A few things on my mind

A few weeks ago I buried my baby brother.  I know death. I get death. People die. I even have a list of people I think should die. With this as a premise, I don’t get how he is dead.  I genuinely cannot accept that he is

Lebodead. I wrote him a letter last night (see below) and even as I was writing it, it was as if I was trying to convince myself of something that is not true. But here we go……

To Lebo,

You were my season, my reason and my lifetime. You were my north, my east, west and south. You were my partner in crime and my alibi.  Lebo how do I say goodbye to you.

How do I say goodbye to my one constant, the one that I took for granted, the one who was always here? My weekend special, my conscience, my gut feel and moral compass.

How do I say yes to my heart being ripped out of my chest without warning? How do I forgive you for leaving without a heads up? Say it is not so. Say it not true. Say they made a mistake. You win, you play dead longer than Lesego. Come back from heaven.

I don’t know why He would take you. What are you doing in heaven except driving everyone crazy. He made a mistake, and I know He doesn’t make mistakes but this time….

It’s now four weeks and two days. And I don’t know when I should stop waiting for you to come back or stop counting the days that you have been dead. I don’t know when you become a distant memory. I don’t know when you die or even if you do die or what dying means in relation to you. In the meantime, I hold on to your favourite sonnet….

“Thou art more lovely and more temperate. Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,

And summer’s lease hath all too short a date. Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,

And often is his gold complexion dimmed; And every fair from fair sometime declines,

 By chance, or nature’s changing course, untrimmed; But thy eternal summer shall not fade,

Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow’st, Nor shall death brag thou wand’rest in his shade,

When in eternal lines to Time thou grow’st. So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see,

So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.”

 You were my summer’s day. I will love and remember you every day of my living days. You were my season, my reason, my lifetime. You were my north, my south, my east and west. My baby brother and my older brother. My best friend and my true love. I will honour you with every waking minute and every effort of my life.

I love you ngwana heso.



I have been quiet. In all fairness a lot of things have taken place in my life, some great others not so much. But still processing so not going to talk about them now. And they involve other people and not so sure how they would react to my sharing.

My son is five – I know, time flies hey. But he is five, over the five years, I have been told that our relationship is slightly concerning. I have written about him being my little man, I admittedly now can say, I did not know how deep that statement was. I am however blessed with a very close friend that keeps cautioning me about my son and I’s relationship, saying it borders on incest.

I am categorically stating that I don’t initiate the things that she has referenced as proof, but I will also not sit here and deny that I don’t entertain them. He is five, with very limited exposure, so all the things done are in a display of affection for his mom. To those older and with more experience, it could be concerning.  Not even going to tell you half the shit he does, you will call child services on me.

While her berating me always leaves in laughter, now that he is five, I do have to admit that I have been a bit concerned about how he displays his affection for me. I, therefore, asked a few mothers – with boy children, if this is something they have experienced, and I was told that this is normal. In fact, they found him pretty mild, they had disturbing stories to tell.

With my concerns put at ease, I can now assess his affection with less concern in my eyes.  This is what I know, I am his mother and he loves me. But let me also tell you that this is not just a ‘perve’ form of affection. I am his superhero. True story, he once told me that had a dream in which he was battling a bunch of ninjas in downtown Joburg and he was losing this battle. Things only turned around for him when I arrived, sword in hand and kicked some ass and we won.

He took his afternoon nap today and woke up to tell me that he had another dream but wasn’t scared in this dream because I was there. Makes sense, remember I am the chick that fucked up a bunch of ninjas in downtown Joburg.  When relaying his dream, he says he did not see my face, just my superhero boots and that is why he wasn’t scared. For the record, I don’t have superhero boots….well none that I know off.

Now that I know that I am a superhero, I want to say something to you, agree with me or not – it is really up to you. A guy who says to you he doesn’t get well with his mother is either saying so to impress you or has issues – big issues, deep dark emotional issues that you are going to pay for in some form or another.

It is also fair for you to say that I have not taken my year off talking shit to study the male psychology, but I am willing to put my head on the block for the above statement.

Just to let you know, I have heard many women complain about their partner’s mothers and their relationship. Either the guy is a “mommy’s boy” or the mother is a complete overbearing bitch. Firstly, about the “overbearing mother-in-law”, I have to say my mine was a sweetheart. Hence I could never meaningfully engage in the mother-in-law bashing. However, now that I have explained my son and I’s relationship, I get how one could be perceived as overbearing.

I think overbearing is too strong a word. Think about it, she gave him life, she is his first love, lover and long-time partner, confidant, best friend…dude need I say more. But I will tell you for free that she knows him better than you ever will, how can she not. And this relationship is not one-sided. He is besotted with her,  how can he not be. He has spent his whole life with her, and he has many times told her he loves her, maybe in not so many words, but he has definitely shown her, and actions speak louder than words. What you are, is the bitch coming between them.

In saying this, I can see how you could raise your brows at me and others that have given birth to boys. I just have one thing to say to you, give birth to one and we will talk then. For example, at this point I know that I will select the woman my son is going to be with, what her wedding dress is going to look like – I have his/their lives all planned out and it is going to be great.

