Monthly Archives: July 2017


When Your Breakthrough is About To Happen, Your Qualification(s) -or Lack of it-Will Not Matter

When Your Breakthrough is About To Happen, Your Qualification(s) -or Lack of it-Will Not Matter

Two weeks ago , a colleague told me about a bid that was open in one of the companies I supply. I had never done this job before but I thought to myself it was time to take things a step forward and upward. Before I was able to apply, everyone, including the staff of the company told me not to bother, the bid always goes to one person and that’s how it has been for the past year. I wondered what was special about this person who wins the bid all the time, only to find out he was the in-law of the director in charge of supply.

A lot of people who wanted to bid for the job dropped out because they were certain it was a no-go-area, why waste resources on a fruitless effort? That day, I also gave up. However, I couldn’t get my mind off the situation, I asked myself how my company would grow from it’s present stage if I didn’t try everything I could to make it so. I also asked myself, “how can I compete against the in-law of a director? He obviously has more funds and experience than I do”.

Still, the next day, I fixed a meeting with the director, I was shocked he even agreed to see me in the first place, but I was excited to at least have his audience. If the job I was gunning for wouldn’t work, I would ask for another.

I was nervous because something inside of me kept pushing me to cancel, to wait for another bid that is on my level, to not disrespect the director by telling him to his face to give me a chance instead of his own in-law who was probably more qualified. I made up my mind I was going, not like I’ve not heard “NO” a lot of times in this business.

Getting to his office, there was another of his colleagues seated, and he asked me to speak in front of him. I started by thanking him for meeting with me in the first place, he immediately cut me off, “get on with it, I have a meeting in 10 minutes”.

So I said “I want you to look at the small jobs I have done for your company and how I never disappoint. I deliver on time and go the extra mile in making sure there are no problems with logistics. The same way I have been diligent in the small opportunities I’ve been given here, if you give me a chance to apply in the upcoming bid, I’ll put in that same effort to execute this one”.

He didn’t miss a beat “ Why are you telling me this, go ahead and bid like every other person, if your price is right, you’ll get the job “.

I looked at the other man seated and I thought, well, I had better say it. “Why I wanted a private meeting with you is because I heard Mr…has been getting the job for the past year, I also hear he is your in-law which makes the competition even more stiff.” The director didn’t look up from his computer when he said “So you assume he is only getting the job because he is my in-law, not because he is qualified?”

I stuttered a little, then I said, “He is obviously way more qualified than I am,  I just wish I would also be given a chance to play in that field, I feel like if only one person keeps getting the job, how can small players like me rise to his type of qualification? I really want to do this, please give me a chance to prove myself”

The director finally looks up after taking a glance at his watch, “Apply for the bid” he said. I didn’t know what else to say so I stood, thanked him and with a heavy heart, left his office.

I worked on the bid all night and cut as much costs as I could. I knew I wasn’t going to get the job since I was dismissed so flippantly, but I made up my mind I’d apply anyway.

I submitted the bid and took my mind off it. This morning, I received an email, I had won the bid and was asked to come in to pick up my purchase order. I stared at my computer for minutes, shocked! Amongst other people with more influence, money and qualifications, I have been given a chance…

I know now to put in my all in whatever I do, that even though the chance of getting the job may be slim, there’s a chance and I cannot afford to waste it.


Rejection is A Blessing in Disguise…This is Why

I experienced rejection multiple times by every blog I applied to as a contributor. I just couldn’t find out why they didn’t hire me and it made me crazy. What I did, I didn’t give up on being a blogger because I knew I wanted to blog. And all these rejections actually made me realize that working for another blog was not my goal.

I’ve learned that I needed to be ready and to build myself up to the next level. Because we always end up achieving far greater than what we actually envisioned for ourselves. And I think if we don’t get rejected in our lives we would get our way, we’d just settle. Imagine if they hired me as a blogger, there might have been a chance I would’ve never started with Women On Topp. In fact, my blog has more followers than all of the blogs I applied to together.

If we don’t get rejections in life we’d just accept what we thought was our goal. Rejection is actually a gift to ourselves to improve ourselves and to get somewhere even better. Because if we would not get any rejection in our lives, we would just accept what we thought was our goal. What we thought we were chasing. Seriously, anyone who got rejected from what they thought was their dream job, should notice that later down the line you will look back and you reflect and realize that what you’ve gained is so much greater.

Rejection can concentrate the mind wonderfully. It shows you that the world can’t be taken for granted and that you have to fight for what you want. Rejections will make you more determined to prove your abilities. It sharpens your competitiveness and gives you an incentive to prove people wrong.

As much as it sucks you are going to get rejected in life sometimes more sometimes less. That’s just the way it is. In fact, getting some rejections in your life are the best things that will ever happen to you. If they were not crazy about you to hire you. Why would you want to be crazy about them? Why would you want to go work for someone who was not sure about you in the first place? It is same as a relationship. Would you want to date someone who isn’t crazy about you? Well, I don’t think so!

Getting rejected is a lesson for you to learn and find out how badly you want something. Is it really something you’ve wanted? Then you are going to try better next time, and meanwhile find out why you got rejected, maybe you didn’t have the right skills yet. You can always invest in yourself, to improve yourself you can take classes, courses etc.

You can’t let rejection get you down. You have to let it pick you right back up higher than you’ve ever been before and motivate you to get what you want.


Ramsey Nouah

God Knew I Needed My Past Experiences To Be Able to Deal With My Present Success” -Ramsey Nouah

God Knew I Needed My Past Experiences To Be Able to Deal With My Present Success” -Ramsey Nouah

Growing up with my mother was like any other single parent home. My mother is a very strong woman who taught me how to be respectful and strong, so I couldn’t be spoilt under her custody. Let me just say I learnt to live life in a very hard way from a tough woman. Those were the times when things got really bad for my mother and I and we had nothing. It was so bad that we didn’t have a home to live in. We didn’t even have a cup to drink water, talk more of a stove to cook on. My mother had to borrow, beg and stuff like that. In fact, I used to question why God was doing this to me. But I think God knew that I needed this for my future”.

