In the last couple of months, it has been very tough and rough for many couples, families and communities. It has been a case of one gloomy situation to another. The past months have clearly not been excellent, happy moments for all, but with love, we will all recover from the hurtful disposition of painful hearts. Since we all experienced pandemic and problems that arose from the protests, our prayer now is for God to give us peace and progress to enjoy the remaining six weeks of the year. I believe that this should be the prayer of every one now. Let’s make this a season of peace, renewal and progress.
It will not be an over-statement to say that so many relationships have been affected by the difficult situations that have befallen the country, in one way or the other. There is no one who has not experienced one form of hardship or the other. The cost of foodstuff has sky-rocketed, and affected all and sundry. Do we need to be reminded of the activities of hoodlums in various states who went on rampage and engaged in orgy of destruction, looting in various towns and in the process paralyzed socio-economic activities in those places? The COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown it caused affected social, physical and religious events because most events were postponed. It was a period when most people relied on the Internet for information and to work from remote locations. This entailed buying a lot of data and airtime. Schools were shut down and the prolonged lockdown turned into a very long holiday. When students in exit classes were recalled to write the West African Secondary School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) and Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE), commonly known as junior WAEC, students predictably recorded minimal success in the two external examinations. Added to these was the frustration parents faced as a result of the further disruptions caused to transportation in vital parts of the urban centres by the #EndSARS protests. It was such a challenging and teary situation that affected all situations. Sports events that give people opportunity to lighten up and relax frayed nerves all got postponed.
You can, therefore, imagine the anguish of ordinary Nigerians who discovered that food palliatives donated to state governments by corporate bodies under the aegis of the Coalition Against COVID-19 (CACOVID), to alleviate the sufferings of the indigent and vulnerable members of society during the lockdown, were hoarded in warehouses by various governments. In some states, officials charged with distribution of the palliatives shared the items to their friends. So, thousands of downtrodden Nigerians besieged the warehouses and looted the palliatives stored in them. The more brazen ones descended on popular malls, supermarkets and business premises and looted all the office equipment and other items they could lay their hands on. Some of looters did not live to tell the story of their looting experience as they were trampled or shot by security agents. Several hundred others sustained different degrees of injuries.
Now, the question is: how are we going about the peace and progress we all desire after the turmoil? Where is love in the midst of all these? Does love have any role to play in the affairs of the crying nation? Are couples still loving as expected or are they only crying for their beloved country without necessary bedroom actions? Are Nigerian citizens ready to forgive their politicians who denied them food when they needed it most during the COVID-19 pandemic?
To think that the Federal Government released such food to cushion the crisis as hunger became the first enemy to man, yet some characters chose to hoard it from the people that needed it most. ‘To err is human, to forgive is divine; goes a popular saying. No matter how hurt people are, the first step in the healing process will come from the spirit of forgiveness and having a willingness to forge ahead. Forgiveness has wings that accommodate others. Are women who went through hell in managing their home all through the rough times willing to forgive their husbands and vice versa? Are the looters of personal property (not palliatives) ready to return the looted items like deep freezers, airconditioning units, flat screen television sets, microwave, blenders, etc? Who and who are willing to confess their sins and let love rule? Are businesses and small-scale industries ready to forgive the obnoxious orders that seem to work against their flourishing trades? What about transporters who lost money as they were forced out of business for months? Workers in the federal, state and private establishments, where is the honour and glory you promised to defend in your fatherland? Private school owners and teachers, kindly apply love and wisdom though your section suffered the heat the most, when you needed support from all and sundry. Most of them resorted to buying and selling of ‘Agege-bread’ to survive. Teachers, who had to remain at home longer than expected, please understand that there are situations that are beyond human control. The period of pandemic and the protests happened to be one of such. Children that did not hold their annual birthday celebrations during the pandemic and did not get all the mid-day snacks as expected, please take it easy with your parents, because it was not a purposeful act. There is need for all to come to terms with the situation, forgive each other so we can all move forward. People who expected much from their relatives, churches, communities and nation, apply the spirit of sportsmanship and move on if we sincerely want lasting peace and progress.Now, couples who refuse to ‘ginger their vibes’ and let the ‘current flow’ should blame no one, but themselves if some other person connects wires to the battery terminals, to get an exciting jolt of pleasant electricity.
It is during rough and tough times that couples who are in love prove their togetherness without looking at whose ox is gored. It is at times like these that both show their true love in everything including intimacy. They should not ignore the refreshing moments that they can spend together. Any of the partners can initiate the move. There is nothing like being in the warm embrace of a loved one, especially spouses. Being together, to reminiscence about how their journey started gives such a wonderful feeling. Such moments strengthen the bond between them. For how long will couple who are close neglect that part of their lives?
The second stage of the healing process would be acceptance in love as an icing on the cake. The greatest solution would be for everyone to see himself as a leader in his little family, community and state. Be the best you can, everywhere you find yourself, especially at home and in the neighbourhood. With this, we will all get it right. Whatever one expects of his boss in the office, leader in his community, House of Representatives members, senators and governors, show it at the level where you are right now. While expecting much from our leaders, let us do our best in the immediate environment, and leave the rest to God.
Evidently, the people we trusted have betrayed us, but weep not my brothers and sisters. When we remember the story of Joseph, we should be consoled. We are all on our way to the palace.