Category Archives: It Changed My Life

19Jun/16

I Became A Mother #ItChangedMyLife

By Blessing Akinsola-Onubedo

A lot of people imagine being married and then becoming parents and leaving happily ever after, I am one of them and i realize that reality is more than the imagination. I got married and to God’s glory became pregnant and the journey to motherhood began. Of course I’ve always known becoming a mother isn’t a child’s play but going through the experience is a different thing altogether. I experienced things that I’d never experienced in my life. I’d always read stories about how being pregnant isn’t easy and several things pregnant women go through but mine was a new and difficult experience even for most of my doctors. I couldn’t eat until the 6th month, was admitted in the hospital several times and then went through some emotional stress affecting me and my family during the period of pregnancy. And then the time for delivery came and some complications came up but by God’s mercy the child came out healthy without any difficulty. I looked at the face of the beautiful angel the Lord gave me and every pain and heart ache in the past 9months disappeared and all I could see is the wonder of God. She brought joy, comfort and happiness not to me only but the family as a whole. She’s changed my life positively and made me a mother.
Since she came into my life I’ve had sleepless nights, and had to learn a lot of new things but its being worth it.
During the journey I learnt new ways of trusting and depending on God and now that I’m a mother my life has taken a new turn. She’s being around for just a few weeks but the change she has brought is quite evident. Motherhood changed my life completely.

18Jun/16

I Saw Them Eat #ItChangedMyLife

By Edwin Madu

In 2009, sometime in the first half of the year, I was an exchange student in the capital of Benin Republic, Porto-Novo at a school named Lycee Behanzin. My secondary school in Nigeria at the time was almost obsessed with giving us a bilingual curriculum and what this meant for us young boys and girls was having to go to a public school in another country and also wearing their school uniforms, which were an acquired taste cos they were plain khakis that were not flattering on anybody.
Living in Porto-Novo for the better part of 9 months came with several experiences, from having people laugh at us for not speaking French properly in class to learning to eat new types of food. One of such experiences had the most effect on me. It happened on my way back from school with some friends. There were three of us. We were headed back home through the same backroads we had come to know like the back of our hands after several months. We had started to feel more like natives now, greeting some of the women as we passed by in Guun, Yoruba or French, depending on which you felt they would respond to. They usually responded to any. It was while passing by one of these backroads that we came upon a calabash filled with boiled yam dipped in palm oil.
“That is Ebo. Sacrifice for gods.” I remember one of my friends saying as we passed by it. He seemed to always know about things like this. It was not the first time he was saying it however. It was also not the first time we were seeing it. Porto-Novo, at least at the time that I was there, had what I have now coined as a high ‘spiritual diversity’. By this I mean, there were all sorts of religious places of worships littered around. From cathedrals to mosques and even shrines. I may be exaggerating but I believe it would be an easier task to find out how many street corners did not have a shrine for a certain god than it would be to find all the ones that had. That is how many they are. So these sacrifices were not a new thing. We saw them everywhere bearing different delicacies; I saw one that had beans and a boiled egg sitting on it. Sometimes you would find these calabashes empty and the insides would look like someone had actually eaten it. As a young boy at the time, seeing things like that caused me to start questioning: Did the gods actually come to eat the food? To eat the beans and egg?
On this day as we passed by this particular calabash, we had only walked a few metres in front of it, already engaging in a different conversation before we heard one of the women we had greeted earlier scream. The screaming was not the type screamed when you are in danger. It was the kind almost every African kid should be familiar with. You know that one your mother or aunty would do if they saw you putting your hand in the fire or something. It was that kind. We turned to see what or who they were shouting at. And there they were, two young kids, far younger than we were, none of them above 7, were eating from the calabash. The women screamed for them to stop, that the food belonged to idols. The children stared at them confused. You could tell from the look in their eyes that this was a last resort. Their eyes seemed to say “If we had a choice, do you think we would eat the idol’s food?”
I think the women got the message, because soon they stopped screaming. I do not know what happened after because before I could see anything else, I noticed I was alone. My friends had turned back and were already on their way down the backroads. I ran to catch up with them. I thought about this incident for days on end. My sympathy couldn’t be helped. It was the one time I was sad seeing another person eat. Seeing what I saw that day birthed something in me that I would not discover till later. It taught me sympathy in a way nothing else could, it made me strive to be better so that I could be in a position to help people driven to do things they wouldn’t if they had a choice. I wanted to give them a choice.

