Life: It’s okay to feel lost sometimes

Ever been at that point in life when you feel you’re just existing and nothing is really happening for you? Yeah, life does come in phases, and some phases will surely suck.

The journey life takes us on can sometimes be strange, and other times fascinating. Can’t imagine how many times we feel lost and disappointed life doesn’t take us on the exact journey we carefully planned for ourselves and worked hard for.

But somehow it eventually ends well, we hope. Maybe the harvest is nigh and we need not give up!

“It’s okay if you’re lost, we’re all a little lost and it’s alright” ~Nightbirde

©Mark Gadogbe, 2021

Featured Image Source: https://instagram.com/_nightbirde?utm_medium=copy_link

Stand Up! Stand Tall!

Perhaps, we should not live life expecting people will always stand up for us or stand with us…because most often they won’t and we would be left disappointed. People these days don’t put their neck on the line for others. Rarely will you find people standing with you in your problems; many will only do from a comfortable distance but will not go through the thick and thin with you all the way.

We must perhaps accept the fact that life is, and gets lonely, and therefore learn to stand up for ourselves every time and when we fail trying to, just accept our fate and move on.

In the face of life’s trials, we hope to get the courage to stand strong and tall, even if we must alone. It does get so hard fighting life alone, but the reality is that sometimes life offers no other options, except being your own life support, backbone and motivator. You can’t force people to always be there for you, and even if they promise to, chances are that they will fail you; so we maybe just have to be mentally prepared to face life alone and on our own terms. The decisions or mental preparations we make today may sometimes be the difference between whether we can weather tomorrow’s storms or not when they do come.

Like a child learning to walk, we can always learn to get up when we’re down at our lowest and alone in life’s battles, with nobody standing for or with us. Our mental preparation and baby steps back up will eventually lead to giant leaps to the top. The struggle is real but to give up we must not.

Stand up, stand tall, through it all!

©Mark Gadogbe, 2021

Cover Image Source: https://instagram.com/grittyvibes?utm_medium=copy_link

Unfuck Yourself 😊

What matters right this minute is that we’re still alive, irrespective of our present circumstances. Because once we have life, we have hope that we will still achieve our dreams no matter how slow it takes. All that we’ve lost that had “dimmed” our shine, we surely will get back, through legitimate means. Yes, no matter the odds, we will not give ourselves to illegitimate dealings.

We will continue to give ourselves to study, working hard with integrity and dreaming our big dreams. The progress may seem really slow but it’s better than being dead, obviously.

Hopefully, life will afford us the chance to “unfuck” ourselves and get back on track…then just maybe, we will earn some respect from those who look down on our today, just because we seem to have lost our shine. 😊

©Mark Gadogbe, 2021

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Bittersweet life…

At the most fundamental level, life is simple and basically made up of both good and bad (evil). The fact remains that everything you’re looking for in life, you’ll find both good and bad. Good and bad kind of coexist in this life and it is simply our job to find a balance. There are good people; there are bad people…and we’ll experience them all, whether we like it or not.

Similarly, there are good investments and there are bad investments. There are good Christians / Christian leaders and there are bad ones too. There are good jobs and there are bad jobs. There are good parents and there are bad parents. There are very great relationships and marriages; and there are equally very bad or toxic ones. Also, and quite importantly, there is good sex and there is bad sex. 😊

Life is superficially simple but most times gets complicated, quite frankly, because of the juggling of all these many good and bad experiences. And the more we grow and experience life in much more details, the more complicated things get. The only sure way to avoid a complicated life is to remain babies. But, grow we must!

Quite frankly, we can’t live life just wishing the bad away; at some point, we will experience bad people, bad situations and stuff that will basically try to suck the very life out of us. Whilst that is actually normal in principle, it is also a make or break situation in reality.

Perhaps, it is only when life has got you into a state of hopelessness, chronic depression, giving in to suicidal thoughts, suffering protracted health conditions or terminal illness, experiencing extreme hardship, or having to deal with loved ones in such state, etc., that you will understand the stark reality of the breaking point situation.

Our outlook on life will be largely influenced by which of the two worlds (good or bad) we mostly come into contact with. Should you find anybody with a bad outlook on life and so lost on hope, check their history of life experiences. And if you are privileged to have experienced a lot of the goodies of life, don’t be too quick to judge or write others off.

©Mark Gadogbe, 2021

Featured image credit: https://instagram.com/curlsaunaturelkids?utm_medium=copy_link

Owning up to our realities

All there is to life is facing reality. You can’t escape the realities of life; you can only live through it (facing one reality after the other) and hope to grow through it. Nobody’s life is easier; we are all facing realities, but just differently.

Reality is always staring us in the face but we always try to look the other way. Many times, we truly just don’t want to face reality. Perhaps, it’s a much bitter pill to swallow; so, we keep trying to run away from it…forgetting that we may only be plunging ourselves into another reality in a different form.

