Thursday, October 17, 2013

As I (gracefully) age...

What To Expect When Expecting -Baby Expo Meltdown Elizabeth Banks Scene

Post Baby WTF

As I write this I am in my car in the parking lot of Heronbridge waiting for my 8 year old to return from a match. Playing is Dia Frampton and Kid Cudi"Don't Kick The Chair". That little piece of info has absolutely nothing to do with the story, just needed to show I'm still a hip mom...#nojudgement Anyway back to the story. I have just had a baby. Lovely piece of bubbly energetic life called Samkelo. Sam I Am, Sambo or Hiccup depending on who is addressing him. While they say being pregnant and being a mother is the best thing to happen to a woman, they fail to mention that it is also the shittiest thing a woman can go through. It really isn't all Johnson & Johnson commercial material. The first issue I have is how much of yourself you have to surrender. Not only does your body start to resemble a beached whale as each month goes on and on but your emotions are all over the place! Sprinkle some aggression, nausea, bloating and swollen feet...voila! Pregnancy! I remember watching What To Expect When You Are Expecting and the little speech that Elizabeth Banks give sums it all up (check video post) And it all kinda catches you unaware. You only realise how miserable you really are at like 6 months in. By then you are committed! And i have been pregnant twice (I don't learn, and each and every time I find myself feeling blindsided. But if you can fight through all the above, and you can, one day you will wake up to a gummy smile and big fat chubby hands grabbing your neck and...well...either you are being strangled by a deranged toothless fat person..or you are finally face to face to what is easily the love of your life! Your baby. The one person that will give you the strength and drive to wake up each day aiming to do your best and be the best you can be. And for those days where you know it could have gone better you still get to go home and fall in love all over again. And that makes it all worth it!!
It's been a while since i blogged. What with growing human life inside me and then having to take care of said life kinda takes all of one's time. But having said that, i cant just blame my lack of blogging on motherhood. The advent of Twitter has me thinking and sharing in 140 characters instead of full paragraphs. Tweeting is such a thing in our household that my 8 year old told me that if i need to get hold of her, I must just "tweet her"! Anyway, while Twitter is fun, every now and then its good to have a good old rant/share session so we blog!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

My Child - Yours to Rent or To Buy

In a joint investigation by Eyewitness News and Carte Blanche it came to light that Zimbabwean women living in the Johannesburg CDB are and have been, for a while, renting out their babies for a grand total of R20 a day to women who then take the kids out on the street to beg for money.

Any motorist will tell you how hard it is to pass a woman at the traffic lights who has with her a child, and not feel the slight tinge of guilt when you see the little body strapped on their backs in the blazing heat with no water or food. And it’s that guilt that’s these women prey on. According to the feedback reporters received, begging while holding a baby is very lucrative and can earn a woman up to R300 – R400 a day!

Elsabe Coetzee, founder of Siphumelele Childrens Home has been on a one-woman crusade to get these children off the streets to a safe haven and according to Occupational therapist Velda Frankim, who treats the babies and toddlers once they are in Coetzee's care, these “mothers" are deliberately harming these children by giving them alcohol, because when you give alcohol to a child they become compliant and “a child who is drunk will not cry when he is hungry because he is passed out," said Frankim. Not only that some of the children show signs of physical abuse with one little girl having had her toenails have been burnt off. She warned of short term life threatening medical effects and long term social implications.
As far as I see it these women are criminals and a disgrace to the nation on Zimbabwe and to women as a whole. Many people came down hard on me when I lashed out at these women. Many felt they had no other option and their actions are as a result of the fact that going back to Bob and Zimbabwe would be a far worse consequence. In my humble opinion, that is utter B/S! There are a lot of people in Zimbabwe who are struggling and yet would never think of resorting to the lows these women have exposed us to. Information that came from Elsabe’s files also show that these beggar women are recipients of care packages from Siphumelele, that they are given every week in-order to keep them and the children off the street and yet they still go back to the streets taking the children with. For a woman to come to the conclusion that putting their own child in harm’s way is a far better prospect than any other option they face is unacceptable. It screams of unfit parenting and a lazy mind. The same argument could be used for hijackers and murderers, that they too were faced with no options, so they resorted to putting others in harm’s way for financial gain.

I have to wonder if these baby-selling and renting women were back home, firstly, would they have been allowed to entertain that kind of thinking? Would anyone have provided them with that kind of opportunity to offer up your child for rent or sell to someone for muti? Is there something about the innate need to survive that has us acting even less than animals or is there something about being in a foreign land that has us lowering our standards? Is it a trait that is brought about by an environment or is there a criminal in all of us that’s just waiting for the right mix of circumstance to bring it out?

In my world these women would be found, jailed and deported back to Zimbabwe – a move that will have more positives than negatives. Let Bob and his band of merry geriatrics deal with the mess they have created. And once these women are there, they should also do time for the damage they have done to their children.

Am I being harsh, maybe. Am I being judgmental, yes. Do I care, absolutely not.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Battle between those that left and those that stayed behind..

The country imploded, things were starting to get tough and life wasn’t as fun as it used to be. So we all found our passports, dusted them off, caught planes, buses, jumped on the back of bakkies and left.

I have been out of Zimbabwe for nearly ten years but I still have family there so I am back there on a regular basis. My daughter spends two months of the year there so I am not removed from the reality of what’s happening in the country.

What irks me and is becoming more apparent is the resentment that’s shown by those that stayed behind towards those that left. Any talk of returning back home is met with comments about how we now want to come back after they have held it together, and we mustn’t think we will be able to just come back in and take things over. From the sounds of all this it would seem those that stayed have begun to believe they deserve some compensation for not making the choice to leave, like they should somehow be rewarded for being the ones to choose Zimbabwe and not some other far off land. In some instances people make it seem like they did the country a favor by staying.

As I see it we all had the option to stay or go. And whichever choice a person took is neither the right one nor the wrong one. Neither decision makes one anymore Zimbabwean than the other, or gives any one person more rights to what the country has to offer than the other.

Yes, I agree the people that chose to stay in the country played a part in keeping the country afloat but they also contributed to the mess, in a number of instances they were part of the problem – contributing to the corruption and decline of the country. Likewise those that left also had a part to play in keeping it together – the amount of forex that flowed from outside to families in the country allowing for trade and people to eat cannot be overlooked, but they also didn’t help the situation either in the dealings that took advantage of the situation because they had financial advantage.

We all played our parts in the upkeep and degeneration of our country. The way forward is to now play our part in fixing the mess, but we seem to be gearing up to start a fresh squabble based on ones “struggle credentials”. And to be honest I am not sure what we are fighting for. For us to all of a sudden be getting ready to sharpen our knives to fight amongst ourselves over what could very easily be just weeds is ridiculous and extremely worrying in a time when the only hope we have is ourselves. If you start to think you have more right to what OUR country offers than the next person, how different are we from the current government who think they alone have a right to all the wealth of the land.

I am one of those that left, but I will proudly, with as much expectation as someone who stayed, walk back into my country and expect to fairly compete for all I want because I am a Zimbabwean and that’s all I need to qualify me. Everyone has that right, because when it comes down to it there are no victims and there are no martyrs.