17Jun/16

#ItChangedMyLife #ItChangedMyLife

By Oluwatoyosi Jolayemi

So here I am trying to think about an event that has changed my life, something, anything to write about, and I can’t seem to come up with any. I had initially written about an accident that occurred some 4 years ago, but decided against it after reading it up, as I realized there was nothing spectacular about it, I had some bruises and at least a permanent scar and maybe a heightened phobia for roads, but the sum of it all didn’t change my life, not in a life changing way.

Right now, I’m thinking and really coming hard on myself on how I don’t seem to have something remarkable to write about and I have come to this hard but honest realization; it is my fault! It is my fault I haven’t exactly had life-changing experiences or permit me to say experiences that I believe are worthy to be termed as life-changing, and I can sit here in my empty PPA doing absolutely nothing like I always do (or my best chore of all- complain about how crappy NYSC is), or I can choose to gather my loins and take it as a call to action, a call to experience life, a call to soak life in and make it remarkable, a call to quit being so scared and actually let myself feel, breath and live this one life I have been exceedingly blessed with.
I can keep complaining about how uneventful life here can be, but have I actually taken actions as to what to do to change it, make it really and actually life-changing? I honestly can’t say I have. So I’m writing this and I believe it’s gonna change my life, in fact, it has changed my life, at least the way I see it, and I hope it does same for yours too. I hope it inspires you to get off your lazy ass and get your life changed, inspires you to take that risk and quit that job that is making you miserable, apply for that position you really wanna be in, register for that exam you are scared of failing, ask that babe you believe is way out of your league out on a date,…and the list goes on and on as these all won’t happen while you wait for them to happen, you have to work hard towards it and make it happen, and you won’t know if you never give it at least a trial. I’m gonna start now and hope you do so too because in the end, we only regret the chances we didn’t take, or like I like to put it, the risks we didn’t take.

16Jun/16

I Got A Phone Call From God #ItChangedMyLife

By Feeyi Okupe

It was a Saturday Morning,

The day after Christmas, everywhere was quiet and cold, so I was tucked in under my duvet. Suddenly I heard an orotund voice speaking to me without a phone or an ear piece in my ear. At first I was surprised but I knew it was the supernatural. I knew it was my Father, God Almighty based on the words spoken. I heard this voice in my right ear, it was very audible and it kept me in awe. After the words were spoken, my ears popped like water came out of my ear.

Was it a dream? No? Was it an imagination? No?
It was God’s voice with a message from Him. I was overwhelmed. His message was clear and I long to hear from Him that way again. He wanted me to know that He truly exists. He wanted me to tell the world that He is real. Hearing God’s voice, changed my life, it is the best thing that has ever happened to me and I count it a privilege to get a call from God. I call it a call from God because it felt like one.

I have vowed to be an encouragement based on the words I heard from God. So my message goes thus:… No matter what life throws at you, just hold on to your faith and believe that God exists. Understand that He will never leave nor forsake you. He is God and He is always faithful. Always remember this; “if God did not withhold His only Son (JESUS CHRIST) from us, He will surely give us or heart desires at the appointed time so don’t give up, just give thanks. Also believe that JESUS loves you and will always show up for you. Please stay in Faith, be grateful for what you have and be thankful for the blessings coming your way. Don’t give up, your Miracle is around corner.

I love you and God bless you.

15Jun/16

My Heart Was Broken #ItChangedMyLife

By Adejumoke Adesanmi

It was my first relationship and I gave it all that I had. It was one of the best thing on earth when it started, it felt so nice to be loved by a man. People are quick to love and admire everything they see that looks good, it is no wonder our friends and relatives were glad seeing us moving together. They however did not know the cost I had to pay inside. This was one of the reason I found it hard to let go on time. I didn’t want to face a lot of questions from peeps and I had no answer for the question I was left with; ‘where will I start from?’

