“Failure sometimes is victory. You lose the battle so you can win the war”- Boluwatife Ishola

Boluwatife Ishola decides to share one of her experiences, as a teenager, with us. According to her, the past few years has been a roller coaster of emotion for her and she believes a teenager out there would be encouraged from this experience. Read and enjoy!

I am Boluwatife Ishola, and here is my story…

Just recently, so many things have brought back memories of 2014. The pictures and the fact that some of my Secondary school mates are reaching out and supporting my writing career, if I can call it that. 2014 was the year I graduated from secondary school. I was straight out of Secondary school and into the world.

Boluwatife Ishola
2014; out of secondary school

In secondary school, I was the kind of girl who the teachers liked. I was the girl that would make sure my assignment was done even when everyone else forgot. I took my school work very serious, sometimes, it made my other classmates look bad. They must have been pretty annoyed at some point. I was pretty close to being an ‘oversabi‘. The kind when asked to write an assignment outside our notes, I would print and spiral bind. At home, my mum would tell me ‘everything is not school’, get up and cook. I was a responsible student and was soon made the Head Girl for my set. Through out secondary school, I never came second, always at the top to the glory of God. That didn’t show in my WAEC though. While I cleared all my papers, it wasn’t extraordinary. I realized I only held the local championship. SS3 ended as soon as it started. I was pretty excited. University, here I come.

I chose the University of Ibadan to study Medicine and Surgery. I made it through the first screening and was called to write the Post-UTME of the school. I scored 68, twelve marks away from 80, the then cut-off mark. I was hurt. No university for me this session. I consoled myself. I said I was 15yrs old, they would have deferred me anyway.

I didn’t want to stay at home. My parents didn’t want me to either. What next? Predegree! I enrolled for OAU’s predegree and we resumed November of that year. Did I tell you that some of my classmates already gained admission at this time? Some of which were serious students and some, not so much.

Boluwatife Ishola
Predegree student, hello!


Predegree was like post secondary school. Four subjects and only four hours for each subject per week. Our tests and exams were just objectives. Sounds easy, right? I refuse to say it is hard but I will not lie to you by saying it is easy.
What we were told was that if you could score 80 percent and above, you would get in for medicine. First contact was over and there was mass failure. We had the worst results ever recorded, so we were told. They had to call a seminar. Second contact came and it was tougher than the first because we were taught those SS3 topics. You know, the ones most schools were unable to cover because of time. Predegree ended and I was back home, praying about my result. I must tell you that I was pretty serious during predegree. I had no plans of wasting my parents money and I wanted to get in for Medicine. I was also already sixteen.

That afternoon, I was in my living room when I got a call that the results were out. With my heart in my mouth, I quickly opened the site, put in my number and password. I waited for it to load. Lo and behold, I scored 80.0 to the glory of God. I was in tears praising God. I was going to get in for Medicine. All my friends were already congratulating me. I think I omitted one part. I wrote the post-utme(August) and scored 292. When combined with my JAMB score 253, I had an aggregate of 272.5. Yay! I could get in both ways.

It took a while for the cut-off mark to be released. When it was, my heart dropped. The cut-off for Medicine and Surgery in both Predegree and Post-UTME were 82.1 percent and 283 respectively. I didn’t make either. I was so disappointed and I cried a lot. Why was I always close but just never there. Life was not fair, it never claimed to be.

Boluwatife Ishola in OAU hostel
Predegree hostel


People told me to calm down. There was a second list. Since I was close to the mark, my name would be there. I prayed and fasted. On a day in January, I got a call from a dear friend that the second list was out. She got in for Medicine and I knew I had higher scores than she did. My hopes were raised only to be dropped back again. ‘Congratulations, you’ve been admitted for Microbiology’ was what was written on my page. I cried the most I had ever cried and not even my mum could pacify me. I had the right to cry. I was hurt and very disappointed. It was heartbreaking. There was nothing that could be done. Was I to be angry at the friend who got in with lower scores? Not at all. I know how hard she also worked. We, I mean, my parents and I decided I would accept it.

It has been a roller coaster of emotion, these past years, some I have never felt before. I was just a girl thrown into world of adults were being a local champion did not matter and it was almost as if I was not enough. I remember speaking with a close friend and old classmate, he told me that they still talk about how they were all expecting me to be the best and all but the world seemed to be saying different, trying to dim my shine.

There are so many details I am unable to write about but I believe I have written the necessary. I lie if I say I have enjoyed the ride. If I could do away with it, I would. What I must say is that I am grateful for it. In all of the happenings, I have grown. I have developed into stronger version of myself. Every failure has taught me to stand up and stand tall and each time a stronger me is made. Even as I write, I still have plans to try again for Medicine and Surgery while praying that God’s will be done.

I know that a lot of people are going through more and some are going through less. Here’s how I pulled through. I somehow made sure that I remembered that even in the disappointment, hurt, pain, and sadness, God still loved me. I had to realize that there is a bigger picture than what I see and somehow, My father in heaven will fix the pieces. I fought a lot of battles in mind against thoughts that tried to pull me into the deep. I fought for my mind. I fought for my sanity. I fought against depression and negativity. While I was fighting, God was for me, fighting for me and he gave me victory. You might ask ‘if God was by your side, why didn’t he give you victory in your exams?’ Like I said before, He sees the bigger picture. Many times, we see things for what they look like and not what they really are.

Failure sometimes is victory. You lose the battle so you can win the war. It happens for the greater good.

Boluwatife Ishola
The king’s daughter


I urge you today not to settle for less than you deserve.
Do not give up on that fulfilled life you have always dreamed of.
Try again and again.
It is not too late to start over.
Do not give your life to chance. Take charge!
You have to fight for your life.
Fight in prayer!
Fight by taking actions!
You deserve to be happy.
You deserve to live.
Give life and truly living another chance.
I believe you can do it.

Will you also like to share a personal experience from your teenage years with TMO? Click here for details.

About the Writer: Boluwatifeh Ishola (Tifehh) is a student of Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU). She is a lover of Christ. She writes with a purpose in her heart, which ranges from inspiring people to putting smile on the faces of her readers. She loves children, and enjoys deep conversations. She is an encourager.

You can connect with her on Facebook, or via email address: isholaboluwatife@gmail.com

Boluwatife Ishola
One last pic before I bade my bye…




11 thoughts on ““Failure sometimes is victory. You lose the battle so you can win the war”- Boluwatife Ishola

  1. I’ve also learnt that ‘in life the best are not meant to be condensed, but are rather sent to dominate in an auspicious domain’ God is not wicked……You’re going places

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve also learnt that ‘the best are not meant to condense but are rather sent to dominate in an auspicious domain’……God’s not wicked……..you’re going places

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s