty days and nights in order to hear something like, “Omoby, my beloved daughter. I have made the land of Nigeria flowing with milk and honey for you. Your fate and destiny is in Nigeria. You are not going to make breakthrough anywhere else”… you know…that kind of response that comes in a vision, a large cloud, accompanied by angel Michael and Gabriel and all the 24 elders.

While it is true that God speaks to us in several ways concerning certain decisions of our lives, remember, God is also everywhere and He can bless you anywhere. He’d hold nothing against you. He knows you’re genuinely trying to survive in this world. Also, you are your own sign and voice. God would never come down to tell you to relocate or stay. You make the choice. You determine the path of your life. Your destiny is in your own hands.

8. The last category. They’re people who have never been dealt with the hard blow of the Nigerian system and may never be. They’ve not had a close relative, friend or family member who died from an unavoidable cause in Nigeria. Unlike Desmond Elliot and some people I know, they don’t have children with special needs. Nobody they know has died due to the decayed Nigerian health system, dearth of infrastructure facilities or reckless shooting of a police official, hence its impossible for them to relate. They’re not very rich, yet not poor, but haven’t had that experience that reveals to them how rotten the Nigerian system is; that close shave of death. Life seems to be just fair with them. If you allow them decide your fate, you who Nigeria has shown pepper, na una sabi o.

***
Need I mention that my facilitator I talked to, keyed into this vision, has since been recruited into our association; Association of Unpatriotic Nigerians Living in Diaspora (AUNLID) and he and his family are super grateful to me that I was very open with him about my plans. He tells me that I’m a different kind because the norm is for people to hide what they do from others. I am aware that this is what makes me different. 😍

The seed of faith I planted in him has germinated more fruits as he has gone on to recruit more people.

Please don’t me wrong. This post ONLY refers to those who desire second options. It its okay if you wanna stay and build the Nigeria of your dreams. I just hope this would happen in your lifetime. We wey no get faith and time don commot.

***

About to Wed?

In a bid not to appear hateful or jealous, I really want to appeal to would-be couples to please cut cost on wedding expenses and focus on building your home together: making it comfortable and worth living for you both. Buy a car. Get your apartment tastefully furnished. Buy foodstuffs in your kitchen. Think beyond the wedding day. When all guests are gone, where would you be heading to? A hut? A cave? A mansion? A home? A shed?

For me, it’s extremely pathetic when I see couples have lavish wedding, yet move into a tiny one bedroom apartment with just a mattress and a wrapper as curtains. For some, the days after the wedding starts a life of misery and penury. It’s sad.

Forget about the talk of wedding being a “once in a lifetime” affair and you want to break the bank, run into debts and go all the way. Do you know your Marriage is forever affair and you’ll live with the financial choices you make.

No! I would understand if you’re not financially capable to afford a comfortable place. I’d understand that it’s not everyone who moves into their own houses or have it all furnished. I am talking about those who ignorantly or in the quest to impress friends, guests and society, spend so much, unnecessarily costs to make their day a funfare, yet could have saved some costs into furnishing and building their homes. It’s sad joooh. Or doing some other stuff.

What’s more sad is many go into debts, and living the next few months after the fairy-tale wedding paying these debts.

A colleague of mine told me of how his wedding was on all wedding blogs and magazines in town, yet he spent the next one year paying debts and balancing vendors. He said if he would go back to rewind that part of his life, he’d go back to cut unnecessary costs and focus more on his home with his wife. He was telling me this to learn from his story.

Another friend had a society wedding, but had to move into tiny self contained apartment which she told me was so unbearable for her and her hubby. She told me she wished she and her hubby had cut down a lot of their wedding expenses. She was also telling me this to learn from her story. When I paid her a visit, I felt very sorry for her. I couldn’t reconcile the lavish wedding pictures almost on all blogs and wedding websites with the present state they were in.

Remember, the wedding is just a day’s event. Many would forget what you wore and what meat they didn’t eat or what souvenirs they didn’t get. However, for your own home, where you would go back to sleep after the whole paparazzi…how is it? Are you going back to a one bedroom unfurnished flat? Are you going back to using kerosene stoves because you didn’t cut down wedding costs to put your kitchen appliances in place? Are you going back to drinking garri and eating groundnuts because you didn’t think foodstuffs in your kitchen would be necessary?