How do I explain how sincere and how committed I was to the relationship? I really don’t know. It was the first thing I wanted to wake up to and the last thing I go to bed with. I was running my duty like a dear woman in her 30th year of marriage. He loved me, if I can call it that but his nature of not being able to say ‘NO’ to anything in skirt, well that is a ‘NO NO’ for me. You know how dangerous it is when the man in question started finding pleasure in my sisters, my cousins or my friends.

Sometime ago, I travelled out of the country for a course and I returned unannounced. This wasn’t my first time, I had made unannounced visits. On one occasion, I came home to meet a friend of ours at his place on ‘her second weeks of visit’. No wonder Oga wasn’t sounding nice on phone. “I am sorry” was the lyrics I had to dance to.

My unannounced return from this particular trip exposed his over 3months secret affair with another friend. Oh! This time, I caught him red-handed; he made a little effort to deny it. We argued, we shouted, we fought and it got physical, I was hospitalized. That was it. I took a very strong decision of not going back no matter how sweet his pleas would be.

I thought everything that will end greatly was meant to be rough at the start. I was carried away with what people would say. I had the belief that women needed to exercise a lot of patience in order to enjoy their relationships. Well, you have to use your brain with all that, else you might have to pay with your dear life. Love is a very beautiful thing, when both parties are in it together.

All these and lots more are what have defined the woman I have become.

I fell in love, I suffered in love, my heart was broken and it changed my entire life.

14Jun/16

I Lost My Dad #ItChangedMyLife

By Jesutoroti Balogun

Everyone has stories to tell as regards life changing experiences and I am not an exemption. I have loved, I have been heart broken, I have trusted, I have been betrayed and of course I have lost some loved ones. These experiences changed a part of me but the sudden loss of my Dad hasn’t left my entire life the same way, it’s had an immense impact on it. I have consoled a few of my friends that have at one time or the other lost a close person by saying ‘I know how you feel’… Well, it usually was about consolation as I also felt their pain but honestly, I never had an idea of what it really feels like to lose someone who means the world to you. Or would I say no one has experienced the intensity of that pain I feel whenever I remember my Dad because it’s just so unexplainable.  When I hear people say words like ‘I know how it feels…’, ‘I feel your pain…’ bla bla bla.  I shake my head because I know they do not have the slightest idea and I really do not wish they do at least not so early. It is usually a very unpalatable life changing experience.
Talking about change, losing someone so close to the heart as my Dad was to mine, leaves you with a definite change that can be positive or negative. As for me, I deliberately made efforts to imbibe the positive transformation that being fatherless brought to my path. Although, I initially questioned God, I felt empty and naked, I felt a part of me was gone, I felt I was a living corpse. Infact, I dwelt on the negativities and I was beginning to act like that fool who said God wasn’t in existence… I’m sure you can relate. Not too long after, I had better understanding on THE BREVITY OF LIFE, THE VANITY OF LIFE, MY PURPOSE IN LIFE AND MY HOME AT THE END OF LIFE.

Of a truth, of all my experiences in life (and the ones to come), losing my Dad to death was one that changed my life completely.

