Today is the first day of the rest of my life. The day that I say “goodbye” to my thesis “hello” to “what’s next?”
What a great feeling! As no man is an island, I could not have gotten to this point without the love, support & encouragement of my friends and family – some of whom read & comment on this blog! I want to wait for it to be marked before I publish the contents of it, but I will share my “gratitude” page. There are many more people that I could have mentioned – who journeyed with me at various points of the process. Please know that I appreciate you too!!:
The writing of this thesis is an extension of my personal journey. Thus everyone has contributed to my last few years of intense self-discovery has played a part in completion of my thesis. I think of the influence of my friends in Communitas, New Orleans and IJM Kenya. Their tireless work for the voiceless and the way they cared for the “least of these” is sheer beauty.
I am immensely grateful for the friends who have been part of my “cheer team” through this process. There are many, but I would like to make a special mention of Ken, Phil & Monika; my St Georges Dragonz family – Kelly, Mike, Deepa, Nick; the WWHFM ladies – Laura, Fi, Claire, Lisa, Joy, Sarah, CJ, Barbara & Honour. Your words of encouragement and prayers have been incredibly valuable to me.
My fieldwork in Nigeria would not have been successful if it were not for the hospitality shown to me by everyone at “The NGO”. I am so grateful for how you welcomed me and were generous with your time and resources. The work that you do is an inspiration. I am blessed to have met courageous women’s rights defenders who are also sons and daughters of the soil. I salute you heartily. I also want to thank friends and family who looked after me whilst I was in Nigeria and helped ensure that nothing stood in the way of my field work. Uncle JC, Obinna, Uncle To’o and Aunty Nkechi – thank you.
Without proper supervision, my foray into research would have come to nought. Thank you so much Carmel for your guidance and support. I am particularly grateful for how you helped me to see the bigger picture during the times when I almost felt despair. The interest you took in me as a person, as well as my study showed me that research happens in the context of real life, not the other way round.
Mum and Dad, there are honestly not enough words that I can write to show you my gratitude and appreciation for how you have stood by me through all my crazy adventures, believing in me when I could not. It is because of your love, legacy and generosity that I was able to press on. Hugh, thank you for always having my back and being my sounding-board. Jess, thank you for your prayers! Chim – it takes a special person to edit a thesis in their spare time. Last and most importantly – all thanks and praise to God, for You are my ultimate inspiration.