Happy New Year to Us All!!!

By Uche Amunike

It’s 2021 and I give all glory to Him that gives and preserves life. I count myself lucky and indeed blessed to witness the crossover from 2020 to 2021! Thank you, sweet Jesus!!! Being alive is a miracle and I also thank God for every member of my family, my dear colleagues here in Fides and indeed, in every Media house in Anambra and beyond, the Fides Management,
my friends and of course, all our readers and subscribers! I welcome you all to the New Year and pray that all our hearts’ intentions be met  by His grace through Christ our Lord. Amen! It’s been just one week into the new year and yet, so many deaths have been recorded already.

We have seen road accidents arising from the impatience of drivers and their penchant to exceed appropriate speed limits. Looking at the pictures of most of these vehicles involved in such mishaps makes me ask myself why people just don’t get it, until it’s really too late.

That is when the meaning of the words, ‘It’s better to be late than be late’, begin to sink in. Apart from the road mishaps that have claimed lives, our country lost people to the dreadful Coronavirus recently. As we know, we have been hit with another outbreak of the virus. Painful though it is, Nigerians are yet to believe and accept that that shit is real.  This is going to be a topic for another day.

However, the earlier we all begin to understand the need to stay safe and live right, the better it will be for everyone concerned. Covid is real. I believe it has also come to stay. We need to start cultivating the habit of  living by the rules like other countries.

I’m talking about washing our hands regularly, sanitizing our hands and surroundings as much as we can, wearing our face masks wherever we go and insisting that people around us wear theirs too; feeding properly in order to ensure that our immunity is high enough to save us if we are unfortunately hit by the virus, etc. We also need to learn how to wear the face mask properly.

Most people just wear it without covering their noses. Some wear it, just placed under their jaws. Some others wear the flat one that nearly suffocates them as it leaves no room for breathing properly. These are things we should take seriously. Covid 19 pandemic is fully on course once more and the virus is seriously affecting and killing more and more people globally.

My point is, if we didn’t take its first wave last year seriously, we need to take this second one more seriously. Remember, this is a new year and there is so much to do. There is so much to achieve.

This brings me to New year resolutions. Have you made yours? And if you have, do you intend to keep it? Ok, maybe I should ask this: ‘What was your new year resolution last year? Were you able to keep it?’ You see, part of the reason  why most of us find it hard to keep these resolutions is that we make unachievable resolutions.

The goal is to see that we do something we’ve always yearned to do but haven’t been able to do in the previous year for some reason. So, I’ll advise that while we make plans about what our resolutions will be, we try to set the bar not too high, but within achievable standards. I saw the WhatsApp status of my very good friend, Henry Duru the other day. The message on his status was, ‘My New Year Resolution.

Any Suggestions?’ As soon as I read it, I replied, ‘Save more money this year’. We discussed back and forth about so many things concerning the culture of saving. I told him that my three New Year resolutions for 2021 are to give alms more, live healthier and save more. I told him about all my plans for the year and how far I had gone already to set them rolling.

I think we chatted back and forth for over 20mins about the need for us to build and indeed work on our saving strength. No matter how much one earns, there are many ways to save for rainy days. It takes a lot of discipline, but it’s really doable.

The economic crunch has really made life unbearable for Nigerians, but then again, we are born survivors and owe it to ourselves and families to keep our heads up in order not to be swallowed by the hard times.

I did mention that I will give alms more this year. I meant every word. That’s my second new year resolution. So help me God!

My third resolution in the new year is to live and feed healthier. Health, they say, is wealth. So many of us are busy chasing our dreams and going about our day to day struggles with little or no attention given to our health. A lot of us do not feed healthy.

We end up eating junk when we manage to find the time to slow down. Going for routine medical checks is a luxury for so many Nigerians. Little wonder we are always slumping and dying. We are always the last to know that we have certain medical conditions. So many are diabetic without having an idea.

Before they find out, their health conditions must have worsened. The hypertensive ones feel all the symptoms and yet run to the patent chemist store closest to him to buy drugs, instead of going for a proper medical check in the hospital. Some women are already in their fifties but do not know what it means to do a Pap Smear test!

Before you know it, they are diagnosed with Cervical Cancer. Most women, including me hardly remember to do a simple thing as checking for lumps in the breast regularly in order to detect early breast cancer signs. I could go on and on. It is really important to take our health seriously and it is my 2021 resolution to visit my doctor more often than I did last year.

Life is truly short and we need to help ourselves to live as long as possible by taking our health seriously and being disciplined about how we live our lives. I did mention feeding healthy.  There are some kinds of food we need to stay away from especially when we are above the age of 40.

These are also the kinds of information or teaching we can get from our doctors if we pay regular visits for our own good. Having said that, I intend to keep the above two resolutions while doing everything possible to see that my aim for setting them as hurdles to scale is achieved.

What about you? Have you made any resolution? It’s ok if you haven’t, considering that we just started off in the new year. I’ll however advice that you try and make them now, while ensuring that they are achievable. No need making resolutions you cannot keep. I wish you luck as you go about doing that.

My prayer in the new year is that all that our hearts desire will be fulfilled by the Almighty and that we shall not witness hardship, ill health or bad luck in 2021. If last year was tough for you, I pray this year will turn out better. If it was good for you, then my prayer is that it also gets even better.

Let’s all try and be more prayerful in the new year. Most times we just don’t ask God to grant our needs. We need to get closer to Him so that it makes everything easy. God sees our every pain and tear. He knows of our daily struggles. He understands our every sigh.

We just need to be closer to Him and make Him our closest friend. That way, we’re super sure that every prayer will be answered by Him who has actually told us that all we need to do is ask and we shall receive. It’s in His word and He never lies.

I welcome you all once again to the new year and just before I sign out, remember to stay safe always. Covid is real! God bless you all!!!

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