I’ve used gas cookers for years. I’m always careful or at least, I think I am. I’m as careful as the average human is anyway. So, let’s imagine that you wake up one morning, a bounce in your strides. You’re happy because things are going well, according to plan, you’re schooling, you have a great career and your whole life is ahead of you. That morning, you pick up a match to light up the gas, it doesn’t come on, so you strike the match to try again. And boom! It explodes in your face and severely burns your body as well. What would you do? Would you be angry? Or like Job’s wife said, would you curse God and die?
Well, I present to you, Desire Benjamin, a real life survivor of the situation above. She’s always smiling, Desire is. I’ve never seen her wear a frown. I interviewed her and her words will bless you.
May we meet you ma?
Desire: My name is Desire Benjamin, I’m in my early twenties, From Imo State.
An incident happened in your life that placed you in the hospital for a long time and altered your looks, what exactly happened?
Desire: First, I believe my looks or personality was in no way altered. I was involved in an in house gas explosion, I was admitted in the hospital for 3months but to God be the glory. I came out Alive and beautiful.
- Desire, before the explosion.
You are a really beautiful lady and i love the way you look at yourself, you inspire me and so so many people. What crossed your mind when the explosion first happened and you were lying there in the hospital? Were you depressed? Hurt? Angry with God?
Desire: Okay, When it first happened, you know i was in shock, i was rushed to the bathroom to pour water on my body, because we thought it would all just wash off, but my body was peeling as water poured on it. That was where i later passed out and next i was in the hospital. In truth, at the time where i was shuffling between passing out and staying awake, all i did was pray and ask God for a chance to live and not die.
- Desire wrapped with bandages in the hospital, pictured with her elder sister, smiling through it all.
Wow… And right after that?
Desire: It wasn’t easy, it was tough, really but i survived. I had series of attacks, setbacks and all, but God was and is still faithful. I can’t even say how many times i passed out, how many times my monitor went flat, but God remained faithful.
Your life is indeed a testimony. Tell us briefly about your life before these events.
Desire: Before june 17th 2016 (date of the accident), I used to be a young girl who wanted to achieve so much, I pursued my modelling dream with Runway Factor and was also working in a corporate office (Somotex Nigeria, Limited) at the time. I schooled at National Open University Of Nigeria, 200level, and being the online learning it is, i had enough time to do other things for myself.
- Desire, before the explosion.
Wow. And now?
Desire: Well now, this accident only made my dreams tougher to pursue. I’ve got scars, but still I have been sending my pictures to agencies, it would be difficult for them to have me because of the scars and all, but i just don’t see myself killing this dream because of rejections and no’s. I have not started schooling yet though because after the accident, everything became so tough. i might not be able to go back to school just yet. You know, staying at home with no source of income has sort of crippled me, but i still have this strong belief, all will be well.
- Desire: I’m not altered. I came out beautiful.
I believe with you. So, a lot of people are carrying pain in their hearts, some are scarred not just physically but emotionally as well, do you have any words for these people?
Desire: First, I must say it really is not easy to overcome the trauma, depression and pain which scars cause but once you decide to “Try” being strong; you’d notice that in no time strength will be a big part of you. My scars remind me of what I’ve been through, but it doesn’t dictate where I’m going. Running away from our scars (emotional or physical) kills us slowly, Embrace it, let yourself feel; let yourself heal, scars mean you overcame whatever tried to destroy you! Try hard not to allow the damage control your life, scarred people should have the greatest success stories. Just know that ‘You Can’.
- Desire with the beautiful smile!
This is really beautiful.
Desire: Thank you.
So, we heard you’ll be doing another surgery soon? A skin grafting surgery… If I’m right…
Desire: No dear. Not skin graft, it’s actually more of a reconstructive surgery. I’ve got a tough scar on my left leg which makes it difficult for me to bend my leg. And also my neck, i cant turn it around properly and was told by my doctors here, it has to be loosened so that i can easily make use of these body parts.
- Desire Benjamin
I know these surgeries are expensive. What are your plans for it? How do you hope to get the finance?
Desire: Lol, hope? It’s in God! Last of everything we had was used in making sure I got out of the hospital alive. I’ve not stopped praying and hoping for favour to come my way. I need to use these body parts properly and I’m certain that God isn’t done with me yet, I believe he’d raise me a helper, for now I am doing nothing, no capital for anything just yet, no headway, just me, my scars and my God. It just feels like I’m stuck but I believe there’ll be a breakthrough for me by God’s grace.
Thanks for granting me this interview
Desire: Thank you too (she smiles).
Desire is very optimistic, she trusts God with her life and praises Him in the storm, she doesn’t hide her scars. What’s your excuse?
Desire would love to hear from you, you can reach her on +2348179038482. You can follow her on instagram @stainlessdesire
Don’t forget to like, comment and share. I love you.
I’m on instagram @idonthidemyscars or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Photo Credit: A big thank you to Dolapo Julius Ogundiran and God’s Grace Studios for the professional pictures.