LOCATING THE STRENGTH FROM WITHIN

Ify Onyegbule
Posted September 30, 2011 from Nigeria

My vision is simply helping people find the strength from within. Life has been one of bittersweet experience for me, having to grow up in a setting where no one was responsible for mentoring you. I learnt the hard way from the things that happened to those around me – family, friends and neighbors.

I would say I know exactly what it is to be told you cannot do something or be who or what you want to be because some people perceive that you will excel so they do everything they can to rubbish whatever confidence you are trying to build.

In the course of my job, I remember walking up to a superior and told him point blank that he was making a mistake silencing this voice because it is destined to be and I make bold to say that the idea of talking down on me or my ideas died that instant.

Sometimes we are influenced mostly by the things and people around us so it’s important for us to be weary of whom and what we surround ourselves with, sometimes these influences can come from the ones we love and those we think truly love us.

Rita lives on my street and her story smells of parental ignorance and greed, she was married off at 15years of age with promises from her “oldman” husband that he would send her to school but he never did, she has 4 children without the knowledge of what her rights are.

Rita has continued to live in fear and rejection and once said to me that she has never looked her husband in the face from the 1st time he had sex with her, I was stunned when she said she had never loved or felt loved before and I said to her… “discover the strength from within”, does anyone know what it feels like to be tapped on the back to get on the bed when its time to have sex? It is that bad, she may not be able to find that voice because of the fear that her parents had built in her and the society’s impression of a woman who leaves an abusive marriage.

Rita’s story is one of many and it stirred in me the spirit to interact and motivate the other Ritas in my community, its about being a light, no matter how small, it will illuminate the path in a dark tunnel. Im a strong optimist about women finding their voices and acting fast on it, because it is something that needs nurturing.

I desire to be part of a community that is very aware of their basic rights duties and obligations. One where Rita or me can speak with other women and draw inspiration from.

Becoming a Voice of our Correspondent will put me at a variety of advantages, it will first and foremost get my voice on the world platform as I echo the voice of the voiceless in my community.

I want to also use the opportunity to expand my frontier, imbibe the technique of writing stories that really tell the story and presenting programmes in such a way that my viewers and listeners are carried along without missing out on information.

It will also help me locate and reach out to other women facing similar challenges through networking, with the hope of finding a lasting solution to the issues.

Being on this platform for 1month has been like I have been here for long time, having to read stories and experiences of other women. Just this Wednesday, Sept 28th Mamalaw and I had a good chat on health issues on my radioshow, she talked about Diabetes and shared with us what it was like when she was diagnosed, that went a long way and I would say WorldPulse made it happen and im sincerely grateful for WP and all the women involved.

I also believe that being a VOC will help point me in the direction of connecting people in want and need here to those who can help their situations.

For me it’s about being that light that illuminates the path in a dark tunnel!

Voices of Our Future Application: Your Vision

Comments 18

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Adepeju (Mabadeje)
Sep 30, 2011
Sep 30, 2011

Awww Ify, you should have mailed us on the time your interview with mamalaw was going to air, I would have done everything to listen and call in :-) Keep supporting women the way you do, along with you, i believe that every woman has an inner strength waiting to be located. Well done dear and all the best to us all!

Ify Onyegbule
Sep 30, 2011
Sep 30, 2011

Ohhhh myyyy...didnt remember to post it here but as i told her, its just the beginning of what we will be doing together and im hoping to bring other women from here who can make it on the show. Thanks for your concern.

Stella Paul
Sep 30, 2011
Sep 30, 2011

Dear Ify

To help people find the strength from within is the best possible way to help! Its like wakening the inner self, and I wish you all the very best in that. I am sure you will make it to the VOF 30. You deserve it! .

Ify Onyegbule
Oct 01, 2011
Oct 01, 2011

Stella,

Its a very poignant thing to help people discover who they are. I "found" myself early in life because i was true to myself, not everyone gives themselves the opportunity to do that so i try ot encourage people in that direction cos i know it helps. thanks for taking time to read through my post.

