Some years back when I was called a “mono” which refers to a form one student, I saw school life to be a hard task. I had to walk a few kilometres from home to school every morning since my parents couldn’t afford the school transport. The dusty roads to school really forced me to carry another pair of shoes in my school bag. At the gate I had to remove my dusty rubber shoes and put on my well brushed black shoes. Despite all this, I couldn’t imagine my name being mentioned by the Sanitation prefect as the cleanest girl in the whole school. After school is when I started to know that life is harder than the one in school. I stayed in one of the largest slum in Nairobi (Kibera) which did not make any difference from the rural life. No fresh air because the houses are congested with very few toilets, some people are forced to use flying toilets; these are polythene bags which are scattered all over the place and the sewage is everywhere you go. I had to look for a job to further pursue my education and also support my family.
This made me understand that life is the spirit that dwells in living things, where expression leads to experience. Success is not about where you are standing at any given time; it’s about how much you’ve learned and how far you’ve come to get there. I really congratulate the person who came up with a simile about life that says “Life is like a cup of coffee without sugar. You realize there is no sugar and feel lazy to go for it. You struggle to finish the bitter coffee and later discover undissolved sugar at the bottom”. When I read this, my head is full of questions and I’m eager to know more. Trying to elaborate, life is the coffee and the cups are the jobs. These two things go hand in hand. Remember, the type of cup does not change the life we live and with hard work you live the quality of the life you desire. That is how life is, look around, maybe the sweetness of life you are looking for is closer than you think. You wouldn’t know what hot is without experiencing cold.
In Africa my homeland, something peculiar exists. People have divided themselves into groups, the poor and the rich, due to the prevailing economic status. This make me feel isolated because I’m caught between these two groups. I understand well that we all have the capacity to better our economic status, regardless of whether you live in rural areas, urban centres, estates or slums; we can all make it through hard work, determination and perseverance since we are all capable and have great minds. One should never limit themselves to a certain economic status just because they were born in it; everybody is in charge of their life’s destiny.
In today’s life, everybody has to dig deeper into their pockets in order to get the daily bread. It is so embarrassing and disappointing that there are people who gave up in life and live like parasites involving themselves in illegal activities. These are the muggers, drug peddlers, murders, arsonists etc. Most of them spend the rest of their lives in jail living bitter lives. Past mistakes should teach you to create a wonderful future and not cause you to be afraid of it. Don’t carry your mistakes around with you, instead, place them under your feet and use them as stepping stones. Never regret, if it’s good, it’s wonderful. If it’s bad, it’s an experience. A change only comes when you accept it. You can change to a new person anytime. I give thanks to MYC4, an organization that creates growth and unites people from around the world who can lend money directly to entrepreneurs who are doing business in Africa. It facilitates micro finance lending via an internet platform to small businesses in developing countries. This is one of the stepping stones for hard working people to change their lives.