I am just a normal person with a million ideas. I designed clothes when I was little, paper dolls and what not. Through out my whole childhood, I bounced between dream careers. A singer? A writer? A doctor? A dancer? A fashion designer? A race car driver? A model, A Capoeira champion. Nooooooooooooo! I watched ‘Sister act’ and convinced myself that becoming a nun was awesome regardless of the fact that one had to be a christian. But growing up in Nigeria one learns, that the only career one should dream about is ; A doctor, A lawyer, A pharmacist or An engineer.
Before I knew it I was a dentist, then an orthodontist. I was going through life, as part of herd doing what Nigerian and specifically the Hausa society deemed right. After years of trying to please people around me I concluded ‘mneh I want to rebel’. Its safe to say all hell broke loose. I was strange, did not know my place as a woman and a little disrespectful. This violently annoyed me as ‘respect’ is one of the base pillars of my upbringing.
‘Less jus be honest,
Less jus be real’
Dej Loaf’s song comes to mind LMAO
As soon as you show your rebellious side and stop hiding the fact that you are opinionated enough for the whole population of Africa, you turn into ‘Demon spawn’. After a while, I developed thick skin and really stopped caring about irrelevant opinions. I had a nervous break down. I wont go into detail but it but I know it was my fault since most of the pressure is self placed and cannot be blamed on the people I considered responsible, at the time.
After the breakdown, I was shocked with the diagnosis of severe depression. Anyone who knows me knows that I’m always smiling and uber positive. Apparently some of us are not aware of the fact that we are depressed. My Hausa connections decided I was either possessed by demons or a drug addict. RME when I say education is lacking at times, it comes off as if I don’t know my place. After a couple of therapy sessions in London, I was given quite a few questionnaires, I added OCD and mild DID to the Diplomas I had hanging on my wall. Boom! It hit me.
Funnily enough, I didn’t feel down. Instead I was more like ‘Ah so that’s what it is’. At least, I knew where to start. I
started reading started absorbing ‘self help books’ by the dozen. I had already read quite a few but mostly about relationships and how to be a better woman. At this point in my life I discovered emotional health and that’s when self reflection almost drove me to insanity. It struck me, that I did not react to emotions normally and sometimes not at all.
Once, I was doing the dishes and someone came in to say there had been a shooting and like 12 people were dead. My head was swirling between ‘ I want to cry, is it fine to cry? Will I be dramatizing if I cry, or will I just be weak?’. The moment had passed and said person was upset because ‘I did not care’.
Then I saw the positive in having Dissociative Identity Disorder. It helps me put myself into other peoples shoes quite easily. As soon as something happens, I already think of 3 reasons why it could have happened. I found rationale and logic behind other people’s actions. What I am trying to say is that, ‘Everything happens for a reason’ and sooner or later you find out what that particular reason is.
Incredible moral support sorrounded me. Some friends of mine went for sessions with psychologists to make me feel normal. They researched on these conditions and found ways to help me through. I revelled in how, instead of pushing me away my friends actually pulled me in closer. I felt like the ‘the belly button of the earth’. This is a weird saying that I directly translated from Russian language.
In 2015 my friend and husband planned an intervention and convinced me to start a blog. Aquarians are annoyingly persistent. Olga tried to get me to start a food blog in 2007, later she involved Antonina who argued that my starting a personal life style and design blog was inevitable.
Once they found kindred spirit in Q, they exploited it. It felt very much like an intervention for alcoholism or drug addiction. To be completely honest I really wanted to do it but , petrified of failure and the level of faith they put into me was quite undeserving from my perspective. at some point I realized if I could just blog for them ( Olya and Tonya) to follow my life and know what goes on even if I dont have time to email or Facetime then it would surely be worth it. Q explained that if its just a hobby there is no posibilty of failing. I created AOD.
Books I believe are mandatory reads for a better you: