April 30, 2013 in Uncategorized
In 2009, I left a job I loved and was progressing relatively well in for absolutely no other job prospect. I explored, in my mind, several things that I knew I’d be good at, but need took the risks to pursue them. As a result, for the next year and a half, I was depressed and jobless. In the process, my credit record deteriorated and that is undesirable in the financial industry. I waited and waited and finally volunteered for a teaching post back home in Limpopo. At that time, I had had to move to Pretoria CBD from Fourways and was living with my two younger brothers and sleeping in the living room/kitchen, which meant no privacy. So, moving back to my Mama’s house, the home I grew up in felt like a demotion. My personal and professional lives were in tatters and I had been spending most times feeling sorry for myself, resenting and hating God for ‘not providing for me’. The voluntary position made me realise how much I love educating others and making them aware of things they had no knowledge of. That time was also characterised by fear, which started in 2009. I was constantly afraid that I was going to lose ‘my source, my provider’.
Turning up late and squabbling with some colleagues had become a part of my life. A lot changes when you tell your boss that you don’t trust him and pretty much that he’s favouring others above you. Well, the voluntary position ended when I got another offer; an actual job, teaching Grade 12 learners, amongst others, economics and accountancy at a rural school. The first thing that struck me was how high I had fallen: From working in a corporate office with air-conditioning to working in a lightless and air-condition less office, dominated by little people and from living in an affluent area, in a flat with a proper balcony and security. At this place, donkeys, goats and stray dogs were at times the order of the day. They would just stray onto school grounds if the gates were not closed. I lived in teachers quarters that were at times dust encrusted if there was a storm the night before. The roofing would threaten to fly off and I would just pray for morning to come. Due times, sleep was a blessing that was sometimes hard to come by. But, I could clean it all away, prepared for lessons each day and just do my job, which I loved.
I think of those times often. Often, I think of the learners I left behind. I wonder if they’re doing well. I wonder about their dreams and whether they have someone who’ll guide them towards achieving those dreams instead of making babies and waiting for a measly government grant to make a living on. I also realise now that, during those times I was happy and afraid. I was and still am, afraid to dream, to dream new dreams and to want more from and for myself. I sometimes ,think that, being hammered like a nail that stood out, as a former colleague once said, was God’s way of telling me to be content with my lot. Now I am nearly 32 and in yet another training programme and afraid. Afraid that I won’t meet the yard stick of measurement. But, now I realise that God giveth and He alone taketh away. I also realise and have learned that, it is possible to sabotage one’s self. CS Lewis says that you’re never too old to set another goal or dream a new dream. Well, I’ve started dreaming again, on a massiveish scale, especially now that I have paid off all my old debt. It took me 20 months to pay all of it off and for that I’m thankful to the Lord of lords and King of kings, who gave me the ability to do so. So now I have new dreams: Cum laude my Masters in Economics, Complete my Pattern Making and Design course, travel to African countries, study Criminology and marry someday.
There is not much I can do about the past. It’s come and gone. I can only look forward from now. I will take my failures and past fears as lessons. Lessons to teach me to fight and be resilient and to never back down and stand up for what I believe and fight for those who cannot fight for themselves. Being chased out of my previous and being ‘marooned’ on a tiny village with donkey carts as the main mode of transportation have taught me a lot. Life is always changing. Circumstances are there to teach us, not to dictate our future unless we let them. Not everyone wants your good or wants to build your dreams. You must build them all yourself and trust God that, should you fail, He will be there and will carry you forward. Because that is precisely Who He is.
Now, I have to get back to Chapter One; dissertation.