My little niece, Tiaraoluwa, who we call Tiara for short, has been a source of many life lessons to me. If you've known me for a while, you would remember her birth and when she was still crawling and the many experiences I shared about watching her.
I have babysat her for the most part of her two years, and she is both a delight and torture (a parent or an involved uncle or aunt would understand this). She makes me want to hug her and scratch my eyes out at the same time. She makes me want to bawl and laugh out loud simultaneously. However, one thing I am never in doubt of is the fact that I love that girl!
In an earlier post, I mentioned how she teaches me life lessons, and I promised to share one of such experiences. Well, here goes.
My baby, as I call her most days, is apparently going to be an extrovert. She loves the outdoors and the accompanying sights and sounds. She gets thrilled by them and grabs any opportunity to indulge in them. One avenue for such indulgence is the balcony. I'll come back to the balcony.
As we know, the pandemic situation has seen schools and crèches locked, and so Tiara is stuck at home all day long. You can imagine how frustrating that would be for her. It is just a matter of short time before she gets bored with her mini piano, the TV and the downloaded nursery rhymes and just wants to go out into the world and see things.
So, back to the balcony.
I love wide spaces, and once in a while, I too get tired of my room and want to see things, so I go to the balcony. Usually, 8 out of 10 times, Tiara wants to go there with me. She says 'I want to go' and beckons on me to open the door so she can join me there, but that is not what is interesting. That is not the life lesson.
Usually, to cure her boredom, Tiara gathers whatever she can find and plays with them. It could be some pencils, a bag she dug out from God-knows-where, her toys, some slippers, or someone's scarf; practically anything that catches her fancy. It could be anything from anywhere.
She plays with them, entertaining herself the best way she can until she sees me going to the balcony. Remember I said she beckons on me to open the door so she could join me?
Here's what happens when I open the door.
She goes back and packs all her playthings, all of them. She leaves no one behind. Not one.
Here is the life lesson:
While she wants to see and hear things from the balcony, she goes prepared in case the boredom follows her there, in case the balcony doesn't do what it promises.
While she follows her heart, she carries her own entertainment. She ensures that she is not caught bored or without entertainment, wherever it is her heart is leading her to.
While going places, while travelling the world, while travelling through life, always carry your own entertainment. Always stay prepared to enjoy your own company, always take with you your favourite things. Always take along something that spells home, with you.
This might not mean so much to you, but for me, being someone scared of boredom when with people, it is something I have learned and taken note of. I tend to get disappointed with some people's company, and this life lesson helps me stay ready.
Instead of getting annoyed with the lack of exciting conversations, I can fiddle with my twine, doodle, get lost in a book, listen to the song presently on repeat, or write down my thoughts.
By watching Tiara, I have learned to go to places with a bit of home so that I am always at home, and never caught bored.