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. . .
Ever since I decided to live consciously in 2012 my eyes have been opened to seeing the beauty of life without the pressure of perfection. I have lived more between 2012 and 2014 than I have in my whole life. Everything around me came alive because of the change in the way I chose to see it, even the way I saw other people around me took a different form! There was a richness to everything, it all had a purpose, a life and a beautiful story. I am continuously amazed because by focusing on everything I am able to see it all much more clearly.
I must admit that in the beginning I felt like I was catapulted back into the time where people cared very little about much. It felt like someone had taken control of the vehicle of my life and kept pumping the brakes, ordering me to look much more deeply into everything around me. My first reaction was a involuntary gasp, because as I looked outside my window, a beautiful transformation took place. The most amazing thing is that it had nothing to do with anyone else but ME! I had caused this slow motion complete change in my surroundings!
Because I was used to cruising through life from one moment to the next, what was a breathtaking moment soon had me panicking. I wanted to see things the way I thought they REALLY were and it took me a very long while to realise that this was EXACTLY how they really were. The blemishes and flaws that I had been seeing all along were so much more than that; they were just pieces of an unfolding story. It was a really extraordinary story, I only had to have the patience to wait for its completion.
For a long time I struggled with my desire to live a conscious life, it was too awesome and very care-free which really did excite and alarm me a whole lot. It made me more tolerant, more accepting, opened up my arms wider than I thought they could ever be and absolutely transformed me from the inside out. I stopped looking for hidden meanings and depth in everything and began to take time to observe, listen, and understand.
Even the Bible took on a new meaning, it became LITERAL – it became the Word of God and therefore has become like a love letter written to me by my Father. A letter that was relevant 2000 years ago and still is. All His promises and corrections came alive and I just wanted to take it one scripture at a time – it turned my life around this conscious living!
Take one of my favourite scriptures for example, “Love your neighbour as you love yourself” – it is a very simple concept – LOVE YOURSELF FIRST then you can really love others. It is a practical, applicable Bible principle for LIFE. But the hurdle was loving myself, that was the really difficult thing. It was a painful process to look at myself with all the things I know about myself and still love myself. It took a lot of acceptance, tears, introspection and so much more. I am still working on it, and it is not getting any easier.
This conscious living thing has taken the weight off my shoulders – I can only imagine what it can do for me in the long run! On Sunday I was driving quite hesitantly and my boyfriend said to me, “Drive with intent – think about what you will do, how you will do it, when you will do it and just do it.” Imagine living like that – living with intent, another nugget has been deposited into my Life Wisdom Jar! Live with intent!
I hope you too will slowly unwrap the gift of consciousness in you – it is for lack of a better word – BEAUTIFUL!
You are enough for you, just know yourself, love yourself to love others, and Live With Intent!
The river flows. . .
I have always wanted to be a model of some sort, it was one of those things I have sincerely wanted to try out. For years I used to dream of being stumbled upon by some agent the way Naomi Campbell was scouted, and that is still a dream. Up to now I wonder if we have scouts in Zimbabwe – maybe there are, but they haven’t seen me yet. I am finally a model and it is not as much glitz and glamour as I thought it would be! I am a Miss Earth Finalist for 2014, does that make me a model? I think it does!
In 2010 when my cousin and I started an Artiste Management Agency and I thought my dream had been taken away from me because “who would hire the one who hires the models?” I resorted to walking around in high heels everyday & strutting my stuff while crossing the road as a song played in my head. It must have been the most hilarious thing ever to witness, especially because I really did “work it” while I crossed roads and then I would walk normally as soon as I touched the pavement. Those were awesome days! I was 20, felt like I owned the world & I was the queen of everything! The agency was alive for 6 months then we closed it because of my full time employment elsewhere.
Every now and then I remembered the time I told my mom and aunties that I was going to be Miss Zimbabwe one day. It made sense to them because I was a tall, beautiful 6 year old with the loveliest hair & eyes! I was watching the Miss Zimbabwe 1995 pageant with my family and I had been vouching for Dione Best who went on to win the contest. As soon as she was announced as the winner, the loud mouthed little girl that I was decided she was going to be Miss Zimbabwe & everyone simply had to know. I was sitting / lying on the floor & told them one day that was going to be me. It is weird how for a couple of months that was my dream till I got onto a plane and decided I wanted to be an air hostess instead.
My career choice kept changing, at some point I wanted to be a neuro-surgeon after hearing about Ben Carson, then I wanted to be a paediatrician because babies make me light up, I remember wanting to be a geologist because my uncle was one, the list and reasons are endless. Now I just want to make a difference in any way that I can and work with my two favourite things on earth; people and smiles.
