“Answer Only to God!” by Sandy Daley – RELATIONSHIPS feature
As little children, we are taught to love and respect our parents and elders to the utmost, never questioning them, only wanting their approval on every wrong or right move made by us. As an adult however, I know that the life that God has allowed me to have, belongs only to me, and the only approval that I require at the end of the day is God’s, ditching the childish behaviour that I had previously.
Many people however, still struggle on a daily basis to find their “true selves“, without hearing their mothers or fathers voices in their heads. In his last piece of advice to his son Laertes, Polonius said, “This above all: to thine own self be true, And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man“. Happily, I must admit that I live by this quote, as my life, the one given to me by God, belongs to me alone: not my children, my immediate family and friends, and definitely not my intimate partners. My life is mine to live as I see fit!
Mind you, it is not a selfish way to live, however it is an empowering move that enables you to feel entirely responsible for all choices made by you, needless of what others might think, believe, wish to believe, whisper behind your back, or even say out loud. Are you living your own life? Do you allow friends, family or foe to influence you in your life choices? Do you only answer to God? The decision to live my life this way, allows a calm, secured feeling that “I have done my best and let the chips fall where they may”. Incidentally, even career choices can cause strife and heart ache, as going against the grain of “what you are expected to be” or “why are you not a nurse or a teacher?” can create many issues even within a family unit: especially a Caribbean family unit.
“But why is it that you never became a nurse or a teacher like some of your relatives, or even just do something else?” many have asked me. “You are different, bwoy.” Whenever these comments are made, I then focus on the positive comments made by total strangers who say, “You know that I read your column every week Sandy. I don’t agree with you every time, but at least I get you: and yu funny as heck. Keep on writing girl.” If I were not a strong-minded individual, I am sure that you would have seen me somewhere on the streets of Toronto, donning a nursing or teacher’s aide uniform, as I attempt to live my life not for me, but for someone else.
Don’t get me wrong, these are great jobs and professions: if you have the stomach for it. Of course, because I know that I will be the very first one to faint at the sight of blood, and taking care of other people’s children for a full 8 hours is not my cup of tea, I refrained from becoming a nurse or a teacher. It gives me such pleasure, such joy, such inner satisfaction, to open up the dialogue that seems to be missing from many a household today: and that is my contribution, my purpose in this world.
Which brings me right back to where I began, as only through my quest to follow my heart and answer only to God, am I able to make a difference to a few. Live your own life my friends, and follow your gut and your instincts. Believe in your abilities and just take a chance on yourself, as you never know what the outcome will be.