October is a month of celebration in our home. We kicked it off with our wedding anniversary, our Son's birthday, and the grand finale is, my birthday. This year, I am marking my special day by celebrating who I am and sharing a little bit about me.
In this blog post, I will share some experiences, thoughts, and fears that make me who I am today. Check out my other "Her Story" blog posts to learn more about me.
#1: I am German-Nigerian
It took me a while to own and celebrate both parts of my cultural identity. After I moved to the US over seven years ago, it finally became clear that both German and Nigerian cultures have influenced who I am today. My love for family and community is Nigerian, whereas my sense of responsibility at work is very German.
#2: I am a Wife and Mother
The two most important men in my life are my Son and husband. I am very fortunate to be married to someone I have known all my life. It is a very special gift that I never take for granted. Two years ago, we were blessed with our Son. Every day I find comfort in the home we have built for ourselves and our Son.
#3: I get to celebrate my birthday every year with someone special
I am one of those people who was blessed to be born with a birthday mate. My twin sister and I celebrate this wonderful occasion every year. It is very special to have a sibling with whom you share a lot with. One of the questions I get asked the most as a twin is if we can feel the other person's feelings and know if something is wrong. The truth is that there is a special connection that I can't explain.
#4: My sister and I were raised by a single mom
Our Mother gave birth to us in Germany and then moved back to Nigeria with us when we were 18 months old. Growing up was fun and challenging at the same time. I learned many valuable lessons about being a resilient woman from my Mother. When I look at how far my sister and I have come in our lives so far, I can't believe it given how we grew up.
#5: One of my greatest fears is that no one shows up to my "party"
In my job, I get to organize and lead various events. One of my steady fears is that no one will sign up and join. I stop myself from looking at the numbers of how many people signed and enjoy the surprise. I also tell myself that it's not about how many people show up but the value they get from being there.
#6: Working towards my financial goal is one of my motivators
I grew up poor but with some privileges in Nigeria. One promise I made to myself when I moved to Germany at age 15 was that I would be intentional with my finances and work towards building wealth. It started with me saving a very small amount from the small jobs I worked at when I was in university. I have kept my saving discipline going until now. As I earned more money, I set more aside and invested in building the life I desired.
#7: My purpose in life is to support women around me
When people ask me what I am passionate about, I always say, "helping women thrive in their personal and professional lives." I take the forums and platforms I have to connect with other women very seriously. Especially being raised mostly among women, I am a cheerleader for those who are working towards living their best lives.
#8: My Career has taken me places that I never imagined
When I graduated, I had no idea I would be where I am today, almost thirteen years later. I chose to be a program manager in Tech, which was the right path for me. I have gotten to sit in rooms and lead programs I never saw myself leading. Over the past three years, I have had the privilege of leading Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion programs as my contribution to making the world a better place.
#9: I wear my heart on my sleeves
For the longest time, I thought my emotions, empathy, and quickness to tears were weaknesses. I have learned to appreciate that it makes me who I am. Especially with my strong personality, I need to balance it with care for people around me. I accept all the tears that I cry as I feel all the emotions.
#10: I am grateful and proud of how far I have come
Every year around my birthday, I reflect on my life over the past year and the experiences that I have been through. This past year has been filled with many successes in my personal and professional life. It has taken a lot of sacrifices and has taught me a lot.
Final Thoughts - My wish for my new year
One thing that I realized is that I need to start dreaming about my future. I have accomplished many of the big things I had already wished for and planned for. This is a great time to get inspired and refresh my bold goals.