13Jun/16

She Called For The Last Time #ItChangedMyLife

By Caleb Ekpenyong

I went to sleep feeling on top of the world and woke up dazed the next day. I felt the pain emptiness had created. This was new to me. It was all shades of wrong. I wasn’t supposed to feel this way. So I asked myself the one question that won’t stop ringing in my head – what have you done to yourself?
My king-size bed gave me no comfort as I lay in it. In fact, I literally fell ill.
18 hours before
’’Happy birthday love’’. This was the last thing I said to her as I ended the call. It was her day and I was so excited but she didn’t really sound excited though. She said she just wanted to stay indoors. I was okay with that as I don’t like parties much as I like hanging out with myself most times though that rarely happened ever since I met Funmi.
I stopped over at her place by 8 pm with a copy Danielle Steel’s Amazing Grace. She screamed when she saw it and hugged me pretty tight I had to beg her to let go. I was grinning from ear to ear at her reaction to my gift. She had ordered for the book from some online store but misplaced it on the day it was delivered to her so this was me being her knight in shining armour.
We both loved to read. It was one of the things that brought us together – reading and sharing ideas. It challenged and bound us together in a way some of our friends never seemed to understand.
I went to the kitchen to see what I could prepare for dinner; it is one of those things I enjoy doing – cooking for her. She told me to forget it as she had eaten enough food to last her a life time as her friends had spent the whole afternoon spoiling her with food. All we had was cake and ice-cream as we started catching up on the days’ activities. We were all cozied up. Holding hands as we gisted and laughed at each other’s joke.
“Babe, you know I love you right?”  I said to her. She nodded her head in affirmation. “I think it’s wise for us end things here and now.” I said.
Gbam!
She held her breath. Looked at me and gave me a sorrowful smile. “You need to think about what you just said before you act on it.” She said very slowly yet firmly as though she was talking to a child. She stood up, kissed my forehead and walked into her room and shut her door. I heard her crying when I stepped out of the house.
Now that’s not the reaction you would expect right? Yes! I know because I didn’t see that one coming.
I left feeling sad and happy. Sad that I just lost my bestie and happy that I was free again.
My friends had told me severally that I was a player and a very good one at that but what they didn’t really know was that I was sorely afraid to fall in love. I tend to love too deep when I go swimming in the ocean of love thus leaving me vulnerable to heartbreaks.  So to protect myself, I usually initiate the breakup with any love interest of mine before I’ll let love in to crack me open.
Present day!
My phone rang. My head was aching. Reluctantly I stretched out my hand and picked up the phone from my bed side drawer, the caller I.d was Funmi.
What she told me stunned me. #ItChangedMyLife
“I love you and I will always love you. I know your fears and I’m sorry you are yet to learn to love completely, to give up yourself to the bliss and pain that comes with love. I regret that my love did not rub off on you as I would have loved it to. Know this one thing; that in life people will hurt you and it will break your heart but it will only make you stronger. Learn to love. Love like there’s no tomorrow for life is too short to hold back love. Pull down your walls like I did mine for you. Love is always a breath of fresh air; it keeps you alive and saves you from your fears. If your heart is broken a million times then make up your mind to love another million times because love never gives up on you until you give up on yourself. Thank you for loving me once. I love you! Bye.”
She didn’t allow me say a word apart from “Hello”, so she basically calmly poured those words into my ear and hung up. I tried calling her back but she had switched off her phone.
What human being acts like this? Or is she even human at all? These were the questions that swamped my mind. I rushed to her place that morning only to see an ambulance driving out of the compound and her cousin sat on the stairs crying. I saw sad gloomy faces all around and I knew that something terrible had happened.
I was told that my Funmi had some crisis and passed away within five minutes of the paramedics from the ambulance getting to her. She had sickle cell and was always prone to such random attacks.
I am no longer who I used to be before I met Funmi. Funmi proved to me that life is too short not to be open to love. So today, I love not minding if I’ll hurt at some point because I know relationships have their ups and downs. I am open to second chances.
Today I know how easy it is to fall in love and how so very difficult it is to fall out of love all because Funmi gave me wings and the courage to fly.
A large percentage of my writings are centred on love and it’s all because of Funmi.  She changed my life.

12Jun/16

A Boy Showed Me Love #ItChangedMyLife

By Sharon Olanrewaju

In my second year in secondary school, I was moved to a new class (you know how our classes used to have branches e.g JSS1 A,B, C or GREEN, YELLOW, BLUE). I was moved to the blue class. It meant new friends for me and enemies too. There was this boy who was a particular enemy.I couldn’t explain why he disliked me but it was so obvious he did.For example, there was a day a classmate who was a friend of mine found a letter in his locker. If you remember well,letters were the in thing then. A boy would put a love letter in your locker or you would write a letter to a friend who has annoyed you informing her you don’t want to be friends with her anymore. Letters just seemed to be a more interesting means of passing any message across. Letters were a major part of our lives (well, for the girls especially). I remember that in our first year, there was a girl who was probably feeling bad she had not received love letters from anyone, so she started writing letters to herself regularly and would put it in her locker and then loud it for all to hear, as if she had nothing to do with it! There was a respect that came from being written to.It meant you were noticed.

