© Muhammadtaha Ibrahim
DEAR HUGO, DEAR NOAM
9th March 2021
Words by Arlette Bgo Badjeck. Photography by Muhammadtaha Ibrahim.
This is the week of Mother's Day and what a spot-on letter for this week.
In her letter, spiritual serial entrepreneur Arlette Ngo Badjeck, based in Tunisia, is sharing a kind and inspiring roadmap with her children Hugo and Noam encouraging them to believe in the flow of life.
Dear Hugo, dear Noam
Today is September 28th in Tunis, Tunisia, and we are in the middle of the year 2020.
In so many ways, it feels like humanity is at a tipping point. The COVID-19 health crisis, and the fights for racial and gender justice and equality, have heightened and highlighted social, political et economical inequalities worldwide. Frankly, my dear sons, sometimes it’s all so overwhelming that I feel like the world as I know it is imploding. Although it is easy to get lost in feelings of hopelessness and dismay, I can truly say that to me, 2020 is also a year of transition and new beginnings. In 2020, our humanity is feeling the pains of growing, the pains of birthing and building a world that is closer to achieving the justice and equality we are all longing for.
In 2020, you are each 11 and 9 years old, and you may hear or study about this year in the upcoming decades, but I would like you to remember what I learned, and what made me power through with faith and empathy.
Dear Hugo, dear Noam
Do not expect your lives to be static. Life is movement. Things and situations can change in the blink of an eye, so no matter how bleak the picture might look like, do not despair. While reflecting on the experiences you are currently going through, rejoice in the expectation of what life is going to bring to you next.
Let yourself be carried by the flow of life. Create space for the unknown, the surprising, the unexpected. The doors that could be opened are as plenty as the doors that are closing. Let them reveal themselves to you.
There is growth between breaks and pauses. Do not be afraid of time slowing down, of your body screaming for rest or of your life seemingly being put on hold. If there is one thing the year 2020 has shown us, it is that formidable breakthrough can occur when mankind sits still.
Community is key. Find your community. It does not have to be your family. You create the community you want to grow with and within.
Find what brings you joy, and hold on to the happiness inside. How you feel inside, will shape the world around you. Throughout this year, I have tried to find and keep my joy, in everything. In the midst of the bleakest news, I have celebrated personal wins. Joy and happiness are what have made me put one foot in front of the other this year. Happiness to see both of you growing up so fast and beautifully, happiness for the life we are creating together as a family, happiness when working towards a goal close to my heart, with people I love and admire. Every time I see a heartbreaking news headline, I am grateful for every little thing I have been able to push forward.
My dear sons, even when it looks like the world around you is crumbling down, know in your heart that from chaos, life is leading you to create joy. Joy will guide and propel your actions, and it will help you hold on to hope in difficult times.
With love and joy,
Arlette Ngo Badjeck is an institutional communication professional, serial entrepreneur, creator of inner journeys and revealer of superpowers. She is also head of "African Propaganda", the History Makers' Lab, I am dedicated to building a hub of activities centered around the values of diversity, creativity and representativeness.
IG @arlettengobadjeck | www.arlettebadjeck.com
Muhammadtaha Ibrahim is a documentary photographer, reader andd writer based in Abuja, Nigeria.