I wanted to be an aeronautic engineer. I wanted to build planes. Unfortunately I never did sciences in class and I was drawn to the arts. My mathematics was terrible. I would have loved to be a pilot or be in the air force. My journey into the movie industry actually started when I was trying to sit for my GCE examination. I didn’t have money to purchase my GCE form, and there were no jobs then. It was hard to secure menial jobs and I couldn’t bring myself to do such jobs. Later, a friend of mine advised me to try my hand at acting.

I later went for a couple of auditions and precisely in 1990, I went for a soap opera audition called Fortunes and was engaged. Later it had problem with the title and so it was changed to ‘Mega Fortune.’ I was one of the key actors in that soap and it was better than Telemundo.

After starring in that soap, I did a couple of movies that didn’t see the light of day. I actually became a hustler working with marketers and other practitioners. I was in all the episodes in Fortunes as Jeff Akin-Thomas and was paid N100 per episode. I was paid N1,200 for only a quarter. Things were bad that I didn’t have clothes, my trousers were torn.

I actually patched my trousers by myself. Thank God my mom taught me how to sew. With the N1,200, I rushed to Yaba to purchase second hand clothes. I looked at myself after I had washed and ironed them and said, “Ramsey, you have arrived now.”

As you proceed in the acting or film making you’ll realise it is only the passion that can take you through the struggles until you are successful. The passion comes first before you start thinking of the business side of things, which involves endorsements, appearances, and other avenues. As time went on the job actually began paying my bills. With the first major money I earned, I bought a sound system, TV and later Air conditioner.

Things got better in Hollywood. Later in 2003, there was a nose dive as pirates made it impossible for filmmakers to get back their money so, they began churning out films. Some of us who are more concerned about making Nollywood a brand, began thinking of how to make things better. At this point, cinema came as a huge breakthrough, Bank of Industry has also been helpful unlike the banks. Today I’m very happy about how things turned out.

You have to be humble and mot let the fame get to you, keep things together. Don’t worry about the name or the fame, do it for the passion, then other things will come along in time. We built hollywood out of nothing, and now we’re shooting for the stars.

Source: CNN, Thisdaylive,

Live and Work: My Father Worked So Hard All His Life and Died A Day After He Retired

Live and Work: My Father Worked So Hard All His Life and Died A Day After He Retired

My Father was a hardworking man who delivered bread as a living to support his wife and three children. He spent all his evenings after work attending classes, hoping to improve himself so that he could one day find a better paying job. Except for Sundays, Father hardly ate a meal together with his family. He worked and studied very hard because he wanted to provide his family with the best money could buy.

Whenever the family complained that he was not spending enough time with them, he reasoned that he was doing all this for them. But he often yearned to spend more time with his family.

The day came when the examination results were announced. To his joy, Father passed, and with distinctions too! Soon after, he was offered a good job as a senior supervisor which paid handsomely.

Like a dream come true, Father could now afford to provide his family with life’s little luxuries like nice clothing, fine food and vacation abroad.

However, the family still did not get to see father for most of the week. He continued to work very hard, hoping to be promoted to the position of manager. In fact, to make himself a worthily candidate for the promotion, he enrolled for another course in the open university.

Again, whenever the family complained that he was not spending enough time with them, he reasoned that he was doing all this for them. But he often yearned to spend more time with his family.

Father’s hard work paid off and he was promoted. Jubilantly, he decided to hire a maid to relieve his wife from her domestic tasks. He also felt that their three-room flat was no longer big enough, it would be nice for his family to be able to enjoy the facilities and comfort of a condominium. Having experienced the rewards of his hard work many times before, Father resolved to further his studies and work at being promoted again. The family still did not get to see much of him. In fact, sometimes Father had to work on Sundays entertaining clients. Again, whenever the family complained that he was not spending enough time with them, he reasoned that he was doing all this for them. But he often yearned to spend more time with his family.

As expected, Father’s hard work paid off again and he bought another beautiful condominium. On the first Sunday evening at the new home, Father declared to his family that he decided not to take anymore courses or pursue any more promotions. From then on he was going to devote more time to his family.

Father did not wake up the next day.

Written By Anonymous


The Good Things- And Bad Things- About Having My Nephews Spend The Holiday With Me

I have five nephews, three of whom were deposited in my house at my request, Age range from 4 to 13. It’s been a while since I spent a whole week with my nephews as they would normally come spend weekends, I assumed that would be the same process.

Aunty knows best:

The 14yr old comes into my room, flops himself beside me on the bed looking at his phone dejectedly.

Me: What’s wrong?
Nephew: I think I said something wrong to Cynthia, she won’t call me back
Me: [Ears flare like a rabbit’s. But I don’t look at him] Who is Cynthia?
Nephew: My friend. When she called me, I told her I’ll call her back, I wanted to finish playing my game. When I finished playing the game, I called her back, she didn’t pick up but sent me a text saying “go and talk to your game”
Me: [Trying really hard not to smile] Tell her you’re sorry. Then go back to playing your game, she’ll call you back
Nephew: You sure?
Me: 100%

I have new stylists:
The other day I was going for a quick drink with friends. As they watched me dress up, they all chipped in on the colour of lipstick I should use and what shoes they thought would fit my crop top and high waist denim. “I don’t think you should wear that out, aunty. Do you have a jacket?” Says the 8 Year Old who is super smart. “why can’t I wear this?” I asked him, “well, it’s too small, your tummy is showing and you may catch a cold”

Oh my chwessttt!

I am now a self-certified Nurse:
There is always a mini emergency and aunty is there to spray quick perfume on a bruised knee from a bicycle accident, constant cleaning of a runny nose that won’t stop, and the 4yr old would usually grab my hand, place my palms on his neck, looking up at me with his cute chubby face and in all seriousness tell me, “check my temperature, am I hot? Do you think I need milo and milk to calm me down?” My response is always a resounding “NO!”

My eardrums are literally crying:
Why do they scream so much, especially at one another? “Give meeeeeeeee” “Leave meeeeee..” “I want to watch Henry danger. Change the channel to henry dangeerrrrrr”. I find myself screaming “indoor voice guys!”. Everyone goes quiet for like 10 seconds, then the loud bickering resumes.


