Hope: foe or ally?

by Admin on

How long can a man survive without hope? If all hope was to be lost, would you live to see the next minute?

<em>take a man’s hope away and you take away his will to live.

The longest time breath held voluntarily (male) is 24 min 3.45 secs and was achieved by Aleix Segura Vendrell (Spain), in Barcelona, Spain, on 28 February 2016.

Aleix Segura Vendrell is a professional freediver. The attempt took place at the 17th Mediterranean Dive Show. (source:

Humans cannot survive without oxygen. science has taught us that after about 6 minutes, the brain begins to die irreversibly if deprived of oxygen. How Vendrell achieved such feat is breath-taking literally! maybe science needs a review, as usual.

How long can a man survive without hope? If all hope was to be lost, would you live to see the next minute? It is impossible to answer this question correctly unless you’ve lost ALL hope at least once. Those who may have been able to help us are those who have taken their own lives in an irreversible act of suicide, but unfortunately they are no longer with us.

while there is life, there is hope.

There is that constant feeling that things will get better, that even if they don’t we will get better and find other ways to survive. Hope is a man’s best friend, a frustrated soul is quick to turn and cling to some fibres of hope, some wish that a turn around might be just around the corner.

I work in the hospital, and it is a daily affair to see people filled with hopes of recovery either for themselves or for a relative. Sometimes, hope delivers and meets expectations, other times, it doesn’t show up. Even at that, people still cling to it. They are quick to invoke a close cousin of hope, Fate. So often do we resort to fate whenever hope falls short. We accept and move on.

protracted hope wearies the soul.

Euthanasia is a difficult topic and raises a lot of ethical debate, many thanks to hope.
One time at work, a pregnant woman was to be operated upon urgently to ensure she and her baby stay fine. After the operation which I was a part of, the baby who at the time of delivery wasn’t responding as expected was still not showing any signs of improvement. The baby had already been resuscitated promptly by every means available. After a few more tries, the baby was still blue. We had done our best and hoped the supporting system instituted for the baby would eventually work. About 30 minutes later, there was a constant loud cry coming from the ward, it was the same baby, now all pink and responsive, as though nothing was ever wrong.
That example will make me always hang on for every other unresponsive baby, because, who knows, it just might make it too. No matter how many babies fail to make it eventually, the memory of that one who made it will breed hope.

Miracles, testimonies of turn-arounds breed hope and make people wait situations out. Hope is strongest when there are no other options. It is the currency of the penniless – more rightly, It is the currency of us all, most palpable when we’re down and out.

Situations that could easily have been put an end to linger and continue because we wait it out and cling to hope. This is no argument to support suicide or an attempt of it, but rather, situations of the living that we should totally turn our backs on. Let me give you a few examples:

Josephine has lost an arm, four teeth and all her pride. She related her ordeal yesterday, when we realised her wounds were inflicted on her by her husband. It’s been going on for 5 years, she had hoped he’ll change.

Coker has been married for four years now, with children. He wants a divorce. He can’t cope any longer. His spouse has remained the careless woman she has always been. He knew this even before they got married, he thought she’d outgrow it and become more responsible when she becomes a mother. He had hoped she’ll change.

Lanre left home at 5am on saturday morning. He was bent on getting fuel at all cost regardless of the fuel scarcity. He was confident that his early rise will yield. His fuel tank gauge was already lit with the warning sign. A hundred (100) meters later, he passed a filling station already having about 50 cars waiting in line even when the station was yet to open. “Just turn around and go home”, an inner voice told him. No, i’ll just check the next one, he thought. He repeated this thought at 1000m, 2000m and 5000m. The car has finally come to a halt and won’t start. It’s 5.45am and lanre has begun a compulsory jogging back home. He had hoped he’ll find fuel.

Fidelis has now made it to his final year in the 7th year of his 4 year course. He has the many industrial strikes and political ineptitude to thank for that. He finished top of his class and as the best graduating student in the university that year. His parents are well to do and had plans lined up for him to get additional qualifications outside the country. Fidelis was too patriotic for his parent’s liking. It is the reason he was just graduating after rejecting an opportunity to study abroad for his first degree. He has definitely learnt his lessons now, his dad told his mother at his convocation. Fidelis has hope to blame for staying back and finishing late; the same hope he clung to at the times he almost lost it. he had thought the new government were going to fulfill their promises.

Hope that here will soon be better is what keeps us from going there; hope that there will be greener, is what pushes us away from here.
Hope is a pill that must be taken for the right ailment, lest it becomes poison.

Yet, hope may really not be the problem or the enemy; but “hope in what or who” speaks volumes.
as long as hope lies in things uncertain and things powerless, it will shatter or be shattered, occasionally it will yield.
As for me, my hope is nowhere near this world or any of the things or people in it, not even myself. I have found undwindling hope, self-kindling in fact, in God alone, powered by Jesus, the Christ.

Sing with me if you will,

My hope is built on nothing else
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness
I dare not trust the sweetest frame
But wholly lean on Jesus name
On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand.