If you think somebody’s life is rosier than yours, think again. If you think somebody’s relationship/marriage is better, happier and shinier than yours, think again. Accept yours as it is and invest in it. If you think those who are married are better and more fulfilled than you, think again, my dear. If you think those living in cosier houses, environment and own expensive cars are way much better and happier than you, think again. If you think those who are academically more accomplished than you are better than you, spare yourself a moment and think through again.

Perhaps, you also think those who have never experienced a relationship failure (“broken heart”) are better than you? Think again. Do you know what they might have lost in life? Well, maybe you might also be thinking those who married young are better than you who married late? Think again, for in this life, nothing is ever a sure guarantee.

No permutation is ever a sure bet in this life, trust me. We’ve seen young people die in their prime. We’ve seen young marriages collapse. We’ve seen far too many young people becoming widows and widowers. We’ve seen people’s fortunes turn upside down just overnight. We’ve seen and heard all the unthinkable happen! Why then do we place so much confidence in this life and worry ourselves to death, thinking we are perhaps the only ones experiencing the harsh realities of life, and trying to wish it away? You may be surprised that life is fucking everybody up!

It’s important you enjoy your own little life and be thankful for it, for the day you hear people’s full stories, you would wish you were never them. If life could be traded or exchanged, many will regret purchasing other people’s lives. People only show you what they want to show you, and trust me, there’s so much gabbage in people’s lives that you wouldn’t want to buy or even envy, if only you knew the full story. People are fighting hidden battles we are never privileged to see.

Sometimes, it is only when God opens our eyes to see what is going on in other people’s lives that we become thankful and accepting of our own realities. In such moments we realize after all, that our own lives and realities are perhaps better off than we thought or imagined.

We should make the best of our time here on earth for life in itself is not promised (guaranteed). Here today, gone tomorrow. That’s the life we’re truly living. Grace is the only differentiator.

©Mark Gadogbe, 2021

Cover image credit: https://instagram.com/museumofblackart?igshid=9r194jprooxh

Remove the labels!

You may have had some negative things spoken about you lately or throughout your life, but you must know this:

YOU ARE NOT WHAT PEOPLE LABEL YOU…YOU ARE WHAT GOD LABELS YOU!! HE ALONE MUST HAVE THE FINAL SAY!!!

So quit believing those things…and put on your new found label in Christ. And begin telling yourself all the good stuff: I am beautiful, caring, intelligent, the best… (the list is endless!).

Say it TODAY! Do not remain what people think and say that you are. There’s never a great time to break free from all that negativity than everyday. Everyday is the right time! So, make a conscious effort everyday to cast off all those cloaks of negative labels!

See you at the top!

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©Mark Gadogbe, 2021

Stop lying to yourself

This new year, I hope that part of our resolutions would be to stop living a lie in our marriages and relationships just to keep or save face. If your marriage/relationship is not good or healthy, it’s just not good. Face that ‘shit’ and deal with it!

Stop all that “playing religious” just to hide the garbage in your marriage. It’s not good for your health. If you die in it, we’ll bury you anyways. There is so much to live for, and a whole lot not worth dying for. A lot of marriages only look good on the outside because we keep playing the game of religious pretense, deceiving our own selves.

I hope you do not realize too late to save yourself from a bad and toxic marriage or relationship this new year, before it kills you.

Cheers to a happy and healthy 2021! 💪🏽

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©Mark Gadogbe, 2021

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Public Opinions

Sometimes in life, when you seek too many opinions from people, you never get to make any bold decision! And most times too, when you need others’ opinion, you never get it until after a decision is made and then their “expert opinions” on your decision (actions) come flying in torrents. “Oh, you should have done it like this or that, or you should have gone this other way”, etc., will always be the feedback from your critics, who funny enough, just sit and wait to offer their criticism only after an action is taken.

The spirit of unhealthy criticism seems to have gotten into many of us, and all we know and do lately, is turn ourselves into “social commentators” who just sit and talk (commenting) all day on other people’s life choices, especially all over the media platforms. Whenever news gets into our ears or our social media feeds, of people around us who are striving in life and daily putting themselves out there to make ends meet – often on the back of many critical personal decisions – we quickly zoom into our default criticism mode and make unwholesome comments about them. If only we are putting in the works ourselves, that could be cool, but no, we always forget we have so many decisions to make about our own lives that we ourselves are not even courageous enough to make. Sadly, instead of lifting people up with inspiring opinions, we instead specialize only in pointing out other’s faults, denigrating them or hating on them. This is becoming the growing trend with this new generation of ours, especially on social media platforms.

This unwholesome trend is making social media no longer fun for a lot of people. It is no longer a place for the faint hearted, but those who can grow the toughest skin to all manner of criticism, abuse or cyber bully. It is now a place where even a post with the most innocent of intentions can place you in deep waters of cyber bully which can cripple your very existence.