I need to look for my bedroom keys!- I never bother to lock my door so I’d never bothered to look for the keys. One week of these lovely guests have taught me to hire a search party or get a carpenter to fix new locks! These kids don’t even knock despite my constant instructions to do so, they just barge in screaming at each other and looking at me to intercede. The 4yr old has absolutely no respect for my nudity even when I scream “Get out I’m naked!!!” He just continues what he came into the room to say in the first place and doesn’t leave until I respond to his needs.

I usually don’t sleep till 3 or 4 am, I have found myself sleeping at 11.30pm/12am in the past week due to exhaustion

Who knew these kids would cure my insomnia?

Tipping your hairstylist

Is Tipping Your HairStylist Mandatory?

Is Tipping Your HairStylist Mandatory?

My salon is a walking distance from my house so when I’m in the mood, I walk.

I went to clean my scalp (I have braids on) at the salon yesterday, when I was done, I dusted my bum and proceeded to leave without tipping. My hair stylist -whom I tip all the time- followed me all the way to the gate.

Hair Stylist: Ah. Aunty you didn’t bring your car
Me: No, I decided to walk.
Hair Stylist: Ah Okay. So nothing nothing today abi? I hope I didn’t do anything wrong
Me: No you didn’t.

I kept on walking as I responded to her. I was quite irritated. I would have tipped her but I had no cash at all in my wallet plus I never thought it necessary to explain myself.

The fact that she asked me gave me pause. Does she assume that it’s her right to get tipped? I tip anyone who gives me good service because I like to encourage them or mostly show that I value the job they have done for me. But seeing that this lady expected a tip and asked for it when she didn’t get it…I’m not sure how I feel about that.

Do you tip? Why?

Bad Marriage

After Leaving A Bad Marriage, I Vowed Never to Get Married Again. Then I Met Titilayo, She Was Not The Typical Nigerian Girl

After Leaving A Bad Marriage, I Vowed Never to Get Married Again. Then I Met Titilayo, She Was Not The Typical Nigerian Girl

This is my reponse to your post about women being domestic to attract men. I appreciate how you let women know that a real man’s love does not depend on what you look like or how perfect your character is, the only thing a woman needs to be -to find the right man- is herself.

After my divorce, I vowed never to marry again. I already have two kids, I was burnt by my ex but I also handled issues in a childish manner. I could have done better but it is what it is now.

Knowing how much trouble committed relationships could be and how complicated women are, I decided to stay off marriage. I could live with a woman for a while or simply date casually but I made up my mind there was no more marriage in the works for me

This was my mind set when I met Titilayo. We met at my company’s end of year party. We were introduced by my immediate boss and we started chatting. I thought she was beautiful but I had seen more beautiful women. However, I was single at the time with absolutely no attachment and we had quite the intelligent conversation so, I was drawn to her

I asked her if she was single, she mentioned she is but not looking to be in a relationship. No Nigerian lady had ever told me that, even my baby cousins would constantly ask me to hook them up with my friends. But I was happy about that information, if she truly wasn’t looking for a relationship, she wouldn’t get clingy and want any sort of commitment

From that day, we spoke everyday. I really liked talking to her and I noticed she didn’t mind too. Titilayo was intelligent, honest, had very few friends, she was the life of a party and blended quickly with people, no matter what class. One thing though, she wasn’t domesticated. She hates to cook and clean. She told me she would do it if she had to but would rather not. I didnt care because I had a help but I noticed she avoided coming to mine when my help was off. This was not also a typical Nigerian girl behaviour. I told myself we weren’t dating, so I made conscious effort not to let those things bother me

She wasn’t going out of her way with me either. This irritated me more than her not being domesticated. One saturday she told me “I want to have some me time today” I thought she was going to the spa so I let her be until later in the evening when I called her again, she picked up and said “hey, I thought we agreed I was having a me time today” “The whole day?” I asked her in confusion. “Yes now. Sometimes I just take out time to read and sleep and be by myself. I need more than a day for that sef”

I was angry, I had been waiting to talk to her all day and she blew me off. I would later realise that this was because I was used to women who dropped everything to be with me. I had never been with someone who would rather be by herself than talk to me. I didn’t call her again that weekend but she called me during lunch hour the following Monday. I didn’t pick up so she sent a message for me to call when I could.

I didn’t call her for two weeks. During this time, I called old flings and hung out with them, having tons of sex to forget Madam T or just show her that if she can take a day, I could take a week. During those two weeks, she didn’t call me back so this further cemented my belief that she was full of herself.

When the two weeks had passed and I was tired of playing games, I called her and tried to act normal. Truth be told, I realised my childish tantrum was one of the reasons my marriage didn’t work in the first place. When we spoke, she didn’t mention the two weeks gap but simply played along with me. I wasn’t sure I liked that but I was relieved I didn’t have to explain myself. I knew I had taken things too far and telling her I was angry because she wanted some time to herself didn’t seem fair.

We continued being friends and even though we had sex without attaching anything to it, I realised I kept wanting more. Our conversations were top notch, we advised each other on work and side hustle. I also found myself praying for her, sometimes fasting for her when she had issues at work. Titilayo wasn’t the girl I was used to and sometimes I wish she would treat me more specially and give me extra attention, I realised those other girls who did those things never appealed to me anymore. She gradually took up my whole world and she wasn’t even trying

We were not dating when I asked her to marry me. We had been best friends for a year and I was tired of not having her all to myself, not waking up next to her when I wanted. When I asked her to marry me, she asked me, “why?” I was shocked but not surprised. I told her “Titilayo you live a life of truth, I have never met anyone like you. I admire you and I’ve fallen madly in love with you and it’s not because of anything you did. Your life inspires me and I want to be a part of it. Do me the honors please” She accepted the ring, said she had fallen in love with me but didn’t think she was ready for marriage. She was 32 at the time.

We’ve been married for 3 years now, she said she wasn’t ready at that time but we started making plans for our wedding 6 months after the proposal. I live with my best friend, I have a child with my best friend, she has not changed, she is still not domestic, she still seeks quiet sometimes and we still have great sex.

