Have you ever taken a long look at your life and asked yourself how far you have come and where you are now? I’m happy with who I am today? I flash back into life and I smile and ask myself how did I become a linguist? How did I learn to speak and write French language?
Was it going to school to learn that helped me? I want to believe that it is the people around me, the environment I found myself in and my great lecturers that helped to build my career. The most important thing of it all was believing in myself and trusting God to guide me.
Today I put to many of us that we are where we are or what we are because of one person or the other, who has had a positive or negative effect on us. So dear readers I want to appeal to us to help build positive confidence in our children and those around you.
Some children have missed it today because of just one word said to them, some have failed in life because of the vacuum a loved one who passed away left behind, others because an uncle or aunt said something negative to them and they took it to heart.
Some parents have lost their children to strangers because the vent too much anger on the children who end up joining a bad group for comfort but all these can be corrected. I’ll use myself as an example today because this story hits home.
I am a linguist because my mother kept on telling me that I would be a great language teacher. She kept on telling me I was born to teach. I reflect on my past and I remember that when I got admission into the College of Education, I did not tell my friends because I did not want them to laugh at me but my mother kept telling that one day you would be a blessing to many people.
Today, as I reflect on the past I just laugh. The peer pressure we suffer where just unnecessary, if we knew then, what we know now. Having to impress others, keep up a standard and even go out of your way for acceptance are some of the things we must not allow children to be dragged into.
Today, I organize training, anchor programmes all because of a mother who believed in me. When studying French became difficult and I almost gave up my siblings started praising me that I am just too much, the love around me gave me the strength to move on.
University days were not easy but the positive friends I hanged out with helped me mould my life while I stayed away from those who can destroy you. However, it is never to late to start being positive in life. Make someone smile today, at work, where you reside, your place of worship see the best in the people around you.
Recently, I spoke to a senior professor in my department, this Prof never saw anything wrong with our pronunciation even when other lecturers rebuked us, he would ask us to go study hard and encourage us to stand out.
Today, I flashback and I say God bless him. He built my confidence and that of others when other lecturers gave up on us, please let us learn to love, appreciate, praise and encourage someone because one day they would reflect and pray for you when you need it.
Madame Buky Olieh is an educator, child psychologist and French tutor. She wrote from New York, US