By Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi

As I was thinking about what to write for Loud Whispers this week, I was determined that it would not be any ‘gripe writing’. There is so much negativity going around locally, nationally and internationally, that anxiety, anger and sadness has been normalized. It is difficult to summon up positive energy when all you hear is bad news. I am therefore going to list some things which make me happy and give me cause to be thankful. For once, I want to name some of my blessings other than gripe about all the gloom and doom. Maybe if we focus on the good things around us, they will become the norm in our lives as opposed to the regular diet of misery and despair that seems to have taken up permanent residence in our hearts and minds. Here are some of the things I am thankful for:

  1. I am in good health. If I follow the advice of my doctors, it will continue this way. It however means cutting down on carbohydrates, sugar, caffeine, alcohol, dairy products and so on. If you are over forty and reading this, don’t snigger. Take this for free, my medical advisory applies to you too! Good news is you can have vegetables and fruits in abundance.
  1. I dance. I have always loved to dance. At the risk of sounding immodest, I am a compendium of dance styles, especially from the days when my generation rocked. From Kung Fu fighting, to the Hustle, Bump, Electric Slide, you name it, I got it. I love dancing so much, it is about the only form of exercise I truly enjoy. I do dance aerobics every day. Since I love exercising to fast paced music, I have also mastered the steps of this generation, so I can do Azonto, Kukere, Shoki and Shakiti. I was at a private party recently in honour of a good friend. There were no phones or cameras allowed. For three hours, all the women put their worries on hold and just danced. A dancing competition was part of the fun, and I won, beating a much younger competitor hands down. My body ached no end the next day but it felt good!
  1. I have good friends. There are men and women who take great pride in saying, ‘I have no friends’. I am not one of them. Yes, I have had bad experiences with so-called friends in the past. Yet it is also important to recognize that they were never truly friends in the first place. I have friends who I know will always be there for me, who laugh with me, cry with me, pray for me and love me the way I am, and I love them in return. I don’t see most of them all the time because they are far away, but our spirits are connected. True friends will always stand by you. Fair weather friends will go away with the seasons.


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