As a writer, music has proved to be one of my greatest inspirations over the years. I’m a music lover and combining this with my self imposed title of unrepentant media addict, you can imagine how I spend a great part of each day listening to music. In particular, I have a soft spot for Nigerian music. I grew up listening to all sorts of music across different genres and from different parts of the world and perhaps that is why I’m extra interested in the Nigerian music scene as I’m constantly on the look out for new material that can compete internationally.

Iyanya recently released an EP titled Signature after his switch from MMMG to Mavin. On this EP, you’ll find a song, which inspired what you are about to read. The second song on the EP, which was also the second single released is titled ‘Hold On’. For those of you who have sworn off Nigerian music or Iyanya as an artist, forgive me for being the one to drag you back down this road but I believe, if not the song, reading this post will justify the trip.

On the first listen, you’ll probably find yourself asking what on earth is going on in the song and that’s not surprising not with lyrics like those below (from the chorus).

Hold on
When e enter
You go feel am
Make you no rush this love
Hold on
When e enter
You go feel am
Hold on
When its inside
You go feel am
Make you no rush this love

Innuendo much? Well, more like a gimmick from Iyanya and his team to get your attention and I must say, it worked – at least for me. After I heard that hook, I found myself paying more attention to the lyrics of an Iyanya song (something I never thought I’d ever do again after listening to his second album). Here’s the second verse:

Take your time you know
Love be like Russian roulette you know
I know say your time dey go
But that no mean say romance be true love
Oh baby take your time you know
Cuz when love hold you na there you go know
For now lets chill as we proceed na there you go know

Chukwuma, e break your heart,
Eugena, she thief your man
And if person fit to take your man
Sorry to say that is not your man
Wetin be your own go be your own
If no be your own, leave am alone

We take it one step at a time
We go get there somewhere somehow

Iyanya is basically talking to the ladies out there asking them to be patient and wait for ‘true love’. This helps to explain the hook a little bit more because I know I have tried several times and failed at explaining what true love is and not to talk about how exactly it feels. And so, as elementary as it sounds, I must give credit to Mr. Iyanya for capturing this emotion the way he did.

When e enter. You go feel am”

Several female friends and acquaintances have come up to me recently to lament their misadventures in the world of relationships. I have friends as young as 24 and others as young as 32 who came to me claiming to have given up on men and the entire process of finding love. Why? Because as far as they’re concerned, love isn’t for them. It’s like an endless torture, one heartbreak after the other. Just when they think they’ve found the one, he goes on to shatter their fragile hearts into even smaller pieces than the person before him.

My message to them has been and will always be the same – Hold On. I’ve said it here, time without number, I do not believe in regret. It’s such a silly emotion and a time wasting one too but unfortunately, we live in a world where we’ve been conditioned to focus a lot more on the negative. Turn on your TV or heck; jump on your Twitter timeline, despite all the good that’s happening in the world, people manage to focus on the negative. Even when the world comes together to celebrate something good, some special trolls figure out ways to dampen the mood by cooking up negative information to draw attention to themselves.

And so, I understand why it’s easier to focus on the fact that a guy who broke up with you after dating for five years wasted your life rather than thanking your stars you didn’t end up married to him and stuck in a loveless marriage possibly for the rest of your life. I understand why at 26, you’d rather believe all men are scum because the last two you dated ended up cheating on you instead of understanding and focusing on how those relationships have helped you better define the kind of guys you need in your life. I understand that this dreaded body count you’re so obsessed with keeps rising with every heartbreak and you’re not closer to finding your prince. Trust me, I understand it so much that I took advantage of it when I was still in the world.

Regret is such a powerful emotion that if you don’t manage it properly, it takes total control of you and makes you even more vulnerable to the same things you claim to be regretting. So a guy cheated on you with a close friend and that’s more than enough reason for you to alienate all your close female friends when the next guy comes along. What if the new guy turns out to be a lying married man and one of your alienated friends knows this and could have warned you? Regret is very deceptive; it masks real issues and causes us to focus on unimportant things.

