Yesterday’s football match reminded me of the story of Judah and Tamar in the Bible. She was pregnant with twins and at the delivery, one of them brought out his hand out first and the midwife tied a cloth around it, to mark it. But the other one came out first. Using it as an analogy, I like to refer to the first child as Nigeria (Forerunner) and other as Tunisia (King).
The Tunisian team lost two games at the group stage and they finished third. The Nigerian team won all the three games, they top the table, in fact, they were overrated to win the tournament. Last night, the tables were turned. Sad and unfortunate.
When I looked at the Tunisian team, I saw myself in the mirror and I knew they were going to beat Nigeria. Ahead of the game, Tunisia’s assistant coach, Jalal Al-Qadri had vowed to end Nigeria’s fine run at the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon. Consequently, I refused to underrate the preparedness of the Tunisian team.
Reacting before the match, Omoyele Sowore took to his Facebook page and said, “Just heard Muhammadu Buhari just passed his bad luck to Nigeria’s Super Eagles! We are working hard to neutralise it!” When I read the post, I knew it was over, with that ill-fated video call; “ọ gwụla”, “aagama yawoo”, “irin-ajo dopin” meaning end of the road in our three major languages. Also, Senator Shehu Sani, reacting to the call and defeat, posted on his verified Twitter account, “He touchth the pigeon, it refused to fly. He talkedth to the Eagle, it refused to fly. Oh yea brethren, Thy King in Egypt hath no miracles but pyramids.”
However, the lessons I derived from the football match is that life is not about who started shining or progressing, because the last can still win overwhelmingly. Second, one should never see one’s self as a failure at the initial stage. One only needs to visit where one missed it, and go back to the drawing board so that one can meet, recover, and overtake. Third, when people write you off because you didn’t start well, it is part of the limitations of man because nobody is able to see beyond the physical.
Life no be gra gra oh! The road to the top is never swift nor easy. Our previous success can hinder us from our next level if we become too full of them and get carried away. I never let things get into my head. I celebrate my little milestones, thank God and look forward to doing better and breaking more grounds.
Overhyping will make you relaxed, you’ll think that you’ve gotten to the peak. Your thirst for knowledge will dwindle. You might likely begin to glory too much in your little victories and that is how we create “Comfort zone”. Overhyping creates comfort zone, and comfort zone establishes laziness.
In conclusion, I have learnt many lessons in the journey of life. Part of which is that if you support evil today because it favors you, it shall surely come against you tomorrow. We must also painstakingly, protect our democracy from people who are self-centered, nepotic and barrack’s mentality.
ARISE ‘O COMPATRIOTS
Richard Odusanya is a Social Reform Crusader and the convener of AFRICA COVENANT RESCUE INITIATIVE ACRI