Tobi was very excited. He could not hide his joy as he jumped around the street everyday reminding me of how many days he had left at home. All I hear after Good Morning daily was, “few days to go”. That usually came with a very wide smile that was generous enough to heal anyone of malaria. It was a daily countdown for Tobi. I clearly remember my daily response to Tobi’s excited countdown drama. “Hope you are preparing?” I asked him always. Whether he ever thought of responding, I cannot remember till this moment. Obviously, my friend was excited. All his mates were in school and he could not wait to be there too.
Tobi was my friend and neighbor who had waited at home for good three years without any offer of admission into the University like me. However, unlike me who was repeatedly writing SSCE because I could not make at least a Credit in Mathematics, Tobi made all his SSCE results at a sit. Truly, I envied him and hated myself for being such a failure but I never stopped trying until I made it too.
Despite Tobi’s very fine and inviting result, Obafemi Awolowo University where he consistently applied for Medicine never offered him any admission. What could be happening? Tobi’s SSCE result was nothing compared to his excellent performance in UTME and PUTME respectively. But Tobi never gained admission into any University until the third year when his father decided to send him to Bowen University. Although his school fees was half of his father’s annual income, Mr Ajemobi was ready to spend all he had on his very intelligent son. What a good father! May God bless all the good parents who go extra mile to cater for their children. (Amen)
Tobi finally ran to our house one very hot Friday afternoon, dancing and jumping as he laughed uncontrollably screaming at the top of his voice, “I have gained admission!” I could not help but celebrate with him although I was still trusting God for mine then. I was excited too especially remembering that Tobi had just been rescued from attending deliverance services with his mother every Tuesday under the palm tree close to the beach. Tobi’s mother had resolved to take her son for deliverance. She believed the old women from her husband’s village must be behind her son’s delay in gaining admission into the University. Tobi never found it funny. He complained bitterly always. He told us of how the Senior Prophet of the gathering hit his head continuously always to push him to the ground. Tobi returned home with wet clothes on those days. He was always bathed with what they called “holy water.” It was believed it will cleanse him of every evil spirit of delay. Please do not ask me if Tobi was truly delivered. I only knew Tobi gained admission finally and we were all happy.
A night before Tobi’s departure to school finally came. I was in his house with other friends of ours. I was really surprised at the small travel bag I saw beside Tobi’s bed. “Is that all you are going with?” I asked Tobi. “Of course!” was Tobi’s respond excitedly. I marveled. Although I was still a jambite (awaiting admission), I knew Tobi was going to need more than he had packed. But he was too excited about his new status that his preparation meant nothing to him. He had waited for too long for this miracle to come and he could not just wait to be there.
My friend finally left for school. It was a Monday morning full of emotions. Tobi’s mother held him tight to herself like a five year old boy forgetting that her son was nineteen and no longer a kid. She was showering him with prayers as if he was going for a missionary work. His father who was waiting for him in the car honk the horn severally but Mummy Tobi like we used to call her would not let her son go. She suddenly ran inside to bring a small bottle of “holy water”. I was tempted to laugh when she started to sprinkle it on an already dressed Tobi praying that the old women in her husband’s village would not follow her son to school. Finally, we all hugged Tobi and he left.
I was very excited the day I heard Tobi was home for semester break. I ran to their house to listen to stories about Uni. But I was shocked at the very thin, dark and very tall guy that stood before me with a very bushy head. Unconsciously, I shouted, “What happened to you Tobi?” My friend used to be an averagely tall chubby young man with a fair fine skin. I never imagined he could be looking like a very hungry cow that had not been fed for months. I really thought he was sick until he told me he was not. Guess what? My friend suffered for his lack of preparation. He finally confessed to me that he was too eager to be in school that he paid no attention to adequate preparation. Tobi went to school with no beverages, foodstuff and sufficient fund. He did not even remember to buy any book or writing materials so he spent the little money he had on books too. He even explained to me how he had to wear one shirt thrice in a week because he only traveled with few clothes too.
It was a pathetic story but a very funny one. Tobi waited for three good years to gain admission into the University. He also had some days to prepare after he printed his admission letter. It simply meant that my friend was only dancing around the street announcing his good news without planning adequately for his journey. I pitied him but I learnt. Tobi loaded his father’s car with travel bags on his next journey…lol.
Many single ladies are like my friend Tobi. They have been waiting to be married since they were eighteen years. Now they are twenty six years but have not placed any priority on preparation. Sister, what are you doing while you wait? Why not utilize your waiting period to prepare for the journey ahead of you.
Some ladies have also been running to different prayer posts attacking the spiritual problems they believe were caused by some old women in the village placing little or no attention to their level of preparation. WORK and PRAY sister! Now that you are still single, acquire knowledge that will prepare you for the journey ahead. Read books that will add value to you. Attend seminars and life impacting programmes. Learn how to cook, take care of the home…etc. Prayerfully prepare too! Prayer is part of your preparation process. Learn how to pray and invest prayers into your future.
Is it possible to be relocating to a land you have never been to without preparing for the journey? NO! So, why wait for marriage without preparing?
For so many ladies, they only count how many of their mates have married daily and fail to prepare their bags for the journey like Tobi. I am sure you don’t want to spend the rest of your life mourning your lack of preparation.
“A future you don’t prepare for may be paralytic. Be wise!”
Photo Credit: Internet
Written by: Ifeoluwa Akinbo