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Housemanship Life in Medicine

An Ode To The #LOML

Baby,

It is exactly one year since you asked me out and I said yes.

I was excited and tagged the day “the best day of my life yet,” especially as I have had a crush on you since childhood.

I was made to wait out adolescence and become an adult both in head and at heart before we could begin dating.

So, I said yes, amidst the feelings of excitement, accomplishment, the uncertainty of what the future holds, and fear of the enormity of the task of being your sweetheart.

Three months ago, we began courting when you put a ring on it and that marked a new beginning for us.

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Culture and Travel Housemanship Life in Medicine

Living & Working In Ile-Ife, Nigeria

Guys!!!! I had to write. And you need not say, I know I have been off this space (and social media) for a good while. I missed y’all. Did you miss me too?

I blogged about my new job here, and mentioned how housemanship can be stressful and time demanding, and even queried how often my showing up on the blog would be afterwards.

My first two weeks were hell! Literally. I barely had a life of my own. I was either in the ward, in the call room, in the theatre, in the laboratory (checking results) or seldom in the kitchen trying to grab dinner – call food.

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The Wedding Band

I’m not the classical female who dreams about her wedding day and may even go forward to plan every segment of the event to the last T, without even meeting the dream guy.

One time, I was in a conversation with a friend and was enthusiastically talking about my hopes for the future.

When I ended, he commented, “In all of these you didn’t mention marriage.”

“Oh,” I responded, slightly taken aback.

All of that notwithstanding, I have a secret fantasy.

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A Letter To The One Who Comes After Me, Part 2 ( And A Giveaway)

Toward the end of last year, when I was making plans for 2018, I made a mental note to feature A Letter To The One Who Comes After Me in February. There was no order to the planning. It was a decision I made – and kept.

As the curtains drew in on January, an alarm went off in my head, “February is in 5 days!!!” I considered putting off the series to a later date, say March. This was not from a lack of preparation. It was simply panic.

I made the decision to write this letter in 2015 before my sister gained admission into the university. When she didn’t gain admission immediately, and instead had to do a one-year pre-degree program, I thought I had some extra time.

Still, I did not get to work.

While I delayed writing the letter, I knew it was a wise thing to at least write the synopsis of the letter.

In the first few months of her first year, I was able to develop three of the areas I wanted the letter to address. With my 2018 goal in mind, gradually and steadily, the letter began to rise to full stature.

Last week, I shared the first part. This week, aware that Valentine’s Day is around the corner, I decided to bring forward the area of love.

4. Guard Your Heart

photo-1449495169669-7b118f960251
For out of it spring the issues of life.

A poem:

“As an apricot tree stands out in the forest, my lover stands above the young men in town.

All I want is to sit in his shade, to taste and savor his delicious love.

He took me home with him for a festive meal, but his eyes feasted on me!

Oh! Give me something refreshing to eat—and quickly! Apricots, raisins—anything. I’m about to faint with love!

His left hand cradles my head, and his right arm encircles my waist!

Oh, let me warn you, sisters in Jerusalem, by the gazelles, yes, by all the wild deer: Don’t excite love, don’t stir it up, until the time is ripe—and you’re ready.”

Song of Solomon 2:3‭-‬7 MSG

Another:

“Restless in bed and sleepless through the night, I longed for my lover.

I wanted him desperately. His absence was painful.

So I got up, went out and roved the city, hunting through streets and down alleys.

I wanted my lover in the worst way!

I looked high and low and didn’t find him.

And then the night watchmen found me as they patrolled the darkened city. “Have you seen my dear lost love?” I asked.

No sooner had I left them than I found him, found my dear lost love.

I threw my arms around him and held him tight, wouldn’t let him go until I had him home again, safe at home beside the fire.

Oh, let me warn you, sisters in Jerusalem, by the gazelles, yes, by all the wild deer: Don’t excite love, don’t stir it up, until the time is ripe—and you’re ready.”

Song of Solomon 3:1‭-‬5 MSG

The last:

“I wish you’d been my twin brother, sharing with me the breasts of my mother,

Playing outside in the street, kissing in plain view of everyone, and no one thinking anything of it.

I’d take you by the hand and bring you home where I was raised by my mother.

You’d drink my wine and kiss my cheeks.

Imagine! His left hand cradling my head, his right arm around my waist!

Oh, let me warn you, sisters in Jerusalem: Don’t excite love, don’t stir it up until the time is ripe—and you’re ready.”

Song of Solomon 8:1‭-‬4 MSG

Three times in the Songs of Solomon, the Shulammite woman charged young women not to awaken love until they are ready.

