Hello 30! :: Thank You!

I started planning my 30th birthday celebration one week after my 29th birthday, lmao. Little did I know that WWIII would almost break out, the black plague would try to make a comeback, Coronavirus would shut the world down and make masks fashionable again – but touching taboo, Black Lives Matter (always have and always will!) would come through like the storm we needed, we would lose a heartbreaking number of special people and just general mayhem and dismay would break out all around the world. 

My grand plan was originally to go to Morocco and live my most elaborate Mariah Carey life. The theme for my 30th year is The Emancipation of Nenesi. This is my year to break free of all things that I feel have held me back in any capacity – spiritually, emotionally, physically & mentally – you know, become a butterfly and spread my wings!

Month after month, the Marrakech trip I had been planning seemed less and less likely. So my girl gang switched directions… again and again and again trying to throw a party that wouldn’t get us arrested for real since it felt like Coronavirus already had us in jail. We settled on a Coachella style pajama party in Lagos, a dream that was quickly squashed when our good friend Bubu decided not to lift any travel restrictions and social restrictions. Somewhere around June I gave up completely and decided I would join all my other friends who sadly, hadn’t been able to celebrate their 30th birthdays during the pandemic. Maybe we could all get together and have a 30 @ 31 party. Either way, I was done. What I didn’t know was that my deflated attitude sparked some fire in the people around me. 

While I was in my apartment telling my mom (for the 18th time) that I had no idea what I would be doing for my birthday, she was behind the scenes (in London) working on a master plan with my siblings and friends. They brought Marrakech to Lagos on Friday. They took the party to the beach on Saturday and Sunday? Let’s just say Mariah would have been proud.

(You can see pictures, video & vendor credits for all the events on http://www.oliviastrunkunlocked.com soon!)

While all the flair and fancy was amazing, what really had me in awe and filled my heart was the fact that they were able to keep every single day a secret. You see, it’s very rare there is any type of production that goes down within my family & friends that I don’t participate in (… willingly & unwillingly) so it’s hard to get things past me. I know how hard that must have been not to mention the amount of time, energy, resources and coordination that would have been involved.

To say that I feel loved and truly know what love is, that is an understatement. Every single person in my life somehow pulled themselves together, from all corners of the world to bring this epic celebration to life.

The moral of my story? Love always wins. Show love and you will receive love. 2020 has shown us that we don’t know what is going to happen next, we can’t control nature and when we plan – God laughs. The only thing we can do consistently in this life is care for each other. When you show BIG LOVE, you get BIG LOVE.

I can not thank my people enough, my Mom & Dad – A1 since day 1, my friends who are my siblings I got to choose, my big brother, Ebruba and my brother in law, Kayode & my sister in law, Ibiyinka – who have held the fort down, BUT a super duper shout out goes to my sister, Makashe. Without her, life would be a struggle. My sounding board, my travel partner, the mother of my children, my gist liaison, my champagne companion, my Mexican compadre… and so much more. Thank you for everything. Thank you for celebrating me, loving me and reminding me daily that I am worth it all.

So on that note… Happy Birthday to me! And here are the rest of the pictures y’all actually came to see and not read my spiel (LOL).

Skirt & Top: Wanni Fuga (@wannifuga)

Shoes: Stewart Weitzman

Makeup: Meraki by Onome (@merakibyonome)

Hair: Collaboration between God & I

Flowers: Sara O (@saraoevents)

Photographer: Obi Somto (@obisomto)

Dress: Banke Kuku (@bankekuku)

Shoes: Stewart Weitzman

Makeup: Meraki by Onome (@merakibyonome)

Hair: Me 😉

Balloon: Luxe Balloons NG (@luxeballoons.ng)

Photographer: Obi Somto (@obisomto)

Dress: SheizaDiva (@sheizadiva)

Shoes: Christian Louboutin

Earrings: Raya Jewellery (@raya.jewellery)

Makeup: Meraki by Onome (@merakibyonome)

Hair: Mary Pius (@piumary_braids)

Balloon: Luxe Balloons NG (@luxeballoons.ng)

Butterfly Rings: Things Made Posh (@thingsmadeposh)

Photographer: Obi Somto (@obisomto)

Creative Director: Ibiyinka Ibru

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