Think. Think. And think again.

Disclaimer: I didn’t say that having a lavish wedding isn’t good. No! I am appealing that if you must have or fancy a lavish wedding, be sure that your home is properly furnished and comfortable. Please.

  • ~ Omoby, 2017

What do you do with your insecurities?

Your insecurities would ruin your life before its ruins your home.

Feeling insecure in a relationship is horrible for the one who is feeling the insecurity. The burden – of fear and obsessive thoughts, of feeling powerless, of awful awareness that all this insecurity may actually itself be destroying what you treasure most – can feel pretty unbearable.

But it’s also tough for the person on the receiving end of all that insecurity. The truth is that being involved with a really insecure person can be hell.

 

People say we have a beautiful relationship and wonder how we have been able to put things together..but we haven’t had it all nice and rossy. He’s done a lot of working in me and helping me to become better.

download

 

8 years ago when I started with him, I was an insecure young lady. Insecurities were my second name. Unlike very fundamental issues that split relationships, we had none but there were big lumps of insecurities lurking in my heart and mind which I needed to deal with.

I remember always searching his phone looking for what’s not lost. He would just look at me and shake his head for me. I was finding it very difficult to trust the man I had. Because I didn’t trust myself, I couldn’t trust another. I realised I was hurting myself more because when I searched, I found nothing. The ones that looked like there was something, my insecurities wouldn’t allow me think logically and I’d make a mountain out of a mole hill only to discover that I was the fool by the time my eye cleared.

That’s what insecurities does to you…

One day, we had to sit down and talk about it. I also had to talk sense to myself too because my insecurities were destroying the beautiful relationship we had both built. I was seeing it. I needed none to tell me that it was killing me…and destroying him.

I must confess that, it didn’t go away in a day but I soon learnt to trust the man I am with considering that he’s never lied to me and never given me any reasons to doubt him.

Today, I am at peace with myself. I no longer feel insecure or check his phone in the search for what’s not lost. When I am in doubts, I ask questions. I don’t assume. I can confidently allow him handle his. And he trusts me to handle mine.

I don’t know where this ends but I just employ you to search your heart this year and deal with the root cause of your problems. It was easy to say there was nothing wrong with me, believe such, because the world encourages women to always check their partner’s phone afterall the cliché that all men cheat still holds in many minds, but for me, I knew the problem was with me. I became true to myself, dealt with the problem and now I am free.

So Happy New Year to you all. I am just exited about 2017. Some say this year is “my” year, whatever that means, I don’t know o.

~ ALL.RIGHTS RESERVED

…on the verge of giving up? 