Please let your readers know, women need to relax and let love happen, a strong woman who insists on being herself and not cowering to stereotype will find her own kind of man. Whoever you are, live your life, truly and genuinely. Be sure what you’re doing is what you really want to do not what you NEED to do to get a man.

I have been in a bad marriage, I am in a good one now, the difference in the quality of my life cannot be compared.

Written for by: Tom

Sebenzile Matsebula

“Avoid Negativity and Self Pity. No One is Interested in That!”- Disbaled and Thriving, Sebenzile Matsebula, Executive Director Motswako Office Solutions

“Avoid Negativity and Self Pity. No One is Interested in That!”- Sebenzile Matsebula, Founder and Executive Director Motswako Office Solutions

I contracted polio at ten months of age in the Eastern part of South African where I was born. I then lived through an era of disempowerment as a black African, as a female and as a disabled person. Therefore I can relate to all forms of discrimination, marginalisation and disempowerment in a real sense.

Yet inspite of rather difficult social circumstances, my experience in life as an adult was of a more positive one resulting from now living in a new political dispensation that promotes the rights of marginalised sectors of the society, the equalisation of opportunities and self representation particularly in decision making processes.

This experience was brought about in my work in my 8 years of working in the highest office of South Africa, in the Presidency of Thabo Mbeki as head of the disability unit.This high level political commitment subsequently enabled me and my compatriots to play a meaningful role in the development of the country at all spheres of governance. It is commitment that is substantiated by an annual allocation of government resources.

After this, I was approached by a company that wanted to up its score points on the Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) score card. I am black, a woman, and have a disability. So they scored 3 different points for the price of one individual. Reading about successful black women in South Africa, who had grabbed the opportunities afforded to them to participate in entrepreneurial activities, also inspired me. I just couldn’t resist the challenge.

In the entrepreneurial space there is no charity and there are no handouts; it’s all about the bottom line and profits. Avoid negativity and self pity – no one is interested in that!

I thrive on challenge, so I convinced myself, I want to move into business. I have always had to work harder than non-disabled people to prove myself in the industry. The perception out there is that if one is disabled, then one is incapable in many ways. They cannot cope with the pressure, they are poorly educated if at all, they are not smart, etc. I had to prove that these were all stereotypes and not true.

I am a mother of two amazing young men aged 28 and 25 years and now the Executive Director of Motswako Office Solutions. Sometimes I get tired, but I am still able to have a full day. It’s important to remember, no-one owes you anything, so don’t expect anyone to do favours for you – take ownership of your life!

31 year old Virgin

“My Future Wife Does Not have To Be A Virgin” Says 31 Year Old Virgin, JimDre Westbrook

“My Future Wife Does Not have To Be A Virgin” Says 31 Year Old Virgin, JimDre Westbrook

First and foremost it’s a promise I made to God. Everything I do is for Him. It’s what I believe in. This is something I came up with when I was 14 after my mother had ‘the talk’ with me right before I went to high school. She figured that just like any other mom or dad, that her child would eventually engage in sex. I thought that I could wait, and that if I could wait until marriage and share that experience with my wife for the first time, that would be the ultimate gift. It would be better than any diamond that I could give her.

I didn’t think I would even make it to being a 30-something virgin. If you’d asked me when I first made the promise to my mom at 14, when you’re 30 or 31, are you still going to be a virgin? I probably would’ve laughed at that, but I know that me being single at this age is part of God’s plan. I’m content with that.

I am 100-percent single. My future wife does not have to be a virgin, no. In the world we live in today most of the women I will come in contact with will not be virgins. I’m not the one to judge people or to say she has to be exactly like me.

I feel that I’m worth the wait because God’s worth the wait. I don’t think that I’m any different or more special than anyone else. I’m a human being; I’m not perfect. I’m a good man and I’m a God fearing man. I believe in myself and I’m a family man too.

I know that I’m not the last man on earth doing this. It feels good to know that other people believe in the same thing that I believe in. It’s kind of like an informal fraternity. I have brothers and sisters in Christ who are also doing the same thing that I’m doing. That’s a pretty awesome thing to have to keep me doing.

My message isn’t to say, “We all need to stop having sex or we need to do this or that.” I want people to look themselves in the mirror and have some crucial conversations and figure out what truly makes them happy.

I can’t wait to have sex with my future wife.


Sagging skin

Self Love: “I’m Learning to Love My Sagging Skin” – 26-Year-Old Sara Geurts With Rare Tissue Disorder

My sagging skin was my biggest insecurity, amongst other side effects. I would later learn this was due to the rarity of my disorder type. As I got older, my discrepancies started to show more and more. The majority of people who had noticed assumed I had gone through some type of weight flux, which resulted in my “stretchy skin.”

I’ll start out by saying I was not always comfortable or accepting of my disorder, Ehlers-Dalos syndrome.(a connective tissue disorder that inhibits the body’s ability to produce collagen) Growing up, my family did not think there was anything specifically wrong with me, especially with it being branded as an invisible illness. I was consistently pushed to the sidelines when trying to cope and learn about the effects of Ehlers and my future with it. I was diagnosed around the age of 10 but had noticed my skin as early as the age of 7.

When I started my journey I knew I was struggling and knew I needed someone to help me break through. Yasmin was with me. I stated how unhappy I was, how I wanted to try to love myself and learn about my disorder – I just didn’t know where to start. Her statement to me changed my attitude. She responded, “This is what I have been waiting to hear for a very long time. Your disorder is beautiful. It’s what makes you, you. Only you can change your mindset and love yourself.” I had heard statements like this before, but for the first time ever, I didn’t doubt her.

Upon serious self-evaluation, I realized my insecurities caused me to lack any confidence, which had an impact on all of my social and personal relationships. I observed that hating certain parts of myself and body triggered my unhealthy mindset, which others sensed as well. This outlook transferred into a majority of my friendships/relationships, which then made them incapable of reaching their full potential.

I promised myself from then on I was going to be true to myself, love my body, love my disorder and most importantly, love myself.

I believe the scars and discrepancies we have are reminders to the world of what we have been through as individuals. We should not be urged to “cover them up” or “remove them” but instead glorify them!

