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Non Fiction: I Choose Curiosity


I wanted to write this ‘essay’ as an essay – a long form of words organised in deep sentences and weighty paragraphs explaining where I was, and how the words D said to me are helping me hold on. But that failed, perhaps because I cannot say that I have chosen curiosity since the day D said it. There are days where I remember those words and I mutter, I unchoose curiosity. But I am still here, so instead, I write about some moments.


The Basics

In social studies, they taught us that the three basic human needs are food, clothing and shelter. I have these and I have love.


Something Inside…

I’ve been here before. Fresh rejection mails reminding me that I am a failure. The small joy of hope reminding me I will be let down. Any iota of happiness punctuated by the knowledge and experience that this too shall soon unravel.

Here, I negotiate. Cajoling my mind on the reason why my body needs to hold on. This time, my negotiation brought me guilt, unlike before. Perhaps it is growing up, perhaps it is as a result of spending more time in one place, settled, reflecting. But I am accepting that I am loved. Deeply. And that I am loved more than I am a burden. How would the people who loved me and whom I loved get over me leaving, willingly.

In my negotiations, I examined “God does not burden a soul beyond that it can bear” and “A person dies when there is nothing good left in their life”. Is there something good left? Show me. Why isn’t God showing me? Does my continued existence in this mood not imply that God is okay with me harming myself?

Someone once said “you do not want to kill yourself, rather you want to kill something inside of you”





I call out names like this, a form of longing. Wishing my voice will carry the weight of what I cannot find the words to express.



I am tired and I don’t know how to make anyone hear me. Or save me.


Délé says…

I choose curiosity. Can you imagine what it would be like if you never saw the 21st century? I mean, all the innovations – the internet; electric cars; music! I know we won’t last forever, but I want to see as much as I can. I choose curiosity.


Burn Out or Hormones

Now, I think of an image – me lying on the floor, jobless, having ridden myself of all the contracts I got myself into. Me, alone, in isolation. The feeling of failure complete.

My journal entry on the 24th

I think something is wrong with me

constant/intermittent headaches

I jump at my phone’s low battery notification

Eye aches

My journal entry on the 25th, intended as a tweet

Maybe I don’t feel well because I have stopped doing therapy writing. I’ve just been chasing money and the prospect of a better life.

I have tried to convince myself that I have a mental health problem and that I don’t have a mental health problem.

I have in the past few days diagnosed myself with migraine, burnout, and hormones.

Hormones is the generic diagnosis for all my feelings that are not equal to happiness.


But this is my Battle, I fight alone

My fatigue becomes annoyance now. Angry at the ones who are trying to help. Angry at how they are frustrated at my lack of enthusiasm. But you are not here with me when I cry myself to live. You don’t cry with me. You are not in the ring with me when I’m fighting.


A Tote Bag

An exciting sewing project. All sewing projects are exciting.

I had this interesting idea of making and selling customised tote bags. I racked my brain for what image or word describes me. As expected, I had difficulty at this, being terrible at writing my bio or profile summary. Blame the identity crisis.

I Choose Curiosity.

These words are now etched on my Denim tote bag in weeping font. I choose this in tears.


You are not alone. I love you too.

“I love my friends!” I declared on a hot afternoon inside a danfo on a Lagos express. I was on my way to see K, who I hadn’t seen in almost four years. Our last correspondence before I made the declaration:

K: Do you want meat or fish?

Me: Anyone.

I stopped myself from saying both, flattered that he’s thinking of getting me food. Later, when K gives me the food, it is with meat and fish.

In the moment, I think about my friends, our friendship, the relationships in my life, my life, the unfulfilled desires and dreams, the rejections, the niacinamide serum I had just started using and the promise it holds. And in that moment, I felt joy. Yes, I want to keep going. Despite. I looked down at the tote bag. Yes, I choose curiosity.



As with every choice you make, your resolve will be tested. But I’m here today.


Mojisola Salaudeen is a writer and editor who loves food. She also loves stories and believes in the ability of stories to shape narratives, inform and connect us.

  • Kola January 1, 2021

    I absolutely love this ❤️

  • Basil Okache January 3, 2021

    This is truly magnificent! I’m weeping at the brilliance of your genius!!!!

  • Nancy January 3, 2021

    I’m utterly obsessed with this piece of writing. More please!

  • Glory Kitchinme January 3, 2021

    This is brilliant!!!

  • Oluwaseyi Adewale January 5, 2021

    This is absolutely overwhelming!
    Of course, I have never expected something less.
    Have a great year

  • Olamide Olalekan January 5, 2021


  • Dillz January 16, 2021

    This is beautifully scripted

  • Lolo Cynthia April 3, 2021

    Loveeeeeed reading this.. I deeply connect with your words and also reminded by it that its the small moments of joy that keep us going…

    ‘Maybe I don’t feel well because I have stopped doing therapy writing. I’ve just been chasing money and the prospect of a better life.’

    This is ME 100%. When I am no longer in the present- writing as a form of therapy- I find myself unwell.. my mind is focused on the future.. the lack thereof of what I need to live a good life.. the hustle and the seduction of the next..

    Thanks for sharing..

  • Ola Eloi August 16, 2021

    This got to me ,my thoughts exactly, one dies when there’s nothing good to live for, been thinking of ending it, maybe, just maybe

    • Semanja August 16, 2021

      There is always something new to live for. Please choose curiosity.

  • Lammie September 4, 2021

    Goshhhh!!! This was so relatable!! It’s the indescribable way your mind works for me, such amazing piece!????????

    Btw how can we purchase that tote bag, the world needs to seee!!????????