It had been a while since I saw Amanda, Rinos & Lisa (my little siblings) and I must say when they came up for the holidays it felt like they had never left. This was thanks to social media of course! But still – the point is they never felt like they were far away for the past year and a half or so. NOTHING could have prepared me for the emotions, conversations, deals, laughter, joy and smiles that they brought! NOTHING AT ALL!
I picked Amanda up from Sam Levy’s after she had gone out with her friends. This was at at 8pm even!! These kids have it going on for them for real! When I was her age I remember being under such severe lock and key that when the man who was to be loved by my whole family about 6 years later called me on my granny’s landline I bit his head off to make sure he NEVER tries those stunts again. I also got shouted at once for lining my eyes and I was NOT going anywhere on the day!!!!. Yet she was out here at 8pm with her buddies and a face with eyebrows so beat! The amount of eyebrow stuff she had and the amount of eyeliner I had . . . HAMENO! Anyway, in the spirit of letting bygones be bygones I am letting this one go. #NewZimbabweHoye!
Where was I? Yes, I was NEVER prepared for this hectic level of Caretaker, Chaperone and “Big big sister” that this holiday brought.I was used to helping them get up when they fall, kissing fingers after they collide with a door, pulling them together after a very petty fight AND putting people in naughty corners while threatening to beat them up. Things had changed sooo much now! At some point on the drive back to Gogo’s Lisa announced that I was going to be a “Cool parent” who knows where to draw the line. Hahaha! I think that is what happens when you make them cook and clean while you sit and obsess over GOT “because you drove and fed them”, then they MAKE you download a whole bunch of movies.
After I picked Amanda up the girls (Amanda, Anashe & Lisa) decided to have a sleepover at mine on Saturday evening, so we went home and they slept over. You can imagine my excitement after church when I realised I DID NOT have to go out of the car to buy anything, neither did I have to cook, clean or mop anything – THEY did it! OK – I am sure you fully comprehend my excitement for minions, WAIT till I have my own! My mothers will have nothing on me.
We had an awesome yet simple sleepover and after church, a meal and hair washing, prepooing and the rest of stuff that goes with 4 heads of hair I dropped them off at Gogo’s. I thought I was done, I thought I was the one, that sister who has ticked all the boxes – I discovered on Tuesday morning that I actually was not. But then again, maybe you CANNOT tick them all!
Amanda had left some clothes at mine and I promised to bring them to Gogo’s on Monday evening. Monday evening rolled by and by the grace of God I found myself at Gogo’s WITHOUT the clothes. I told her and she thought I was joking, even though I said over and over and over again. I hoped it would sink in and at that point I was not making a big deal of it.
We went to bed and early in the morning as I was about to leave she walked to the car with SUCH a spring in her step and that “EverCalm” Amanda look on her face. She asked me to open the car door so she could get her stuff and I told her I had actually not managed to bring it with me. What came after THIS I was not prepared for AT ALL!
This child has ALWAYS been calm! Like – I don’t think she can EVER be phased – except by Lisa and Rinos, her younger siblings. She looked at me with her beautiful eyes swimming in a sea of disappointment and her smile slightly curved downwards. I was NOT prepared for that and nothing in the world could have prepared me AT ALL! Seeing that look of disappointment and that fleeting downward curve of her lip. Being Amanda, she quickly smiled when I told her I would bring them or have them with me all day so I can give Mama or whoever would be in town.
You see, I had NOT realised how much faith she had in me and how much she actually looked at me and saw a reliable person and I had let her down. It was such a blow for me to realise that I had taken for granted just how much she believed I would do something for her when I say I will. How many times do we take people’s faith, trust, hope in us for granted? Now that I have had that thought on my mind all morning I just had to send it out to the world so that we can all ponder on it.
To Mandy, I apologise for letting you down, even if it was over “clothes”. I took your faith in me for granted and I am so sorry honey! Please forgive me, I will do better next time! <3 … let it flow.
