TRANSITION

TRAN·SI·TION

The process or a period of changing from one state or condition to another

It’s the second month of 2018 and with my birthday coming up, I want to reflect a bit. If I had one word to describe my year so far, it would be, busy. I am busier than I’ve ever been. With academics, with doctors appointments, with small events and with life itself. If this was last year, I would be using all the usual tricks to get myself through all this shit like compartmentalizing, repressing, avoiding. But none of the usual tricks work this time around.

When I started the year, I set goals and in a short time, because of my willingness to reach those goals, I have changed. Old shit that used to work for me just doesn’t work anymore. I was depressed for most of my first-year in uni and all of second year. How is it that my third year, the happiest and most content I’ve been in a while seems like the most difficult one so far. Don’t get me wrong, being depressed sure as hell isn’t dancing on rainbows but it was comfortable. As much as it sickens me to say, I was used to it. Not in the, “I’ve given up come and get me” way, but in the, “alright this isn’t my first go around’ way. Now though, I’m so out of my element I don’t know how to feel.

On top of piling school work and stress, I have to stress about getting a job, graduating from here and starting my career. I have to stress about spiritual conflicts that plague my mind daily. I have to stress about feelings that I really have zero idea how to handle because whoop de doo compartmentalizing doesn’t work for me anymore. All these things are taking turns pushing and pulling me in all directions, leaving me gasping for air. I’m frustrated? That’s a hell of an understatement.

 

“I’m out of my element”

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My element is my coping mechanisms. Because of what I’m striving for, the triplets (compartmentalization, repression and avoidance) don’t fit anymore. I’m evolving, slowly. So slow I can feel it in my bones; in every step I take, every move I make towards something different. I am in transition. Look, this is the longest transition I’ve ever gone through, and that’s because I am aware of it. The triplets no longer numb my mind and now I can see the process for what it is, tedious and uncomfortable. I don’t think I’ve felt this anxious and restless before. It’s like there’s something just beyond my reach … And the waiting, is torture.

 

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Accepting your humanity

Hu·man

Of or characteristic of people as opposed to God or animals or machines, especially in being susceptible to weaknesses.

We all know that we’re human but we don’t all accept that. A lot of us overcompensate for our humanity throughout life and all it leaves us with is sadness and frustration because being human is something that is not exactly desirable. Now when I talk about humanity I am not just talking about being mortal; flesh and bones. I am talking about the essence of humanity, weakness. As human beings, we are weak in so many ways but that doesn’t sit well with a lot of us. Our rejection of weakness can range from something as small as pushing too hard at the gym, to rejecting a fundamental part of ourselves-possibly, a character flaw.

Before we can even think of accepting our own humanity, we must first accept that of others. Some of us already have that down. You’re reading this and thinking, “other people’s weaknesses? That’s easy. My friend is a flake and I’ve learned to accept that’s just one of their flaws.” Now forgiving others who decide to walk all over you is not a good thing and that may, in fact, be your own humanity seeping out but that’s a topic for another day. Like I said, a lot of us are skilled in the art of accepting others flaws. It’s easy for us to choose what part of a person we can tolerate, to gain the advantageous parts of their personality like, tolerating an overprotective trait to gain a loyal friend. Sometimes we understand that we need to let people go because what we can’t tolerate outweighs what we can and that’s alright as well. At the end of the day, we realize that our friends, family, and people around us are just human and they make mistakes. It’s harder to accept that about ourselves though.

 

Your Guardian/Parent(s)

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When you’re learning how to accept other people’s humanity, the biggest hurdle you will face is your parents’. For a lot of us, we look at the people who raised us and grow up believing they can do no wrong. Sometimes we ask a lot of them because we see them as heroic figures in our lives; our protectors, comforters.  It is very easy to view these people as superhuman, but that does not last forever. As we grow, there is a disillusionment that happens, and it could be anything. It could be the first time we see our parent cry. It’s something I always find interesting, crying, something so normal. We cry, why won’t we expect our mom or dad to also? It’s quite absurd, but understandable as well. The first time the person who has been nothing short of perfect reveals to us that they are human too, that there’s a kink in their armor, the way we see them changes immediately. It is important to note though, that even though we see them differently, our love for them does not change.

