When you stand for nothing you fall for anything end up chasing the wind. I became trapped in my own life satisfying others, doing what has always been expected of me.

I had no say whether I agreed or not, I let other people’s opinions determine how I lived, but the danger was that I started to limit myself. I felt like I was good at nothing.

I let every negative comment thrown at me about my front missing tooth and my body size, get to me, and define me, and who I became.

I was always upset with myself because I couldn’t stand up for myself and just bottled my sorrows pretending like I was okay but deep down I was crying and broken. Consequently, I decided to become something that I wasn’t in order to fit society. Attract cool friends and girls, I started fighting which made me to look strong, became a party animal which made me a cool guy to hang around with and I quit church and became a street smart.

Indeed, I went from zero to hero, the most popular guy many looked up to me for the wrong reasons, I derailed and was out of control. At home, I was no longer obedient, constantly stressing my parents. But I also hated how I lived, I was tired of being a nerd and the thought of causing my parents pain was killing me inside. Because I knew that I was not living my life the way I wanted but for the sake of acceptance and of being cool in front of my mates’ eyes.

One day I was at the tavern with my friends busy drinking where I met ‘uncle Wise’ at the counter, he was a friendly fellow so we just clicked. He told me that he was a farmer and invited me to his house to help him out and promised to pay me. The next morning I went to his house and found him drinking tea all alone so I kindly joined him, that’s when he started telling me about himself. How he lost everything due to alcohol and trying to impress friends.

He told me that he was once a gangster in his youth and one day they did a heist with his four friends and robbed a super market but the heist went wrong, two of his friends were shot dead during the incident. He and his friend Chris managed to flee with some bags of money. Cops were all over the place looking for them, so they decided that one of them should take the fall, the other one will remain behind keeping the money safe and that they will split it after the other one was released.

Uncle Wise took the fall and was arrested for ten years in prison; Chris never visited him even once as agreed. Uncle Wise fought with some inmates in prison which resulted with him losing his eye, after he was released he went to check his friend where he used to stay but

found out that Chris relocated to another place but he heard rumours that he moved to another country. This broke uncle Wise’s heart and made him a big drunk. Uncle Wise called me to his house to warn me about my friends, alcohol and my lifestyle. He told me that I still had a chance to change my life and chose a right life path. What I learned from him was that it’s okay to be different always do what makes you happy, you don’t owe your life to anyone and believe in yourself no matter what.

All thanks to Uncle Wise, ever since that day I changed my life for the better that’s when I realised that life is like a movie with a lot of characters so the choice is ours on which character we want to be. I choose to be me – the church lad. I have accepted myself the way I am and have made peace with it. Now my parents are proud of me again and I’m helping around the community by motivating my mates and the upcoming generation about life, I’m also focused on my future and on being a better guy.


Tell us: What did uncle Wise teach you?