I aim to break society’s transparent barriers of perfection. Barriers that subliminally tell us all to be perfect in all aspects of life, work, social and personal interactions. “Be this skinny and you’ll be happy,” “Buy this and you’ll be happy,” “Look this way and you’ll be happy.” Really? It is the imperfection that makes us perfect and is where true beauty lies. A reminder we all need: love your body, love yourself, be gentle with your body, be gentle with yourself. We are our own real life warriors. Our bodies tell a story that no one else has, a literal vessel of the struggle we as individuals have gone through – a vessel to be praised, not shunned.

My mission is to show the world my own imperfections to aid others on the journey to self-love. Real beauty lies within ourselves. The beauty only seen on the outside doesn’t count, but what matters most is on the inside. By reinforcing the mindset that our imperfections are real and beautiful, I hope to lessen the journey and struggle of others on the road to self-love.

I can honestly say I am the happiest I have ever been in my life.

I believe deep down that God put me on this journey for a reason. I will not stop until my voice and the voices of the EDS community are heard, and I will continue in my efforts to change society’s visions of perfection within our fashion industries in the U.S. and around the world.

I aim to be one of the first recognized models with Ehlers-Danlos.

You’re different. People don’t know how to react or how to accept someone who doesn’t follow the crowd… They are not used to someone who doesn’t try to fit in — So instead of bolstering your uniqueness, they’ll try and make you feel like you’re weird or damaged. I’m here to offer some well earned advice : Screw them.

Wear your stripes with pride, my loves.

Grenfell Tower Inferno

“I’m A Grown Man Who is Now Afraid of The Dark”- Oluwaseun Talabi, Nigerian Grenfell Tower Inferno Survivor

“I’m A Grown Man Who is Now Afraid of The Dark”- Oluwaseun Talabi, Nigerian Grenfell Tower Inferno Survivor

“…We tried to run out of the door, that’s when the massive smoke, I can’t describe it to you, you have to be there to see but I wish you would never be in that sort of situation but yeah, you got to be there to understand it. It’s like an inferno coming towards the house, so we shut the door straight away.

We put a towel, a blanket and things like that around the door. My partner was holding it. While she was holding it, I run to the bathroom. I’ve got water and I start pouring it at the door. And while I was doing that, we saw smoke seeping through the door.

Then I started tying blankets together. I went around every room in the house, all the dirty blankets, all the clean ones, all the old ones we don’t use, I started tying them together and my partner asked me what I was doing. But I just carried on doing it, then I went back to the window, I started screaming “fire! Help please I’ve got a child here. Help please!”

I carried on in my survival mode. I carried on tying all the blankets together and everyone was looking at me like I was crazy like, “what are you doing ?”READ: I was burnt but not broken

From outside, they kept shouting “stay in your flat. They are going to come and help you.” but I kept on tying anyway, tied it as strong as I could. Then I tied it around the window. People were telling me “no, don’t do it””. But I was not looking to die in there. So I’ve climbed out the window and I told my partner to pass me my daughter but my daughter was not having it. She was crying.

Now my daughter isn’t coming.I’ve got to get back into the flat because I’m not going to go down without my daughter. So now I’m finding it difficult getting back into the flat because I’m dangling from outside of the window from the 14th floor. Guess who helped me out? One of the guys that is dead now. A Syrian guy and his brother pulled me back in because I couldn’t pull myself back in. But anyway -this is what Africans do you know, when they put like a child behind their back, and they tie him up- so I put my daughter on my back, used two wraps and tied it so tight, so when I have to go through that window again, my daughter doesn’t fall off my back.

I’m about to go through the window again, and the fire brigade has come and said, “Run!”

I’ve grabbed my missus by hand, my daughter tied to my back already, and I don’t look back. I don’t know who followed us, I don’t know who stayed in the building, we just ran. It was pitch black but we found our way through the thing and we are all coughing and choking. I can’t describe this choking.

Please God, I pray no one ever have to go through that. I can’t describe the choke. Literally, like I was going to die at that moment. To me, I was dead already. My daughter behind me was crying, my partner was falling down the stairs. I’m trying to make sure I don’t lose her, I’m trying to make sure my daughter is safe and I’m trying to be strong for myself. It was mad. I gave up.

Anyway, we kept on going and we got to the fourth floor or something, then I could see that the next floor below there’s light. So that kind of gave me energy, like just one more push. We’ve gone down now, the fire brigade had stopped us and tried to take my daughter away from my back, to rescue her. But because I’ve tied her so tight because I was going to take her from the window, it was kind of a struggle.

While I’m there I’m still inhaling some smoke and my daughter is still inhaling some smoke. My partner is waiting for us and she’s all scared like “where are these people?” So they grabbed my daughter off of me and took all of us to safety.

I’ve had probably about 10 hours sleep in one week. I can’t even go in the dark by myself. I’m scared of the dark. A grown ass man, I’m scared of the dark. Imagine going to the toilet and you have to switch on the light quickly. How long is that going to happen for? I can’t go back to work. You see the building I run at my workplace, it’s about the same height as this. I don’t know if I could go back and do the same thing. Every little thing is just going to get me scared and paranoid.

I need to get myself. I need to sleep. I need to be able to sleep…”


Being faithful

This Is What Being Faithful Means Because It’s More Than Not Sleeping Around

Being faithful means more than keeping your hands to yourself. It means more than only sleeping with one person, only kissing one person, only being physically involved with one person.

Being faithful means that you delete your Tinder and any other dating apps on your phone, because you don’t need it anymore. Because you don’t need more booty calls or backup plans. Because you’re happy with the person that you’re dating and would never dream of cheating on them.

Being faithful means putting an end to any flirting that becomes too intense. It means telling the girl hitting on you at the bar that you’re in a relationship. It means making it clear that you aren’t interested in her instead of leading her on and enjoying the fact that someone other than your partner is attracted to you.

Being faithful means keeping your wedding ring on or keeping your relationship status public so everyone knows you’re taken, instead of purposely trying to make other people think that you’re single so that they treat you differently. So that you still get checked out and receive miniature confidence boosts.