Tomorrow, when another day comes
I will rise with the sun
Rise to keep the journey moving
While silently learning more
Even when my heart cannot take it
I will walk tall and walk on
Patiently waiting, heart in my mouth
My smile widens, tears well up
Threatening to spill over and wash it all away
Her voice is in the wind “Inguva chete,”
Like the setting and rising of the sun
Only time will tell
Where my journey shall end
All this by His grace
The river flows. . .
There is a word that has been taking on a different meaning to me every single day. The only thing that I regret about it is why I did not learn it earlier. Glorification; it means so much more than just giving honour and praise as the English dictionary would put it. It is a word laden with so much meaning – if it were an animal it would be a chameleon.
I have glorified some things so much that they have taken their position on a pedestal in my life. They have gotten so much glory from me that they command me and I do their bidding. Yes, glorification is not just giving glory – it is giving control. You grow what you glorify, you are subdued by what you glorify and you are over taken by what you glorify.
The web woven by glorification is so intricate, beautiful and safe for the glorifier. It is all this till you want to live on the other side of it. On the inside of the web of glorification lies so much comfort, ease and security. Yes, it is easier to glorify than it is to vilify or be indifferent. Much easier to lurk in the shadows of constant glorification and not take responsibility for one’s life.
Like many of you, when I first thought about glorification I did not think it was a big deal. However, now that I am looking back to the point where I first thought about it I am realising that it is a really huge deal.
Before I glorify glorification itself let me show how I have glorified something as simple as fear. I have let it envelope me and it has gripped me so hard I cannot seem to shake it off. Fear used to be a shield, it protected me from sticks, stones and even words! Then one day I was wounded and fear became a crutch, I could not function without my heart beating furiously and my pulse demanding attention. That was fear; it had penetrated my being so much that I could hear it crying out as it coursed through my veins. It had taken over, it had subdued, and it had gotten comfortable.
Fear made me believe its thoughts, words and actions were mine. I never once did question their origin much! How do I question something coming from so deep inside me? Fear had grown roots in me; I was producing the fruit of fear and I was convinced that they were mine. I guess the growth was fuelled by failure and experience – things which should have made me stronger!
So many times I let go of opportunities when fear showed up and reminded me who the real boss of my life was. I delayed sending in proposals, reports, and even making phone calls because I was “afraid” of the results. I delayed going to the VID because I was “terrified” of failure and the possibility of having to pay for a license therefore wasting money. In my head fear conjured up so many excuses which I saw as reasons not to do so many things. Crazy enough I still fear getting out of bed on some days, simply because I am afraid of what the day has to offer.
What you glorify knits itself to you so well that getting rid of it means getting rid of some parts of your being. I am slowly learning that although fear has crippled me it is not me and I am not it. I am painfully carving away the bits and pieces of fear that have bonded themselves with every fibre of my being. It is painful because it involves doing the very things that I am afraid of. It means ensuring that parts of the perfectionist in me dies too, because she has brought me more pain than joy. She is one of those that have fed fear till it incapacitated me.
The bottom line is that you really have to be aware of how you handle life. Glorification might as well be a weapon of mass destruction, taking no prisoners as it strides around the world. Remember; you grow what you glorify, you are subdued by what you glorify and you are over taken by what you glorify.
The river flows. . .
So on Saturday morning I went for a run after a very long time of not working out. It was inspired by my friend Tash Africa, that child has a body chiseled by hours of extremely hard work. She shapes her muscles one by one into a form that she dictates! And even though she lives in Germany and I in Zimbabwe, we are some sort of workout and life buddies. We have never met in real life and yet we understand one another really well, we think alike in so many ways and it is weird how she can get into my brain and vice versa.
Enough about the AH-mazing Tash Africa, I was telling you about how I got my groove back; but I will start with how I lost it. After failing my fitness assessment in January I just wanted to stop working out till I was mentally able to push my limits (this was an excuse by the way, I was just disappointed that I had failed). I had not even prepared for the assessment and the last time I had worked out properly was in October during the preps for the Miss Earth 2014 international pageant. We did workout during the Miss Earth 2014 bootcamp, but it was nothing compared to the work that I had been putting into work out sessions since 2013. When I came back home I had tonnes of excuses for why I could not work out, I even became an expert on jet lag and the need to rest so I would lecture anyone who wanted to get me to resume my normal routine. The truth is that I was just plain scared, I was terrified of the pain during sessions, but I craved the burn.