This being said, it’s not an easy emotion to control. As you can tell from Iyanya’s lyrics, one requires a truckload of patience to be able to conquer regret and patience is even harder to preach when it’s up against something unknown. Telling someone to hold on for five months for a new job is way easier than telling them to hold on for X days for this thing called love that you can’t really explain more than ‘when e enter, you go feel am’.

Iyanya likened love to a game of Russian roulette and I must say the man is spot on. If regret is as powerful as I tried to describe it above, just imagine how true love feels – the things it can do to you and the things it can make you do. Christians will talk about God displaying his love for us by sending his only son to die on the cross – just imagine the emotion behind all of that. Now, do you expect it to come easily? I think not. I feel too many of us have over simplified what true love is – we have reduced it to common actions or events such as social media PDA or buying of gifts, lavish proposals and weddings; forgetting that this emotion is so powerful and unique that it cannot exist the exact same way in two people.

And so, whether you’re 21 or 35, if your body count is 0 or 50, if you’ve completely given up on love or you’re still out there trying to understand why it just seems like nobody really wants you, my message to you today is, put Iyanya’s Hold On single on repeat all day sit tight. Spend some time to evaluate your journey into love so far. It might be difficult at first but as you continue to dwell on each experience, you’ll understand why you had to go through them and what sort of lessons you should take out and focus on.

Do you agree or disagree with anything you’ve read here? Got questions, experiences to share? Please use the comment section below to express you.

Responses

    1. thetoolsman Post author
      Maybe.. maybe not.. I wouldn’t think of it as a need.. I believe everyone deserves the opportunity to experience something so amazing.. Will everyone experience it? Like I said.. maybe.. maybe not…
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    1. thetoolsman Post author
      And that’s understandable.. Even those who’ve been privileged to experience it find it hard to describe.. Like wth is butterflies in your tummy or.. ‘when e enter, you go feel am’… I think it’s better experienced than explained and this makes it even more frustrating when you don’t have it…
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  1. Deevadoc
    Haven’t been here in a while. But the topic was catchy so I decided to click. This is beautiful Toolsman. I hope that people can let go of regrets and pain and look forward in hope, waiting for the for the real deal.
    I like that you also touched on how people now liken love to pda and iPhones and sex. How shortsighted.
    Now running off to listen to this ‘inspirational’ song.
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  2. CeeCee
    I am a romantic and somewhere deep inside, we all are. No matter how much we want to give up, sometimes we can help ourselves. We are wired for love, that’s why we keep coming back, despite heartbreaks and losses. It may take some work to open yourself up again to love, but romance can show up in places you never imagined, and feelings can develop unexpectedly.

    Many people who had given up on love surprised themselves and found they could fall in love again. The human heart, however, damaged, still can start beating again under the right circumstances.

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    1. thetoolsman Post author
      Very well said. Like I told someone this morning, it’ll take a whole lot for anyone to completely give up on love. We say it, whine and cry when we get frustrated but when the right person comes along, we forgive and forget and just let love do its thing. The whining and wallowing in regret part can and should be avoided…
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      1. CeeCee
        While we might not be able to avoid the whining and wallowing in regret part. We can indulge a little, grieve and then move on, move on to much better things.
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  3. Morris
    Hmmm, I have fallen in love twice… And i do not regret any of them. I wish what we have didn’t have to end, but I don’t regret it.

    I do hope the next one is my final bus-stop, because, regrets aside, It takes Energy, and i shamefully pride myself of being lazy.