Funny enough, most of the people we always find expedient to criticize for making what to us are ‘wrong choices’, as if that is our paid job, are the ones not just sitting down like us, trying to act all clean and angelic. Rather, they are at least doing something with their life, they are the ones putting their hands to the plow and trying out what works or will not work for them, learning valuable lessons and making future improvements. One day, they are the ones that will grow to become resilient influencers and world game changers. On the contrary, it is we, the critics, who now call ourselves “social media commentators”, who will remain at the same place with apparently nothing better to do with our lives, other than offering vitriolic criticism.

Perhaps, the most talked about people are always people who are doing something and trying to get somewhere. Critics will always remain to talk down achievers, but may themselves not be achievers. Very few achievers seem to waste time talking down others.

Well, criticism in itself is not a bad thing, but it must be constructive. Otherwise, it is only damaging and never builds a person up. People struggle to turn out good when they constantly hear negative words thrown at them. Try that on your child or spouse and see how they turn out. Words carry power and our words must always be measured, even if we want to criticize. Negative environments are just so caustic, and we must do all that we can to avoid them – at least, for our own mental health.

©Mark Gadogbe, 2020

Featured Image Credit: Instagram | @adina_thembi

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Dear Women, It’s International Men’s Day! Hello?

International Men’s Day is celebrated on 19th November every year to celebrate men and address some important male issues. Unfortunately, it appears the day doesn’t receive as much buzz as its opposite, International Women’s Day, which is celebrated on March 8 every year.

I know it’s somehow sad that an important day as International Men’s Day passes every year without some women in our lives even realizing it. The least they could do is to use the day to recognize our existence as men and the positive roles we play (no matter how little) in their life and society as a whole, but somehow, it often appears there’s a grand scheme amongst some women to pretend not to know what day today is and what every little bit of appreciation means to men.

Maybe it’s not a grand scheme after all. Perhaps it’s just a sad reality that only a few men out there are influencing women’s lives positively enough to warrant a great celebration or recognition by the large army or population of women.

Perhaps, the reality might also just be that it is time for us men to embrace the sad fact that the world is progressively becoming feminine, and our essence in this new world might continue to be downplayed. We might as well awaken to the fact that it’s not just gender equality or balance that is being sought but female domination.

Perhaps, all men are needed for by some women in this “new feminist world” is to be sperm donors. If we are not lucky, that’s the only recognition we may continue to get. We may only find our worth when our “new age women” get tired of their dildos, so let’s fast and pray they do real quick…for our own good. 😂😜

In any case, may the good Lord continue to bless and lift up all women who continue to recognize, appreciate and celebrate the men in their life. Thank you for being our support system and life blood! 🙏🏾

Happy International Men’s Day to all men! May we continue to play our divine roles and fulfill God’s purpose in our lives. The world can still not do without us, under God’s divine order. 👏🏽💪🏽🙏🏾

©Mark Gadogbe, 2020

Witnessed a mix of good and bad fatherhood

Our fathers are great (not all though), but we do not want to be like them when we become fathers…we want to be better. Yes, better than they are or were! Come on fathers, a charge to keep we have…!

A charge to keep…🤔

My view of fatherhood has been a balanced one because of my personal experiences. Even though I focus most on the good, I appreciate the ‘bad’ as well.

Ultimately, dad has been a great dad, but he had his good times and bad times with parenting. I had a fairly balanced experience of fatherhood growing up. I grew up to witness at first hand, both the good and the bad. Dad had largely been a great dad; but at a point, he admittedly became a bad dad and neglected his responsibilities towards us. I wouldn’t say he is fully to blame for my parents’ divorce and our bitter experiences of growing up in a broken home, but he obviously contributed. Mum single handedly shouldered a lot of responsibilities until her untimely demise. But I’ve been blessed to also see Dad acknowledge his shortcomings openly to us following mum’s death and trying his best to make amends. I have seen a beautiful lesson of a Dad pick himself up and try to be better.

Even though it had to take the shock of mum’s death to perhaps bring our Dad back to his senses, I guess he really did his best to reunite with his children. Ten years on, after mum’s demise, he’s still trying his best to be there for us in every capacity as a Dad, obviously having learned his lessons. On our part as his children, I wouldn’t say there’s still any bitterness towards him for the way things went (trust me, words can’t describe how really broken our relationship with Dad was), except that we do sometimes wish mum hadn’t gone that early.

But we also do know that there are no guarantees in this life and that our story or experiences is obviously still better than many people who had to go through worse. Whether we like it or not, the obvious truth is that, there are families much more devastated by divorce and failings of parents. It is therefore important to have that balanced thought and always be reminded that, no matter what we are going through or facing today, our story is still better than millions out there.

So, on every Father’s Day going forward, we just feel blessed that things turned around for us and our Dad, when we never even imagined it would. And then, we also remind ourselves of our resolve to do better and be better.

Indeed, a charge to keep we have and a God to glorify! Happy Father’s Day to all you amazing fathers out there! Keep giving fatherhood your best shot, God being our help! 🙏🏾

Been grateful for this one thing…all my life 😊😁

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©Mark Gadogbe, 2020