Go GNG, it’s your birthday…


It’s my birthday today, and in just under two hours, at 1:22pm, I will be 29.

This might sound a bit like an acceptance speech, but I am so grateful to God that I am seeing another year. For the last few years, I have not been taking this life for granted. My cousin in Naija, a brilliant, ambitious young man, died last year. My father has lost both of his younger siblings (my aunt and uncle) far too early. And six years ago this month, a young Naija man, the son of family friends, lost his life trying to break up a fight in a club. These events have shown me that you never know: you can be here one day, gone the next. We are not invincible. Waking up each morning is truly a gift. So don’t waste time: live for you.

My mother is one of the most exuberant and joyful women I know, and most birthdays she’ll come to my room, jump on me or my bed and wake me up, singing happy birthday in Yoruba. Today was no exception: she danced into my room with my birthday card, smiling and wishing me all the best.

And as I dashed off to work, my father ran up the stairs to give me a hug and wish me a lovely day. And really when your day starts with that, how can it be a bad day?

I would like a gift from you: Tell me the name (or better yet, give me the lyrics) of any Nigerian (Yoruba or otherwise) birthday songs you know of. I’d love to learn them.

20 Responses to “Go GNG, it’s your birthday…”

  1. Happy Birthday!!

    Song ( i think its by Ebenezer Obey): happy birthday to you
    On this occasion of yours
    happy birthday to you
    many happy returns

    Evi Edna Ogoli: ooo yea, I wish u happy birthday
    ooo yea many many many happy returns

  2. 2 Believer

    Happy birthday GNG. Love reading your blog and I love the way you express yourself. I pray that as you add another year, the good Lord will cause you to increase in knowledge, wisdom and favour. Continue being a blessing.
    Kudos on your decision to buy a house, it is a wise investment and you can always sell or maybe rent depending on the type of property when you get married . Remain blessed and have a lovely day.

  3. 3 30+


  4. Well, well, well……..whatelse can we say but, Happy Birthday to you GNG.

  5. 5 sherri

    Happy Bufday!

    here’s a song for u

    olojo ibi ijo kan e o
    se were ko dawa lohun
    ko redi ske ske ske

  6. Olojo ibi
    It’s your birthday
    Jo ma worry,
    Its gonna be ok……

    Birthday girl,
    its your birthday
    Please dont worry
    its gonna be ok

    Happy birthday to you. I wish you a very fruitful life this year and many more years to come. Have fun.

    Here’s a link to the song, so you can play it.

  7. 7 sting

    Happy birthday lady. I wish i knew any nigerian birthday songs to share but i don’t. Do u have another blog? If u do, i think i stumbled upon it.


    sorry abt ur losses

  9. Happy Birthday LOve!

    May God bless you indeed, and add much more wisdom to all your years…

  10. Happy Birthday girlie
    Hope you enjoyed your day… what a wonderful way to start the day.. I love your mom for doing that… Here’s to many more years ahead and becoming a better person each day.

  11. Happy birthday girl! I hope you had a really splendid day. May God bless you more and more and grant you all your heart desires! How about a slice of cake?

  12. 12 Oya

    Happy birthday!

  13. Happy birthday babes…Hope I was the first :)
    Hugs and kisses…..will eat a cake for you…this is a great sacrifice out of friendship oh…since I am on a diet!!!

    While at it, I’ll eat some pounded yam for you as well…love ya loads…

  14. Happy belated birthday. You’re exactly my birthday number of days after my birthday. :)

    LOL @ Afrobabe… Only cake and pounded yam?

  15. Happy belated birthday GNG, we share the same birthday month. Wow you parents are just too sweet, my mother never remembers my birthday and this year was no exception.

    Hope you got everything you wanted! I’ll have a glass of riesling just for you :)

    The naija birthday song i know is kinda razz, its by JJC and 419squad its called the “birthday song” . It has a video out on youtube http://youtube.com/watch?v=1K3vGOxI4rQ.

  16. 16 Oluwadee

    Happy belated bday GNG, wish u all Gods blessing in this new year.

    Love d way ur mum jumps on ur bed 2 wish u a happy bday.

  17. 17 Yosh

    Happy Birthday Joom!

    Good health and many more ahead. All the best wishes to you!

    Lotsa love.

  18. 18 Simi Speaks

    Happy bday! mine was a day before urs!! :-0) Geminis rock, ya?

  19. Happy Birthday. May this celebration bring you closer to your destiny and may you shut your eyes to all difficulties and open them up on the morn’ of your dream dawn!

    nuff said

  20. Hope your birthday was a blast.
    Sadly, I missed out :)
    Strange, but I can’t remember any birthday song in Nigerian languages. Not even Igbo. Maybe there’s none?
    Oh, well, 3 gbosas for you….

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