Back to the letter in question, the writer was angry with my friend because she had heard that he said she was a bad influence on me (you should know: I was loved by many in class, I was friends with many too).
When letters were found in anyone’s locker, the interesting part was trying to figure out who wrote it. This boy who was a particular enemy then accused me of writing the letter😶.I was stupefied! How could I have written the letter when I was discussed in it.There was another day he accused me of asking for answers to a test question during the test.(you wouldn’t understand how annoying all these were back then, it was a slap in the face). We just weren’t in each other’s good books and it was quite fine with me. But less than a year after, things were about to change!
He Started liking me and damn! he was so not ashamed of it😄
He exchanged his seat with that of the person behind me. It brought him closer to me,it was also a good thing for me.I wasn’t so good with mathematics, all I needed to do was look back and he would take it up from there,my problems would always be sorted out.I could also get lazy with writing my notes, He was sure to handle it😘 (he had a good hand writing, he still does). He got me my first boy gifts: two beautiful cards for the Christmas break (I slept with those cards almost everyday, till I tore them), he would also call and message me like that was his only life duty. Although these actions made me feel special and even made people talk in class, I was too naive and jovial to be so bothered.I simply thought he was just being nice.I didn’t know so much about crushes and feelings.
We drew apart after some time.Years went by and I found myself in the University, we were also coming back as friends. This time, I was not just the same jovial, innocent girl he liked years back but more than that, I was a grumpy,insecure,depressed, doubtful,religion beaten girl, one who never found Joy inspite of all her efforts to get to God.No matter how hard I tried,it seemed God and I were not just meant to be.
Then he came (again). Now,I also had a crush on him. He endured my broken,messy, grumpy,insecure person and just hung around as a friend.Trust me, a girl who has not found herself and is insecure or is not conscious of her person in Christ and His (Christ’s) unfailing love for her would always be a big, fat burden. That’s because anyone in her life would be ladened with the task of satisfying that deep pit filled with the desire to be loved and always doted over and no guy who wants to live till his old age can ‘completely’ satisfy such a woman (He’ll simply die young!)
But he came and showed me Grace, helped me understand Christ and his love for me and that did the trick. Gradually,I was becoming a better person, a gracious lady, learning to be secure and confident in who I am and not be a burden to myself and to others. I started learning to treat all guys in my life as Kings because I felt like a Queen,my feminity was brought to play. I was confidently loving up on people. It wasn’t so much of the depression anymore.Life was becoming better, much more peaceful,much more worth it.
Now, I’m still not a perfect girl, but boy am I glad with this person I see now and even much more,I’m overwhelmed at the thought of the woman I’ll be in years to come.
There were indeed many other friends who helped in my understanding and acceptance of God’s love.( I  wouldn’t want to mention names, it’s a real long list), but you see, there is just something about the ‘boy- girl’ thing that makes it run deeper.I think the best way to understand God’s love is to be loved by someone who has been hit by that same love, especially if the person is the opposite sex…(Glory!🙌)You just must understand it that way. Not the same sex o, not girl-girl or boy-boy,that one might not work😄 (🙋I’m simply  preaching heterosexuality here) *lol* and it doesn’t matter to me that it didn’t ‘work out into something bigger’ between my crush and I, all that matters is that he came into my life and did things right!

11Jun/16

I Said Yes #ItChangedMyLife

By Bukola Olusola

It was an exciting day. One I can’t really explain. All day, the surge of happiness that welled up in me knew no bounds. The root of that happiness, I couldn’t trace. It did little to bother me: I was happy and I dared not quench the feeling with my “Why?”s

I was in the place of my dreams, where  was literally the caption ” Dreams do come true”. I was in the university I could brag about, after 3 years of trying. Today,this day, is not my first, yet I’m still in awe of how things look.
I remember later that evening, a friend came and dragged me along. I knew not where I was going but I did not care – Not in this mood,I would do anything without regret.

I  recall sitting there, for each spoken word, I felt a dagger piercing my heart. I was transfixed and practically glued to the seat; I tried running but it was too late, I got caught up in the net. With evident scowl on my face,I kept my eyes fixed on the man standing in front me, speaking like I was an open book for him.

I didn’t know the exact thing he said that opened the flood gate of tears but I knew that moment had changed things.
I wept like a baby,I just couldn’t stop. With all the filth I saw within,I couldn’t stop my legs from running to the altar when I heard’

“Will you give your life to Jesus?”.