I have never been good with failure, it has a way of making me want to curl up into a ball, tie myself up in a big knot and separate myself from the world. I am really mind boggled by this feeling of total defeat that engulfs me after failure, it makes me want to not try again because I just might fail and then get disappointed again. One of my goals is to be a fitness trainer, so I told my trainer who agreed to help me reach it. For a long time I walked around with my head held high seeing possibilities, imagining myself as a trainer. When a random text from Eve, my trainer came through saying that I should not miss training because she wanted to assess my form and fitness level I was not excited. Even though I knew what I wanted I had not worked towards it and obviously during the assessment I was skiving, huffing and puffing in lousy form. When she told me I needed to get fitter before she could work with me towards being a trainer I was gutted, so much that I just wanted to give up.
Everyday for the past three months I would look at my to do list and there was a subtitle that was never crossed out nor updated. The word “Superwoman” stared at me in the face daily and I would look at it the way I look at guys who try to chat me up after a “psst” – like it was made of glass and was transparent. Whenever I dared to make an effort and update it I had a reason why what I had set out to do could not be done, so it moved untouched from page to page. Tash and I would swap ab pics, meal tips and workout ideas, but I still felt uninspired. This month I decided it was time to actually get up and do something about the hot mess that I was, to stop wallowing in self pity and change the fate of my goal. It was after a realization that I was not going to click my fingers and be a trainer, that I have to work for it and had I started working earlier I would not be in this pool of discouragement.
Before I became a lazy excuse machine I used to jog for over an hour but on Saturday I only managed 25 minutes of running, walking and wheezing and to my surprise I was not disappointed! Even though I did much less than I used to five months ago, I did more than I had done the day before and I was still pleased with myself because I was 25 minutes closer to achieving my goal. When I got home I went straight into a 30 minute lower body workout that almost ripped my legs off and was highly rewarding!
There is something about working towards an achievement, being real with yourself and pushing your limits while at it. When I started my first real job I was told to under promise and over deliver, it is starting to seem like a principle which does not work well in the relationship I have with me. Maybe if I am real with myself while consistently promising and delivering I will be closer to achieving my goals.
The river flows. . .
“Ndawana wekuchemera, ndawana anondichengeta, ndawana wekuturira! #NdagarwaNhaka” – Tuku Music
This kugarwa nhaka business must have been relieving back in the day when cultured African men wore loin skins and knew what it meant to GENUINELY want to take care of their deceased brother’s wife. It must have been an honour to be entrusted to ensure the safety and well being of your brother’s wife and children.
Sadly, these days when a parent passes on, their siblings are the first ones in line to make the orphans’, widows’ and widowers’ lives a living hell! They are the ones already planning on how to get their hands on the title deeds, how to make sure that they get the sofas (never mind that they already have a set at home – they just want more to put in the bedrooms), they are already weaving a story to ensure that they get the car.
What happened to the faithful, loving, giving, caring and compassionate REAL man who was content with being thanked for taking care of a family that was otherwise going to suffer? What happened to the man who was already grateful for his own wife and didn’t lust after his dead brother’s wife? What happened to the man who valued integrity above personal gain?
Where are the men of days long gone, the men who took on the responsibility and not the burden of taking care of their kin? Where are the men who understood that #NhakaSandiBonde?? The men who were real protectors of women and children. The men who saw a mother and child bearer before they saw a sexual object?
Is it not their blood that flows today in the veins of these men in suits and ties? Is it not in the men who have title deeds for their land instead of simple boundaries?
If we don’t find it in the man of today, let us resurrect it in the man of tomorrow. Let us raise our sons to have a raw desire to protect women and children. Let us be the reason for a better tomorrow which is just like our yesterday.
Come with me back into the future where the man knows that #NhakaSandiBonde
The river flows!