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    1. thetoolsman Post author
      lol shamefully pride yourself on being lazy.. I do get what you mean tho. The entire process of getting to know a new person can be quite energy zapping and whats more annoying is the the fact that there are no guarantees.. Thats why a lot of people end up compromising senselessly..
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  4. Defemi
    Spot on! Reading this piece made it seem like I told you what to write. Lol. Funny enough, I totally didn’t think much of that Iyanya’s song. I was just like “this one has come with his hoe behaviour”. In all, this is refreshing to read.
    P.S. I’m holding on o 😐😐😐
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  5. Jojo
    Really interesting read! Great job!!! Quite recently, I have come to desire stability over “true love”. This whole “tell me about yourself” after being in a long ass relationship gets really boring.
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  6. Glow
    Thank you for this Toolsman.
    I made a conscious decision not to regret anything that has ever happened in my life. This write up is like a confirmation to what I keep hearing (honestly, sometimes I get tired) about not giving up.
    @Morris, you’re not alone in the “laziness zone” o. Lol…
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  7. Mayree
    To say that true love is on short supply is an understatement and I have more often than not been accused of having my head in the clouds thinking such thing exists. Good to know someone else also thinks so too.
    Now how long one will have to wait…thats the question. While we wait and strive in every manner to be loveable ourselves, Baba God please be a boo-provider. Can i get an Amen?
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  8. JanJan
    The part about alienating your friends after a few betrayals jumped at me most.I am the girl who can now count her girlfriends on one hand thanks to men. Body count has never worried me but now I’m holding out on sex and dating for year because it is exhausting to keep looking. So I’m in the phase where I’m taking a year off to work on myself. In the process, I’ve taken up new hobbies to occupy myself. As if working and schooling isn’t strenuous enough. interestingly, now that I’m not looking, more people are expressing interest and they just feel like nuisances rather than excite me. I don’t regret any of my past relationships though, I’m rather glad for the lessons. And more importantly I realized how much I’m willing to give even after being hurt. I have no problem waiting but do you ever wanna ask God to hurry up?
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    1. thetoolsman Post author
      God doesn’t work on the same timeline with us ( I say this because its the right thing to say and not because I do not feel your pain) the wait can be frustrating…
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  9. Bukola
    Reading this makes me question something I’ve always heard/read..”you can truly love once, if you fall out of love, you probably were not in love”
    This love thing eh eh…abeg, it’s tricky fah! You are completely sure you’ve found the one, next u know…he/she is out..and the cycle begins… The heart becomes so “experienced” from series of lessons you eventually don’t even know when the real thing will enter. Finding love or waiting to be loved is hardwork joor.
    1+
    1. thetoolsman Post author
      I agree.. it is hard work but if you really want to experience this true love, you gotta put in the work.. And sorry to add this but the work doesn’t even stop when you find this love.. you need to keep putting in the work even after…
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  10. Larz
    True love makes you look back to your life answer say to yourself, I am glad we waited until this one.

    This journey of marriage / monogamy is ….. lemme explain it. Imagine you have a 50 piece puzzle/ lego (and no bags or pocket). If you make a solid puzzle that fits then you can carry the 1 piece item for a very long time, if you don’t, carrying multiple items will tire you out sooner rather than later.

    I have dated the male ashewos of these world, the unserious serial daters, the couch potato self and I realise that, they were necessary experience. I learnt so much about myself so much that towards the end of my single period, i began trusting myself and instinct even more. If I didn’t feel right about someone, I don’t even start (or stop if I started) with them, whereas when i was much younger, I will try to give them the benefit of the doubt so I don’t seem picky. That confidence in yourself can be seen a mile away.

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      1. Larz
        Thank you

        Here I see the kicker toolsman. No matter how much you explain these things, if you don’t get it, you don’t get it. If you told me this when I was 21, I won’t get it because I wasn’t ready then. Age isn’t the deciding factor though. I have friends that didn’t get it at 32 and those that got it at 21.

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        1. thetoolsman Post author
          Yup.. definitely not age.. I think experience is a major part of it because what you’re describing isn’t just maturity. It’s like knowing something in theory till you experience it one way or the other.. Some experience through others like when their friends tell them stuff and they might be lucky enough to make do with that bit others just wont get it till they go through the process themselves.
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  11. folarin
    “Regret is very deceptive; it masks real issues and causes us to focus on unimportant things.”
    very well put, Regret makes us blind to the disaster averted rather than being thankful, it takes a deep thought and right association to open our eyes to the positives that comes with every heartbreak.

    nice writeup

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