In less than a month’s time, I shall be celebrating my 25th birthday. Oh! Don’t you dare give me that dagger look. Wasn’t it last year when I declared to be 25 Years Old Forever until I invoke my right to change my mind? Hahaha!
Seriously, I was born to two very young individuals who were unprepared for marriage.
As a result, I grew up in an environment where I was economically deprived as a child. I could still vividly recall my childhood. It was a childhood that’s devoid of children toys and I wasn’t given the chance to play like all normal kids would. It’s because I was trained to do household chores as young as 5 or 6. I had to look after my younger brother who was only about 3 then. You see, I am the eldest of three broods and the only girl in the family.
I cannot recall from my childhood instances when my parents lavished me with a birthday party; even a simple birthday cake. In fact, I only had my first birthday cake two years ago.
At such a very tender age, I have realized that life is not a bed of roses. I feel grown-up even when I was just a young little kid.
The idea of writing this article occurred to me not because I felt deprived as a child. Even when life was hard back then, I felt complete because I have a family who showered me with the love and attention that can never be bought by any amount of money.
While writing this article, I feel proud of my parents because even when they were young and did not plan my conception, they however, lived up to their responsibilities and love commitment. What I am now is not because I am better fed, better housed and better schooled because as I’ve earlier pointed out that we weren’t well off. What I have achieved as a person is entirely because of my parents. They have molded me to be the best person I could possibly be. As such, I have become determined to achieve my goals from an early age. Anything dignified about me and whatever decent you read in this blog I actually owe it to them; anything else is simply not their fault.
When I went to school, I was a shy and timid girl who didn’t want to mingle with others. I always have that reservation with people. I have my own inhibitions and it included that I may not fit in their kind of world.
Nonetheless, I have been a loyal and friendly friend to those who keep a low profile. I tend not to come close to those who have weird hang ups and those who have a tendency to bully others. I simply can’t stand bullies!
This year, I am celebrating not just any other birthday. It is actually my “25th”. Born and raised with my own sets of faith and belief, I celebrate neither Halloween nor Christmas. However, these yearly seasons are “bookmarks” to an event in my life. For me, these are the time of the year when we have to share our blessings with others. Sharing can not only be manifested by material things but the most essential of all is the sharing of one’s self and being a blessing to anyone that we come across with.
Many times, I planned of having a garage sale. Who wouldn’t want to earn from selling the not-too-worn out clothes? However, I think of my cousins and my nieces (daughters of my cousins) who are much less privileged than I. On most occasions, prior to meet ups with relatives, I would remove the price tags (items are supposed to be up for the garage sale) and replace these with names of my cousins and nieces. I would then pack them individually. As I see the smiles on the recipients’ faces upon receiving these hand-me-down clothing, I feel wonderful. I feel great not only because I was able to share but because I have now a good excuse to go shopping, LOL!
I realized that the art of giving, sharing and loving makes me happier. How can you make something valuable that is already of great value or how do you give value to something that is already valuable? For me, it is when I give out something valuable and that it was given more value by the person who needs it more than me. These are the little things that actually makes me happier. It is not the material things. It’s the unseen things in life that are given to us for free like joy, love, care, trust that makes us the happiest persons on earth.
What excites me and what makes me look forward about turning 25 years old forever is the idea of being graceful when aging sets in and of being wise in decision-makings, especially in my pursuit for personal and professional growth.
As I grow older, I feel deeper appreciation for my family. Most people say that real love can only be experienced when one has children of their own. Since I don’t have children that I could call my own as of now, the love of my family are the only love I know that’s unbounded and immeasurable.The love of my father (may God rest his soul), the love and care of my mother and that of my brothers and later, that of my nephew, Morning Dew. I don’t know yet a love that’s more real than this.
I have always loved to read and write. Though I may not write free of errors, I have always loved to express. I can’t remember anyone teaching me how to read. I must be too young then to recall. But if my recollection would serve me right, I have learned on my own. When I was a little grown up, I simulate what teachers do. I own a piece of board eraser, chalk, blackboard and my students are my brothers. I have been their first teacher. I taught them how to read and write. Yes. I do love teaching. It was my second best ambition. I was almost on the brink of being a college Professor some years back but I believe it wasn’t my calling. I have always wanted to be a lawyer. Yes, a frustrated lawyer I am.
My passion for writing somehow paved the way for me to have interest in learning the ropes of blogging. Some bad experiences at the blogs though kept me from wearing my heart in my sleeves. I had to do away with letting out everything for everyone’s scrutiny as the past experiences had taught me a hard lesson. Some had deviously gathered information about my person and I was dissected like a laboratory specimen. It was a terrible experience that a blogger would not want to go through. I find the gesture unethical and abusive.
When I went to college, I have met more and more people. The more people I meet, the better I understand myself. I discovered the things I like, the things I don’t like, which applies to people as well.
However, early on, I knew I did not want to be talked or gossiped about, so I deferred judgment against others and refused to gossip about them. I found the people, aside from my family, who can jive with me, who understand me and withstand all of my moods.
I found friends, online and offline, who are so like me in some ways and so unlike me in others, stuck by me through thick and thin. I need not mention any of them here because they know who they are.
I know one day, someone is ready to make me his world (a scary responsibility on my part). That someone does not mind building a family with me and consent to my being mother to his future children (a risk on his part). I know my capabilities as a woman and with the many roles I play, I strive to be a woman who is a better daughter, a sister, a soon-to-be-aunt, a friend, a blogger, a servant of God, but I could not be certain if “wife” and “mother” fit me. Only God knows. I cannot imagine being responsible for the future and well-being of another individual, much less an innocent, all-love, trusting little child. Right now, I am happy being me, focusing on completing myself, making myself whole, before I become that someone’s whole world, before I become a wife and a mother.
In my 25 years on Earth, I have made mistakes, I guarantee. But these mistakes I turned to lessons learned. And I also guarantee that I will make some more mistakes. However, this will not stop me from moving along, taking each day one step at a time and planning for my future. It is a conscious effort, a continuous everyday choice on my part, to constantly look at life in a positive light. I am scared, like a little girl of 6, of what my future will hold. But I gather strength from God, my family and my friends. I am encouraged and inspired by the unending love from those I love the most.
To get me through another 25 years, I need the younger version of me who thought herself a full-grown woman, ready to take on the world. I am truly uncertain of the future, but I am certain that with all the uncertainties of tomorrow, I am both scared and excited of what the future brings.
One more thing that I am very certain about is that I love to be forever 25! Hahahaha! There are still a lot of people who gets deceived by my real age. I feel good that the aura that they see in me is the younger version of my real age, LOL!
So as I excitedly and giddily prepare myself for another 25 years of my life, I am ready to take on the world, unafraid of the storm, heartaches and pain that may come my way. I believe in my heart and I know in my mind that I have loved, I am loved and my life is worth living.