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SHADES OF FAILURE
ADERONKE ADETONA

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Get in here girl!

That was my friend's first opening speech when she called me. What now? I murmured. I drag my feet to the lecture theatre, Kicking each stone as I pass them. I don't like Afternoon Lectures. What would it cost them to Reschedule this class? The stupid department, I was ranting to myself. The place was so noisy; there were about 200 students in the class. Some were gisting and shouting while Others had a sober look on them.  Immediately I sat down; the lecturer came in. He started introducing a topic to us. I wasn't listening. Why did you call me in that manner I faced my friend, it's not like the course is that serious to start with, I whisper yelled. Our result is out! That grabbed my attention. I thought It was going to take months for that to happen since that has been the usual practice of the school. Which of them?

Chm and bio. She replied.

Have you checked? How was it? I bombarded her with a lot of Questions. I would tell you after class; she wasn't about to allow me to distract her from listening to the lecturer now. I hate suspense! You know I hate it!. Why won't you tell me now? It’s not like I carried it or something? I looked from her to the lecturer; the man was trying to say something I didn't hear. Something about us reducing the noise or he leaves. I didn't care. She didn't reply to me until I heard a faint ‘Yes.’ I wanted to tell her to stop joking until I saw the look on her face. Damn, she was serious. Wow, I said. I didn't know what to say; Another friend answered Wow? To a 3 unit course? It's that what you are supposed to say! Am I supposed to be crying? Is that how am suppose to feel? I replied. At that point, I don't even know how to react.

Wish you could hear a thousand thoughts going on in my head. I pretended nothing happened and started paying attention to the lecturer once again, but my train of thought was somewhere else “This is all a sick joke” They are kidding. You all should laugh and tell me it's a prank and tell me to relax and stop being too serious.  I swear I Read for that course. Heaven knows I did. At the end of the lecture. I need to take a look myself, I told them. Catch Ya later. I left them to see for myself. It's a mistake, how am I going to do this, there is nowhere to add it if I need to retake the course, God. Why now?. It's at the back of the HOD's door if it's your result you all are looking for.

Matric no 01 let me check, please...Its an F. It all dawned on me. They weren’t kidding. Holy cow! I did carry the course. What now? What next? I was thinking out loud; I can't sit for this course in finals. What if I didn't pass it again? Would that mean I would spill? No way! Heavens Forbid. Not on my mummy's not enough salary. I was battling with it in my head watching people who were rolling on the floor, crying. At that point I was feeling numb, I didn't know whether to cry or laugh. Or maybe I should do both.

I can't even bring myself to do any. I am emotionless as fuck. Permit me to use the word, but that’s how I feel in reality. It's okay I tell myself, You are a strong woman I affirmed, but my thoughts weren't agreeing. That course is hard, ‘Don’t go for it. Don’t say I didn't warn you’ those words keep ringing in my head. They were everything that was said to me before coming to school. Who am I going to tell now? They won't listen. They are all going to say to me I told you so. I left the place for my hostel. The only place I can get comfortable in my bed. I would sleep and move on. It won't matter if I don't think about it at least that's what I told myself, but it wasn't as easy as I thought. It was until I got to my hostel to write about my day every emotion come flooding. I was crying. I did. I needed it for my sanity. I wiped my tears away until there isn't a single drop left. It’s not the end of the world girl! Nothing is! And nothing deserves your tears now. Show the world what you got! That was my new mantra. I resolved that very moment, no matter how bad my situation gets. Nothing ever deserves my tears. I remember those words in motivation speech. If you didn't fail at any point in your life, you have not grown as a person; you have just been adding numbers to your years. Fail forward! When life throws you a curve ball ask if that's the only thing it got? The reason I felt that way that day wasn't because carryover was a life sentence; it was because society has brainwashed our thinking to accept failure as a death sentence. Get an excellent grade that's the only way you can have a better life than your parents, that's the only way you can be a good daughter. In a bid to be somebody, we took failure as a No No., Nobody is ready to fail. Nobody wants to, but the bitter truth is. If we don't fail at some point in life, we would never have the experience of how to do better, how to move on in bad situations. I am not saying it's ok to fail courses just because we all have to fail at some point. The point I am trying to drive home is how to accept failure. A lot of people are committing suicides because of different things. It's a controversial topic I know, and I would not want to dive into it too. The reality is, 50% of reasons why people are committing suicide or slipping into depression nowadays is because they haven't accepted failure as part of life and Until we are ready to take that fact Failure would be Something we all dread

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