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2018

Did I reach my 2017 goal?

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At the beginning of 2017, I had a goal. It was to have a New Mindset. Towards the end of the year, I found myself asking, have I achieved this goal?

The answer is yes. I reached my 2017 goal and so much more. Opening my mind to new things and new people was the bare minimum and I managed to surpass that. I not only understand people around me, concepts, and ideologies better, I now understand myself better than I ever have.

I have received insight on things that I never thought I would before. Things that I never thought I could understand or appreciate, I now do.

This year I started out basically testing my faith but now I’ve started a Bible Study Group.

I started the year unsure of where my career was going but here I am now. My career path is clearer & brighter than it has ever been.

I started this year very uncomfortable in my skin but today I’m more confident than ever in myself and the way I look.

This year was without question a year of tests and trials. I wouldn’t say I passed them all. In fact, my average would probably be a C minus. What I can say is that I learned something from every single challenge I had to go through this year.

Having a New Mindset allowed me to explore the world and my surroundings in a way I never had before. It allowed me to shed an old, damaging mentality and take on a new, diverse and renewing one. Having a New Mindset opened my eyes to a life I was living but not appreciating simply because I was seeing it through the wrong lens. My New Year’s goal helped me make my 2017 a year I’m proud to have lived through.

So what’s in store for 2018?

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What to Do When You Get Stranded at an Airport

The season is upon us Y’all! It is the time of year when people are going on holiday to visit loved ones or have a nice vacation of their own. Flights are usually overbooked. There are a lot of delays and cancellations this season and it’s very easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle of it all.I recently traveled back to my hometown. The flight from Toronto, Canada to Nigeria is a particularly long flight to begin with but it was even more so when my connecting flight was canceled due to a three-hour delay on the Toronto leg of the trip. It was ridiculously frustrating and tiring, to say the least, but by some miracle, I survived it, and you can too!

Missing your flight or having an unexpected cancellation during this time of year can wreak havoc on your mental health. To make sure you don’t lose your head, try out these tips. The first thing you should remember is:

DON’T PANIC!

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Whatever predicament you may find yourself in can be scary. Especially if you’re alone and you haven’t gone through it before. It makes sense for your initial reaction to be to panic, but that just makes things worse. Panicking disorients you and causes you to be anxious and if you already suffer from anxiety, that’s definitely not a good thing. So, take a deep breath, calm your mind and try not to work yourself up.

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Fighting Your Body

Very recently I got diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome). It wasn’t too much of a shock though. I mean not having a period for 7 months was a big give away. I’ve gone through a lot when it concerns accepting my body and learning to listen to what it wants. Loving my body in itself was a trial. Learning that I had PCOS definitively from my Doctor was something that frustrated the life out of me. I found myself asking, “why me?” “Why does it feel like my own body is against me?” It hurt especially because, I thought I was finally at a very good place with my body.

Now for the first time in my life, I experienced the 5 stages of grief (well more like 4). It was weird and strange because although I had mourned people before, I’d never gone through the 5 stages. I kinda had it in the back of my mind that it was just something that all the tv shows did.

My 4 stages went kinda like this:

 

Denial

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The first time I went to my doctor and I heard that I may have PCOS, the first thing I thought to do was reject it. After a while though, to anyone that I’d talked to and even to me, it seemed I had accepted it. I acted like it was no big deal for months. This was my way of denying it. To me it really didn’t exist, it wasn’t something I should stress about and so I didn’t. To me, it was as insignificant as a common cold. I believe this was why it took me so long to come to terms with it. I’m so good at pretending, I actually believed I was accepting it. At the end of the day though, I couldn’t pretend forever.

I wasted a whole month on denial. Once I got over it, the other three went by in a flash.

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