Being faithful means being honest with your person about the fact that you ran into your ex during your lunch break or that some girl at the bar asked you for your number. It means being open, even when the truth makes you uncomfortable, because you believe that your person deserves to know what really happened.

Being faithful means knowing what your person is not okay with, what they would consider being disloyal, and never crossing that line.

You are allowed to text someone else. You are allowed to like someone else’s picture on Instagram. You are allowed to have friends of every gender.

But if you start hiding texts from your person, because you know that they would get upset if they found out about what you’ve been saying to some other girl — if you leave several inappropriate, sexual comments underneath another girl’s picture — if you treat your female friend exactly the same as your girlfriend, then something is seriously wrong.

Maybe you’re not technically cheating, but you’re coming close enough. Close enough for your girlfriend to worry. Close enough to hurt the person who loves you more than anything.

Remember, being faithful means more than never letting another person into your bed. It means never letting another person in your heart.

Being faithful means deciding that your love for this one person outweighs your desire to be with any other person on the planet. It means that you’ve decided you’ve found the person you’re meant to spend the rest of your life with and you aren’t going to do anything to mess it up. TC mark

Written by Holly Riordan. Author of the book, Lifeless Souls

Doing Business Deliberately: Michael Ade-Ojo, Owner of Elizade Motors

Doing Business Deliberately: Michael Ade-Ojo, Owner of Elizade Motors

Doing Business Deliberately: Michael Ade-Ojo, Owner of Elizade Motors.

Born to a poor family in the western part of Nigeria; at a very young age, Micheal became a street hawker selling matchsticks, charcoal, and clearing weeds to support his family.

While studying at the University, he had difficulties paying his fees, he also could barely feed but he got involved with a young lady, who often gave him meal tickets so he could feed at the cafeteria. One day, she gave him $63, her entire pocket for the 1962/63 academic year. That lady eventually became his wife and business partner with whom he started Elizade- Elizabeth and Ade.

After his graduation, he joined the work force at CFAO motors; a French distribution company. This same company had paid the tuition for his last two years in the university. He later moved on, and got a job at British Petroleum (BP).

During his annual British Petroleum (BP) holiday, he decided to take a daring step to approach the RT Brisco Group; an importer and distributor of trucking and automobile equipments. He made them an offer to sell their equipments for a commission on every successful sale.

In just four months after he sealed the deal with Brisco, he sold about 40 cars. The commissions earned from the total sales, were overwhelmingly higher than his yearly salary at BP. This motivated him to quit his job, and pursue his dreams.

He acquired the license to import Toyota Cars, with the name, Toyota Nigeria Limited, and single handedly, made the car brand, the most sought-after automobile brand in Nigeria. He later went on to acquire 100% of RT Briscoe in Nigeria, and subsequently acquired more shares, to make his total holdings in Toyota Nigeria Limited, sum up to 74%.

In August 2015, Forbes Africa dedicated its cover story to the entrepreneur, who was presented as one of the great business leaders on the African continent. He became a multimillionaire in the automobile industry starting with only $63 in capital.

Micheal Ade-Ojo had specific plans about the emergence of his business, being an employee didn’t stop him from deliberately setting out to put them into action. Today, his estimated worth is $3.2Billion.

My Embarrassing Fart Story

My Embarrassing Fart Story. Oh, Hello China

My Embarrassing Fart Story. Oh, Hello China

When I go watch a movie by myself, I usually sit in a corner at the far back, with the hope that no one sits beside me. Mostly, I like to enjoy myself and eat my pop corn in peace without some stranger making commentary beside me.

Yesterday, while watching Alter Ego (read review here) I thought I was in luck, until a man begins to walk towards me. I mean…the theatre was half full, there were two empty rows in front of me so why choose my self designated corner? I quickly put my bag on the seat beside me as I continued to scroll through my phone. “Is this seat taken?” He asked me. I didn’t bother to look up, I just nodded and continued scrolling. I noticed he took the next available seat, I still didn’t like it but there was nothing I could do.

As we watched the movie, he would make comments directed at me, hoping I would respond, instead I would smile, nod when appropriate and continue watching the movie. Why must strangers talk to other strangers during a movie? Why can’t people understand that this is a way for some of us to relax and enjoy life?

When the movie was almost over, I felt a fart brewing so I tried to trap it and let it out slowly (I have mastered the art of letting out my fart in small doses so if it smells, it doesn’t overwhelm the people around me). So, I let out a small dose by raising my right butt cheek just a tiny little bit. pfffft…soundlessly and effortlessly, that happened.

The movie had ended, people were trooping out. Left butt raised slightly, still seriously watching the screen, I was ready to release the next one. This felt like a heavy one though so I gave it more room to let go by raising my butt cheek higher. As I let go, I heard the loud sound of betrayal coming from my behind “Brrraaapp!” and at the same time, notice Mr stranger get up. I quickly looked up to see if he heard anything.

He did! We both froze. He was looking at me!

Trying really hard not to smile, he sat back down! Whyyyyyyyyy? Why did he sit back down? I have asked myself this question since yesterday. At that moment I knew, I had to leave the country and move to china. There are over a billion people there, I can get lost in the crowd and this man would never be able to find me.

Don’t ask me what happened next, it is really not important. Who has a family in china I can stay with till I’m able to get my own place?

Alter Ego

Movie Review: Alter Ego

Alter Ego is a drama, directed by Moses Inwang. Centred mostly around Adaora Igwe (Omotola Jalade Ekeinde), a radical lawyer whose pro bono defence of the under privileged abused girl child is quite personal. As much as she carries her own scars, secrets and demons, she fights aggressively, in and out of court to bring abusers to justice.

