A Reason to Cheer; A Morale Booster
We were screaming, jumping, clapping and singing almost at the same time from our stand as we saw Abbie struggle to finish her long distance race. All of a sudden she started slowing down. What could be the problem? She looked tired but then there had to be a reason for the new development.
It did not look too good; she had sprained her ankle. Our hopes seemed derailed; the thought that someone from our house would place in the school’s sporting event went awry, it definitely was not the big day we had all been yearning for. Out of the blue one of us shouted “Abbie raise your body, run! Abbie you can do it!” We all chorused these words as she neared our stand. Then the unexpected happened. She gathered all the strength she could and run with the speed of the wind till she crossed the finish line. She did it! Third place and yet that was not the cause of our jubilation…the fact that she did not give up was enough motivation to scream the more.
Three years down the line and this is exactly what Abbie has to say about how she finished that race. “At a point my running was actually moving with their rhythm. I did not feel tired anymore because I was caught up in their excitement and I told myself for once that I had got to make this happen. It really helped me a lot, honestly, and being someone who is a fun of jama (the cheering on), I kept raising my hands to signal to them I needed more “jama”…more fire because that fire kept me going. To know that you have all those people behind you, “charley” you would make it.”
The message is simple. There are people all around us who just need us to tell them things that will push them to press on. Some of them have all it takes to pass that paper, or to get through that chemotherapy, or score that goal, or to do what it is that looks right in their faces and causes a chill to run down their spine. Mostly we feel it is really unnecessary to pass some encouraging comments especially to people who look “ok” to us or people who look like they can do with or without us. If our friends will be sincere enough to tell us how much we encourage or discourage them with our care or our nonchalant attitude towards their situations, maybe, just maybe, we might know how important we are to them.
It sounds like a huge task but it is not in real sense. How difficult is it to say, “I like your shoes, you look gorgeous in them?”, or “You can do this; all the best?” Someone’s success tomorrow may depend on what you tell them today. It is not enough to just look on as people try to do something if we cannot give them that support they might need; we can show them what we wish for them by putting them in very few but sincere words. At least they will know that someone out there believes in them and that person has got their backs.
We do not necessarily need talk shows on television channels and airtime on radio to make the impact we yearn for. We do not need a crowd before we get the feeling we are being heard. The change we desire for is not far-fetched. It could be a brother, a friend, a parent, a course mate, a colleague at the office, the one who sits next to us in the pew on Sundays or in the bus on Mondays. All that matters is our contribution to the success of these people no matter how insignificant it may seem.
Written by: Yaa Serwaa Antwi with contribution from Abigail Okyere