But also, I am not saying you should go marry the guy who goes home to mommy to breastfeed every second day, that could also be a bit problematic for you.

All I am saying is and speaking on behalf of all the freaking moo cow mothers-in-laws out there, is that I have superhero boots. I am unsure what that means for you and your relationship with him. But I will tell you this for free, if he tells you that he doesn’t love his mother and they don’t speak regularly and their relationship doesn’t leave you slightly uncomfortable…run girl, run.

With that said, I am also not sure how you manage me and the many like me out there. I did say mine was five when he starts liking girls and I have to deal with them, I promise I will holla.  Until then, I repeat, stay away from the non-mother likers.

BlogSo 2016 kicked off with a bang – Penny Sparrow causing much fuss in the year that everyone hoped would be the year of great things to come – or maybe it’s just me who was excited about 2016 and its prospects.

In any case, the reaction to Penny Sparrow had me thinking – as most things do. In illustrating my point, I wanted to share my experience as a tweenie. By the age of 12, I was technically an orphan. My dad and mom died when I was six and 12 respectively. As my siblings were still in high school and first year of university, I was shipped off to live with my favourite aunt – my dad’s youngest sister. Growing up I used to love her visits – she spoiled me rotten – the mother I always wanted. So when I had to be shipped off to her, as devastated by mom’s passing, it wasn’t so bad since I got to live with someone I actually loved.

I was 13 and didn’t realise how badly I needed a mother at that time. While I had all the comforts of a normal family life, my aunt had her own two kids. I quickly realised that living with someone who is not your real mother, and has children of her own, has it challenges. I spent the next five years of my life hoping that she would claim me as hers. For example, in the early stages of our living together, her friends would visit and would say “Oh this is your daughter!” knowing very well that I wasn’t her biological child – they were just trying to make me feel included; but she was always quick to point out that I wasn’t.

It was never malicious, but most of the time, especially because of the speed that they were corrected on what she knew they knew, it felt me wanting. But most importantly, it hurt tremendously, especially because at that point I wanted so badly to belong – or for her to even claim me as one of her own. But a grew up, moved out the house and finally after many years of therapy, came to understand that as much as she had provided a roof over my head, it did not automatically make her my mother.

So what the hell does that have to do with Penny Sparrow and every ‘racists’ outed in the past few weeks? We need to get to the root of why we continue to take such an offense with racists/people who don’t want us. Please don’t misunderstand my lack of understanding of racism. I spent a good few years in a corporate environment where I got paid less my peers, was never really good enough – and when I tried to claim my space in their business – I got told that “I was getting too big for my boots”.

This morning I listened to Bob Mabena congratulating Ster Kinekor’s first black CEO. I am not hating, congratulations to Wanda Matandela. To have made it to the top seat in their world is an achievement, I guess. Like many of us who walk the corridors of corporate South Africa, we know that Wanda is CEO as a result, he will have a Board that he will report to, and his transformation vision will not be at the shareholders demise.

On the same show, one of the interviewees was someone from a marketing industry who was speaking about white people being curious and understanding us so they can sell their products – something he highlighted that was not happening but would be great if they did. Fact of the matter is, despite their lack of curiosity about us, we still consume their products.

Listening to that show this morning, I realised, that we are trying so hard to be claimed and to belong. And when we are not, our feelings get hurt, like that 13 year old I was telling you about.

Imagine if the interview on Kaya this morning was with Wanda Matandela, the first CEO of a black owned and run cinema. I for one am tired of trying to find a spot in their little kingdoms – there are too many of us capable black people to be chopping at the bits of one seat every decade.

How about we start building our own empires where the transformation we so desire would be at our design. For example, according to Census 2011, the country’s population stands at 51.77, with Africans in the majority, making up 79.2% of the population.

Based on the above, quick maths says we have 40 odd million people that if we created our own economy, our own businesses, we would be able to the provide jobs and lives our people so deserve. All it needs, in agreement with Mr Matandela, is to work as a collective. If at this moment, we took our money and spent with the people who are remotely interested in us, we would create an economy to be reckoned with and then everyone would engage on free will – not some form of obligation.


Today I heard an interesting explanation of spirituality. Being in touch with your spirituality is knowing that your existence is meaningless without a meaningful existence of those around you. And all the pieces just seemed to fall into place. This was the reason why I can’t sleep at night. The plight of those around me is keeping me up at night. My soul is bothered – I cannot hear of another innocent child being raped, another brutal murder, robbery….

I know that I am not alone because my friend said to me recently “The convenience of my middle class life is suffocating me”.  Too many people died and continue dying while I keep pretending to be an ostrich. An ex-colleague of mine left a lucrative job to go join a movement because ‘evil thrives when good men do nothing’. I have for long time not known what to do with all the things wrong in my beautiful country and I still don’t know – but inaction gets me no closer to knowing let alone sleeping.

So I have an idea. If you are reading this and agreeing with me, how about we start a movement that galvanises people? You are required to donate two very valuable things – your skill and time.