You are not ready when you ought to be studying. You are not ready when you ought to be discovering yourself. You are not ready when you are yet to understand your feelings, body, and emotions. You are not ready even though everyone around you is getting hooked, acting and feeling in love.

You are ready after you have understood your feelings, body, and emotions. After you are sure what you want out of life and in a relationship. You are ready when you are ready for marriage.

Don’t let nobody put pressure on you. Don’t put pressure on yourself either.

Oh, dear, and when you are ready and in waiting, do not forget:

“The right company exists: the kind that nurtures, shares your values, believes in your process, respects you and is going where you’re headed. Find it. Until you do, do not be afraid to be alone. Aloneness is better than compromise.” – Oreoluwa Fakorede on Medium

Giveaway:

A Heart♥Dictions Undated Planner

To enter the giveaway:

1. Follow the blog by clicking the subscribe button below – if you aren’t already following.

2. Share this post saying what you love about this blog and why others should follow this series.

Entry closes Sunday, 18th February, 11:59pm.

A winner will be randomly selected and announced on the last day of the series, 22nd February, on the blog. Should be based in Port Harcourt or Lagos or can take care of delivery charges outside these cities. The winner would receive their prize within one week of announcement. Good luck!

A toast to intentionality and goal smashing this year!

Love,

Annie.

 
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When Loving Her Becomes Difficult

In honour of Nigeria’s Independence day celebration, I will be throwing back to this poem I wrote seven years ago. Sadly, it still re-echoes the present state of our dear nation.

Recently on Twitter, someone tweeted: “So, 5 hospitals didn’t have oxygen and we lost you, Chris! 5 goddamned hospitals! Loving this country is HARD!!!” 

I didn’t know how to respond – or better put, had no response as it was touching two areas I am both passionate about: Nigeria, and her health sector. What’s worse, I could not take away the sadness from them. Could not. Even if I wanted to. With all the insecurity, strikes, poverty and hunger that threatens the intergrity and sanity of Nigeria and Nigerians, I can’t help but agree that indeed, loving Nigeria is HARD, as they put it.

NIGERIA

The land of my ancestors

A vault of many resources

The giant of Africa, they say

A name to us that seems stale

A hubbub of talented youths

Straining to unleash their gifts

But with no stage or audience

Their efforts prove futile

How corruption has eaten in deeply

Virtually all our leaders are greedy

Stealing the nation’s wealth in lump sums

For their daughters and even their son’s sons

The rarity of good paints wrong right

A nation where black is called white

It’s obvious our nation is decaying

What role are you playing?

Are you a force for correction or corruption

Nigeria, a nation that needs redemption.

I love Nigeria. I can’t help but love her. I am just wired to. And I believe in her. I believe in me, because I am Nigeria and so are you. Do you?

When I recently re-read 2nd Chronicles 7:14, I saw our problem AND solution in one verse.

2nd Chronicles 7: 14 – “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” (NIV, emphasis added)

A 2015 statistics released by the Pew Research Centre data ranked Nigeria as the 9th most religious country in the world. So, it is not prayers I am talking about now. We have done too much of praying, and less of acting. Remember, faith without works is dead. So, our solution lies in turning from our wicked ways. First, as individuals and then collectively as a people. This is where the responsibility of building Nigeria into the great nation that it was and is supposed to be falls back on us.

So much degradation has happened to her in the past years. So much worth tearing her apart of recent. But somehow she still manages to stand tall.

1615767855676283885_486592484

I’m not about to beguile you into joining the faithful that believe in all Nigeria carries, and is willing to deliver her future – even though I would enjoin you to, but I hope that before you point fingers at all her corrupt leaders and everything that’s not right about her, that you look inward and see for YOURSELF if you are truly different and any better. I do hope though that you can believe in her enough to fight for her. I do hope that you look on her inside, and see all the beauty she possesses and all she is capable of becoming, and  can point others toward that. Nigeria is ours, the land of our birth, the land of our fathers, the land of our children.

We are so much stronger, so beautiful, the pride of the African continent, when we stand together than when we fight against ourselves; when we are united and fight for her cause, than berate one another.

We can be better. We can love her even when it’s HARD to love her. Isn’t that where it all boils down to in the end? Love. The ones we love sometimes are not befitting of the love. But we hope that through love, they can begin to see themselves through the eyes of the ones who love them, and rise to become the truest versions of themselves.

Unity, Peace and Progress 🇳🇬

Someone just turned 57!

Happy Independence, Nigeria!

Annie. 💚