One of the best years of my life till date are the years I spent in Olashore international school, Osun state Nigeria. Going to a boarding secondary school is ‘IT’ as far as I am concerned. You experience life in its fullness. You learn things not school related but education related that will prepare you for the future. You make friends for life. You do silly things. You smuggle in contrabands and learn 007 skills. Whenever I reminisce about my secondary school days, I smile. Yes, we didn’t always eat what we wanted. We didn’t like to be dragged out for prep. We didn’t like to wake up early and we fought with one another, but we still have pretty amazing stories to tell and even the bad are part of what makes our story interesting.
In Nigerian secondary schools, especially the not so posh ones, boys had it worse than girls in terms of bullying, punishing and the likes. Imagine a senior waking you up in the middle of the night to get him jollof rice from Mr biggs when there is no way you can get it but you still find a way to produce it because you know what awaits you if you don’t. Or a senior putting hot iron under your stomach and telling you to do pushups. You know you can’t fall because if you do, your skin will be the one to feel the effects. Girls were more of a senior shouting or telling you to kneel under the table or maybe occasional slaps and unlike boys, a junior student could even dare slap a senior back although her whole set would come after you. We used to hear stories of past seniors and what they did and we used to be so amused. How seniors could go late to their hostel, get away with things. We just admired them and most of us could not wait to be those seniors. I remember the excitement when we were transforming from pinafore girls to shirt and skirt girls because we were moving to the senior class. We made sure our skirts were set and we were excited about the privileges that awaited us. We were going to be in charge of the juniors and have leadership positions. We made plans of how we were going to be seniors that won’t take nonsense. We could not wait to get to SS3. That was when we could fully exercise our rights as seniors and most of us looked forward to meting out punishments to juniors as we experienced the same. They did it to us, so it’s only fair we do it to them and tradition continues. The ones under us when they get to this high position of authority would continue the trend although wickedness mostly reduced with each set. But darling, do you know you don’t have to do it to them because they did it to you?
One of my friends then in school would take another person’s drink from the fridge and when she was asked, she would say someone took her own too so some else has to suffer for that. Darling, they were mean to you when you first got to that school or office doesn’t mean you have to be mean to someone that just comes in. someone cheated you doesn’t mean another should suffer it by you cheating another. They stole from you doesn’t mean you should steal from another. That girl dumped you after you really put a lot into the relationship doesn’t mean you should go on a sex spree breaking hearts along the way.
Guys, everything we do has a ripple effect. Someone out there will be affected by what you do. So let it end with you. Let the bullying end with you. Let the hatred and unforgiveness end with you. Let the wickedness end with you. Then let kindness start with you. Love, giving, forgiving; let them all start with you. You are above whatever it is they did to you. So they did it to you doesn’t mean you have to do it to another and they didn’t do it for you doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it for another. If it’s within your power, help kick start another’s story. Help someone to believe in him or herself.
Have a good week darlings and please, let’s help spread the message by sharing the post 🙂