I wish you the kind of hope that makes not ashamed.

Oluwatosin Fatade

Abortion is the termination of pregnancy and removal of the products of conception before the age of viability, 28 weeks in Nigeria.
Abortion can either be
spontaneous or voluntary (induced)
safe or unsafe
legal or criminal.
In Nigeria today, abortion is attended with cultural, religious and legal hiccups. However, it continues to go on in the background, mostly coming to the fore when things go out of hand and require urgent medical intervention.
On a global scale, the debate goes on about legalization of abortion. In medical parlance there is provision for abortion to be carried out under special circumstances.
The medical concerns of the debate bothers on who administers the procedure, skilled or unskilled personnel? It as well considers whether it is done in an appropriate environment and with the proper tools. This is captured in the definition of “Safe Abortion”
Unsafe Abortion is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a procedure for terminating an unintended pregnancy, carried out either by persons lacking the necessary skills or in an environment that does not conform to minimal medical standards or both.1
Sustainable Development Goals (SDGS), a sequel to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), is a 17-pronged package with the 5th goal tagged “Achieve Gender equality and empower all women and girls”. One of the Goal 5 targets 5.6 reads “Ensure universal access to sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights as agreed in accordance with the Programme of Action of the International conference on Population and Development and the Beijing Platform for Action and the outcome documents of their review conferences”.2 The provision and argument for safe abortion is embedded in this target.
The cultural and religious concerns of abortion in Nigeria bothers on its categorization as murder. It is argued that a formed fetus or growing pregnancy has begun life and thus must not be tampered with. There are wider arguments about when life actually begins, at fertilization or at implantation? I share in the sentiments that life once begun should not be tampered with. Any life not desired should not be allowed to commence in the first place.
A proper statistic of abortion requests in Nigeria is likely to show a majority of unwanted pregnancies. Pregnancies that resulted from relations between two unmarried people or sometimes between a couple who have not properly applied the rules of family planning.
Some parts of culture and religion in Nigeria abhor prevention of pregnancies by any means deemed unnatural. The only natural means of preventing pregnancy is not having intercourse, having intercourse at a woman’s safe period (when she is not ovulating), or not releasing semen into the woman (coitus interruptus). Some religious sect frown at coitus interruptus.
Other forms of pregnancy prevention which are artificial include use of pills, injections, implants, barrier (condoms), and some permanent methods in some instances (vasectomy-tying the male tubes; tubal ligation – tying the female’s fallopian tubes).
What then is the way out of the “abortion saga” from the cultural and religious perspective?
Let’s call the answer to that “family planning”.
Family planning here will not just be to family settings but to every case where there is a desire to prevent pregnancy.
Abortion is especially prevalent among youths mostly unmarried and is totally preventable. A proper approach to curbing this menace will begin from appropriate sexual education, which should include safe sexual practices, pregnancy prevention, and where to go get some help. Stigmatization and isolation of pregnant unmarried girls should be discouraged. If any girl has failed to prevent pregnancy either by her own waywardness or parents’ negligence or any other means thinkable, it is unfair to leave her to her woes. If we are not going to lend our voices to endorse abortion we cannot afford to be silent when pregnancies stare us in the face. We must support the pregnancy regardless of how it came to be.
Make family planning services available, accessible and non-stigmatised to girls of all ages and we can conclude that no one should ever call their pregnancy unwanted.
You are probably thinking already what of those girls who get pregnant from cases of rape?
Same answer, remove stigma and encourage rape victims to report cases immediately. When they do, they will get medical help to prevent pregnancy from the event. Justice must also be served hot to the perpetrators of rape and their accomplices.
If we have all these in place and working properly, we can then abolish the term “unwanted” from all pregnancies as any pregnant woman can be seen as having kept or having decided to keep the pregnancy.
Some readers are already lamenting how all these measures will encourage premarital sex, prostitution and unfaithfulness to partners. Let me remind you that refusing to enforce the above will not in any way reduce its prevalence. Neither will effecting these measures encourage vices, but will curb the menace of abortion and its complications among those already engaged in these vices and a few who are victims of such evil as rape.

For the sake of clarity, I do not support that abortion be legalized except for medical reasons where the mothers life must be preserved or the “supposed pregnancy” is useless in terms of quality of life.
If I and anyone must refuse to support abortion, then we must be armed with ready alternatives. Asides religious/spiritual empowerment to enable abstinence, the rest who will refuse must also be helped. Appropriate means of pregnancy prevention must be available so that no one ever will be correct to call their pregnancy unwanted, and if your pregnancy is wanted abortion will be unnecessary. And no, sharing condoms free are unnecessary, anyone whose sexual incontinence cannot permit abstinence should go buy it themselves, they are affordable. And condoms are not the only means to prevent pregnancy.

P.S The views represented in this article are personal views of the writer.
Preach Abstinence! Stop Teenage Pregnancy! Stop Abortion! End Rape! Protect the girl-child!
1. ../en/

%d bloggers like this:
Skip to toolbar