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By Hassan Olalekan Sherif Esq.

For me, birthdays are moments of reflection. I find myself reeling through time and taking comfort in memories past, evaluating my present and the expectation for the future.

For me, birthdays can be quite sober, for though I remember my departed mother with every ticking clock of every single day, on days like this, I am painfully reminded, with new depths of sadness, of the reality of her absence, felt in the impact and presence of her prayers, and the soothing comfort of her wishes.

For me, birthdays are gentle reminders of the reality of the grave, the certainty of death and the vanity of earth. They are a reminder of the need for compassion and that humanity can never be out of fashion. Birthdays are just simply celebrations for the certainty of an afterlife.

Birthdays are also grateful moments for the gifts of the present. They remind me of living the "now" with purpose, with intention, with vigour and hope for a better tomorrow. They remind me to be a person of convictions and to live on my terms, never afraid, intimidated nor cowed by the insecurities projected by the fears and shortcomings of others. They remind me to be steadfast in knowing i can never be right always but that i must be humble to admit my wrongs and reflect my convictions as the times and circumstances would permit.They remind me of the promise of manifestation of the glory of God. They remind me of the humility of time in the long shadow of the sun of tomorrow.

And so... while I appreciate all the messages from colleagues, business associates, friends and family, I am always deeply reminded of the essence of this day and deeply grateful for the gift of now and hopeful for the promises of tomorrow, my Lord.


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