Japa Blues: Why the movement is depressing

Rapture has happened, but we don’t know it yet. Little by little, our friends and family are scattered across the world and it may take years before we see them again.

Are you experiencing japa blues? [istockphoto]

Another friend has announced they have left the country by a picture of themselves in an aeroplane with a view of the clouds or a picture showing surprising opacity that is not associated with the Nigerian weather.

Your best friends in the world are in another country, they were your support system. Being around them, and going out with them brought you joy and when you saw them board that flight, you wept uncontrollably because you were never going to see them again, at least for some years.

All you have are hours of video calls, and after the calls, you have to accept the reality of living in Nigeria. If you could, you would leave this country or maybe you never envisioned yourself leaving this country, yet you feel stuck and alone.

The Japa movement might make you question yourself and your life choices, and before you know it, you are joining the bandwagon to begin an immigrant’s life even though all you have in your account is 100k.

You can’t be the only one left in Nigeria, it’s almost like the game we played when we were younger, ‘the last person to enter the room is a fool’ and we ran as fast as we could not to be the fool. Are you a fool now? Because it’s like they said, ‘Everyone leave Nigeria now, the last person should put off the light.’

Our hearts are not built to take that many goodbyes, but we are forcing ourselves to say goodbye to our friends and family, coworkers, church members and neighbours.

While it is a new life for them, it is the same life for you, but one without them, and it can be very depressing.

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