Now I know more,want more.
My philosophy has failed me.
Motivation is gone from too many rise and falls,
I seem to slip away like a withering flower,
“Grace, how long do I still have?” I mumbled

That was it! The moment everything blew up in my face and I didn’t  measure up. But again grace abounded.
This time it led me to the cross. Where the scalpel laid with loving lure. That day I was given a conscience, a conscience that tugs at me with despite the plea of my facing self. A conscience that nudges me onto the right path like the untiring hands of a church clock.

I said Yes to that call, it changed my life.


 

Read previous episodes here

I Got A September 11 Phone Call #ItChangedMyLife By Rev Laurie Idahosa

I Discovered A Bird Of Prey By Priscilla Adeboye

Death #ItChangedMyLife By Okikiola Oladele

I Read A Book #ItChangedMyLife by Victoria Akinwande

I Discovered Purpose #ItChangedMyLife by Daniel Otabor

Dr S.O. And His Cane #ItChangedMyLife by Olubukola Omotoso

I Met A Happy Blind Lady #ItChangedMyLife by Nissi Inspiration

I Lost My Phone #ItChangedMyLife by Adekunle

I Fell In Love #ItChangedMyLife  By Tomi Adesina

I Watched Scandal #ItChangedMyLife By LordJosh

10Jun/16

I Got A September 11 Phone Call #ItChangedMyLife

By Rev Laurie Idahosa

I got a phone call… it changed my life.

I was happy living in America. I had an amazing life. I was a single woman in my late 20’s, independent, carefree and enjoying all the great things America offered. I owned my own home, my own car, my own business, I was a real estate investor, I was a minister, I took spectacular  vacations and went on missions all around the world, I had so many great friends…  It was a life that many single ladies would dream of!

Then, on the evening of September 11, 2001, I got a phone call that would change my life.

One of my childhood friends, Feb Idahosa called me.

September 11, 2001 happened to be the day that the terrorists blew up planes and killed over 4,000 innocent people in New York, Washington DC and Pennslvania. It was a day that the whole world was glued to their televisions in fear.  Phone calls were jamming all the networks as people were checking in with their loved ones to make sure they were okay.  I had family members in New York City that day, so, when I heard from Feb, I assumed he was just checking on me.

Little did I know, Feb was on a plane headed for America at the exact same time that terrorists were using planes to blow up buildings!

Feb began to tell me how they re-routed his plane to Canada (which was where he was calling from) and that he was stranded.  The airline was moving passengers to America via bus, since all flights had been cancelled until further notice.  They gave him an options of taking a 12 hour bus to New Jersey or a 24 hour bus somewhere else.  Feb was not a big fan of road trips. Of course, he wanted to choose the shorter route to New Jersey, which wasn’t far from where I lived.  The event he was coming to America for was cancelled because of the high level terrorist threat. He asked me if he could come and spend a few days with my family and I until he could return to Nigeria.

I said, yes and drove to New Jersey with my Mom to go pick him up.

In my heart, I was overjoyed to see Feb and to catch up on his life. It had been a while since we had even talked.  I never expected that the phone call and his visit to me would change my entire life.  It was during that visit that our love was rekindled and that he decided he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me as his wife.

Within 13 months from then, on October 18, 2002, I married my childhood friend, Feb and moved to Nigeria as his wife. My life is completely different from what I was used to, but, it is ten times more fulfilling and more exciting than I ever had, living in America.

Thank God that on that fateful day, Feb chose to call me, and not some other girl.  I got the September 11th phone call, it changed my life.


Read previous episodes here

I Discovered A Bird Of Prey By Priscilla Adeboye

Death #ItChangedMyLife By Okikiola Oladele

I Read A Book #ItChangedMyLife by Victoria Akinwande

I Discovered Purpose #ItChangedMyLife by Daniel Otabor

Dr S.O. And His Cane #ItChangedMyLife by Olubukola Omotoso

I Met A Happy Blind Lady #ItChangedMyLife by Nissi Inspiration

I Lost My Phone #ItChangedMyLife by Adekunle

I Fell In Love #ItChangedMyLife  By Tomi Adesina

I Watched Scandal #ItChangedMyLife By LordJosh


 

Tomorrow on #ItChangedMyLife; I Said Yes #ItChangedMyLife by Bukola Olusola.