Five years later, I reflect on that decision to see if there are any regrets, lessons learnt or milestones achieved. I’ll summarize my reflections with the battles I’ve had in the spirit and how far they have led me…
Dreaming of Lions
As a young girl, I was so obsessed with day dreaming. I would dream of my future and how I’d become this great woman that would change my world and make it a better place. I built so many castles in the air and I always had this strong faith that I would never become a failure. I knew what I always wanted and focused fiercely on how best to get it.
By the time I was through with my university education, I fell in love, got married and settled down to having kids. This didn’t seem wrong. It was always a part of my dream. All of a sudden, it felt like an unforeseen power poured a mighty cup of darkness over my sunshine. Then I started having a recurrent nightmare that refused to go away.
Almost each night I went to bed, I’d have this dream. I’d see myself wearing my secondary school (high school) uniform and sitting behind my desk, just like I did every week day for six years as a student. Some wicked teacher would appear and flog me mercilessly on my head for no reason. I would cry and cry until I wake up. At first, I thought nothing of it. When this particular dream began to occur more frequently, I was forced to ponder on what it meant.
At some point, this dream became so real that I’d wake up crying in reality, leaving me depressed the whole day. These dreams were so powerful that in reality, it would wipe any memory I had of obtaining my university degrees. Twice I even had to open my files to hold hard copies of my certificates to prove to myself that I had indeed gone past high school. I told my mother about it and she said,
“Child, you need to pray. I’ve heard about dreams like these before. It’s a sign of stagnation.”
In reality, I was truly stagnating and it translated into everything I did. I lost the zeal to blog or write or do those things I once felt passionate about. Spiritually, I became so weak I couldn’t find the right words to pray, but my heart never seized groaning to God. One of such times, I heard a loud voice in my dream shouting:
“Save me O Lord, for the waters have come up to my neck!”
Then I said to myself, “Hey…I’ve heard those words before. They’re in the Scriptures! Psalm 69:1” (NIV Version) I knew God wanted me to pray in line with that passage. I read through Psalm 69 and the bottom end was laden with curses and punishment for enemies…a prayer I’m often times skeptical about praying. This time however, I felt compelled to obey and pray it I did.
These nightmares stopped after a while and then one day, I had a similar dream. This time, I saw myself in my old secondary school, standing behind a very long queue. We were standing in line to collect our WAEC results and I was regretting why I didn’t arrive on time to be one of those at the front line of the queue. Just as I was wondering what year it would get to my turn to be attended to, a kind-looking teacher walked up to me. With a smile on her face, she called me by my maiden name, just like I was addressed in school. ‘Peace Udo?’ she asked. ‘Yes, Ma.’ I nodded in the affirmative.
‘Come with me,’ she said. ‘You’re not supposed to be here.‘ Then she took me to the very beginning of that queue and put me first in line. Everyone on the line was furious. They grumbled and protested angrily but the lady calmly explained to them that I was never meant to be on the queue in the first place. That it was a mistake because I already had my result but they were all yet to have theirs. They were silent. The lady moved me into the Vice Principal (Academics) office who smiled at me and told me I had been at the end of the queue because all along I was ignorant of the fact that I already had what I was seeking for.
That was the last time I ever dreamed seeing myself in my blue and white secondary school uniform.
But I kept dreaming this time of something else…LIONS…lots of them. I recurrently dreamed of lions standing at my doorway, in the market place…searching for me everywhere, and I kept running to hide from them.
One time last year, I dreamed of Lions in front of my home. They sat by my front door. I stood there contemplating whether to go out or remain indoors. But something rooted my feet to the ground. Was I frozen by fear? Whatever it was, it made the Lion walk up to me for the first time. Its face was so close to mine, I could feel its breath. Its size was so intimidating I wished I could just move my feet and run. The terror in its eyes were unspeakable, yet behind that terror, those same eyes had trickles of kindness lacing it. It gave me a long hard stare…searching, piercing the innermost depths of my heart like it was ripping my every thought, secret and desire and laying it bare. I lay still and surrendered to be swallowed or spared.
This ‘Lion King’ looked back at the rest pack of lions. Just like they had received a secret command, they walked into my home. Then I knew. They wanted to be my guests. They never wanted to eat me. I was one of them!
I’ve always been a dreamer. Dreamers have always met an un-pleasurable fate before they finally discover themselves. Some are thrown in dungeons and kept prisoners for years. Others are thrown into the lions den, but they survive because lions don’t eat lions. No matter how long a dreamer suffers, his/her dreams never dies. The audience will change, but the dream always gets better until it bursts forth into reality.
That has been my story. I died as a scared rabbit and rose as a fearless lion, never to be intimidated no more.
On the fifth anniversary of my blog, I’d like to leave this with my faithful readers whom I fondly call PWEEBERS. Dare to dream. Chase your dream until it becomes a reality. Your story gets more beautiful chapter after chapter just like mine.
Like Joseph, Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, your dungeon will always catapult you to greatness.
I thank God for 5 years of Blogging. I thank you all for sticking with me for 5 years.
God Bless us all.
God bless Peace Ben Williams Blog.