Let Us Be; Our dreams are valid too

Honestly, I am sitting right here, typing and literally about to let my heart out to a world that probably does not care, but its cool anyways isn’t it?

I just got the most devastating news of my whole lifetime, and even though the world seems to say its not entirely bad, there’s a squint somewhere saying clearly to my head; well, it is, if it weren’t you wouldn’t feel this way. I mean, there’s no perfect life but I could have avoided this, does it seem so?

Let Us Be; Our Dreams Are Valid Too

Growing up, I had always wanted to be in an environment that would not only enable me be the best at what I hope to be, but an environment that would make me be with people who think the way I do. I loved and still love humanity; it has always been my topmost desire to help. It was career day in school sometimes, 26 years ago and I had opted to be dressed as a nurse.

Nurse! Are you kidding me, you’re a boy! Everybody in my street had the personal notion that there wasn’t a single male nurse on planet earth. Males were doctors, females were nurses. Well, against everything, my mum dressed me as a doctor and asked me to make sure I said that during the career day I wasn’t exactly in my good mood the whole day, my teacher had noticed and somehow asked me to sit down during the  presentations.

Fast forward to many years afterwards, I couldn’t reach the cut off for medicine and surgery, I had tried two times and my parents were already getting impatient. Just try out Engineering, you’re smart enough, you could get it and it’s not exactly as competitive as these other ones. Oh well, right! I could do that since nobody approved of my nursing career anyway. I had gotten into the University of Maiduguri for my first post-UTME, this time applying to the department of electrical engineering, and it clicked!

I got admitted, very hopeful about surviving this place; I was quite good in mathematics anyways. Life was so good, until horror struck in the last two years of school; I could no longer follow up. It seemed learning became harder with each passing day… As though assimilating those things was an uphill task… I began to seek help immediately, something was definitely not right.

In the course of this panic, I started recording my first ever F’s, they came as surprises to every person that had known me… This certainly is not the Nonso we know… They’d ask me questions subtly; some would choose to wait until I was on my way out of class. “Man, what’s happening?” some would go as blunt as asking me to sit up. If only they knew the struggle… they’d have let me be.

By the time I was done gathering my F’s in the second semester, it dawned on me that I could no longer continue. I needed help. But who would believe I had need for help? You’ve always been intelligent… You can do this… That’s all I could hear from every willing ear that cared to listen. I fought it over and decided to continue to struggle to become better…

Final year was done; luckily I was able to pass the remaining failed courses on a second attempt… Fairly… I fought like a wounded lion. I really was left with no other option.

Fast track to our last day in school, I was so happy to be over and done with this environment and all it had to offer… Finally! I get to live my life!

Unfortunately, my happiness was short-lived. The graduation list has been published and I made a whooping third-class. Yes, whooping. I’m still stuck on my feet… besides breaking the news to my dad who has concluded plans on sending me to study for a Master’s degree abroad and blaming them for pushing me way too far…

This is the personal story of Nonso; it could represent a whole lot of other student’s stories out there. Whose dreams have been stifled and snuffed out because they’ve been believed to be omniscient. The worst part of their stories is that they still get blamed for turning out nothing less than a first-class. Our parents need to do better, so also the society.

Invalidating a profession because of perceived gender-fitting is something we should shun in this generation.

Let the dreams of your children and wards be.

It is true that we desire the best for them, but it is advisable to not push them into a deep pit that they may not be able to pull themselves out of.

This is the reason our children consider suicide, they feel they’ve fallen so short of the expectations… the standards that we’ve set for them. We refuse to let their creativity blossom and assume we know the very best for them at every point in time, invariably turning them into puppets without a say.

This is an earnest call to all Nigerian parents, Let your children live out their dreams!

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