By Uche Anyanwagu, MD, Ph.D.
In spite of what life brings to you, just be you. Being you and not the other is all you need to overcome.
Like a roller coaster ride, life has largely been – filled with ups and downs. Often times, we tend to believe that the grass is greener on the other side.
This is the story of my life. Life is a gift given to me. As I hold it today, it’s a present. Tomorrow, I will surely give it away.
While I carry on this precious present, let me share the true story of my life.
I have received both commendations and condemnations. Some made my heart merry, while others made it cringe.
Of the ones that made me glad, some did make my heart leap for joy like the “fetal” John The Baptist, while others made me wonder if I was truly deserving of it or they were simply being kind and courteous.
I am not perfect. I won’t pretend. I DO NOT desire to be. I can’t simply make it.
The only perfection I seek in my sojourn in life is to be better today than the man who stood in front of my 6-foot mirror yesterday – that non-competitive desire to constantly improve myself.
Of course, change can be positive or negative. At least,a recent story has taught us so. So, while I strive to grow my virtues, I am fully aware that my vices will feed of the crumbs too.
Now to those who say:
“I want to be like you”,
“I wish to be like you”, and
“I wish I were you”;
to those that even say: “I want to be like you when I grow up” even after they are already grown and better; I just have a simple advice: Just be you! I mean, you! Yes! You.
Just know that for many that reach out to, and desire to be, me, there are more that reject and swear never to have anything to do with me.
For each smile on my face, there is an ocean of tears.
For each mile gained, lie three lost in struggle
For each beautiful photo posted online are hundreds of others that failed that simple aesthetic test
Underneath my success story lays an iceberg of failures and unsuccessful attempts
For any glory I’ve shared, I have tasted shame and ridicule more.
For every love I hold, I have dined with rejection at a state-house banquet.
I have been judged and hated before being heard. I have also been loved before being seen
I once told a friend only if they know…
The tears masked by my smile,
The story behind my name,
The wars preceding my victories,
The ache bearing forth my leap
Oh I wish they can realise…
The journeys that lead to the destination,
The cross before the crown,
The depression enveloped by this expression,
And the shame that wrought the glory
They will they understand that the grass will ever remain greener on the other side of the viewer.
Last last, I leave you with two lessons life taught me. I hold these two lessons so very dear and true:
1. Life is selfish – it is yours and yours alone. Be you. Live it.
2. NONE of us will leave here alive. Carve your path and leave a dent.