The third episode of Olajumoke Orisaguna’s vlog is out and there, she talked about her life back home before she moved to Lagos. She said she was a hairdresser, who only came to Lagos to seek for greener pastures.
Olajumoke tells the story of millions of women hustling in the streets, but may never find similar good fortune as her.
Are you living the life that you want or the one people chose for you? You sit down in a spot, pitying yourself and waiting for people to come and help you with money. You better go out and search for a job, if I tell you what I’ve been through, you’ll be amazed.
When you hear Olajumoke, it is not Olajumoke, the bread seller, but Olajumoke from Ire (in Osun state), Olajumoke, the hair dresser.
I am a trained hair stylist, with many apprentices in my salon but I came to Lagos to hustle when there were no sales and things were rough.
I come from a humble background. My mum has six children and I am the first child. I have male and female siblings. My siblings and I usually go out to hustle, so as to eat.
I am not the type of woman that would sit and wait for money to come her way, I wasn’t brought up that way at all.
I used to go to school but when I got to primary 5, I told my parents I wanted to stop schooling to learn hairdressing because I saw the way they struggled to send six of us to school at the same time.
I told them I would support them with the little I would bring home and they could use it to send my siblings to school. They agreed and took me to where I could learn the work.
It was when I was working that I met a guy who usually comes around just to woo me with sweet words. I told him I was at work to learn, not to marry but he was persistent.
Eventually, I agreed and I had my first child. At that time, I graduated from apprenticeship and when I told my parents, they said, they had no money to buy me equipment.
So, I went to meet my friend, who asked if I could come to Lagos and I said yes. She told me we were coming to sell bread and I told her it was fine. All these happened in 2011. She also told me, we would be sleeping in that bakery and I told her it was fine.
Since I was not stealing nor prostituting myself, I told her I could do it. I just don’t like to be idle.
So, I came to Lagos in 2011 and from my work, I gathered money and bought equipment, went back home for my freedom and got a shop.
In Ire, most of our customers are students because of the Polytechnic not far away from us. Whenever the students were around, we always had money.
When the students went on strike in 2016, things became so difficult that my children and I, sometimes, would eat garri throughout the day. So, I thought that I could not continue like that because to me, it seemed I was intentionally maltreating my children when I couldn’t feed them.
So, I decided to come to Lagos and I continued in the same bakery, where I came in 2011. We slept in the bakery and whenever it rained in the middle of the night, I would back one child and carry the other in my arms, with our bags in our hands.
I couldn’t leave my children because I like them around me. I’m fine with whatever I give them, I’m just contented that they were with me.
Whenever I went hawking, the money I realise is used to feed myself and the children, while the remaining money is sent to my parents at home to eat because I didn’t know if they had eaten or not.
Things were difficult but little did I know that God would open doors for me in my second coming to Lagos.
Whatever we find ourselves doing, let’s do it well with the assurance that God will make a way someday.
If I had just stayed at home when Ire students went on strike, thinking that what would I eat with the children, without making any efforts, I wouldn’t have met Aunty T.Y.
She wouldn’t have come to Ire to look for me and take pictures of me. I came out to work to better my life and change my name.
I believed in the words of the elders that said, weeping may endure for the night but joy comes in the morning because it wasn’t up to two months that I got back to Lagos that I became known. hard work never kills, it is poverty that kills.
My manager always says, “Your life is like a book, make it a bestseller.”
And remember that when situations become difficult and you are at a crossroad, always know that there is a solution at hand.