Chapter 28

Crisis within a crisis

Be yourself; Everyone else is already taken.

— Oscar Wilde.

Chapter 28 has began and I have so many questions I want to ask the inner me. I would like to believe that I am suffering from an identity crisis which is very hard to explain to people. Many a times they make it seem like just because now I am older, I know who I am. However why do I feel this way? Why do I feel as if the world is coming to an end and that I don’t understand myself?

Who am I? Do I really know who I am? Do I really understand the woman I have grown to be or am I in a faze trying to grab a hold of who Bambi is? Robin Sharma in The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari mentions meditation. But how do I meditate in a hurrying world? a world that never sleeps. Is it because I have all these expectations of who I want to be that I lose myself in the mix?

I am guessing this is the beginning of understanding this quarter life crisis I may be going through when I have to discover my life’s purpose by being still. Block out the noise and listen to the inner Bambi.

The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate – Oprah Winfrey ❤

Why We broke up and made up

“Until men and women have an open, honest and real conversation about who they are, what they want and what demons they are fighting, they will never truly understand each other”—Anon

We met through my friend who is his cousin. It was a surreal moment because imagine dating as a young mom. It felt like finally I have found the biggest break in life (let us not make it seem like relationships are not amazing things done with the right person, we all long for that, and we cannot help but feel attracted to people). Once I find a guy that I am attracted to, I do not even waste time, I go for him and that is exactly what I did.

Our relationship took off and it felt amazing. Although the distance between us was taking a toll on us, we made it work regardless. He would come to the city since I was renting somewhere around. However there were lil cracks made in our relationship because we never sat down and had open and real conversations. Out of the blue, we started fighting, not understanding each other’s love languages. Even the smallest thing would spark the hugest argument and we had found ourselves sleeping without a good night text or phone calls.

We broke up because we didn’t understand each other. We were trying so hard to mold each other into these ideologies what a perfect partner is. We fought because I wasn’t listening to him. We fought because he wasn’t listening to me. I remember telling him before we dated that I want to get married, so when I brought up the topic in our relationship, he put up a resistance and I went crazy. I lost my mind, I thought maybe he is here to waste my time, OMG!

He is a reserved man who really loves keeping to himself, I on the other hand am a loud outgoing woman. I didn’t know how to love and accept that he keeps to himself. He has the same expression for everything, even when he is happy, shame he would be having a straight face, I DIDN’T UNDERSTAND THAT!!! I would talk to him, and he would take his time to respond, me being me, I just didn’t understand why he would do that. Bongani also didn’t understand this loud mouth girl. He would try keep me quiet and tell me no, I’d throw a tantrum.

We got so tired of the constant fighting and we finally broke up!

For a good year we were apart!

Then one day, I texted him “baby if you are ready to make this work, come home”. Its as if he was waiting outside the door for the dragon to calm down. For the first time in my 27 years in this world, I found myself sitting across the table with a man I truly love and wanted to build a future with. We had an open relationship. We talked, laughed, cried and sat in silence together, for the first time since our relationship started in 2016.

We each had skeletons in our individual closets that we weren’t ready to speak of, but that day felt different. We opened the closet doors so wide and we each emptied them. The demons we were battling with were put on the table. It was at that very moment that I loved this man standing across me naked. We took away the clothes, the curtains, anything that covered any imperfections we each had and we started on a clean slate.

We were ready to love each other flaws and all. For the first time it actually did feel like we are suited for each other. We are tailor-made for each other and we actually started to see that by accepting each other. A noisy cheerful woman, made for a quiet reserved man. Kissing him today feels amazing. I guess we needed the break away from each other to actually appreciate the love we have for each other. The time apart was a form of reflection and growth. A time of self introspection. A time of self appreciation.

“I no longer believed in the idea of soul mates, or love at first sight. But I was beginning to believe that a very few times in your life, if you were lucky, you might meet someone who was exactly right for you. Not because he was perfect, or because you were, but because your combined flaws were arranged in a way that allowed two separate beings to hinge together.”

― Lisa Kleypas

T

It hurts to be human

Never give up, and be confident in what you do. There may be tough times, but the difficulties which you face will make you more determined to achieve your objectives and to win against all the odds.