Yesterday, the 9th of November, 2016, I got fully inducted into full membership of my Professional body, the Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (NIQS). I decided to share my story with you all…to encourage whoever is on the verge of giving up…please read and get encouraged.
I remember how sad I was last year when I got results that I had failed the exams on my first attempt. I remember the tears that so drowned me. How I cried and thought God had abandoned me. I thought of the sacrifices I put into the exam. How I got home late on Sunday night attending tutorials and yet had to resume work the following day. What of all the financial commitments I made?
I thought I had prepared well enough for the examinations and I trusted God to give me good grades. I attended the tutorials and never missed the weekend classes.
It was a sunday morning during thanksgiving in church when I got news that the result were out. I brought out my phone and checked the results. My heart beat harder as I scrolled through the pass list and didn’t see my examination number. I proceeded to check the fail list and didn’t see my number there as well. Well, if I didn’t pass all and I didn’t fail all, it means I had some resits. With a mixture of sadness and joy,  I checked the resit list and saw my number. It had been confirmed. I had two resists.
I got my stuff together and left church. What was I thanking God for anyway with these resists? Shadow of shame and tears enveloped me as I cried my eyes out and walked out of church.
In spite of my tears, I brushed myself up and was determine to rewrite the exams the following year…and even if I wouldn’t make it again, I’ll keep rewriting until my breakthrough comes. I don’t want to look back in the future and wish I didn’t give up. I don’t want to look back in the future and wish I only pushed a little more. I want to look back with content and fulfilment.
The next thing I did was to reach out to similar people who had failed in different endeavours and ask them how they pulled through. I was introduced to a friend who told me she failed hers thrice. Her story gave me the courage to pull through again.
Furthermore, I took responsibility for my failure. I didn’t blame the examination committee. I didn’t blame my job. I didn’t blame God. I didn’t blame my boss. I didn’t blame my colleagues. I didnt blame anyone. I didn’t blame the devil. I told myself my best wasn’t good enough for the examiners.
Owning my mistakes helped me to be bold enough to declare my failures. I saw no shame in hiding my failures. I needed to know what I did wrong that didn’t earn me a pass on my first attempt. I asked a friend who passed all hers, how she answered her questions. Was there something I needed to do? What was it? How can you help me? I also ensured that I tried not to repeat the same mistakes I made. One of such mistakes was answering questions using head-knowledge instead of answering them professionally?
I really don’t know what you’re trying to do which has resulted into failures several times. Please keep pushing at it. Cry all you can. But get up knowing that you’ll try again and again and again. Most importantly, recognizing your mistakes and seek ways not to repeat them.
Last year’s tears has brought this year’s joy.

It’s really sweet to look at how far you’ve come and be proud of yourself. I owe all this to God who gives victory and success. The Bible says except the Lord builds the house, the labourer works in vain.

To God, to whom be all glory, honour and adoration…who made this possible. Who held me and never gave up on me. I am nothing without you!❤💚

To you others who are on the verge of giving up, please don’t. Give it another try. Don’t stop until you achieve your dream. It’s not going to be easy o. But, you’ll be proud of yourself in the long run.

So, you can now refer me to as Omoby, MNIQS. But wait, let me get that PhD first. Lol. Then you can call me Dr. Omoby, MNIQS.

Now, this is what I call “Achievement”!!

..yet to make up your mind?

Do you find yourself in a relationship where you really can not figure out what’s on your guy’s mind? Today you see him…tomorrow you don’t….

I have come across quite a number of intelligent babes, brillant, classy, educated, beautiful, fashionable, local, exposed, whatever. It has cease to amaze me how some just seem to get stuck in relationships that are not going anywhere and are failing to see all the signs the guys are giving them. They are busy dreaming of walking down the aisle with a guy who sees them as just ‘one of those girls’, if you understand what I mean, it doesn’t make them less intelligent or less smart, but only human.

Have you ever being in a relationship where it seems as if you are the only one who’s making effort and the guy keeps coming with one excuse or the other on why he can’t see you tonight. Not just for tonight actually, but he has a thousand and one reasons for not seeing you in 2- 3 weeks and not even tangible reasons to this effect? Don’t we all have one story or the other to tell Prince Charming to whisk us away to the altar?

I have known a lady for quite some time as an Undergraduate, a few years back, she used to practically sing the name of her supposed bobo to all who cared and she spoke of how he promised to make her his bride, take her to England (he lives there anyway), how he couldn’t compare her with anyone else blab la bla. Honestly, as much as I tried, I couldn’t really figure out the kind of relationship that existed between them. There was no issue of him coming to see her because he lived in the UK and she in Nigeria. The guy never called and anytime she did, it was received by his answering machine in his apartment. Although she left several messages on the machine for the bobo to call her back, this bobo never returned her call, not once!

On few occasions when she spoke to him, he always told her how difficult it is to live in England, which he said it’s very difficult to call. It was really obvious that the guy was using this strategy to make her see reasons, but did she get the signs? No! At times, she was becoming so irritating when she began to make excuses for him and I had to tell her she must be a dummy (forgive me) for believing something would come out of their relationship. Some of her excuses ‘ehn, maybe he hasn’t gotten a better job yet, or he may just be getting used to the weather’ huh?😕😕

Listen, if you don’t know anything about relationships know this truth, a normal guy would never make you doubt him or guess his intentions to you, that is to say, if he serious about you, he will let you know immediately.

