If I think of a legend it would be my maternal grandfather. He was a quiet, disciplined, faithful man with grounded, unwavering values. He also loved stories and jokes and toffees. Why is he such a legend in my life? He encompasses balance that I rarely see today, love that I rarely feel, forgiveness and peace and a sacrificial type of love that left the world better after he left it.
Me, hm, I strive to display the things I felt in my grandfather’s presence and more, the things unique to me.
I was born in 1976 in the Cape Winelands, a few days after the Soweto uprising, to coloured parents (both educators), in the coloured section of the hospital. We lived in the Swartland area for a few years and then returned to the Winelands.
Both my parents love music and have a specific love for choirs, therefore they conducted / started choirs wherever they go. A prominent influence in my life. My parents are stalwarts in my life. They know what they know and have allowed their children, within their parameters, to grow their world as well. Conservatively so. They have done and still are doing the best to support the growth and development of their children, children’s spouses and grandchildren while maintaining one of their biggest interests – singing in choirs, ad hoc these days as they’r’e over 70. Grateful.
I have two brothers. They mean more to me than I express. This will change now. My brothers have quietly been my two bestest supporters, challengers, confidants, defenders. They make me laugh and prompt me to reflect. Challenge me in ways they’re not even aware of. I’m amazed at the men they have become and how they both navigate life as spouses and parents so very differently, successfully, life. They each married a loving partner who challenge them to grow, compliments them, walks with them and flourish with them within every phase that life presents. Grateful.
Me. I’m 42. The single, eldest child. Daughter to my parents. Sister to my brothers and their wives. Aunt to three adorables. Godmother to 5, soon 6. Cousin. Niece. Confidant. For the first 40 years of my life I have allowed my life to be defined by my music, my job, my studies, the choirs I sang in, the orchestra I played in, my family and their needs, my friendships.
Two years into 40, the change has been painful. Like a purifying fire. Changing everything.
It started with words.