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By Oludara Ogunbowale

oludara ogunbowaleWho remembers wanting to grow up as a child? I always thought adults had it easy. All the adults around me were always put together, composed and happy. At least they always smiled at me when they saw me so I ‘knew’ that they were happy or so I thought!

When my grandma asked me to kneel when I did wrong or my mommy instructed me not to wear what I felt like wearing but to instead, wear what was appropriate, I felt like I was being suffocated. Oh my! Tell me about the wish to marry a Prince or a rich man. How about the desire to live your life freely without inhibitions? I was certain that when I was older, I would be a woman of my own terms, talk to anyone how I felt like without having anyone to tell me ‘Shut up’ or ‘Keep Quiet’ and who did not say ‘I can buy anything with my own money anytime and wherever I liked!?’

I am not too sure about all of us but I know that some of us felt growing up was going to make us in control of our lives but here are a few things I did not know as a child or better still, that our parents and other adults around us did not tell us about being your own person and some of the things that come with being an adult.

  • That earning your own money requires real hard, smart and strategic work

Being in control of your financial decisions is good. You plan all that you want to do with your own money. But Money does not fall from trees. They are an exchange for value. You must put value on the table. Unlike getting money from the love and obligation of our parents or guardians, your employer does not love you. You have to work!

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  • That Sometimes, you may be between the devil and the deep blue sea

Decision making is harder when you know that there is nobody to blame the consequences on if the results of the decisions go south. As a child, when you were directed or advised  to do something and it went wrong, your parents, guardians or teachers may be blamed for it, but now, if you make wrong decisions, you are so on your own.

  • That there is some ‘Pain’ in becoming a woman

I remember all the fine Aunties that were around me. I wanted to be like them. They smelled nice, had well-manicured nails… ‘Oh, I can’t wait to be a woman!,’ I would think. Hmmm. They did not look like they had menstrual cramps or heart breaks or bad hair days. Our mothers are so beautiful. So they went through that death road bearing us?

  • That dreams don’t always come true

This is not me sounding negative. Life does not always turn out as planned. We outgrow dreams, we have new dreams. Sometimes we get amazing things we did not even dream of. And even when dreams come true, they only do with much persistence, patience and resilience. With dreams, I have learned and I am still learning that when Life gives you Lemons, make Lemonade.

Read also: #DarasPage – You Are Not My Standard

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