Please don’t misunderstand me, a guy can court you for 10 years or more without a clear purpose, but one day you will know you are the one after his heart. He sleeps it. He talks it. Dreams it. Sings it and eats it. He wants you to know that he can lay claims to you not wanting to give ears to another guy. In other words, if a guy is in a serious relationship with you, he leaves you with no doubts, no guess work, no excuses, no disappearing acts nor hide and seek game; just pure intentions.

Anything short of this, it’s time to count your losses and move on. Forget all the talk about being busy with his work and having to focus to his career for now. No matter how busy he is or how career minded he is, if he is serious and committed with you, he will go the extra mile to be near you! Get that fact! You will be a major source of inspiration of achieving success in his busy schedule.

If you cannot decode the message a man is passing across to you, through his words, its either you are not listening well or your vision is being blocked by your own wishes and fantasies. Because you fancy him that much, you believe he has to feel the same way about you and if this is not love, what’s love? Sorry, but you need to remember that because it feels good doesn’t mean its good. A typical guy naturally avoids a situation where he has to tell a girl that she is not the right woman for him. But he tries in other non-verbal ways. Failing to turn up when he should, suddenly developing fever on the way he is supposed to meet your family, and having to catch up less important engagements than those with you.

Your heart skips each time, so what? If he feels the same way towards you, great! If not, too bad! Quit waiting for him to discover how much of a perfect pair the two of you will make because the truth is that the relationship only exist in your head!

Finally, do you know that for every guy that leaves you feeling unwanted, there are at least two who would do anything for you to be their woman? Do you know that there is a guy out there who will be so fascinated by your brains, overwhelmed by your natural wellbeing (disable or not), that he would want to stand on the roof top and broadcast to the whole world that you are the woman in his life. If you haven’t meant this guy, believe me, all other relationships are a sheer waste of your time and emotions!

Omoby 2016. (A repost)

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Once Upon a Time…

Once upon a time,
We were all like little snooker balls,
Playing around, striking eachother yet clustering back together.
We thought all life was about, was just with us.
We didn’t think life to be iniquitous, complicated and unfair.
We didn’t even know what life meant.

Gradually, life took us on different routes,
Pursuing dissimilar things,
Driving us to singular destinations.
Vehemently making us to say our sad goodbyes.
Few of us tried to bridge the big gap.
Oh! We tried. We fought date and night,
But we realized that too much time has gone away.
Several stuff have been learnt,
Several ideologies and concepts have been formed.
We were nolonger boys and girls of naivety,
But grown men and women with strong philosophies.
Things could just never be the same again.
Water has found its source,
And the friendship so beautiful and young that we shared,
Now filled with thorns and weeds,
With really deep roots.

We’ve found out that it’s easier to make new friends,
On the beliefs that has now formed us,
On the routes we now ply,
On the journey we now embark,
On the path we have found love on,
On the philosophies we now hold so strongly,
Than reconnect to the ones we grew up with.
Because we are nolonger convinced
That the innocence we shared would not have been eroded.
Although some remain,
Only a few of them do, and in places that holds our heart so dear.

But if I could turn the hands of time,
I’d wish that the friendship I had many years, remains so till date.
I would wish that the naivety we shared remains ever fresh.
I would wish that life revolves only around us.
Unfortunately, Manytimes, life doesn’t listen to the desires of our heart.

I write this poem for “YOU!” whose heart burns with the pain of losing your old friend(s).
AND
I dedicate this poem to all my old friends I had at some point in my life, whom life has taken on different routes.

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, Omoby, 2016

Rocks and Stones…

I remember when I used to be ashamed of my failures. In Part 1 in Uni, a friend asked me of my CGPA, I couldn’t tell the truth so I told him I did well. She was happy with me and told me that she didn’t expect anything less from me anyway. Another senior friend saw my result and bodly declared that nothing good was going to come out of me, further reinforcing my fears and shame. But today, I remember him and just laugh at his statement. Hahahah.😂

When I took my first attempt at my professional examinations and failed, a colleague asked me why I was attending the tutorial classes again. I told him I had few resits and I have to take the modules again. Observing the expression on his face, I think he was shocked because he didn’t think I’d be so bold and blunt to say such. Days later he asked me, “Omoby, how were you so bold to declare that you had failed?, I wouldn’t have been able to say such.”

