Temitope Shittu-Alamu: Time… and chance

by Temitope Shittu-Alamu

Where are my dreams? Why am I not yet interviewing Oprah and Clinton or Obama too? Where is everything I hoped for as a child.

Today has been quite draining. Work has been crazy but eventful. I am on lunch break, and heading back in a few minutes as I have a deadline. Munching on my snack. Usually I buy chicken and fries, but today is an exception. Don’t ask me any questions, all I know is that I am enjoying my meatpie, (or not) the taste is honestly very flat as there are more potatoes and onions in the dough than beef. So I am systematically pushing it down with Coca Cola. The bland taste is perhaps the reason why I can’t concentrate and my mind is drifting back and forth. My mind is definitely on something, though I haven’t  put it together in one thought, so my eyes feed on the string of university age ladies that keep strolling in. You know the look. All dressed up like there’s a party when they are only just coming to buy Fanta, and then those signature rubber color block slippers with the bow on top. Yes those ridiculous ones. I know.

Somewhere in the distance,  “Ara” by Brymoh is playing from a stereo I cannot see, and somehow I relate the song to the Biblical awaiting of the manifestation of the sons of God. Of course the major part of the song isn’t about manifestation of the sons of God. It’s more of the material manifestations of  money in the pocket of the son of man to please the daughter of man. I add the English meaning of Ara; “wonder” to my uncompleted line of thought. I think about what I wanna be in future. How massive the dream is. How much I wanna start living the dream, and how in recent days I have been questioning if I am actually fulfilling purpose.

You see, I have grand dreams. Dreams that scare me actually. I arise from deep thoughts and visions and literally cover my head with my duvet seeing that they are so big and scary and somewhat unattainable. As in there are lots of why’s, when, and how it would be possible. Growing up, my mom had me understand that I could be anything I wanted to be as long as I put my heart to it. In my little head, I restricted that to being just a doctor or lawyer or maybe a happening business woman with about five shops in balogun market. But as I grew up and years rolled, it occurred to me that there is more to life. I got so drawn to Television shows and television productions. I’ll wake up thinking I had just interviewed Michael Jackson, or that Clinton was coming to Nigeria and I was getting ready for an official interview. I’ll in-fact laugh at myself afterwards but those thoughts never left me. I had papers with imaginary questions for my guests. From everyday people to top celebrities and business moguls. My toothpaste and hair brush served as microphones. I had bad eyes, so I’ll be glued right in front of the TV. That didn’t change still, even after my parents got me glasses.

Still swallowing hard at my not so nice meat pie a feeling of being trapped envelopes me. I feel like I am stuck in a dark room. Where are my dreams? Why am I not yet interviewing Oprah and Clinton or Obama too? Where is everything I hoped for as a child. I wonder how my grand manifestation would happen. Shortly after, the feeling changes to fear. Maybe the dreams are actually too big and un attainable. Perhaps Clinton would not come to Nigeria again, and maybe the studio I have always dreamed of would just remain in my head. Maybe I am even never gonna be as big as I have always imagined. Maybe I am not doing enough to drive my dream. My mind ponders on successful people in this world. I imagine Oprah at my age and wonder what it was like for her. I am hoping she had meat pie and coke moments like I am having now, and that all my negativity is normal for beginner’s.

I remember what my best friend once told me. He said “you can’t scheme your way to greatness.” you work at it and keep the dream alive. Doesn’t matter if it doesn’t seem like it now, soon, the factors would come together, the seeds will germinate. Even if your job at the moment doesn’t tally with your eventual life dreams, be the best at it. Get used to being great at something, anything. Legitimate definitely.

Again there is another rush of emotion over me as I wipe my hands with tissue, and gulp the last bit of coke. I actually don’t know what the feeling is called but I heave a sigh. It’s one of relief probably as I think to myself that the world is still waiting for my manifestation. The earlier I get at being great, the better.

I may not exactly know what to do with these big dreams of mine or how to go about them, all I know is never am I giving up on them. Whatever route it takes to get there I am prepared for. Oh well maybe not, but determination should certainly get me somewhere. I’ll watch, I’ll learn, I’ll volunteer, I’ll stay on it, I’ll keep at it. This dream ain’t dying. Watch this space.

I get up to leave and take a quick glance at the now giggling university ladies.

Squared shoulders, chin up and a rejuvenated mind later, R. Kelly’s “world greatest” is now playing from the same mysterious stereo. I smile and ask myself – Coincidence? Naaaa me think not.



Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.

Comments (14)

  1. Tope, its like u re in my mind. A wonderful piece it is. Now I know I am not d only one in dat world…..Another lesson learnt.

  2. Weldone Tope, this piece is amazing and inspiring. Keep on dreaming, God who has given u the dreams wld definitely see u thru achieving them.

  3. This is philosophical in its conception, and inspiring in its delivery. Whatever the human mind can conceive is already on a journey to reality. Remember we never thought a ship could float on water, or a plane glide safely in the air. Dreams do still come true dear, if we apply the hardwork to push it through. Stay at it, go to bed with those images yet in your head, wake up and work at it, and see it all happen, sooner than you expect.

    Well done Tope!

  4. Wonderful piece, this is really a nice one, incisive and enlightening. Everyoneneeds to read this.thumbs up tope!!!

  5. Very nice article, pls hold on to ur dreams…and stick to your chicken and fries!!!

  6. Thanks for this article! Its brilliant. I'm glad to see I'm not the only one to go through such thoughts in my mind and I'm also glad at your conclusion. Keep that chin up, I'll be doing the same. God bless. 🙂

  7. They say… Time and chance will always cum but how ready are we when such presents itself? Good job dear. Feeling u baje!

  8. Tope, this piece is amazing, not only entertaining but thought provoking. Let's all keep @ it, allow our dreams and pursue them and soon enough they will land us in the land of fulfilment. Great piece darling! Everyone should read this and reflect. God bless you

  9. welcome back tope. missed your write up.. I HAVE A DREAM that one day we will have the answer to all the questions in our heart. not too far from now thou….. LETS KEEP DREAMING

  10. Cheers to big dreams, determination and achieving them! Xxx

  11. …and at the end, I and my friends… Shittu… MielP… We will sing "We were here… we lived, we loved, we did stuffs!"

  12. I believe in the dreamer of these dreams and I trust the giver of these dreams. This is so timely! "You can not scheme your way to great…" this is deep! Its Proverbs 32 vs 1.

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