There’s A Story Before Glory, A Light After The Night

African Woman Carrying a Pot

Many are the times we see people and judge them according to what we are currently seeing without a inkling of what they have gone through to become what you see. You might see someone balling and you think they are flashy without knowing they might have tolled their whole life to be able to do that.

I was at Linda Ikeji’s blog today to catch up on the latest news and gossip from Naija plus the usual laughter that comes along from the comments. And she featured a story on Ini Edo buying a BMW X6. As usual the reactions were as diverse as the tribes in Naija, some kind ones came in with congratulatory messages; others with spiteful comments about her being busy buying a car instead of giving birth while the nosy ones wanted to know what her hubby drives. Well I have no issue with any of these groups, my issue is with the other groups, those in the diaspora who always make comments like “Check a Nigerian buying an X6 while Bloomberg rides the subway” or “Such an expensive car when others are starving?”….really???

I’m all for philanthropy but sometimes I feel like as modern day Africans we feel so entitled to aid that we now demand for it and expect anyone and everyone on earth to first think of the power staving africans before they  enjoy the fruits of their labour. Really? How many of the well to do africans actually help their neighbours? Or do you think just because you’re a kawaida African Mwananchi (ordinary African citizen) you aren’t entitled to help? Is helping Africans only reserved for the celebrities and the rich?

The only reason people like Ini go into the news about buying big cars is because they are celebrities but how many of us help with the little we have? Or are we busy walking around telling the poor to pray and God, Bill Gates, Bob Geldorf etc will provide yet continue living our lavish lives without a care because helping isn’t for us?

I bet each one of us has had that one thing that you always dreamed you could get for yourself either after you did your KCPE/KCSE or after your graduation or even after you got your first pay check. Don’t all self help books preach that we reward ourselves? I’m just saying next time you see anyone getting themselves something extravagant don’t be quick to judge them and classify them into whichever category you can come up with cause you never know what they went through before they could get that.

On that note, I’ll be graduating soon from Uni and I have a loooooong list of stuff I’ll get myself, simply because I’ve made it through it all. I know some people will say, you’re lucky you studied engineering, you’ll be making a lot of money in the future; well my dear at times like these when I’ve been having exams for 3months the salary I’ll get isn’t my consolation. My consolation is what I’ll buy for graduation 😉

We see built house and wish they were ours, forgetting the hours spent by the construction workers to make that house what it is. Sorry for taking you all over the place, I bet you’re wondering what’s the point? Well my point is reward yourself and allow others to reward themselves (not that it matters anyway, cause people will do what they wish to do) but just don’t be judgemental about what others decide to use their money on. As for those talking about all the American millionaires riding the subway, how can you sanely compare the subway to an Okada/Trotro/Bodaboda? Really? Remember we are all different, you might be willing to spend a million on a new car, while I prefer to spend the same on a trip/jewellery/tech gadgets. We all have those favourites, one might not mind taking the subway but you’d never catch them sleeping on store bought sheets and would instead prefer the handmade silk from Asia that costs an arm and a leg for.

I know I should be ending this now, but let me say this last thing just because your problem is invisible doesn’t mean it’s less of a problem compared to mine. This is just to those that were busy poking fun at Whitney Houston’s problem with drugs. We all have our issues, just because the press doesn’t find yours worth headlines, doesn’t mean they are lesser problems. Before you take our the spec in someone’s eye, please be careful you don’t trip over the tree blocking your own view.

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