I realized that I had grown and become better. Omoby in the past would shield her failures from people but here she is declaring to people that she did fail and she’s going to try again.

A senior colleague she saw me in class and asked me same, “Omoby, I know you’re intelligent, what happened?” I paused, then spoke, “Well ma, I did my best, but I think my best wasn’t good enough to have earned me a pass”. She gave me a warm hug.

This brings me to tell you that whatever you’ve failed in isn’t the end of the world. Failure is dissapointing and extremely painful but it isn’t the end of your world…if you’d try again and try again and try again and try again. Cry all you can, but get up knowing that you’d still give it another shot.

Remember, there’s absolutely no shame in your failures.

Remember, failing is not the opposite of succeeding, it’s actually part of success.

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, Omoby, 2016

Frienemies…??

‘Omoby, my wedding date has been fixed now!’ Tani came jumping to me announcing her wedding date. She brimed with somuch joy and I couldn’t wish for anything better as this for her. Marriage has always been her top priority. Now her dreams have come true. I was happy for her.

‘You know who he is, now?’ She jocked. Obviously she was pulling my legs.

‘Lol. Why wouldn’t I know who he was? Charles!! Charles who chased Tani for 3 years before she decided to give him a yes. Charles who went extramiles to get Tani’s attention. Mehn, if I were a guy, I doubt I’d be this patient and when she eventually did say ‘yes’ to him, it was like she couldn’t let him go. She was all over him. Monitoring his movements, checking his phone chats etc…I would always ‘lol’ at her asking what exactly she was looking for. I also remember telling tani to consider him because he was very generous and he was a man I knew had a genuine heart for God. Although he was 4 years older than both of us, He had a great sense of humour. He loved Tani deeply, I knew it.

I knew Tani would get married before me. Charles was ready, wasn’t he? And Tani had always wanted to get married early. Tani had an older sister who wasnt married yet. Fortunately, her parents weren’t those who cared whether the youngest one married before the other…and all her sisters, were the most supportive of her relationship and her wedding plans. Not many people were such fortunate. Indeed Tani has been a woman of great favor! I was truly and deeply happy for her.

I brimmed with excitements as Tani relayed to me everything that would happen on her day. She talked of her dress, shoes, invitation cards and especially her wedding dress. I always offered my ears to listen. I think there was this thing about brides who always liked to share details of their wedding events with everyone.

******three weeks later******

Something was missing. Tani hadn’t yet told me about her bridemaids nor who would be her Chief. I was a bit puzzled but I waved it aside. What she would want them to wear? I knew every bride’s dream is to have ladies in lovely dresses that would had colour and glamour to her day. I didn’t even know what colour they were wearing. But I could guess. Orange was tani’s best colour. What could match Orange if she’d choose that? Lemon? Peach?

So I decided to ask her.

‘I know I am gonna be your chief bride’s maid right?! Wow! What am I gonna wear? Let’s see. We could check out magazines and see what would be befitting for me. What do you think?’

Tani gave me a blank look. If I were more sensitive, I should have noticed something…and as I picked up my phone to check Nigerian websites of all bridesmaids dresses, Tani said…

‘You know what Omoby, I have to quickly pick up something. I’d call you later’

‘But we were just about going through what I’d wear now?’ I inquired, a bit confused.

‘Oh, don’t worry about that. I’d sort it out for you. Trust me now, I know exactly what you want and how you want it. You’ve always been a size 6’, she smiled.

She was right. Tani knew everything about me. She knew what could possibly best fit me. She knew somuch about me. We’ve been roommates since our 2nd year in Uni. In our 3year, Charles got her a new flat and so she moved out. Occasionally, I spent few nights with her only when she requested I come.

What of the price and all? How would I know how much I am supposed to pay? I reasoned she didn’t want to bother me.