Abused by her teacher at a young age, Adaora deals with uncontrollable sexual urge as a result. She has sex with men she is attracted to without minding where and when. No one was exempt when she gets the urge, it could be a family member, driver, gardener or even her colleagues. Thereafter, she would feel remorseful and beat herself up for not being able to resist

As her popularity grew, she met Timothy (Wale Ojo) a billionaire philanthropists who shows interest in her work and decides to work with her in providing food and shelter for the kind of people Adaora represents. Adoara finds love with Timothy and in the process, confesses her past experience as a sexually abused child to him. Unfortunately, Timothy also came with a baggage so big, even Adaora found it unacceptable

Alter Ego tells a story of sexual abuse, betrayal, vulnerability and strength, skin deep habits and emotions so deep you can only express with actions. In this movie, you find yourself reading more into the characters expressions, more than their words

Omotola Jalade is an A-List actress, whom I love dearly and expected perfection from. I cannot categorically say her acting was top notch, I also cannot say it was bad too. Average acting is not what is expected of her, however, this is what I got. In some scenes, her overall delivery is almost perfect as you can see her struggle with her demons even without words, in some other scenes, her acting was such that would not make the cut in a low budget hollywood movie

From the trailer, this movie was supposed to be sexy, dark, emotional and powerful. It was almost there but it felt to me like a relationship with good prospects that eventually ended badly

At the end of the movie, Adaora finally meets the man who abused her. There was an emotional moment, where she got on her knees, head raised to the heavens while she let out her frustration and pain by screaming. This was such a good scene…until it dragged on for too long

I thought the movie had ended, then there came an extra ridiculous scene that got everyone confused. I sat down in the movie theatre after the last scene and wondered to myself “huh? Is this it? That makes no sense!”

Alter Ego carried a powerful message but delivery was rushed and inconclusive. The sex scenes were short and unbelievable, actors’ make up was mediocre and some scenes dragged on longer than they should have

If one was sexually abused and watched Alter Ego, it doesn’t leave you with more problems, but it provides no solution either.

Do not Shrink To Fit

Love and Accept Your Friends For Who They are But Do not Shrink To Fit

“Do not shrink to fit”

We all have them in our lives, those friends who we love dearly because they’re good people and you laugh your heart out when you hang out together. As soon as the topic turns serious, they wave it off. They don’t want to talk about growth, how to spend money wiser, how to grow your career, how to strategize that new business. They love you, but they can’t help you when it comes to the things that really matter: Mutual values

Sharing your next big idea is practically orgasmic. Your eyes sparkle. Your heart flutters. All manner of happy chemicals flood your brain. You expect the fire in you to extend to Mr/Mrs no goals, so you can move the idea around and make it better; but, they come out bland. This makes you feel deflated but you know in your heart you can’t blame your dear friend. He/she cannot see what you see, because this friend whom you love dearly, just wants to take life easy and live life as it comes

I believe most of our friends have something to offer but it will only be wise if we know which one of them meets our intellectual/ business needs. Those ones who’ll stay on the phone all night just to crack a puzzle or help open up an idea you’ve been toying with

f no one in your circle can fuel the fire of your goals, ideas and the need to live your full potential in life, then I hope you have the courage to begin to carefully select a new circle, a circle that’s healthy enough to feed that part of your life you want nourished. You know what you want to be in life, you know what your goals and aspirations are, don’t forfeit those because people around you have chosen to live a mediocre life

Love and accept your friends for who they are but do not shrink to fit


‘I Went From being a War Orphan to a Ballerina”-Sierra Leonean-American Michaela DePrince

‘I Went From being a War Orphan to a Ballerina”-Sierra Leonean-American Michaela DePrince

“My uncle took me to the orphanage after my father was shot and my mother starved to death. He knew he’d never be able to get a bride price for me, because of my vitiligo. There were 27 children in the orphanage and we were numbered. Number 1 got the biggest portion of food and the best choice of clothes. Number 27 got the smallest portion of food and the leftover clothes. The aunties thought I was unlucky and evil because of my vitiligo. I was number 27.

I was always dirty. They used to braid my hair too tightly because they wanted me to be in pain and they told me I’d never be adopted. The only moments I was happy were because of my friend, who was also called Mabinty.

We slept on the same mat and she used to sing to me and tell me stories when I couldn’t sleep. She was number 26.

I thought nothing good would ever happen to me and then, one day, I found a magazine outside the gate of the orphanage. On the cover was a picture of a ballerina in a tutu. I thought she was a fairy on her tippy toes in her beautiful pink costume. But what struck me most was that she looked so happy. I hadn’t been happy in a long time. I ripped off the picture and hid it in my underwear.

We had a teacher who came to give us English lessons and I showed it to her. She explained to me that the girl was a dancer. I was walking with this teacher one day when some rebels came towards us. A boy was following them and another truck full of them around the corner. They had been drinking, I think. They saw Teacher Sarah was pregnant and started betting whether she was having a girl or a boy. So then they thought they’d find out and they got their machetes and cut her open. Her baby was a girl. They killed her and my teacher in front of me. The small boy thought he should imitate the older ones and he cut my stomach.

Later, the rebels occupied the orphanage and threw us out. We walked across the border to Guinea. There were plans for most of us to be adopted, but not me. Finally, there was a plane to Ghana. I was miserable because I thought I would never see my best friend, number 26, again. Then a lady with blonde hair, which seemed amazing to me, and wearing bright red shoes grabbed my hand and my friend’s hand too, and said: ‘I’m your new momma.’ Number 26 became my sister Mia.

When we got to the hotel, I started looking through my momma’s luggage for my tutu and pointe shoes. I thought all Americans were doctors, models or ballerinas and she would have brought my clothes with her. I didn’t speak English so the only way I could explain was to take the picture out of my underwear and show her. She understood straight away. She said I could dance if I wanted to.

When we got to America, I started going to ballet class once a week, then twice a week. I found a video of The Nutcracker and I must have watched it 150 times. I begged my mother to take me to a performance and I knew it so well that I could tell when they went wrong. By the time I was ten I was going to ballet classes five times a week.

I worried that my vitiligo would be a problem but my skin turned out to be an issue in a different way. A lot of people are still very traditional in their views and they want to see the same thing in the corps de ballet – white skinny dancers. Early on, my mother was told by one of my ballet teachers, ‘We don’t put a lot of effort into the black girls. They all end up getting fat, with big boobs.’

I have strengths as a dancer. I am muscular and I have strong legs. More importantly, I work very hard. I was lucky to be featured in the film First Position, which followed six dancers preparing for the Youth America Grand Prix, a competition for places at elite ballet schools. That helped me to get a place at the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School and it also meant I was seen by different directors. The director of the junior company of the Dutch National Ballet knew of me. I spent a year there before joining the main company.