And let’s see if we can find other like-minded people who are willing to do the same and we donate our time and skill to help address the fact that our people are going to bed hungry, our children don’t have day care centres, the long queues at hospitals and clinics; and yet there are millions of our people sitting without a job or purpose. Imagine if we could inspire, teach and up-skill one person out of their situation.

If interested – inbox me with the following:

  1. Name
  2. Contact details (cellphone number and email address)
  3. Township close to you
  4. Area of interest/passion
  5. The skill you are offering

So, please share this note with as many people as you can –the more hands on deck- the more effective we will be.

Looking forward to hearing from you.


I have not had much to say – not because there haven’t been things on my mind, quite the opposite in fact – I just could not find what to talk about.In a month’s time, we will be commemorating Nelson Mandela’s passing. This is going to be an opportunity to once again reflect on where we come from and where we are and going. I can already see the headlines, local and international – all good and bad – on the state of things in this beautiful country of mine.

My thoughts today are based on statements I have read or conversations I have had. At the risk of plagiarising – I will attribute comments accordingly.

In understanding what I found so difficult about putting my thoughts to paper – I described this period we are in as the ‘Twilight Zone’ I used to watch the Twilight Zone when I was a child.
This might explain a few things about meFor those who have never seen the show, it “it is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, and it lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge” Branko Brkic dailymaverick.co.za/article/2009-09-30-the-twilight-zone-is-50-years-old/#.VFnejvmUd1Y

As we head into the silly season, the events of this year will pass, and we will plan for a better 2015. As historian, I am firm believer that we must look at our past to determine our future. But in so saying we need to know what lessons we learned.
So in review of things that have passed and had us acting in an episode of the Twilight Zone, here are my top three :

1.Oscar’s trail
Done and dusted. We move on, unsure what lesson. We will revisit this issue one day am sure. Just suffice to say, after explaining to my daughter what Oscar was on trial for, she said “Why did he not knock on the door?” But for a more informed view, read the article by Rian Malan on Oscar Pistorius in Newsweek: newsweek.com/2014/11/07/pistorius-trial-parable-about-celebrity-not-south-africa-280549.html

2.The Lighthouse Baby Shelter
My son turned two, and as per his paediatrician’s advice, I can now take him to a nursery school. In my search, I decided to check out the one up the street from house – The Light House Baby Shelter. I was saddened to find out that it is a home for ‘unwanted, abandoned and abused babies from newborn upwards’https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Lighthouse-Baby-Shelter-Main-Page/184040991612919?sk=info&ref=page_internal. My daughter last night asked me if I had found Lesego space in this school and without thinking I told her what that place was and she said ‘Why would anyone abandon a baby?’

3.Nkandla… Bring back what money, for what?
Apparently the draft report by the parliamentary committee on the Nkandla controversy has absolved President Jacob Zuma and concluded that Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s findings against him on misspending on his private home were not binding Media24,

In the absence of something smart to say, I will quote Ranjeni Munusamy who said these things happen in our country “Because every day we get accustomed to a new abnormality”

My man

I few days ago I attended Emotional Intelligence training – I know right like I need that. It turns out among a few things that I am not a sensitive to others as I should be and that turning to myself for expert advice is not ideal – but will share more once I have my full debrief.

In learning more about my emotional side, we spoke about being a mother – especially of more than one. The women in the room had only one child and were scared of having the second one as they felt they would not be able to love them as much as the first one. They turned to me and asked how I found being a mother of two– my response was “You grow another heart” I did not think about my response then but I have been for the past two days. I have documented how responsible I feel about my role in my daughter’s development as a woman and placed a similar onus on her dad.

My second child is a boy – over and above the fact that he is a real terrorist – he is actually quite sweet. For the record – I do love him with all my heart and I am able to do so because Mother Nature gives you an additional heart with every child. He is learning to reciprocate affection – bearing my earlier declaration – I need to work harder at demonstrating to him emotion and affection.

In raising a man – I know that my responsibility is to also do right by his future female friends. To do so I need to make sure that I cut the umbilical cord at the right time – not too soon and not too late. If I get it right – I would have created a real man for some woman out there.

As much as my boy will model his father’s characteristics, making his dad’s role in him being a man crucial – I also have the same responsibility on how he will treat and appreciate women. And being a woman – I would want him to be a real man. But what would that entail – a real man that is?

So I came across a definition of real man by Myles Munroe and according to him – pardon the Christian bias – a man is the foundation – designed to hold the weight of the family. In addition, there is the below list – and without a guide book – I think this is a list worth working from.

Munroe says before I send him out to the world, I must ensure that he:

1.Has a clear self-image
•I must help in developing his self-confidence

2.Is in the presence of God
•I must teach him that while the world is his oyster, he must be aware of the bigger powers at play

3.Is working and loves to work
•I need to teach him about responsibility and accountability

4.Is able to cultivate a woman
•I need to teach him that it is his role to bring value to his woman’s life

5.Is able to protect his woman
•I must teach him about the power of his strength – that he must be able to use his strength for good and not harm

I have said many times that raising children is hard – but it is harder now that I know that I am actually raising a man.


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