*A two-sided Collaboration with Isioma Ononye of ReflectEveryDay.com
Nigeria isn’t perfect – Given! But where on earth is perfect to be honest?
When I left Nigeria 7 years ago, I had no plans of moving back. However, as time went by and I began to understand a few things about who I am and what I really want from life, I realized Nigeria was the place I wanted to be and so far, I have no regrets!
Apart from the reasons of me moving back being validated over the past months, there are a few other things I didn’t realize I missed so much about Nigeria and in my short time being back I’ve come to appreciate them even more. It’s a shame though that every now and again, I hear a lot of young people speaking with so much passion and fire in their eyes about moving out of Nigeria.
While it might seem like life outside Nigeria is much better than being here, there are some patches of green grass within the country and I’ll love to share with you from the bottom of my heart and as someone who’s had a taste of both sides of the world. So without further adieu, here are 3 things I love about being back in Nigeria.
Family and Support
You expected that right? but I’ll tell you this for free – Nothing can beat having your family around and I don’t mean just having them in the same country as yourself, but literally having them around.
The Nigerian society is very much family oriented that it provides such a strong support system for an individual beyond just the nuclear family. Extended family members, distant cousins and even those people who aren’t related by blood but have somehow become “Family” are always there to help and support you through trying times and every stage of your life. No one is ever too busy to help the other and even if that happens, there’s always someone else to fill in the gap.
While some people might be lucky enough to have family members living abroad, some people aren’t. Even when you do have family living in the same region as yourself abroad, seeing them or relying on them to come through for you isn’t something you can count on not because they don’t want to help or be there for you, but life is so fast paced in the western world that it is often times very difficult.
So I’m glad to be in Nigeria where life is a bit more relaxed and ‘chilled’ and family is always there to support me!
You never know how much you value saying things like “God will see you through“, “May God keep you safe“, “Only God can help us now” and even something as simple as “Thank God“… until it becomes something offensive and phrases you can’t utter freely for fear of being tagged as a trying to impose religious beliefs on others.
In the UK there are quite a few restrictions on where and when you can use religious terms, especially in professional (work) environments. Even in those situations where you have the ‘freedom’ to express your religious views, there’s always someone around to put a damper on the situation by saying things like “God couldn’t have done that, it was your hard work”. People who believe in God are often made to seem like a set of brain washed human beings, who cannot think for themselves and believe in some imaginary being.
I remember a group of Christians at one of the places I worked having to meet secretly to pray weekly because when they asked if they could have time off to pray, the company felt it wasn’t appropriate to so do at work. It was a massive shock for me and I couldn’t believe it was actually happening. I got to also find out that it was the case at many workplaces and honestly, it feels like being in bondage when you have to watch what you say because praises to God or gratitude to Him might just slip off your tongue and you could get in trouble for it.
So I’m glad to be back in my country where I can truly express my self as a Christian and also be reassured by my fellow Christians about our faith in God
Believe it or not, Nigeria is a land full of unharvested ideas and opportunities. There are so many business opportunities within Nigeria that all you have to do is just look and think a little deeper.
We have so many problems to fix which means so many business opportunities for you if you can find solutions to them. Nigeria is also still a developing country compared to America and the United Kingdom who are over 240 and 480 years respectively. So you can only imagine how much work needs to be done here and if we all keep running away, who exactly is going to fix the problem?
These are only a few of the things I appreciate about being back in addition to the culture, hospitality, weather and so many other things that are unique to Nigeria. Home is always Home and I truly wouldn’t be anywhere else than here in Nigeria!