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Breaking Barriers: The Unyielding Spirit Of  Physically Challenged, Busayo Dairo

Daud Olatunji

In a world that often judges by appearances, Busayo Olaitan Dairo stands as a testament to resilience and determination. At 27 years old, this physically challenged entrepreneur from Abeokuta, Ogun State, opens up about her life’s journey, the challenges she has faced, and her unyielding optimism for the future.

Busayo’s educational journey was marked by both triumphs and tribulations. Starting with a scholarship that paved her way through secondary school, she encountered health challenges during her time at Moshood Abiola Polytechnic. A severe bout of typhoid fever forced her to drop out, emphasizing the fragility of life and the unpredictability of one’s path.

She said “I began my educational journey in kindergarten. Fortunately, I secured a scholarship for my secondary education although it presented challenges due to my health issues. Despite the difficulties, I persevered with divine intervention. Subsequently, I enrolled at Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, Abeokuta. Unfortunately, my time there was cut short due to a severe illness during the second semester of the first year. 

“This forced me to return home and spend two months recovering. I received nothing less than 20 injections, uncountable drips, and my eyes turned inside out; I nearly died during the period. It was during this period that I missed crucial academic activities, including exams and practical training (Student Industrial Work Experience Scheme). Despite attempts to catch up, I couldn’t pass my exams upon recovery. 

“This led to my decision to drop out, fearing a recurrence of the illness if I continued.

“My mother is employed at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital in Ikeja, which provides ample opportunities for various individuals, including HIV patients. It was through her connections that she secured the scholarship for me.

“I was diagnosed with typhoid fever, and it severely affected my body. I underwent numerous injections and received intravenous drips, and my condition deteriorated to the point where I was unable to walk. I was practically being carried everywhere. My mother constantly prayed and pleaded with me to avoid falling ill, as my illnesses were always severe. Despite this, I am not affected by sickle cell anaemia; instead, I have the AS genotype.”

Her physical condition, characterized by difficulty in walking, has been a lifelong challenge. Despite undergoing spiritual treatments and facing the uncertainty of its origin, Busayo’s spirit remained unbroken. Her mother’s unwavering support and her own determination led to a gradual recovery, emphasizing the power of perseverance and faith.

The most profound impact of Busayo’s condition has been on her relationships, especially with men. Heartbreaks and distancing became recurrent themes, highlighting the societal challenges faced by individuals with disabilities in matters of love and acceptance.

While friends betrayed and distanced themselves, unexpected blessings emerged. Gaining popularity on TikTok provided a platform for Busayo to share her story and advocate for greater understanding and support for people with disabilities. Her positive experiences amidst challenges illuminate the resilience of the human spirit.

Venturing into the fashion industry with an online business, Busayo hopes to achieve financial stability and provide for her family. Her determination to succeed without formal education reflects her focus on practical goals and the pursuit of personal growth.

Busayo calls for mental, physical, and financial support from fellow Nigerians. She advocates for a change in societal perceptions, urging inclusivity and equal opportunities for individuals with disabilities. Through fundraising efforts and awareness campaigns, she aims to create a more supportive environment.

Despite the hardships, Busayo remains thankful for her life and family. Her aspirations include becoming a successful wife, mother, and a source of pride to her parents. Through her journey, she seeks to inspire others facing similar challenges to focus on their abilities, seek help when needed, and never let disabilities define them.

Busayo Dairo’s story is a testament to the indomitable human spirit. In the face of societal prejudices and personal setbacks, she continues to navigate life with grace, determination, and an unwavering belief that challenges are temporary.

Her journey inspires us all to look beyond appearances, embrace our identities, and build a more inclusive and supportive society.

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