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Showing posts from December, 2011

why do i blog?

I have been blogging for almost two years. When I started the blog I thought it was going to be a distraction from the arduous (and often painful) process of researching and writing up my Masters thesis. Much to my surprise I have been a keen and consistent blogger with regular readers who have encouraged me to keep writing. In spite of the limited readership of friends, family and facebook friends, I have enjoyed the process of thinking, “what shall I blog about this week?”.

A few months ago someone asked me why I blog. My response referenced bell hooks and how her writing had inspired me to give myself the opportunity to write, even though I wasn’t certain that my writing caused waves or whether there would be any faithful readers to entertain my thoughts. I discovered bell hooks in my third year and fell in love with her voice that made complex and heavy issues accessible and worth consideration. She gave me the words to understand some of the angst I was feeling at the time but was…

being my mother's daughter

I will not be spending Christmas at home with my mother this year. I had the conversation with Mama explaining my change of heart and she sent me an sms which began with the sentence “I want you to carry on with your life...”.Being designated the baby in the family, I finally felt like I was being given permission to grow up (this is significant now that I’m finally moving to anoher province). Granted, this process began when I left home and moved into hostel and later to varsity. However the apron strings had never been fully severed. And spending Christmas away from Mama means some confirmation that it is possible for the apron strings to be cut.

Amongst the strange conversations I have had with Mama, the most vivid in my memory was about gratitude; where she was expressing how grateful she is that I chose her to be my mother. Amongst Mama’s ideas about the world, she believes that before we are born our souls are always alive and view the world from a celestial or spiritual realm of…

a room of one's own

The first time I had my own bed was in high school. I moved into hostel when I was 16 and shared a dorm room with 3 other friends. The only possessions I had were in a single bag my mother bought from PEP. Prior to moving into hostel I’d always shared a bed or mattress with my sister. We learned the economy of space and the importance of sharing when we moved around during our childhood, often into one-roomed flats. My parents shared a single bed and my sister and I slept on the floor.

Sharing space and having no privacy was part of my childhood and early teens. Having no space to be and think was the norm. It was only in Grade 12, where in hostel it was a matric privilege to have a room of one's own that I began to relish the endless joy of having my own room with a key and a lock. My own private space to think. It was by leaving the one-roomed flat (that I called home) that I was able to have a room of my own.

I have bitter-sweet memories of sharing space with my family in crampe…