“That which does not kill us makes us stronger”
These words by the 19th-century philosopher, Friedrich Nietzsche have made a lot many people fight against all odds to emerge victorious; whether that victory is out in the world for all to see or whether it is deeply ingrained in your soul. The story that we are about to share with you today has both these aspects and that is the reason that a student who became a teacher because of a talent that God gave him, is our Hero for this website on the occasion of Teacher’s Day here in India.
I have known Aneke Sochi Cyriacus because of my endeavors in writing and creating uplifting content for my website since last year when he wrote for us a motivational true story of a young girl who sponsored her education through cooking and selling the food when her family denied her of resources of study further. It has been that day and today; when that same author is now the one I am compelled to write about, who by the way is not more than 20 years.
So, this amazing pool of writing talent has always been self-motivated to do the best in life from whatever he is given. Born in Nigeria into an average family of 6 members as the only son, his responsibilities have made him vow to not accept defeat at any cost; so far as he has blood running in his veins, in his words. But life seems to be always showing that there are still some challenges in our way, which can either break us or make us. What happened after high school for this young fella was heartbreaking enough for him, but obviously he didn’t break.
The sudden shock
Yes, that is what conspired in his life when dreams of joining the pharmacy course in University were marred by the University’s offer to him for joining Crop Sciences. Being a science student, that was his dream and so of his family. And because of this turn of events, not only did he face a redirection of sorts of his dreams, even his mother went into depression. But, being the strong one he is; he actually forfeited his admission inspite of all his friends having gone to the University. Tough choices can only be made by tough people and that choice was now made.
Re-direction of dreams
For people who see their lives taking a certain path, the sudden uprooting of that way becomes a life-changing event. Having had lost the chance to study what he loved, he went into an introspective thinking mode where all his focus rightfully was on what to do next. He believes that failures are there to delay us, into thinking more about our lives and this is what he was doing; thinking about it all. And during all of this, he remembered that all throughout his high school days, he had been a writing champion of sorts; indomitable with the pen as he likes to say. His raw talent had got him many awards; local, deanery, diocesan and he even got selected as the School President for a period of three consecutive years, all because of the way he wrote. He was getting an inkling that if was he was being taken away from his love- sciences, it was for a rather good cause. The creator favors those who go ahead to find their way in the face of uncertainties even. And exactly this happened with our boy, Saneke, as he likes to call himself in the writing circuit.
As ironic as it may sound, he was put on the path to become a teacher to the very students who were once his friends and were now taking exams to enter into University. And that too to teach what; not physics, not chemistry, but Literature. Yes, that’s correct! It so happened that his school teacher and mentor, Mr. Ubani Uzodimma who also owns a Coaching Institute by the name of Brain Child Academy, once called him to discuss why were his students failing the literature exam. This was an opportunity for Saneke and he grabbed the bull by the horns when his teacher gave him the chance to teach, saying; ” You’re a writer son, take literature and make these students pass.”
This was a challenge apart from being an honor obviously, more so because he had never studied literature per se in his academic life. But gifted as he was, he did everything so that he could not just teach, but learn as well, learn more about the classics and refine his talent thereby.
Learned to be a teacher in the classroom while teaching
Without any prior training to be one, he became a teacher in the classroom itself. He went out to a class full of students, some elder than him as well now calling him ‘Sir,’ discussing more about literature than technically teaching it. His sense of humor added life to his classes and he was having a ball of a time, or so he thought! Because at the back of his mind, he was ruminating the course of his life as well and during these days he took the plunge. He switched from Science to arts, and found this as the perfect reason as to why he was not put in the course he wanted to. Saneke always likes to back up his losses with good excuses and this was the biggest one till now.
“I was my teacher, My own student”
That’s how he termed this phase of his life. He was focusing day in and day out on teaching, and with it obviously learning beyond limits. He knew that literature had been terrorizing students and he wanted to find out why. He found the reason in the inability of students to read all of their course material, so he decided that he would read it all in the short span of time that he had. The teacher-cum-student did that and out of it all, he summarized and extracted some 610 questions, their answers and explanations and references, to publish a book that was to be a blessing to all his students. He got his book, ‘Literature Made Easy’ published and what happened after that served as a tonic to heal his back which had started to ache by the constant writing and studying. The Manager of the Coaching Institute, Mr. Chidera Chime also played an important role in making Saneke do and become what was to make him a literary celebrity.
A man of many talents
The determined young lad started doing the rounds of schools, selling his book to not just his students, but others as well. According to the students, this was a huge relief and so his status as a celebrity of sorts on the campus took flight. He was now being called by schools to sell his book and some even wanted to take his teaching services. But, he is just 20 who wants to study more, so he did not take any of those offers. Among the other great things that happened in all of this, is that his book had become a hit. And this was not met without challenges if you think all of it was a cakewalk. He had to struggle to take his hard-earned money at times, sometimes even forgoing the profits because of many attempts to get the cash, which some were not kind enough to immediately give out to him.
The good news came soon after. The exam that was then taken by his students and himself after studying from that very book, saw a record success rate of almost 80% of the students passing the dreaded literature exam. But, the surprising part is that most of his students scored higher than him even. Yes, the teacher taught so well, that his students surpassed him in the results. This was like a bitter-sweet moment for him, but obviously he doesn’t like to settle and gave gratitude to the Lord for making him so good at teaching. He is more thankful because, the success of the book meant that a lot many people got to know about him being gifted as a writer.
Looking at a bright future
He sees himself to be a writing don of the University in ten years, but feels that the constrictions in his country maybe delaying his success. Nonetheless, he hopes to one day find a sponsor who can relocate him from Nigeria and place him at the center of a literary world where his true talents are properly harnessed and he becomes the name he wishes to be known as, around the world. Currently, he is teaching at the place where it all starte as he seeks admission into college by giving numerous exams so that he starts his higher studies soon apart from creating written masterpieces every now and then because a writer never stops and a literary genius never ceases to be what he is; a Genius!
To that awesome teacher, who is still a student we would like say, you are an inspiration and we wish that you achieve all your dreams. And yes, Happy Teacher’s Day. 🙂
Featured Image: Pixabay