I was stigmatised as a child and I had to grow up very fast. I couldn’t show my emotions. Being adopted showed me that it was OK to be weak sometimes, that weakness can also be a kind of strength. Dancing can be very painful and exhausting, which is why it’s so important to have my family. My parents were able to convince me that all the people I love are not going to die and that, even when they do die, their love will always stay with me. They also made me see that it is OK to be different and to stand out. ‘Be a poppy in a field of daffodils.’

My sister Mia is a part of what I do every day and she and the rest of my family have helped me to appreciate a number of important things – it is possible for things to get better; it is a mistake to hold on to the past; you should laugh when you can; and you should look forward to the future.”


“I Worked Hard and Prepared Myself For The Success That Would Come”- WizKid

“I Worked Hard and Prepared Myself For The Success That Would Come”- WizKid

I need people to know that I didn’t just get things for free. Nobody gave me anything, my parents gave me nothing. This is something I did for myself. I took a loan from my friends, I jumped my books for loans and nobody saw that part of the hustle, and I think it’s just relevant for me to point it out so that my fans will be sure of where I came from

When I actually came out…people didn’t take me seriously. I had to prove a point. I had to go the extreme mile to prove myself.I worked hard and prepared myself for the success that would come. I wasn’t thinking I wanted to be bigger than anybody; I just wanted to be able to feed myself and my family, live a good life and make music – which I love to do.

I started when I was 11 years old, in church; and from then on, I’ve been in love with music, and everybody in my family knows that. I dropped an album in church. I performed in church. I go from church to church for performance. I did a couple of concerts and later, when I told my parents that I wanted to take music serious, they refused. They told me if I wanted to do this professionally, I had to stay in school. I had to stay in school and again do music professionally. So, it was like a double task for me. I’m thankful to God for where I am now.

I’m a perfectionist. I can listen to the music now and tomorrow I’ll be like, ‘Yo, I feel we need to change this’, and then we have to go back to the drawing board

I love working. I never stop working. So I take the studio everywhere I go. I tell everyone I work with, we are trying to build an empire.

I don’t think there is a level of fame I can achieve that can make me lose my cool or lose who I am or forget where I’m from. Because I came from the bottom. I know what it means not to have anything. I know what it means not to have food to eat.

Keep working hard, put God first and if you really believe in your talent and you believe in yourself, it is definitely going to take you places. I believed in my talent, I believed in myself and I never stopped working and God just crowned that with blessing. So just keep working and stay focused.

***Title picture is a recent shot of wizkid as seen on a billboard in Toronto, Canada***

The church

I Became Less Religious But Grew Closer to God When I Left the Church

I was so over church the day one of the older women in the congregation pulled me aside and basically said my tattoos and piercings made me look like a jezebel. No really, she called me a jezebel. I was through.[ with the church ]

I was raised in a church that identified as Baptist. Growing up I liked reading scriptures and the history of the Bible. I had always been a very spiritually aware person, but one thing that used to throw me off was all of the rules and regulations that, to me, had nothing to do with the Bible. Length of clothing, wearing jewelry and makeup, hairstyles, hobbies and friendships seemed to all be regulated by men and not God.

As I grew older, I began to question a lot of things that happened in church that seemed to be more religiously correct motions and not practices that actually reflected a passion to please God, but more so a passion to please people. I continued to go to church, but as I began to challenge and question the religious practices, there seemed to be more and more tension between myself and fellow church goers, especially the elders. As I got older I became more liberated in my way of thinking with topics such as feminism, sex, and self expression. All of the views I possessed seemed to clash with my “religion.” I had (and still have) many homosexual friends, and often times I was questioned/scolded about my allegiance to the LBTQ community (even though I identify as heterosexual). Scripture after scripture and prayer after prayer were used to try to counter my argument that I felt that it was my duty not to judge, but love.

I began to study and embrace a feminist mentality, which led to chastising about going against the submissive way of thinking that a woman should have in the relationship with her husband. I didn’t particularly think that being submissive to a man was a way to keep him, but the elders of the church thought otherwise. I’d always been fond of tattoos and piercing as forms of self expression, and opted to utilize those methods as I got older. In return, many of my fellow church members thought the method of my expression meant that I was being sexually deviant and “loose,” and that such methods took away from my femininity.

These different viewpoints and ways of thinking ultimately led me to stop going to church altogether. I felt as though the religious space I was occupying was a space that used rules and regulations as a marker for your relationship with God or how perfect you could make that relationship seem. I didn’t understand how following rules set by man could be indicative of whether or not I was following rules set by God. It seemed as though religion was more about pleasing the people you occupy religious space with, trying to impress them by how diligently and fervently you could follow religious doctrine and less about being accountable for how you ran your life. I knew people who followed all the rules set by the church but were seemingly breaking all rules set by God: their skirts were the appropriate length and their skin was virgin, yet they were rude, greedy, and had laid with plenty unwed.

After I left the church, I remained without a church home for some years, but continued to maintain my spiritual relationship by reading my Bible regularly, praying, and living life to my fullest by trying everyday to be kind, considerate, and honest. Even by finding my own spiritual path without a shepherd or communing weekly in a temple, I found that I was able to grow by working through my own trials and errors.

I was better able to examine my life and the mistakes I made by viewing myself through an introspective lens; not through the lens of those who were merely judging by how many rules or rituals I didn’t live by.

I was better able to clearly see my life’s purpose, my areas of spiritual weakness, and things I needed to work on as a member of humanity who happens to call themselves a Christian.

Yes, I did get tattoos, piercings, go out on Friday nights and break “rules” set by a church, but I realized that my true faults where things that were beyond superficial. I was able to work on my patience with others, become more open-minded and more in tune with the emotions and feelings of others.

By taking a break from the church, I was able to figure myself out for myself without worrying about judgmental eyes peering over my shoulder.

While I’m not currently actively searching for a new place of worship, I do hope to find a church family in the future.

Until then, I’ll be very careful before aligning myself with a group that goes by “religion” and not by God’s word and principles.