Tani also knew about my relationship with Bode even though she had always asked me when we both gonna  get married. She had expressed fears about our 8years relationship. She said she couldn’t possibly wait for a guy forever. Well, that’s why we are both different. I believe in Bode. I know he’s true and hardworking. He may not have been as fortunate as her Charles, but I know someday ‘luck’ would smile on him.

********** few days later *********

‘Heyyy sis! You know what? Omoby now said she wants to be my Chief! Imagine! Huh?’ She gave the disgust smiley’

‘You kidding me right? Did you ask her yourself?’

‘You know I wouldn’t have asked her. I mean, couldn’t she have been so sensitive to know that I discussed everything except that. She hissed.

‘Lol. She’s only been a friend. Anyway what did you tell her?’

‘What could I have done? I obliged her now but I’d feel so bad to have her be behind me. I don’t want to see her face at all on my wedding day. I sound ridiculous but that’s how I feel!’

‘Oh yeah! You are ridiculous! You don’t seem to like her as much as she does, right? But hey, you said she has her exams now. Is she gonna skip them for your wedding or what? Who does that?’

‘I don’t know honestly. But looks like she’s willing too. Who skips exams for someone else’s wedding. Not for someone who doesn’t want you anyway…’

‘You should have told her you have already picked your chief now’

‘ What was I supposed to say?’ ‘Oh no Moby, sorry…you can’t be my Chief. If she has been sensitive, she should know I didn’t want her. Honestly sis, I just don’t want her desperate face on my wedding day. She’d really just disgust me.

‘It must be that bad I must say. Then you’ve got to find something to do about it. Have you told Tolu and Tola yet?’ Tolu and Tola were older sisters of Tani.

‘No not yet. But I can predict their answers. Omoby is just very desperate. I am sure she never thought I could get married before her. I mean, she’s been courting her ‘church rat boyfriend’ for the past 8 years and the guy hasn’t proposed yet. I don’t want her ill-luck to rub off on my day’ she scorned. I think she just never thought I could get married to Charles.

‘Lol. You’re funny Tani. Don’t be this mean. Anyway, let’s chat later. I’d give you a call then we could find a way around this’

‘Okay sis, thanks for listening. I’d expect your call. Love always.

What??? Were my eyes seeing clearly? Was I dreaming? Was this tani? My very own Tani? Tani whom I shared a bed with? Tani whom I made excuses for?

images (1)

Hot tears rolled down my eyes as I read the conversation chats with Tani and her sister. I was too shocked to utter a single word. I cried like I had never cried before. Wiping the tears with the back of my palms…I sat and thought again…’So Tani thought she ill about me? She referred to Bode as church-rat? Things would get better for Bode oooo. I thought I was been a friend when I asked if I could be her chief bride’s maid. I thought I showed genuine interest in been part of your day? This decision was  greatest mistake of my life. Tani? You dare mean that my face would disgust you on your day? Your day I thought was mine as well? You dare think I am jealous of you? Who talks of getting married before 26? Who says it doesn’t matter to get your hands doing something before Marriage? Who prays of Marriage like its a do or die? And when Charles came along? Who was there for you, listening and praying when you couldn’t make a choice? Have I ever made it appear to you that I am sad/jealous about you or your relationship? When you told me Charles got a new job, wasn’t I genuinely happy for you both? What of when you told me he just did his house warming, didn’t we both go together for the ceremony? Even when he got you a flat in town, who skipped lectures to help you wash your apartment?

And so…that’s how I found out.

Tani was a friend. I loved her with all my heart. Yorubas say ‘we know those we love but we don’t know those who love us’ I could vouch for Tani anywhere and with anyone. I loved her genuinely. I called her a ‘best friend’ I called her a sister I never had. Her conversations with her sister shook the marrow out of me.

Her wedding is next weekend and I am seriously considering if I should attend. Oh lest I forget, I eventually opted out from been her Chief Bride’s Maid.  I told her since I had paid for my exams, I wouldn’t want to resist for it next year. I wasn’t read to make sacrifices for someone who thought so evil of me.

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Hard and bitter, I learnt my lessons.