Usha K.C.
Sep 30, 2011
Sep 30, 2011

Dear Ify,, it's good to read your post. I admire you r courage for sharing the story of Rita .

keep helping dear, my heart and soul are with you!!

love and hug

Ify Onyegbule
Oct 01, 2011
Oct 01, 2011

Usha,

Rita's story is a touching one and i wondered what she feels each time her "husband" had sex with her without the feeling of love as she put. I hope all the "Ritas" around the world will find that strength to move on in life.

Love

Ify

Rumbidzai Dube
Oct 01, 2011
Oct 01, 2011

We have all been given a chance to illuminate our light in the dark and I hope even if we do not get to be VOF correspondents we will still use the Pulse to get our voices heard. Best of luck.

Ify Onyegbule
Oct 01, 2011
Oct 01, 2011

MaDube,

I appreciate you follwing me here on PW and reading my posts. We must as women continue to be the light no matter how tiny it can be, we just have to continue to encourage ourselves. You are equally doing a good job. Thanks for sharing!

Celine
Oct 03, 2011
Oct 03, 2011

Hi Ify, Good to read your piece and to know that you are part of this. I know you with your presentations showcasing women ans all they contribute to Nigerian society. Keep up the good work. I am having a skill building workshop for women with disabilities in Lagos. Hope to invite you to one of our programmes someday.

Best, Celine

Ify Onyegbule
Oct 03, 2011
Oct 03, 2011

Thanks for your comment and compliment. I will love to be a part of it and will be glad if i get the details on time so that i can plan ahead. Its nice to be here and meeting women like you on WP.

Regards,

Ify

Osai
Oct 03, 2011
Oct 03, 2011

Dear Ify,

Your story got me thinking about that song by Whitney Houston, 'The Greatest Love of all': "I believe the Children are our future..." but the stanza that captures you best is:

"I decided long ago Never to walk in anyone's shadow If I fail, if I succeed At least I lived as I believe No matter what they take from me They can't take away my dignity"

Yours is a triumph over adversity, early disappointments and challenges. Yet you did not despair into self-pity, bitterness or depression. You have now gone further to help others who are going through similar troubles or worse situations. You are the phoenix that has arisen from the ashes. Keep up the good work and hold on to your dream because no one else can make it happen but yourself. I guess you know that already!!!

Best wishes, Osai

Ify Onyegbule
Oct 03, 2011
Oct 03, 2011

Osai...you summed it up...no one can walk and live a borrowed dream! Its nice to be on a platform where we can interact as women. All best my sister!

Ify

Yenly Thach
Oct 05, 2011
Oct 05, 2011

Ify,

You deserve it! It was so kind of you for sharing the story of an innocent voice. Please continue to be their voices and believe in your path. You can do it! Thank you so much for your support and great help! I truly appreciate every minute of it! Cheers!

Best regards,

Yenly

Ify Onyegbule
Oct 05, 2011
Oct 05, 2011

Thanks a lot Yenly, your comments are appreciated. We are in this together!

Regards,

ify

AyeshaM
Oct 09, 2011
Oct 09, 2011

Warm greetings dear Ify!

Thank you for sharing Rita's story & your own. Keep speaking up & speaking out!

I wish you the best of luck with VoF!

Peace, Ayesha

Ify Onyegbule
Oct 10, 2011
Oct 10, 2011

Thanks Ayesha for the good wishes, im just hoping that the voice of women get the echo it deserves and being a VOF will help me do that in so many ways. No matter the outcome, im on this platform and i will keep the fire burning!

Regards,

ify

nadinerose
Oct 10, 2011
Oct 10, 2011

"Sometimes we are influenced mostly by the things and people around us so it’s important for us to be weary of whom and what we surround ourselves with, sometimes these influences can come from the ones we love and those we think truly love us."

This is a great line. I love that you are bringing to light all of these struggles and sharing already what you are doing. This is amazing!

Ify Onyegbule
Oct 10, 2011
Oct 10, 2011

Nadin,

Its about letting the light shine, sometimes the people around us need us to help bring them out of their shells...in the case of Rita, i actually encouraged her to go on a radio station and share her story and it was actually a hit because people learnt from it lot.

Thanks.

ify