My close friends and I congregate around whatsapp messaging quite often because most of them live out of the country so keeping tabs on one another is an endeavor requiring more effort than before.
Over the years, I have noticed that the texture of our conversations have changed and without realizing it – adulthood crept up on us.
The carefree years of high school life (where the biggest problem was which love proposal to accept or reject) made way for bigger dilemmas involving whether to accept and live with the fact that our husbands have mistresses or simply pack up and get out of the stagnation caused by interminable love triangles.
We have chosen different paths, prioritized different things and now with the age of 30 looming ahead of us – we are all taking stock of what we did with the last decade of our lives and grappling with whether or not we made the right choices.
All I have been able to ascertain as I have reflected on where the years have gone and on what we did with our lives in that time frame is that we did with our lives the only thing anyone can do – we tried.
All of us tried.
Whether we failed or succeeded, at least we gave it all a shot and for better or worse the choices we made over the years have brought each one of us to where we are today.
We are just a bunch of tryers.
We have tried to follow our hearts, and where we lacked the courage to do so, we have followed the expectations of others.
We have rebelled against our families in the name of love, shacking up with men who never paid any bride price but went on to impregnate other women while we waited on them to go meet with our elders and set things right.
We have wasted years deserting our spouses only to reconcile with them before changing our minds and calling it quits or we have spent the years following our men across the globe – trying to make the reality of marriage and relationships tally with what we once fantasized it to be.
We have held on longer than we should and sometimes we have let go too soon but in all those things – we have tried.
We have made mistakes in some things and we have learnt from them but the older we grow the more afraid we are of making the wrong choices because it seems as though our chances of rectifying them become more limited with each passing year.
As we get to 30 we start to think, ‘if I don’t do this degree now, I might never get round to doing it at all’ or ‘if I don’t accept this marriage proposal now, I might never find someone else’ or ‘if I don’t have a child now, I might struggle having one later’.
It feels as though the clock ran out on us and suddenly we’re just trying to catch up with all the things we thought we’d have done and accomplished at 30.
Whether we choose our careers ahead of our love-life or chose love and familial duty over careers – we get to stop in our tracks now and check if the gamble paid of.
I may not be certain as to what the next decade of our lives will hold but all we can do is what we have been doing all along – all we can do is try.
Try to make the right choices and where we fail, we simply dust ourselves up and try again.
We will try to love the right people for the right reasons and at the right time and in the right way – and where we fail we will bruise our souls, break our hearts and grieve our spirits on our way to getting over them.
We will make tough choices and sacrifices concerning whether we will leave or stay; fight or reconcile; hold grudges or forgive.
We will just try to do the best we can with what we have wherever we will be. No more, no less. So to my girls…here’s to another decade of trying.