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Shanae Cooper-Robinson


You are not defined by your past, however, “ you can use  it to refine and define a definition of your future.” Starting from a humble beginning is a humbling situation that calls for self- drive, tenacity and hard work to escape that reality. When the resounding voices of negativities echoed in my subconscious memory, it was hard to erase those noises. It took God and guts to beat the odds.  Based on my background many people wrote me off. I was under-looked, undermined and under- estimated.  A lot of negative words were spoken over my life, but I reversed and sent them all back to the sender.  I was told that I wouldn’t amount to anything good; I was sneaking and would have gotten pregnant before age sixteen. Listening to all my critics I could have yielded to those negative utterances because norm and culture are hard to change. The norm of my community was for boys to prematurely drop out of school,  sit on the street, rub out their hand middle , while most girls don’t make it to ten grade without getting pregnant.

Throughout my earlier years my attention was affixed on how I could escape poverty, I found the answer, by getting a sound education. There is no life on earth without challenges, but if you can get pass them,  you will break free to visualize your silver lining at the end of each dark cloud.    

    Personal Story and Challenges

Before I blossomed into this wonderful fruit, I experienced a lot of ‘adversities’ (can I put it as my root experiences?) I stemmed from the bowels of poverty. I grew up in a broken single parent family household. My father was absent from my life, so mummy had to go to market as well as worked odd jobs to suffice the needs of my siblings and I . My mummy’s work ethics was and still is unmatched. There was no limit to the ethical things she did to suffice our needs. She played the role of a mother and father well for many years.

Despite making huge sacrifices, life was still rough. It has even gotten worst when a life changing tragedy struck. As a result of that dilemma, my mom lost her mind at the time when my youngest brother was a baby. My siblings and I went through a series of depression, despair, emotional tiers. Our home was broken; consequently we went to live with our grandmother, then aunt. I can recall fourteen (14) of us living in one room. We suffered psychologically and emotionally from the situation. Life has never been the same since.

Despite my adversities, I excelled academically and materially. I became the first person in my family to graduate from high school, get CXCs and go to college. I have broken down many generational barriers that seemed impossible.

Successes and Achievements

Jeremiah 29: 11 , “For I know the plans I have for you ,” declares the Lord, “ plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” I knew that there was more to life than my adversities, so I was on a quest to pursue my purpose , unleash my potential and discover my passion. This burning desire sent me in search of the possibilities of life. I knew I had a God- given purpose and I wanted to fulfill that. It was through obedience that I resurrected my dormant skills and wrote my book .  All the adversities that were meant to be disadvantageous turned into my message to help others experiencing the same thing rise above them. I began sharing my stories, experiences, knowledge, and lessons (my message) of which are transforming other people’s lives positively. Since then, I have been busy writing books, started getting featured in local and international television programs, newspapers, , blogs, summits, and podcasts. I used education as my escape route, while exercising firm belief in the Most High to steer me to my destination.

Advice and Tips

Each person enters this world with God-given skills, but it’s up to him or her as to what is done to harness them.  It takes resilience and determination to elevate yourself,  when all you know is sitting at lodibar. You don’t have to stay on your face when fall or yield to your adversities and struggles, instead you can rise above them. Use them as steppingstones to reach your destination. “Smooth roads never made good drivers; fair weather does not make good pilot.” Weather your storm and rise above your adversities. Additionally,  whatever you are facing, there  is hope for that situation. Behind every dark cloud there is a silver lining and there is light at the end of every dark tunnel. When you’re going through your adversities pray, when God delivers you from it;  thank Him,  share your story and be better than what you were yesterday. Use the lime that life gives you to make limeade and the sour tamarind to make tamarind balls.

In a nutshell, when life knocks you down, get up, brush yourself off, rise above your adversities and keep going.   

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