This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Disney’s Queen of Katwe. All opinions are 100% mine.
Every now and then, you watch a movie that touches you. Igwe and I live about five minutes from a theater, but it seems like the closer we are to the theater, the lazier we become to go see movies. Although we wanted to, we failed to go see Queen Of Katwe in the theater, but we heard from real-life and virtual friends that the movie was great. And of course, because most of our friends are Nigerians, they did not fail to tell us in person and online how the movie had Nigerian songs.
Eventually, we saw Queen Of Katwe. I had even forgotten about the Nigerian songs until I heard them in the movie. Songs like Skelewu (Davido) and Sekem (MC Galaxy) had me squirming in my seat. While that was great, it was the movie itself, the story of fourteen-year-old Phiona that had me.
When I was fourteen, I was not in competitions with adults for such prestigious titles. I was dreaming of my future, but that was all I was doing: dreaming. Also, I did not have the challenges that Phiona had. Phiona was a 14-year-old teenager who lived in the Katwe town of Uganda. Her father was late, her mother was a poor and struggling single mother, her older sister eloped from the house, she had two brothers, and they lived in a house that barely had walls. I did not have these challenges. But as a fellow African, however, I get it. I get the struggle. Seeing it on screen was not a surprise to me.
What was a plesant surprise for me was how inspired I was by Phona’s strength and bravery and consistency and determination and desperation. Her desperation to change her situation made her want to be better. It was not easy or comfortable, but it had to be done. Apart from the challenges she was already facing, she also had moments of weakness and failure in between, and it inspired me.
It was only 9 months ago that I came on here to tell you that I quit my job to live my dreams. Since then, several people have reached out to me in person and virtually to congratulate me and encourage me. [Thank you]. That said, I’d be lying to you if I were to say that it’s been a ride in the park. Honestly, I have had many down days, days that I feel like quitting because I’m tired of trying and getting rejected. I regret to say that I spend a lot more time thinking about the things I haven’t done, and I spend little time being grateful. Entrepreneurship, working for yourself – whatever you want to call it – is not the road with the least resistance. It’s actually easier to just keeping working for the man.
I’m not saying all this to discourage you from stepping out on your own. I’m simply telling you that it is not half as glamorous as people on Instagram want to make you believe. I try very hard to not misrepresent my life on the blog and on social media. While I don’t want to bring your spirit down with my own challenges, I also don’t want you to look at me as having it all because I don’t. If God were a snitch, He’d tell you how many times I’ve cried myself to sleep.
But watching Queen Of Katwe really encouraged me. If fourteen-year-old Phiona can fight to become a grand master and fight to live her dreams, then I have no excuse. When things get tough, I have to get tougher. No matter what is happening now, I have to make my move. I have to continue striving and fighting and moving forward.
I loved the movie so much that after watching it (and crying hysterically), I had to go on Twitter to tell Lupita Nyong’o how much I loved the movie. Hi Lupita!
— Vera Ezimora (@verastic) January 18, 2017
Disney’s Queen Of Katwe is now out on Blu-ray, Digital HD & Disney Movies Anywhere, and you cannot sleep on it. Phiona will have you swinging. You, too, will be desperate to make your move. But the first move you have to make is to grab a copy of this movie. Don’t forget to grab your tissue too. You’re going to need it.
P.S. Phiona also inspired me to learn how to play chess.