The Miss Earth Zimbabwe Foundation promised me a platform to create a sustainable difference & I must say they did deliver on that promise! This is a pageant with a difference because all finalists have to run an environmental project for 60 days and the project constitutes 40% of our total pageant scores. It is only natural that I chose to work with people and smiles for my absolutely fulfilling green project! I have been working on my project called “Environment Matters” in Kuwadzana since the first week of August.
All I can say right now is my experience has been simply eye opening, enlightening and amazing! I can’t wait to share it with you all. My next few blog posts will be about my project and how the Miss Earth Pageant is slowly chipping away at the tomboy in me. Yes, sometimes I am angry at that – I love my simple hair, tees, jeans and sneakers: BUT I am also discovering that I like lipstick, curled locks, mascara & pretty dresses too. I am not sure how I feel about foundation though, however I know concealer is amazing!
It seems most people are liking my new look, my aunt Nomvula looked at my Whatsapp profile picture one day, sent me this message – “Siyabonga iMiss Earth nge profile pic” (“We thank Miss Earth for the profile pic”) then told me to thank the Miss Earth Foundation on her behalf. I haven’t done as she asked so;
“Dear Miss Earth Foundation,
Thank you for giving this opportunity to my niece and for contributing to the lovely profile pictures we are seeing on social media. I hope this is here to stay or at least to be constant.
I hope you guys will all enjoy my Miss Earth Finalist journey – I promise you, it has been very different from what I expected it to be!
The river flows. . .
Yesterday is long gone
I know, yet it lingers on
I am sure that is one yesterday
Which is here to stay
That smell floats into my nose
Conjuring up moments like those
When all I would have wished for
was for the whole thing to end instantly
A hand from the past
Glides up and down my body
Bringing to mind the struggles
Struggles only I know of
And dare not speak about
My eyes put together an image –
Closed eyes, an intense face
This was a human….NOT a beast
Complete with hands like fists
Though in action beastlike…
I knew he was all human
My ears come alive
As I hear the grunts and whispers
From that yesterday, as light as feathers
Yet as deadly as the worst poison
I cringed then and I still do so now
The memories are what I relive
My mouth feels once again,
That invasion, that force, that taste
Which bring to mind a struggle in vain
Rendered powerless I laid there
Glassy eyed and numbed…was this really me?
Then I feel the pressure and warmth
That was that of a body spread over mine,
And I remember it was not her…
I was the one who lay there
Only I know what happened then.
On that yesterday long gone.
The river flows. . .
Its 2303hrs and I am literally putting pen to paper after having drafted my bloginity breaking piece. I am having SUCH a great time sitting in the kitchen writing my second blog post. I could go on and on writing – this really IS my happy place! Reading and writing are two of my favourite things in the world! J
I have a time machine & I can teleport! YES I CAN! How? Easy – a counter book (3 tier please), a pen, a laptop blasting good music, headphones (now and then) and I am transported to another world. A world where I create whatever I want to create. Normally it’s just me venting, loving, appreciating, or dreaming – nothing fancy! But I simply love it! When people ask me how I love to wind down after a busy day ‘in my time machine’ is what I would love to say! But then I realise I cannot use that phrase without terrifying most of the people around me. So I just give a ‘diplomatic’ answer based on what I feel at the time.
Only recently (2009 to be exact) did I begin to place value on solitude. Even without my creating utensils or my time machine I can still have a blast! Solitude – a word I really appreciate. I love long trips by myself or with my partner in crime because then I am engrossed in my own world. Yes, being with my significant other feels like being with myself because it does (I wish I knew why, but that is all I know).
At times even a kombi ride in silence can be amazing for me! I offload so much when I sit in that loud kombi in the calm, quiet place in my mind and heart reserved only for me. In the stillness of my mind I am filled with calm and peace for the outward rush. I used to be so much of a chatterbox when I was younger; but I outgrew some of the chatter for inner inspection and meditation. (Others would like to argue that I added on introspection and lost none of the chatter at all! – but to each his own)
It’s not a matter of not wanting to be around people, but a matter of being comfortable with myself and with being with just me. I find that really restorative. I like knowing that I will be here to be with me after a busy day. I find myself looking forward to that moment that I spend time pondering and looking back at the day, past, present and future. I wish I could explain the feeling, but I cannot. No matter how long or short the moment is when I steal it from the world; it is quite soothing to be alone with me at least once a day.
If you know what I speak of and you have tried it, I am sure you can attest to what I am saying. If you are one of those people who have never sought or never seek the company of yourself I suggest you try it. Just be with you, allow yourself to hold hands with you and take a well-deserved break from the hustle and bustle of the world.
In future I will respond and say, “Partying with myself” when I am asked how I like to unwind. Because it is true and it is less weird than saying, “In my time machine!”. I like to hang out with me and have a blast! Try it and see for yourself! I promise you it is the best experience after good music!
The river flows. . .