Why Chimnelo? They curiously asked suggesting that I use a sweet sounding name like Genevieve. I made them apologize for asking such question after educating them. The translated version of an Igbo saying reads ‘It is only a child who doesn’t know how much God has done for her, that refuses to acknowledge Him’. Indeed, Chimnelolom (my God thinks better for me). If you believe in the power and mystery behind the names we are called by, you will understand the angle I’m coming from. Actually, using my English name, or rather my French name wasn’t a bad idea, but Chimnelo made more sense to me. I never appreciated it until adulthood because I failed to read its meaning. In the past few years, I thought being successful was my making, hardly did I know that I was ignorant of the reality. When I began to make a lot of dangerous mistakes, and failed even myself, I came to realize that for not being destroyed by my mistakes, indeed, God was up there pressing a lot of buttons for my safety. In fact, I appreciate this name now to the extent that I have planned to call my first daughter by it; I guess she would be as strong as I am as well…smiles.
So, my friends felt really disappointed at themselves at the end and even apologized to me. I understood them anyway. The funniest part of it was that they left thinking about the meanings of their native names and praying passionately for my success.