– Marta

Lyrics of Pink's "Hurts 2B Human"

I am a Front Desk officer so everyday Jane would walk through the door, very jolly and cheerful as always. We would change our pleasantries and chat away about a lot of things. Jane is significantly younger than I am and I have adopted her as my younger sister. We would talk about a lot, from boys, to fashion, to education, you name it. I must say, I see mini me in her, since she is a sanguine, confident and friendly. One day she walked through the door and I could tell that she wasn’t okay.

She was quieter, calmer, puffy face, and clearly she wasn’t happy about something. Over my desk as we usually do it, I asked her if she was fine.

Jane: “it really hurts to be human” (starts crying)

At that very moment, my crazy upside down life came flashing before my eyes. Here I was, older me looking and younger 22 year old me. I was looking at her sobbing and loosing her mind because life had been so unfair to her like it was to me when I was her age. Instantly her mind was plagued with negative thoughts. All I could do was listen to her talk and crying while I offered a shoulder to cry on and a listening ear.

Jane: “Bambi I want to feel better, what do I do?”

Man learns through experience, and the spiritual path is full of different kinds of experiences. He will encounter many difficulties and obstacles, and they are the very experiences he needs to encourage and complete the cleansing process. – Sai Baba

“What advice would you give the young you if you had the chance?” I asked myself. It gets better. It actually gets better. The pressure you have put on yourself to be the best because you actually thought you are good at everything, will die out and you will learn about life. No one ever sat you down and told you that life is like a rose garden. For you to pick one, you will get pricked by thorns and bleed. You grew up thinking that life is all cupcakes and rainbows.

Life is actually harder than that. You will get rejected, humiliated, embarrassed. You will also get wanted, uplifted, cheered. Like a wheel on the car, life goes up and down, its like a roller-coaster ride. There are times when it feels like you are on top of the wheel and you are passing at school, getting promotions, your relationship is going well, basically winning at this life thing. Then there are times when it feels like you are at the bottom of the wheel, you are flunking in school, losing friends, retrenchment. These are the times that you get to dance through the rain.

The battle of life is, in most cases, fought uphill; and to win it without a struggle were perhaps to win it without honor. If there were no difficulties there would be no success; if there were nothing to struggle for, there would be nothing to be achieved. – Samuel Smiles

We are all trying to win at this life thing and we just need someone to be there to understand what its like to go through this journey.

We ought to stop being hard on ourselves and appreciate ourselves.

We ought to celebrate the small wins in our lives, that way we will enjoy our destiny.It gets better.

Redirection is not always bad and failure and pain is absolutely necessary for growth. Its okay. We will be okay!! – Oarabile Mokgatlenyane

Dance Through The Rain

While he did have faith and passion, he had many challenges to overcome. It was not an easy ride to success, but through his faith and passion he did make it – Catherine Pulsifer

Growing up, I had always felt like my life was horrible because it lacked something. I used to want the latest everything because I thought somehow I will be happy. For a long time, it had appeared as though my life was short of something and somehow once I acquire that thing, I will lead this amazing life. I didn’t want to accept that in life there are rainy days. I didn’t want to believe that too much sunshine without rain, makes a desert.

I always thought that happiness was something I had to get in-order for me to actually feel it. I felt somehow when my life reached that point of no challenges, I will be over the moon. However there was always something in the way of my happiness. I either needed money for that latest iPhone or I had to pay of some debt. I had to finish some business or omg! time had stopped, yet I was getting older.

Until it dawned on me that these challenges make up my life. These obstacles are who I am. Who am I? I am the ups and downs of my life. I finally had to admit to myself and decide to be happy anyway. I chose to be excited about life, to be content, to appreciate all that I have gone through. I made a conscious decision to look forward to the best things in life. HAPPINESS IS A JOURNEY NOT A DESTINATION.

Sing like no one is listening.
Love like you’ve never been hurt.
Dance like nobody’s watching,
and live like it’s heaven on earth.

William Purkey

I learnt that there is something magnificent about myself and that my journey is unique. I had to learn to love myself and to forgive myself to be able to grateful for all that I have. I have always been someone who sees the glass as half full. However as I was going through these set-backs in life, I never realized that I had to learn from these hiccups in order for me grow. Oh Life is amazing ever since I changed my approach towards it.

