Happy Sunday! This past week – I missed my late aunt and mentor so much. She would have been 53 this month. I wished I spoke to her a lot more than I did. She was the strongest woman I knew and I just could not imagine that she would die so soon. I miss her a lot and sometimes the “success road” can get very lonely. With her, I didn’t have to say much before she got it. Two years gone now.. I wont say there is void in my heart.. Truly I believe she completed her mission in my life.. I just was not ready to see her go. Last year I wrote a reflection piece and I want to share it here. Hopefully someone will become motivated, encouraged or inspired by it.
August 2017 is beautiful month for me and more importantly a reflection of decisions and experiences triggered right about this time last year. Before I delve into such reflection, let me say a couple of happy birthdays to some great people in my life: Mummy, Aunty Osasu, Shabs, Chocho, Ogo and of course my beautiful daughter – Grace. I also want to wish my beautiful little sis – Ese a very happy married life and a big welcome to Kola (my newest brother in-law).
August 2017 marks one year since my aunt and mentor – Osaretin Oyewunmi (nee Odaro) went on to be with the Lord and every time I think about her I get a bit emotional. I’ve always known that aunty Reti had a big impact in my life but I became fully aware of it after she died. Every professional decision I’ve made has been greatly influenced by her. Sometimes I wish I could pick up the phone and give her progress report – But I can’t. She is in a much better place. I learned a lot from Aunt Reti. I am going to share some key things that I learned from my aunt and I hope it encourages at least one person (woman especially) who reads this.
1. Don’t hide your talent. It has been given to you to for a purpose. You are not going to please everyone and there is a great likelihood that some people (if not most) will find you intimidating….. but that’s ok. Be who God has called you to be. If it’s your calling to challenge the status quo please do so unashamedly.
2. You are going to make mistakes (big and small). That’s ok too. The question to ask is: What did you learn from it? Pick up yourself and keep moving.
3. If you are looking to accomplish certain things, you just have to put your feelings aside and treat them as projects. Set goals and get them done! No questions. (Chuckle: Reminds me of the last intense conversation I had with her)
4. It’s ok to share your experiences (good and bad) so that the ones behind you (who look up to you) don’t make the same mistakes again.
5. In all these things, enjoy life – we are not guaranteed tomorrow so make the best of today.
11 days after my aunty died – I went into preterm labor and gave birth to one of the strongest girls I know – Grace Ehizuwa Osaretin. Grace was born at 27 weeks and under 2lbs (13 weeks before her due date), she had to be resuscitated and placed on jetted ventilation tube to save her life. I saw this tiny little girl fight for her life in a feisty way, it was so inspiring. 3 days after her birth, Grace ex-tubated herself and only needed oxygen prongs in her tiny nostrils. She pretty much set the pace of her progress while in the NICU. 11 weeks later, we took her home. Grace is the true definition of God’s divine grace on my life. Being an emotional rec with little or no room for an outlet, I needed every strength in me to keep moving. Even with the intimate knowledge of God I had, I was too weak to pray. I was numb.
Numb was the word that could best describe my state of mind for the next 4 months. I didn’t want to be the person that asked God “why me” but by November when the movers we hired, stole my sentimental jewelry (including my diamond engagement and wedding rings).. I screamed not only “Why Me?” But “Who did I offend?”, “Nah only me one?”, “wetin sef” and God knows what other things fell out of my mouth.. I had cried so much in the months past that I barely had tears to shed…. Let me digress a bit here.
You see before I lost my aunt and had Grace, 2016 had started out a bit difficult. It was just crappy. Work was stressful, constantly arguing with hubby, had friends drama and then got caught in the middle of it. Adding in to that I just felt like I wasn’t growing or connecting with God anymore – that inner hunger and thirst was fizzling away.
In the midst of all the drama and stress, there was strength to move forward. I had a quiet confidence that everything was going to be alright. All because i had ingrained in my head that no one goes through tough times and comes out short changed especially children of God.
God came through in ways I could never imagine. He sent helpers at every time of my need. My family members came through in most dynamic ways. A big shout out to Pst Lamide our diva nanny who was taking care of my 17month old at that time while I was dealing with NICU issues; I am grateful for mentos – yes the candy bar that my hubby and I shared and munched on as we walked to and from the hospital. God found ways to keep me pre-occupied in his work through my lovely Pastors Femi and Itee (Day of Bliss –October 2016 – looking for LMAM NY choir outfits in the fashion district of New York.) The Christ Embassy NY church members that were aware of what was going on came through big time being very supportive all the way. God always sent his word at the time I needed to hear it and He has kept his word thus far. God showed me his plans for me on my birthday – The best birthday gift that I’ve ever gotten.
One year gone and I can smile about the experience. I could look back in one year and think I lost a lot but honestly, I gained a lot more qualitative things. We can go about thinking that our works/good deeds/riches will help us at our time of need which they may for a little while but it’s much deeper than that. It is our belief and trust in God through Jesus Christ that brings forth the victory. It is knowing that my life experiences once entrusted to him will surely be for his glory. And God’s glory cannot be overlooked or ignored. It is that shining light that obstructs darkness. This is the light in me that keeps shinning.
Until next time.. Thrive this week!