“Omoby, don’t go asking anyone if you wanna be on their train or if you wanna be the Chief. Not anyone!!”

Photo Credits: Google.

THE END

All rights reserved, Omoby 2016


Is ‘JUJU’ real?

Sometime ago, when I used to be very nice on the streets of Lagos, I was given the “welcome to Lagos” treat.

It was both an horrifying and ugly experience that opened my eyes to the ills of this world.

I am talking about the kind that leaves you like you just watched a Nollywood movie. The spell bound kind…The Africa Magic Yoruba one. Popularly called ‘black man juju’

jujuman

Here it goes.

I was on the National Youth Service Corps that year going back home from work that evening. I lived with my aunty with her hubby.
The kind me, not anymore though…tried to answer a man who needed descriptions for a particular place. Yemkem. This guy explained that he needed to sell a drug quickly to get money for his mum’s ailing health and Yemkem is the only place he could get to sell it for a good price. Oh! I felt sorry for him and considering all the stress he’d have gone through coming all the way from Ijebu Ode. I listened to him and waited to hear him out.

I told him that I used to see Yemkem on the other side if the road, he can go and check. But while I made to continue my way, I noticed another, say B, coming from the service lane saying that we should help him since the first man, A, had said he was knew none in Lagos…that was where the jazz took effect. I’d explain why I call it jazz. 😀 😀 as I continue in my story. This guy said he knew somebody that could buy the drug From A and we should kindly assist. Nice Omoby thought I was doing somebody a favour.

And so we walked o…we walked…and walked. I was new in Lagos. I didn’t know we walked until we got to Idiaraba almost an hour after LUTH. But I noticed that each time I tried to catch up with man B, the one who came as a solicitor for A, he’d tell me to just walk behind him. A was really walking slower…like he was completely depressed.

We eventually got there. We met the guy, C, who was to buy the drug from A. He said he was an herbalist. The place looked dirty and so unkempt. Like all those ghettos I had only seen on TV.

Note that A never showed me the drug sef or whatever he called it. It was in a small bottle. As C saw the three of us, he told us he was an herbalist and he’d buy the drugs but first of all we’ve got to do some stuffs. He now started saying all the things A had told me about his mother. How his mother is ill and he has come to sell a drug to him. My jazzed mind was shocked because I wondered how he knew. C continued and said that because he met B and I on the road, we’ve already been indicted with trouble or the diseases of the mother except we cleanse ourselves.
He also said something to A which he confirmed to be true. At this point, I was scared. Fear took control of my faculties. B was acting troubled as well and saying that he only wanted to assist. He didn’t think A would do him this harm.

C continued and told B and I to drop all we had. I dropped my phones: three of them. He asked if I had money on me, I told him I had 4K, he told me to drop it. I did. I don’t remember if B did same but he was acting like he did. C also made me drop my wallets and my bank cards. He told me he’d have to speak to the Oracle to find out if everything about all he said about us are true. He did. He rubbed a big stone in my tummy and opened his hands, the stone was no more. He also did some magic which according to him meant that I/we was/were in trouble except I cleanse all the money on earth that I have. I was already thinking of how to get money to cleanse o.

Finally, they made me speak some rubbish and in them reveal my ATM codes. I noticed here that B said his codes were 2222. It didn’t occur to me that something was wrong. They asked if it was for both cards. I said yeah! Truth is, it was!

Now filled with fear and completely out of my senses, they told me I have to cleanse all money I have and bring back whether in the bank or not. My mind was already thinking of the money my folks had for my Msc school fees to England and others. I told them I had lots of money but I’d have to go to Ibadan to get them. You see why I said it was jazz?

He gave me frightening instructions of coming back after I have gotten the money. C told me I’d die within 4 hours if I don’t and I have been monitored. He also performed some live magic which were real o. I wonder how it was done. He, C, have B same instructions as well.

Before then, my ATM cards had been taken away from me. My phones and money. I was only given 200naira to hurry and come back. I was like a dunze!

And off “we” (B and I) both went to look for money. I remember asking B if we could first of all go to his house and collect all his money then go to my house to get mine. Chaiiiiiiii. Foolish me. He objected. I thought it was my cross and I needed to bear it alone.