  • Focus on your life’s journey and stay committed
  • Run after your destiny and enjoy the ride
  • Believe in yourself, be confident and chase your dreams
  • Work on yourself and you will see the change in your life
  • Remember that comparison is the thief of all joy, do not look at other people’s lanes, stay on yours.
  • Spend time with people who uplift you and cheer you to be the best

When breaking a window, you do it over and over again, until it actually breaks, you don’t give up on the way and say you tried – BambiLocs

Laugh like you never cried before

Why appearance matters to us

We have built a culture that places such immerse value in appearance that we would rather spend a lot to appear full than spend a little bit to buy food. There is no argument that we spend so much more on time, we spend so much effort and use so much more money to appear as though we are doing fine when indeed we are suffering.

We always tell each other that appearance doesn’t matter, however we are always bashing each other. We always want to keep up with the Joneses. If one day we woke up looking like superstars we would be very happy. We are quick to point out one little flaw about our appearance that is why we spend so much on cosmetics. It is the norm and tradition we have developed that it keeps trickling from Generation to Generation.

It is no wonder we suffer so much anxiety because we feel we aren’t good enough because we somehow lack something in our appearance. It is uncalled for to hear a person mention that they wear clothes from the second shop, or they drive a 10-year old car. I would rather spend a fortune that I don’t have to appear as though I have everything under control. This is because as a society we have placed so much value on appearance.

The famous saying that “do not judge a book by it’s cover” is somewhat fake because we actually judge books by their cover. That is why sales reps are always in fresh cut suits, receptionists since they are the face of the company, must wear and appear “clean”. No matter how many times we try to deny it, appearance does matter to humans. This is simply because:

  • It is socially acceptable hence the famous saying an attractive person is a sight to sore eyes
  • Looking good makes us feel good about ourselves i.e. an ego boost
  • Physically attractive people get to make more relationships with people because they are impressive

We do not realize however that in putting so much value on appearance, we miss out on the one thing we must learn as humans, contentment and gratitude. We suffer the inferior complex of placing appearance as a measure of success. As parents, especially in Botswana, we tend to feel like we love our children if they go to a private school and not a public school. Over-indulging our children, because we want to appear as though we are loving our children and we are there for them.

We suffer emotionally and go to bed hungry because we rather forfeit our bread for our latest shoe because someone will see and think we are rich. We have put so much pressure on ourselves because of the culture we have built of appearing as though we are okay, when in actual fact, we are suffering and trying to understand life as it is. We do not learn the basic language of money, instead we want to cheat by using get-rich-quick schemes, by promising each other temporary riches than actually building wealth.

Let me know in your comment below why we place so much value on appearance as people

why do I stress about appearance so much

OMG! Mommy is Dating

Dating a single mother doesn’t mean you’ll be playing daddy… It just means you will be becoming part of a family and a role model to a child/children. If you aren’t ready to step up, then don’t step to her- The Gentlemen’s club

I am not going to lie, dating as a mother was the most difficult things I ever did in my life. I thought after I have my daughter, getting back into the dating scene will be easy and any man will see that I am a real woman. Oh boy was I wrong! I found myself giving up on the idea of love altogether, because somehow having a child has “degraded” your value as a woman worthy of love.

Until one day a friend of mine introduced me to her cousin and my world changed forever. He didn’t try wine or dine me to try win my heart, he was straight forward with me. I found a man who chose to be with me because he loved me, not because I bore him a baby. In his upfront approach to ask me to be his woman, he made a conscious decision to love me. I know that because I see his actions towards me. His random kisses, his care, the chivalrous actions towards me.

Like Ella Mai puts I needed somebody who would love me naked, someone whom I’d never ask to love me and someone who’d never ask for love too. Someone who’d will stick around after I have undressed, shown my flaws and seemed impossible to love because society said so. I found that man! If I had to go back and choose again, I would choose him over and over again because he opened up his heart to love me.

He is an introvert, I am an extrovert, I cannot begin to imagine how my life would be had he been as out going as I am. I feel like he brings to me a sense of balance, calmness and relaxation after I am done being mommy for the day. Sure, we have had our ups and downs, we have had our high highs and our low lows. I remember one time my daughter was hysterical and throwing tantrums when she was 3 years, I found myself asking him if he is ready for all that drama, because that’s what dating a mother means.

