For a while I lost touch with my inner self. I almost forgot who I really was. I almost forgot how to write.
Those dark days had me thinking…. Am I any different from the rest of the pack?
I suddenly discovered that there were so many people in the world; 6,905,152,225 statistics say….. I brushed past them every day in the bus, at the park, in the market n they neither stirred nor turned. Invisible I screamed!
Many times I toyed with the numbers in my head. What number would I represent? Maybe 5,736, 576,908.
Just a number I often whispered. I couldn’t say it out loud…. Dared not…. It might just be true I feared.
Day after day, weeks rolled into months….I felt my life fizzling away before my eyes.
I often would reflect on how as a child it seemed simple…. School-Marriage- Death.
It seemed like math.
There were only two paths: I was either good or bad
Judging from those standards…. I might just fall into the latter
Many times I said to myself ‘Is this it’? Is this all we are here for? All of a sudden it all felt prosaic and bland!
Life was tasteless, meaningless…. Too many questions for someone who represented just a number.
I often wondered why I had to go to school and why I had to do the things I was doing… Worse I asked what if good is bad and bad is good? Who defines any of these things anyway?
Then fear crept in
The fear of not fulfilling.
The fear of failing that child I once was.
The fear of passing through life a ghost.
The fear of missing the right turns.
The fear of fear and its denial.
Yes I lost myself in those days. Many of us have. Many still are.
Unlike the subtle nature in which those dark quiet thoughts had come, I snapped back. It was evidenced by a smile that came from within. A charge that propelled me to forge forward, a burst of energy that singled me out, a naked passion to do and undo, to know and to change, to think and to question to breath, to hold life in my hands. More than that, to live.
I am no ordinary person I told myself, and all the evidence I need is in my eyes…
Dedicated to Oluwatomi and Faith