A fortnight ago, my son went for a football trial and hurt himself – he sprained his ankle. The mum and I took him to A&E the next night as it was getting swollen. X-ray was done. Thank God, no bone was broken. The situation meant I had to adjust my schedules in order to drive him to school, as he was on double crutches. It wasn’t convenient, but I’m talking about my son.
I have a habit, which I acquired from my late maternal nanny – I always admonish my children, especially when, sometimes, I have the time to drive them to school – they mostly go alone, especially my son, because his school is fifteen minutes walk from the house – my daughter’s is about an hour on foot, so she goes on the bus.
This morning, as I took him to school, I spoke to him about the essence of having depth in whatever one does. I said to him, “If you want to be reliable, you must dig deep. If you want to be trusted, you must dig deep. Mediocrity will take you nowhere – it’ll keep you on a level where everyone is, and with average performances, average results, life ends up being average.” I added by saying to him, “In school today, don’t scratch the surface and assume that you’ve done well – go deep if you want anyone to respect you.” And as we manoeuvred a traffic light, we saw a tall building by the junction, and I pointed it to him and said, “Look at this tall building. Imagine if the foundation was shallow, would it be able to hold heavy weights without collapsing? Imagine if the designers of this building didn’t determine a deep foundation for the edifice, it would have crashed, considering the weights of the many people and properties in it. So whatever you do, dig deep, go deep.”
When I look back, I see a lot of people that didn’t go for it by dying for it. Today, those people are struggling. If you sit when you should get up and fight, when those who fought begin to live, you’ll find yourself drowning even without waters. There are millions of people that drowned without ever swimming in seas. They were drowned by their own attitudes. They were drowned by their indolence. They were drowned by their inactions. They were drowned by giving up.
Since the first week of July, I have been chasing a dream, and have been getting lots of nos. Many times, I’ve been frustrated and wanted to give up, but one thing I know about me is that I never give up. I have learnt from my growing up – I look back to see where and when I thought life was over, but I ended up living. I draw strengths from my history and I say to myself, if I won when it was totally dark, I would win in twilight, and I will walk into total sunlight. Surely, I will.
One character that make people give up is mental laziness. Mentally lazy people don’t want to push themselves – they want to be flown up the ladder without making any attempt to climb. Even if you have someone to fly you to your utopia, when you get there, you’ll be lost in the mountains. The easiest way to kill dreamers without the will to climb is flying them there with zero efforts from them. When they get there, they don’t know how to survive when there is avalanche, but those who walked the road to the mountain top, already fought wars, and have gained the skills of survival before reaching the summit. At the top, they know what to do when there’s a rage.
Between the months of July and September this year, I know how many times I cried. I cried because it was like my dreams were fading away before my wide eyes – I was seeing, but it was like what I saw was getting dim because my hopes and aspirations were darting and effervescing – they were tarnishing like a crystal of sodium dropped in a solvent, but not forming a homogenous solution. The more I cried, the more I tried, and the more it was getting so difficult to bring my desired expectation to fruition, but in spite of that, I never stopped trying. In life, I have learnt lessons of resilience, toughness, determination, and commitment. I know that the best prayer a man can say is the attitude of not surrendering when everything suggests you should. So, when it comes to getting something done, or a dream actualised, I work more than I talk.
After all the no, I got a yes! I got what I wanted. I got my heart desire. I did pray. God did answer, but He answered based on actions I took. If I had sat down to do nothing, I would be nothing. If you do nothing, you be nothing!
There are people I dislike, and will continue to – those who suppose that manners fall in promised lands. In promised lands, that’s where the real work begins – that’s where the fight to be something begins. If you don’t fight in your destined location, you’ll starve and die on a fertile soil. Many people are dying on fertile soil, and as they slip into oblivion, they blame father and mother for not driving them from zero to hero, while they sit down with no imagination or quest to reposition themselves for good.
This year, I put myself in a coach that’ll drive me for the next two years to work hard and propel me to use the whole of my brains to think creatively and logically. For the next twenty-four months, starting January next year, I won’t be the one assessing myself – it’ll be a group of intellectuals looking into how I think and write, and telling me how good or bad I am. I am ready to learn. I am willing to push myself. If I truly want to reposition for good, I must be willing to be inconvenienced. If you don’t like inconvenience, stop dreaming of a better life!
Let me round up by sending a message to our young ones – pretending to be committed just to get help from bigger brothers is your first step to failure – it’s called living a fake life. Let me repeat what I said in the fourth paragraph of this article, “If you sit when you should get up and fight, when those who fought begin to live, you’ll find yourself drowning even without waters.”