Scarcity Isn’t Real

Erioluwadamiloju Shodayo
6 min readMay 16, 2022


Except when there’s no fuel in my gen.

This one’s taking longer than usual to finish. I’ve even changed the title three times — one for each time I felt a different wholeness the story.

I think it’s because of how much honesty I’ve been calling from myself these days, the struggle. I’ve found lying to everyone else is easier when you know the truth. So, I’m conversing with myself a lot more these days. I’ve accepted much more unsettling quirks of my delirium, anyway.

Read my bestie’s piece here.

Not only am I struggling to be honest, the honesty is a struggle. Is this why running is the default?

Let’s start with something easy first: I’m not sure I’ve ever truly loved or let myself be loved — meanwhile, all my life I thought I was a hopeless romantic.

If I colossally embarrass myself first, the real vulnerability won’t be so hard anymore.

The people I was sure I loved back then, I felt like I had to love — for one reason or the other. Sometimes, they seemed like the kind of person I was expected to love.

That fucking bitch, CompHet.

Most other times, those people — some of whom I am coming to love properly right now — gave me love. I don’t like to leave nice gestures unreturned. How dare I turn away a heart full of love for me?

And for a while, it worked. I’m not a person who receives a lot of ... anything. Never for very long enough, even. I took what love I got, even from people I wasn’t sure I liked.

Don’t try to love people you don’t like o.

These people, I knew, actually liked me. (With hindsight, I’m not so sure about love.) It felt like the millennium would go by, ever so slowly, before that happens again.

I only had to reciprocate ever so often, too. The love I knew: it was a good way of getting by. I wasn’t ever hurting anyone. But most importantly, I wasn’t getting hurt. Not really. Not even when I told myself (and everyone) that I’d been with someone for two years — someone who ghosted every other month. Someone would come back with a bang, we’d make love and I’d watch him sleep.

Now I know I liked someone. I risked him opening his eyes and looking into mine. I don’t look people in the eyes. It feels intrusive.

I knew I loved someone because the moment he replied to one of my 60 something messages (one for every day he was gone), I would start to shave. I loved my pubic hair and I hated sex, but I’d give both for someone the moment he sent ‘I’m sorry ❤’.

Wait that’s a little disgusting😩

Twisted as it sounds, it was effective for me as much as (I assume) it was for him. You see, someone never stuck around long enough for me to resent him. And I’m incapable of no greater vice.

That’s how I know I loved her, too. She pushed every button. Hard. But it was every button. And ever so often. I couldn’t get enough. It was like going straight to crack when you didn’t even know how much alcohol got you woozy yet.

Now I can be honest about the struggle with my need to be ‘special’ or ‘unique’. I think it’s an aftermath of having always been a special kid.

Fun Fact: Ultrascan said I was a boy, but I came out with a vagina. 20 years later, I’m a hot babe they/them.

Someone say ‘The Lord Is Good’!

I would literally get annoyed by someone else doing/saying something that I thought was my little ‘quirk’. That is, until I — for some weird reason — had the urge to Google the rest of a popular quote:

Imitation is the highest form of flattery that mediocrity can pay to greatness.

For the longest, I didn’t know what came after ‘flattery’. I didn’t even know that what I knew was incomplete. I thought the half I knew was pretty…flattering. In fact, I was in the business of using it to make myself feel better whenever I got that discomfort from being imitated. You’d think finding out the rest would give me a god complex, but it was just a little upsetting. I don’t think people who imitate me are mediocre. Quite the contrary; I think I fear they’ll be better than I am at being me.

Now that I’ve learned to trust myself a little more, I realise how ridiculous the fear is. I’m literally one of the women of Backdrop. Sometimes, at 3 am when I’m making a quiz or finishing an article, it registers that I’m actually doing stuff I enjoy — and getting my coin.

LOL 16yo me would do it all for free. She did us good fr fr.

I read something just a few months ago in one of the Ichiro books. In the book, the philosopher asserts that many of us don’t have the ‘courage to be normal’. I remember it resonated with me back then as a big source of my anxiety. If I just believed that I’m like everyone else when I enter the room, shit would be a lot less scary. All my biggest fears would be reduced to single hilarious moments. Everyone trips. People come late to class. People come early. When you remember you’re just doing what people do, life is not that hard. People also lie and cheat and bungee jump. People also kill. So do whatever you want to do as long as you feel justified. Executioners certainly do. And everyone thinks their vitriol is justified, too.

Validation like this is the only reason I’m still on Twitter.

Of course, I’m being generous in assuming everyone is capable of self-awareness. I like hope.

If you google ‘the need to feel unique’ you’ll mostly find positive things. And it was easy to just…want to go down that rabbit hole; to just read what I want to hear. But there was a single article, saying near contrary of everything else on the page. The article is from 5 years ago, though. If you have much more recent content, please send them my way.

Since I didn’t like feeling bad about something so petty, I wanted to jump straight to internalising the courage to be normal. So, I only scratched the surface of my feelings of inadequacy; after which I considered, perhaps, I simply wanted to be original. But the moment I said it out loud, I knew that was a lie.

Now this, I believed as soon as I heard it for the first time years ago.

Growing up in the church, I heard time and time again that every growing person (which I have learned is really everyone) needs a list of role models. And at the top of that list must sit Jesus.

I was a bored child. Still am. I don’t need an ADHD test worth a hundred grand to tell me that. Always on the go, I had a new role model as often as I needed — and found — a new hobby. (Which was no less than every other week.)

So, you see, I don’t believe in originality. This is not to say you can’t be unapologetically you, but no path is truly untrodden in its most basic form. Not in this century.

I hope I remember to add the link when find this article again.

If being you involves drawing inspiration from someone else, then any castigation is unsubstantial. And, as is evident in my case, most of that reprimanding arises from the inadequacies of the lofty.



Erioluwadamiloju Shodayo

On growth and neuroses. She/they. Libertine. Anxious person on the journey to self-discovery.