On my way, I was thinking of all the money I needed to bring back to him. I thought of the hours I had left and if I didn’t come back early how I was just going to die. I had been warned not to tell anyone. I thought of my folks in Ibadan and how I was gonna convince them to give me their money as well.

I got home and made way to my aunty and uncle’s room. Prior to this event, my Granddad who lives in England had come back to see his children: my dad and aunty. He came with money. I saw the large bundle of pounds and I as drawned to take it away. I took some of my aunty’s jewelleries and packed it in the plastic bag I was given. I was checking the time. I still had time. I looked around searching for more money but didn’t see. I reasoned that it was enough anyway.

Then suddenly something happened. I heard a voice. A subtle voice…kind and gentle.

” Omoby, wouldn’t you be stealing if you take your aunty’s jewelleries and that money?”. I shoved it aside. The voice continued “You know your aunty could send you packing?” I froze and made attempt to return the money. I looked at the empty bag and said “Well, since I can’t take the money, it means I’d die in 4 hours. I need to tell somebody about this so that my family know what killed me”

I ran back to the bus top and made plans to call him having it in mind to tell him that I saw some money and jewelleries but couldn’t take it as well. This guy had given me N200 for transport back home and money to give him a call when coming back.

“Hello, it’s me. The lady you took her stuffs from. I am coming back to get them. How do I get to your place?”

“Oh okay. I remember. Do you have the money and gold with you?”

“Don’t say anything!” The voice warned sternly!

I murmured something and hung the call. He was expecting me back.

I thought. Who do I tell I just had 3 hours now to live? I thought of going to my aunty’s office, but she worked on the island. I’d have been dead before I get to her office considering Lagos traffic. My uncle worked on the Island as well. I thought of my friend Funmi. She’d have close from work and lived in Ipaja. I’d be dead before I get to her house. Someone needed to tell my folks that I only had few hours to live o. Who? Who? What do I do?

Anyway, I got in the bus going to Ojuelegba. He told me I needed to board that before getting to Idiaraba where we were taken to. While in the bus, I thought of explaining to somebody. But nobody knows my parents and how to get to them now?

The voice again.

“You needed to tell somebody you were going to die right? Get down here at Ojuelegba and walk to your bobo’s place. He just lives down the road”

With no plans to alight or remembering that I had somebody close by, I did as I was told. I got down and raced to my bobo’s house with the fastest legs I could walk with. Yaaaaayyy! I was excited. I trusted that he’d give my message to my parents and family and tell them what killed me o.

He was shocked at the sight he saw me. I looked like a mad woman. My hair was all up and scattered, my clothes were rumbled and rough and I was completely in an insane state. He asked me what happened. I told him there was no time for questions yet, can he just call my folks and tell them I had less than 45 minutes to die? The bobo was shocked! He didn’t understand what I was talking about. He got back inside spending snot 20 minutes in there. I was worried. I don’t have enough time. I was given only 4 hours from then. Please kindly call home and tell them. When he came out, he was accompanied by his older brother and wife.
They told me to rest and gave me some water to drink. They told me I had just been given the “welcome to Lagos package”! I had been jazzed! They went further to ask what other things were taken from me…it was at that point I remembered that they took my phones: three of them and the ATM codes for the two banks I operated with. Everything and my surroundings began to make sense to me again.

By the time we could reach through to the customer care of Access Bank, the account that had a large chuck of my savings, (110,000.00), it was confirmed that the money had been deducted. That money was all my alawee savings I had wanted to use to buy a Laptop knowing I was going for my Msc programme the following year. We tried to also call the customer care of UBA which had 10,000.00 on it. The lady confirmed the money had been deducted hours ago.

That was how I was hypnotized or jazzed and everything taken from me. I am not a nice person on the streets of Lagos anymore, driving or walking. Regardless of the kind of help you need: genuine or not, I don’t give you a second look or listen to what you wanna say. I keep moving. Do you blame me?

THE END

Photo credits: Google

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Omoby, 2016