Walking down the streets in major cities in Nigeria I couldn’t help but notice men and women young and old all either hawking or trading on the streets trying to make a living or at worst something to feed on.My major intrigue was the fluency in the English most of them spoke when communication was needed indicating that they were once in the four walls of a school whether a public or private one but they got educated to a certain level. I begin to wonder;
How could a child full of dreams, aspirations and multiple future ambitions grow up to become a man or woman living his or her worst nightmare of a life?
I can’t particularly say I have the answer to this question or know the solution to the problem, but what I am sure I know is that it is a major problem facing the whole world not just the developing countries.
At a particular time in our lives, we aspired to increase the number of doctors, lawyers, nurses, pilots, etc, present in the world but along the way reality dawned on us and dreams changed. From illusion and aspirations of gigantic occupations and a luxurious life afterward to a more realistic statement of affordable livelihood.
In my own private time I wonder what the cause of this sudden change in course of life is; mismanagement, economic condition, reality, carelessness? I cant pick out one and assume it is the major cause but I know it is killing the future of the youth and depressing the aged. The lucky ones only have a change in the course of academic pursuit from the desirable to the affordable while the others might end up dropping out of school completely due to one problem or the other usually financial or family.
To this end, everybody is living just for the sake of living and gets hostile at the slightest provocation. Transferring aggression seems to be the best and only rational thing to do yet it fixes nothing but makes the situation worst.
A young lady full with ambitions can either achieve them as a single lady (career woman) and search for love all her life or dump those aspiration and become a good mother and wife trying to find the joy in family to outshine the regrets that must set in as time wears out.
During my NYSC days, I was teaching a bunch of students geography in SS1, one innocent kid told me the reason why he wanted to study geography was because he has aspiration of becoming a pilot and since geography would teach him navigation and knowledge of the world using the map well. He thought knowing geography was the only obstacle between him and becoming a pilot and I wasn’t going to be the bearer of bad news, I told him “hard work and diligence could get him anywhere”. If I had told him how expensive being a pilot was he might either think I am a hater or possible I could discourage him completely and Nigeria might miss out on a wonderful pilot.
Dreams become nightmare when not properly nurtured or managed. Parental encouragement, counseling and other social and mind building activities could help in discerning which dream is achievable among the multiple dreams a youthful mind could wonder about believing to become in future.