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Life is not always perfect, and it never will be - by P

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Life is not always perfect; it is what you make of it

Nitec student-inmate from institution TM1

3rd Prize

Life isn't about cribbing about the past but about accepting what comes our way with grace. We may not always get what we want. However, we are all gifted with free will. So, we can choose and make good, calculated decisions. As human beings, we are prone to make mistakes, which may be how the term 'human- error’ was coined. Nevertheless, one should remember that to err is what defines us and to forgive is what will take us closer to divinity.

Life is a journey, and like all journey, it has its up and downs. Over the past 30 years, I have taken rides on multiple intensive emotional roller coaster. I have to confess that I am far from being the poster child of perfection nor my life a bed of roses. My lack of experience paired with my immaturity has resulted in me being institutionalised at my prime age of 22 and fill this day, I am still manoeuvring through the delicateness of imprisonment. Most importantly, I have realised that the hardest journeys are always the most valuable and the best teacher available.

Growing up, I was the complete opposite of responsibility, even though I was the only child in my family. During my teenage years, I wreaked havoc and terrorized my parents becoming the reason for their heartaches. Then I moved on, unintentionally to break my girlfriend's heart, who I had difficulty committing to, ultimately rendering myself as an unreliable partner. Even when she invested nothing else but her unconditional love and care in me. Somehow, I remained stuck in the vicious cycle of a life fuelled by crime and disorder. At the end, she moved on.

Upset and frustrated with myself for being a pain and burden to the people around me, I reach deep inside of me and looked for answers. It was while I had hit rock bottom that I made the decision to ascend out of the muddled depressing mental abyss of self-pity that I had wallowed in. I manifested enough courage so that I could take that first step towards changing myself into a new leaf. This was not easy for me, but I took courage from Muhammad Ali's word's, "We become hero's when we stand for what we believe in- Have faith to believe in yourself and the courage to follow your heart!”

Since that fruitful day, I have never failed to pepper my loved ones with honesty, love and super conscious attention. The shift in my demeanours eased me the reciprocation of their love, which now fuels my courage to massive proportions allowing me to go that one extra mile, in whatever I do. During my dearest moments, they were the beacon of light which illuminated my heart. That clarity shifted my past perspectives and helped me comprehend that imperfections can never be corrected, but that the meaning we give to these imperfections are what going to lead us down a path of correctness in the future.

Life is not always perfect, and it never will be. There will always be challenges, obstacles, and setbacks. But it's not about avoiding these things it’s about how we respond to them. It's about taking control of our own lives and making the best of the situation, no matter how difficult it maybe we have no control over the time or place of our birth.

We may not be able to decide the way we leave this world. But surely, we can choose and decide, what we want to make of this one life we have. Muhammad Ali my greatest inspiration figure once said, "Real Success comes when we rise after we fall. No one starts out on top. You have to work your way up. Some mountains are higher than others, some road steeper than the next. There are hardships and setbacks, but you can't let them stop you. Even on the steepest road, you must not turn back. You must keep going up in order to reach the top of the mountain, you have to climb every rock." Afterall, life is not always perfect, it is what you and I make of it.

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