I’ve been reflecting a lot lately; on where I have been, where I am and where I am going.
One of the experiences that stands bright in my memory is my Masters graduation on 19th July 2017.
It was wonderful being back in a city that I called home for 4 years. One that I am remarkably fond of. The weather was great, the streets as beautiful as I remember and my ceremony as stunning as I had imagined it to be.
For the first time in my prefatory year of adulting, I felt accomplished. I recalled the late nights and long trips to the library, the endearing pep talks and occasional tears and all else that culminated to reminders of my resilience and intelligence when I most needed it.
One of the highlights of my graduation ceremony, heck my trip, was the most moving speech from Gary Younge: Author, Broadcaster and Editor-At-Large at The Guardian. I wished I had my phone with me if only to write, record and capture every word.
I quickly learnt that moments wholeheartedly lived and cherished in the present last forever.
Gary Younge told me exactly what I needed to hear as I celebrated this milestone. Today, his timeless advice rings true.
This, in summary, was his address:
- Life is short and precarious: It is fleeting and none knows how much time they have on earth. Be true to yourself, live life to the beat of your own music and trust your power. Follow your hope rather than your fear. Do the things you love and take responsibility for your life. May your life be lived in honest expression. May you be, own and love who you are unequivocally. Hold on to your quirks and remember to laugh!
- You will be remembered for how you made people feel: To this effect, he told us a story of his late mother who though died young, left a strong legacy in all the lives she touched. “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did but people will never forget how you made them feel” (Maya Angelou). Choose peace and choose love as often as you can master the courage to.
- You leave with nothing: Resist attachment to earthly possessions. Don’t be so busy making a living that you forget to live your life because when you leave this world, it’s gon’ be you, your spirit and your memories. Whatever you do and no matter how successful you befittingly are, nourish your Spirit and make the best memories.
Thank you Gary Younge.
Love and Love,