Hello. I am back.
I won’t make any ta-da! or toot-toot noise. This is not a proud, loud re-entry. No. Instead, it is a shamefaced, silent re-entry. It has been 129 days since I last posted, and they have been some really tough days. Since Feb 1, when I last posted here, I have wondered about my blog and its abandoned state. I have read on so many blogs about how it can be very difficult to post; but I never knew it would be this hard. Four months! Jeez.
I don’t know if it was writer’s block, laziness, lack of passion…call it anything. But in the last four months, writing was very difficult for me. I just couldn’t think of anything to write. Anything at all. When I did think of something to write, which was not very often, I could not find the strength to write it down. I can’t really explain it, but the thought of putting pen to paper just made me tired all over. I could hardly even find the strength to write in my journal. Anytime I wrote, I would start with the words, “Many things to write, but no energy,” or “A lot of occurrences to record, but little time,” or something else along that line. I would then scribble a little more before my attention drifted to something else.
When I talked to some of my close friends about it, they said not to worry, that it is due to all the stress and hassle of final year. Oh, did I mention? I’m in my final year of university, and I feel like i’ll just drop dead sometimes. Anyway, a lot of my future posts will be inspired by my experiences this year, so watch out. Eh ehn, where was I? (This is another thing that happens often now; I’m doing one thing, and before I know it, my attention has walked out on me, leaving me wondering, “What was I doing? What was I saying?”)
So yes, schoolwork (all the daily assignments, tests, seminar, presentations, reports, proposals, and crazy deadlines) actually contributed to the whole issue, and I could hardly think of writing. My press duties also suffered. Every Friday when going to the meeting, I would go with something I had dug up from my archives or my blog. Whenever I was told to write something and submit for printing-e.g Editorial-the little humour I had left in me would just disappear. I didn’t tell anyone in the press about my problems, you see, and so, I was still expected to churn out several pages as usual. I was tired! And I even considered quitting, but my Faculty Press is one of the few things that make my life in UI enjoyable, so I stayed.
Those who have been close to me this year know that I have gotten to a place in my life where God is #1. He comes before every other thing, and I tell Him everything. When I got absolutely tired of everything- at that point, nothing made me happy, least of all my writing- I went to Him and told Him. I’d been telling Him right from the point I stopped posting in February, but when I didn’t get a speedy answer, I knew something would be born out of the whole process. I also read a lot- again, I forgot to mention that while I wasn’t writing, I was reading like crazy. In fact, if books were calories, I would not fit in a doorway now. I read several blogs, ebooks, and paperbacks. It was while going through Instagram and checking out blog links that I found Pribodunke of http://www.pribodunke.wordpress.com and a post she’d written, titled The Originals. You should read it, it was very apt for me, as if she was talking directly to me. I was very grateful for it, and I told her so in a comment.
So, yeah, I told God I didn’t know what was up with this gift He has blessed me with. It wasn’t flowing well any longer, and I didn’t know what to do with it anymore. It occurred to me after several days of praying, and fasting that maybe I wasn’t using my gift exactly how God wants, so I asked Him to show me.
I am a very private person, and I find it hard to talk about myself, and much harder to put details of my life on social media. When I do put stuff about myself online, trust me, it is with effort. Whatever it is- an experience, a picture, whatever- it has undergone consideration and several re-considerations before posting. Even when I wrote my own stories, I would try to disconnect myself where possible. This was also because I don’t want to have a blog that is sort of an online diary. But after praying, I realised,that was what was wrong. God does not want me totally isolating myself from my stories when I post them. Sure, He’s not asking me to be all over social media, but I should stop thinking my experiences are of no worth to people! Also, my idea of what I wanted my blog to be was different from what God wants it to be. I wanted my blog to be about culture, traditions, society, and an occasional infusion of ‘God talks’. I felt I was not qualified enough to discuss religious matters; people like Seye of http://www.glorysounds.wordpress.com seem more qualified. I would not try to be more spiritual than I am.
But again, I got it wrong. What I hadn’t realised was that, there are people who have questions about God, and their walk with Him, and they feel like they can’t direct their questions at “mature Christians”. I know how hard it can be to believe that some mature Christians we know once had doubts and questions like us. I also know how comfortable it can be to know someone who has gone through this phase, and ask them questions. No one wants to be alone in their experiences. I couldn’t write because I wanted to write things other than what God had put in me to write. I wanted to write excellent literary pieces, mind blowing poems; but I thought my walk with God was not worthy of mention. How ignorant I was. Do you see the link? I didn’t want to write my experiences, or about myself, so I had nothing to write. And it took me four months to realise! What I didn’t understand was, when I write what God wants me to write, other things will come too. Ultimately, this blog is not supposed to be about me, or how it will be for my happiness alone, but how it will touch lives. We are indeed blessed to bless others.
I read Toke Makinwa’s book, ‘On Becoming’ again last week, and I saw a place I highlighted, toward the end of the book. It read, “We are all preachers; our lives are sermons, and it’s up to us to decide what the sermons say.” That was my confirmation.
Four months have gone by, I am sure I have lost several readers, but I pray I gain you back. I have grown up some more in the past months. I have cried so many times, but after all those tears, I have developed skin as thick as pònmó (precisely the dry pònmó of Ijebu); I have learnt to stop trying to explain myself to everybody; and I have learnt to accept my weaknesses and love myself all the same.
This is my sermon.
I have to say thank you to some special people who showed me that I was not forgotten. Jidenma, thank you. For your concern all these months. Thank you for always asking, “Dunni-Dunni, how is your blog?” Your words contributed in no small amount to my return. Sinmi of http://www.unboxedliving.com Thank you. For your strong, quiet presence as I like to call it; your reassurances, and the little nudges and pushes. Teniola…thank you. For everything- your friendship, your support; for being “impressed” with me and laughing at me in my times of “impression”. Your confidence in me stupefies me! And you, yes you, reading this right now, thank you. For coming back.
Tell everybody, Enioladunni is back.
Photo credit: pinterest
*Pònmó- Yoruba word for Cowskin.