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Reinventing Myself: A Story of Pursuing Passion
Money and Me

Reinventing Myself: A Story of Pursuing Passion

I have always been fond of children. Primarily because they are a clean slate for this thing called life. In them, I see a sea of possibilities and dreams that can be forged—a future! More often than not, whenever I come across a kid, one of the questions I ask them after their name, of course, and the infamous "uko class?" and what they would like to be when they grow up. The majority of us, if not all, have been asked this by our school teachers, our parents, relatives, or random passers-by (like me).

In a life where one could be anything, I wanted to be a teacher—simply because I loved how my teachers treated me? Maybe.

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I wanted to be a doctor because it seemed like the most famous career choice after piloting. Imagine if there was a genie granting all our wishes; we would have more pilots in the world than we do drivers! Well, there were times when I aspired to be a lawyer because of the high regard in which my parents talked about my uncle, a prominent lawyer in Nairobi. The big city. 


I lived through my childhood, hopping unknowingly from one career choice to another. At the time, these were just fancy random words. I had no clue what they meant in depth. This reminds me of my younger brother, who so badly yearned to be an astronaut, and my sister, a neurosurgeon!

As the years went by through primary school and high school, all these dreams started becoming clearer. I had a glimpse of what they entailed and what was required of me to get there. Thus, I delved deeply. Was I a math student, a science student, or an A student? Did I want to be a doctor, a surgeon, a pilot, or a teacher?

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I started narrowing down my choices with these new realizations. I most definitely wanted to dream big. I mean, who doesn't? This also meant making better choices with the subjects I took so that they would be aligned with the career I pursued later in life. My passion was math, but I also had a strong interest in the arts, which were not very popular in my school at the time.

After taking my national exams and doing reasonably well, I was accepted to a city public university. But no, I was not going to be a lawyer like my great uncle, whom I had grown up hearing praises about. I was going to study for a Bachelor of Commerce degree.

I was thrilled to explore the next phase of my life and discover what awaited. The novel experiences, making new friends and becoming a resident of the city. However, living in the campus hostels was not exactly the kind of city life I anticipated. But we are grateful for the shelter. We are taught to be grateful. 

Four years later, having truly been initiated into the Nairobian society and learning about the greatest and most affordable food vendors, Mama Wambo was my personal favorite. Her ugali-matumbo with some cabbage on the side was the greatest. I considered myself a Nairobian for I knew the streets of the CBD like the back of my hand and frequented Gikomba for the finest trends in stylish yet reasonably priced outfits, without forgetting the life of the party, among other things.

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At 23, I got my first job as an accounting assistant. Entering a new phase of my life filled me with excitement. I gave my all at work since I was so driven and ambitious. They conducted our annual salary reviews, and we occasionally received bonuses and raises. I felt like I was thriving. It was ideal since I had graduated from living in a bedsitter and was now living in a one-bedroom flat in a decent neighborhood, with most of my neighbors being my peers. I furnished my small abode with what was fairly good enough furniture and enjoyed life as it came. I would say that life has been good for me.

The company I worked for was also growing, and everything seemed perfect. We were happy. I had joined the Sacco which was the perfect way to save money since I had a designated amount that was deducted from my salary before it even hit my account. This ensured that I would never miss a payment towards my savings. 

In the fifth year of my journey, I began to feel a sense of dissatisfaction. I was no longer very excited to get to the office. Sure, I was grateful for the opportunity, but deep within, I felt that something was missing. I had an okay life in the eyes of my friends and peers, but deep down, I could not help but feel a void so big within me.

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I was frustrated because I could not talk to anyone about it, lest I be deemed an ungrateful brat. I felt that no one would understand. I knew I was no longer fulfilled. I needed a way out and to find my purpose.

As I am battling with all of this, I am 28 years old. Ideally, I should be more settled by this age, with clear goals and a path that is not as foggy as what I was wading through. With every passing day, I was convinced that I was in the wrong place and that I needed to find a way out. This was not ideal. No one would get it. I kept tormenting myself with this truth. I needed to find my purpose.

One afternoon, after what I would call a mind-boggling soul search, I spoke to one of the ladies I regarded as my mentor. She was gracious enough to listen, and to my surprise, I did not feel judged as the ungrateful brat, the confused 28-year-old, or this lost soul, as I had on many occasions labeled myself. 

We dived deep into all that I was going through, trying to get to the root of this so that we could then devise a plan.

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From this teen who liked to keep to herself, I would still say I love my space, but I had developed a taste for art. I found myself so invested in wanting to know how to put different colors together, different fabrics, and different colors together. Over time and after some introspection, I realized that I had played interior designer in most of my friends' houses. I had developed such a bursting urge to explore my artistic side. The number of hours I had spent online looking up different designs and ideas And to acknowledge how much joy this brought me. I knew for sure that this was the path that I wanted to take.


I started looking up institutions, finding out how much taking a course from scratch would cost, the duration, and factoring in all the things at stake. 

Six months later, through my savings at the company Sacco, I was able to enroll and start school. Most of the people who heard this were taken aback. "You mean you are starting afresh?" "But why?" "Don't you think this is a waste of all the years you have had and the experience in the job you have?" "What if there are no jobs for you when you are done?" I was bombarded by all these questions, but I was certain that nothing I said would guarantee their approval of my decision or my choice in this drastic career change.

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My mom even pointed out that I should be dreaming of pursuing my master's degree rather than taking on a whole new career path. But I had made up my mind. It was my fulfillment, or what some may call a calling vs. the sure path, which was already seemingly mapped out.

Currently, I am in my 3rd year, just about to get to my final year of studying a Bachelor of Science in Clothing, Textiles, and Interior Design. The anticipation of starting my own company and the help I have received from all the firms I have occasionally interned at and my wonderful friends for allowing me in on their projects and referring me to their friends for projects have been nothing short of a blessing.

I am happy now. Content.

Will it take some time to build myself up? Most definitely! But as long as I am on the path to pursue what is most fulfilling, then I am willing to put my nose to the grindstone.

I excitedly walk this walk, confident that I am where I ought to be, and that I can now take the world by storm and proudly leave a mark while I enjoy what I do the most. I am grateful for the opportunities that have come my way and for the support, I have received from those around me. Their belief in my abilities has given me the confidence to pursue my passions wholeheartedly. With each project and referral, I am reminded of the incredible potential that lies ahead, and I am motivated to continue pushing myself to new heights.

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