What’s holding you back?

On Tuesday morning  we made a detour on the morning ride to work because my father wanted to give someone a package at an all girls’ secondary school he’d once taught. Before my brother made the turn that took us into the school, we’d noticed the boisterous singing and drumming coming from the girls at the morning assembly. The person wasn’t around yet so my brother went to give it to someone to keep for her. 


My father turned to me and said “it’s girls who are drumming here, if this was a mixed school, they wouldn’t drum.”

His words stilled my tongue and made my brain spin fast, he was right. I had attended only girls secondary schools and girls did everything there was to do, we had no other option. How come the same girl who would drum in an all girls school would not do the same in a mixed school?


Easy… The boys are better at drumming right? And drumming isn’t a feminine pursuit too and those girls wouldn’t enjoy masculine attention and yada, yada, yada. It’s simply because there’s no need for them to, the people who said necessity is the mother of invention weren’t high on cheap drugs. If you have never found yourself at a place where you have only yourself and your feeble skills to rely on, you might never know just how much potential rests in you to do great things.


I recently ran away from a sewing class, what if my life depended on my learning to sew or at least my source of income… I would have planted my butt on the seat and sewed through my tears, innit? I don’t even want to think about all the other things I ran away from…

My new philosophy is “what if my life depends on it, would I fail to try because I was afraid to fail?” but there are exceptions though, if my life was threatened by staying put- I’d fly without perching anywhere close until I’m too far from the danger to be affected by it.


In unrelated matters, I wrote a poem that I’d like to share with you- yes you who’s reading this post. It has no title and I do not even know why I wrote it.


At the ends of your string I hang
Thirty degrees west I tilt,
Ten degrees east I flop,
As the wind decides or as your fingers will.
My arms burn from chaffing string,
Muscles constricting from the agony of sympathy
Rubbery legs continue to flail
In the rhythm of the Surugede you hum..
Dance! You say and crack your whip.
The rags around my waist cascade to my feet,
Foiling the plans of curious blood suckers,
Adding patches of modesty to an empty shell.
Your ropes hold strong against,
The fiery blades of my pain,
Impotent as piss in a forest fire,
Kills hope instead.




    1. Very true Charles,
      However we can either sit back and whine or stand up and change things. I know it is hard but the women who fought for many of the privileges I enjoy today didn’t find it easy either.


  1. This post is fantabulous Adaezenwa. It’s such a simple observation and yet it’s so profound.
    At one point I used to be a minor computer geek. And when I met up with someone and she asked me what I was doing at the moment, I told her I was fixing laptops. She was shell shocked. Alas, I stopped and have forgotten a lot of my laptop skills. But I still had enough to fix a minor fault in my boss’s laptop this year.
    I love this post. And no, the geekiness never extended to tabs or phones.


    1. I honestly thought I’d replied to this comment. gbahara Nne.
      I think you’d do well in tech, you have this intensity that them compu-geeks have. Andela’s latest recruitment cycle is targetting women, I think you should apply.


      1. I only have the most basic computer repair and programming skills. I’m not sure I’m qualified enough.
        Consider yourself forgiven! 😇

  2. No, they weren’t high on cheap drugs. Sometimes we do what we have to, until someone who enjoys it or is better comes along. Reminds me of how some men cook until they get married. 🙂


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