A BITTER PILL TO SWALLOW – ESEOSA OGBEIDE
Today I really had so much to think about. A lot of issues came up and I had to face the truth as bitter as it was. Getting to know what people think about you is a very revealing process and it becomes quite scary when people actually criticize you. We smile and giggle when people shower us with praises and laud our efforts but trust me, criticisms are a bitter pill to swallow.
Today, I had to face the truth of what people actually thought about me. I am presently involved in a long distance relationship and though it’s not easy being apart from each other, technology has thankfully helped us communicate as much as possible. This has been through the use of smart phones, twitter, facebook, skype, yahoo messenger, webcams and the lot. I really like my boyfriend and though we’ve only dated for a short while, it feels like we’ve been dating for ages. Last night, he told me that I was too bossy. He said I was a control freak and a drama queen. Imagine that.
My boyfriend is years older than me and far more experienced but the thing is that we are both strong characters and we both know who we are and what we want. I have always liked things to go a certain way and that is, my way and when it doesn’t, I don’t like it. So I try to make it go my way if I can help it. My boyfriend did not mince words in telling me who he thought I was and how I respond to certain situations. Problem was, he was so forthright about it and couldn’t care less about sugar coating it that it made me want to knock his big head. So insensitive! He actually told me that people just didn’t tell me. So I decided to find out what people thought about me.
So when I woke up this morning, I asked my brother if I was bossy. He promptly said yes. Shuo! I was speechless. Is this what people really thought about me? He told me since that was how I had always been, everyone had simply accepted me like that. I couldn’t believe my ears. I had always seen myself as a very humble and grounded girl. This was news to me and it wasn’t very pleasant. From the time I left my house to the time I arrived my office, I was lost in thought.
When I got to my office, I called my friends asked them the same question. They all responded in the affirmative. It was not a proud moment for me. They agreed that they had accepted that I was like that and it didn’t make me a bad person. They even agreed with my boyfriend that that was probably the reason my previous relationships had failed in the past. What in blue blazes were they talking about? See me, see wahala!
I sat down and starting asking myself some questions. Is it because most times I know what I want and I go after it with no apologies? Or is it because I do not let my relationships define my life? It became obvious that my perception of myself was completely different from what others had of me. I began to ask myself the events that had succeeded in shaping my life to the way it is now. Losing my parents at a tender age was definitely a big factor as it consequently made me fight for everything and I mean everything I wanted. My sisters could only do what they thought they could. Its 13 years after her death and I still want my mum.
I’ve learnt to be strong and fight for myself. I’ve learnt to comfort myself by myself. I’ve learnt to take things as they come and not be too hard on myself. I’ve learnt to cry and laugh. I’ve learnt that I’ll definitely make mistakes but life goes on. I’ve learnt to always trust myself. I was not born with a silver spoon and life has not been easy, to say the least. The result is that I’m a strong person and I take responsibility for my life. It’s difficult trusting people enough to make even the simplest of decisions for me. I want to control basically everything to make sure that it results in the way that I want. I realize this now. But how do I change who I am?
I’ve decided to take a step towards being a better person and stop being the control freak that people see me as. Everybody acknowledges the fact that I’m a wonderful girl with a big heart and a winning personality and they are willing to support me in this journey. With the support of my friends and family, I can certainly conquer this fierce desire to control everything around me. After all, I can do anything I set my heart to. Yes, I can.
Eseosa Princess Ogbeide.