I sometimes wonder the direction my life would have taken if I was never introduced to chess. This is because, over the years, chess has served me for different purposes.
At some point it was my deepest heart desire, at other times it was an obsession, it became my best friend at a time. Chess was opium when I was depressed or broken. At a point, I replaced it with my girlfriend. When I needed to create or invent something I reached out to my chessboard and invited my toughest opposition.
Chess inspired me to academic excellence while in the university and even now as a police officer.
When I was jobless and broke, it was chess, chess and more chess! Chess was a getaway, it was a companion and it offered me a glimmer of hope at such times. However, I also failed a course at the university because of chess. I lost a girlfriend because of this beautiful game. I have also had quarrels with my wife because of chess. But in all, I can say chess has done me more good (so much more) than any perceived negatives.
I believe I am a better person today because of chess. I am not a chess master but the little I know of chess has always proven sufficient to make me happy and continue to improve on my person. Chess has taught me more about my temperament and most importantly how to harmonize it with the universe.
Time will fail me to articulate and itemize what chess means to me or has done for me. But with the foregoing, I am sure it is clear to whoever may stumble upon this piece that Chess is a strong part of my life and indeed I am grateful to chess.
DSP Emmanuel Diogu