Today is 27th December, 2018 and I am typing this review with my dream laptop, a MacBook Pro. Honestly, as I recap 2018, all I have is gratitude. Gratitude! Gratitude for how God has brought me this far. I will take my 2018 story in bits….
First – My faith journey
This is one of the major highlights of my 2018. I joined the 30 days of Prayer organized by Ken Ifeanyi(@kenifeanyii on Twitter). It was indeed a turning point in 2018. There was indeed a fixing, a shifting and a shaking in my life. Things started happening in life. Also, in 2018, I got better in my walk with God. I desire to be even more consistent in 2019.
Then, the second big guy – My Career
In May, after the 30 days of prayer, I applied to work in Andela as a software developer. I would not resume until December.
To help you understand the significance of this, I would backtrack to 2014. I was supposed to graduate from the university where I studied Microbiology, however, I failed a course in my final semester. So, I had an extra year to retake one course (CHM 202- Organic Chemistry). However, looking back now, it was one of my best years in school. I started learning computer programming. I scored 98A in the course. I held a coaching class where all my students (students taking the course the 2nd, 3rd or 4th time) passed CHM 202. And I worked as a Research Assistant. Fast track to 2016, I decided against going back for Msc but instead pursue software development.
I finished service in April 2017. By God’s grace, literally, I got a job as a Software Development Intern. However, I had to turn down another offer to work as a Quality Control Officer. While the pay as an intern was very low, what kept me going was the desire and zeal to be a software developer. With time though, the pay kept going up. At this company, I started learning the basics of web development and I also worked on a host of WordPress websites. However, my desire was to do real-world software development.
Back to May 2018, I applied to Andela. I attended the Bootcamp in July ending. It was very rigorous as I juggled Bootcamp project with work. Also, I had accommodation issues so I had to stay at a friend’s house. Despite my efforts, I didn’t get in. I was discouraged of course. However, I got a mail in September from Andela that I was invited to Andela21 – a remedial program. It’s more like Bootcamp but more intense. This time, I gave my all. I literally worked day and night with little sleep. Also, I would sleep in the office on weekdays, going home only on weekends. Four weeks after, on the 6th of October, around 9 pm, I got a success mail from Andela. I had been accepted into the fellowship. The Sacrifices, efforts, and prayers paid off!
Since I needed to give about 1 months notice to my former employer, my resumption at Andela was in December. Thinking back, It’s been such a journey.
One major lesson, I have learned is that even in our lowest moments, God is working in us and for our good. When I had the extra year, it was a very low moment of my life. This was me that was literally the best student in my set in secondary school. And now, having an extra year. However, in that trying time, I found a path to a career I love.
Errrrm *Clearing my throat* – My Love Life
I started 2018 single. I wasn’t sure I was ready for a relationship but I had an open mind. Over time, I reconnected with a friend and wellllll, we have been together for about 4 months now 🙂 🙂 🙂 And its been an interesting experience so far. Being in a relationship has exposed insecurities I didn’t realize I had. They were buried them within from bad experiences in the past. However, I thank God that I am improving by the day.
Next – My Health:
2018 was quite challenging health-wise. I had bouts of sickness from the time I finished the Andela 21 boot camp. However, the Lord is my healer. One fateful night in November around 8pm, while seeing a movie, I started feeling pains in my groins and both testes. I informed a Dr friend of mine who advised me to go to UCH (University College Hospital), Ibadan immediately. When I got to UCH around 12 am in the company of my parents, the doctor asked why I was just coming. I had testicular torsion which is a medical emergency. In a layman’s terms, testicular torsion is condition where the testis wrapped itself somehow around the spermatic cord. The corrective procedure was a surgery that had to be done with 4-6 hours. This is because if the testes lack blood for that long, they would start to die. I had the surgery around 6 am the next day. I’m grateful to God for saving me and my testes. The doctors didn’t have to remove any of them. I was literally in the risk of losing my virility as a man but God saved me! Gloryyyyy to God! *dancing*
Along the way, I experiences various challenges:
On the 4th of October, the day before the presentation of the app I built for the Andela Bootcamp, I was attacked. It was around 9 pm. I was walking home with a friend and we were almost at PalmGrove Estate, Lagos. Out of the blues, the attacker came down from a bike and demanded for my phone. I refused to give him. He hit me with the blade of his machete. All that came to my mind was to speak in tongues. I began to shout in tongues. He released me and I ran for my life. I had wounds on my elbows and body pains. But I thank God! Because it could have been way worse. I was able to present well the next day which happen to be the final day of the Bootcamp.
Again, on the 9th of November, I went to make photocopies of some of credentials. While there, I got a text from GTBank that the sum of 49.99 pounds has been approved on my account meanwhile, I was with the ATM card all that time. I rushed to the bank. Apparently, somehow, someone somewhere used my card details to make a transaction on asos.com. The individual made transactions that were excess the total amount in my account. The last one bounced due to insufficient funds. I lost about 95% of the money left in the account that day. To make it worse, I just got paid October Salary the day before. All I had left was transport fare to travel to Ibadan the next day. It was a very tough one but somehow, the Lord saw me through this phase.
While this might not seem a big deal, about the same period, my phone got stolen in Ibadan. It was like many things just seem to happen in November all at once: the stolen funds, surgery and now, phone. But to be honest, I’m simply grateful to God for seeing me through. It could have been way worse.
To crown this all – My Family
Its been a tough one in my family this year. But, again I am very grateful. My mum clocked 50 years this year. My sister had her convocation and POP in the same month. My elder brother had his convocation for his 1st Msc as well. Everyone is doing well and all I can say is: Thank God!
Now concerning my expectations for 2019,
I want to walk more in God’s plans and not mine. I want to pursue his path. My desire is to be consistent in my quiet time and personal walk with God.
In 2019, I want to grow to be an even better solid software developer.
Also, in 2019, I want to release my expressions to the world. This could be in form of technical articles and fictional stories.
In conclusion, I have learnt to trust that God is always working in me and for me, no matter what may be going on – the greater good lies ahead. I hope this has encouraged you, It doesn’t matter if you failed. That failure may be the exact stepping stone you need to achieve your dreams. Secondly, your dreams are valid. Your school history or degree shouldn’t stop you from attaining your goals. If you fail, try again! Don’t stop trying until you get a YES 🙂