Change alone is eternal, perpetual, immortal. ~ Arthur Schopenhauer
I turn 28 in about a week or less and this is probably as good a time as any to reflect on the changes that have taken place in my life lately. I am grateful for the fact that I yet live. So many people die young and sometimes in the hustle and bustle of life we forget to be grateful for the fact that we draw breath each day. Last year a hockey teammate of mine was diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time in her 21 years of life. She beat the cancer again (Thank God). Seeing her go through that reminded me that no matter how much stress I may go through from time to time there are people whose daily battles are life and death. One must take a moment to see and appreciate that life on its own is a gift.
On to lighter topics….
Until this past birthday year I had never taken writing seriously. I have always enjoyed it. In high school and in university I used to write journals of random inconsequential stuff and despite the fact that my close friends would ask to read them and seemed to enjoy doing so, it never occurred to me that it may be a gift I could put to serious use. This past year the marketing department at the office introduced a new policy requiring staff to produce articles for the firm’s website to raise the firm’s profile. I quickly tapped out a series of articles and submitted and moved on with my life. That series was featured on a radio station and was translated into other languages for publication. It was also published by other firms on their websites. I didn’t really wake up to what was happening until a magazine offered me a column and $$$ for writing for them. So far I have had a full page spread in two consecutive issues. Writing doesn’t earn me a lot of money but I thoroughly enjoy it. I am grateful to be able to do something I enjoy and earn a few bucks while doing so. I also just started writing for my church’s blog as a voluntary service and I am praying that goes well.
This past year I also went through some painful self discovery. This is difficult to explain but in summary I could say I learnt to let go of myself. I learnt to allow myself to cry when it hurts and I am learning (despite great resistance) to not only allow others to help me but ask for help. I don’t know whether it is pride or fear but I have always struggled with reaching out for help especially the emotional kind. I have always been the type to put things in little boxes and toss them out to sea. These past couple of months my little boxes burst open and I battled to stay afloat. For a while, despite the fact that everything was what it should be in my life, I battled a feeling of overwhelming sadness. Between a boyfriend and a close friend who would not take no for an answer I finally let a few things out and first I “ugly cried’ until I looked like Rudolph the red nosed reindeer….. (I am not one of those people who looks sweet when I cry 😀 Even I look at myself in the mirror after and think Jesus take the wheel)…. then I started to heal. Finally I understand that its OK to be weak sometimes (this is very much a work in progress) :-). I understand that its OK to let others know I am not OK.
I also learnt another interesting lesson in friendship. I learnt that true friendship is hard to find. The type of friend you can call on for all seasons of your life is a rarity and when you find one, you must treasure that person for he or she is exactly that…. a treasure.
I learnt and confirmed the following: that avocado and rice make a delicious combination (who knew!?), that I need to rein in my temper, that weekends away do wonderful things when your soul’s batteries are failing, that I love my family, that I love Nigerian bloggers and I read pidgin (probably all wrong) and still giggle to myself, that I love Kenyan Choma sausage, that I love God and my church, that I love South African sour milk and boerewors (not together), that I love Zimbabwean beef stew, that I love fashion and style (and avidly follow bloggers who feed my imagination), that I love a man who sometimes drives me crazy, that I love reading, that I love writing, that I love shoes, that I love other people’s children (mostly because I can spoil them rotten then shamelessly give them back) and that I love playing 30 seconds.
Birthday plan….. Go Karting!!!!! Colour me excited.