He played it so well, and in a calm voice he said that he is ready, because that’s what being a dad means too. He is also very understanding. For a mother, dating means that I won’t have time to be going out to every date or club, I will be tired to give him the attention because children are demanding. Somehow, He is very accepting of that fact. He even chooses PG dates that will accommodate the kids, while we also spend time together ❤

I urge all single mothers out there not to give up hope. Love will find you, in fact love finds you at the time that you least expect it. You will find the man that you have been praying for, word by word. A man who, regardless of y’all having a baby together, will treat the kids equally as his own. A man who will love you flaws and all. Love is a beautiful thing.

I know what I am talking about. I am the living testimony. I didn’t fall crazy in love and blindly in love, I had to be sane and open my eyes to see what I was getting myself into.

I’d choose you over and over again

Securities

We all have self-doubt. You don’t deny it, but you also don’t capitulate to it. You embrace it. – Kobe Bryant

“I’m a combination between extreme insecurity and extreme confidence.” This is how I describe my personality to all those who ask me to tell them about myself. I have self-doubt. I have a fear of failure so bad that when I have to do something, I sometimes avoid it. There are days when I show up at work and I just want to chill. I wouldn’t want to adult or anything because wow I am feeling hopeless.

“The creative people I admire seem to share many characteristics: A fierce restlessness. Healthy cynicism. A real world perspective. An ability to simplify. Restraint. Patience. A genuine balance of confidence and insecurity. And most importantly, humanity.” David Droga. I believe that I am human going through my phases of I do not want to adult today because I feel inadequate.

I have come to accept that I am insecure. Insecure about my looks, insecure about my appearance, insecure about my educational background, insecure about my dark lil secrets. I have however stopped allowing my insecurities to get in the way of my happiness. I have confidently embraced myself as I
am, flaws and all. I believe I have my moments of insecurities and figuring out what I am doing, how I am supposed to do it and when, but if I don’t ask these questions I wouldn’t know how far I have pushed myself.

I fortunately have a positive attitude towards life and I believe it brings out the best. My anxiety, my insecurities and my fears need to know that as much as they sometimes cloud my mind, my tomorrow is promised and will be beautiful. I am really confident and fierce. However these aren’t traits I had naturally, these I picked and learnt to perfect over the years as I was growing older. I use my confidence to mask my insecurities and my doubts because I don’t want people knowing the real me.

What comforts me after all these feelings is what Debbie Ford once mentioned “An exciting and inspiring future awaits you beyond the noise in your mind, beyond the guilt, doubt, fear, shame, insecurity and heaviness of the past you carry around.”

I know I will be fine.

I am a mother, a friend, a girlfriend, a sister, a daughter, a brown skinned Dreadlocked sister

Culture and Children

“Losing the language means losing the culture. We need to know who we are because it makes a difference in who our children are.”—Dottie LeBeau

Lefatshe le le senang ngwao, ke moka le latlhegileng (a nation without culture is a lost nation). Culture is beautiful and gives a sense of pride and belonging that we all long for. Components that make up culture should be passed on to the next generations that follow. Things like norms, traditions, values, dance, tales, songs just to name a few should be taught to children so that the legacy does not die out.

“Generations have struggled to learn, despite efforts to eliminate our traditions and language. Having a strong sense of yourself and your community is a great foundation for learning.”—Agnes Chavis, Lumbee

One has to be involved in their culture so that they can be able to know who they are, where they are from and where they are going. Here in Africa, we have been taught the white culture in fact the English language since we were young and we have some how forgotten our ancestral trail and have lost our ways. It is no wonder we are raising our children to only speak English and have done away with our mother tongue; The language that brings us closer to who we are as people.

The only way to develop a strong sense of knowledge of ourselves is if we go back to our roots, that way we will have a better nation. As parents we need to teach our children the essence of language and that losing their mother language is a major dent in the true identity of who they are. Not only is losing language a major problem, it is losing a feeling, an identity, a prayer, an ideology.

Raising children in a fast changing world can be overwhelming, but culture shouldn’t be taken away from them too. They can be a part of the world, interacting with other people of different cultures, tribes and ethnic groups, but they should also be involved in their own culture, knowing everything that makes them know who they are. As a motswana mother, speaking setswana, knowing poems, songs, ceremonies and tales of the batswana, I believe it is of great importance that I teach these to my children, so they can teach the generations to come. Because if I don’t, all these will slowly fade away.

Culture is dynamic yes, but we cannot do away with it completely and pick up a new culture, as if we are saying our ancestors did not know what they were talking about. To understand your culture however, we must know our language.

I am a motswana mother