I have read countless number of books trying to figure out the concept of love and how it works. People have different journeys when it comes to love, from why they actually fall inlove to who they fall inlove with and when they decide that they no longer want to be in love. We as individuals often don’t understand these journeys and we often judge people based on what we see from the outside. Our perception and understanding of the term love differs because of learnt behaviours from when we were young. Love is learnt from a young age, the people you grow around are the biggest influence in your life when it comes to the way you love or perceive love.
If you have been following my previous posts you would know that I come from a rather dysfunctional polygamous family where love is almost non existent but a system for raising children and living together as a family. Expressions of affection whether Physical or emotional are seen as bizarre or foreign. I grew up in a family set up where tenderness and satisfaction of the needs of the other was absent or rather shared behind closed doors. There is this thing with Zulu men that if they show compassion to their partners it is seen as a sign of weakness and is shameful to the community at large. There is no desire for shared activities between two partners which almost makes me wonder how they come to making so many children and still remain firm in freely showing no intermacey towards each other.
-Black woman have always been magic.
-Zulu black woman lead as magicians.
I may not have a very strong foundation of love but the more “woke” I become the more I understand what it means to love n be loved in return. I have put so many years into this whole self love and healthy relationship with self thing that it takes alot for me to give into anything that doesn’t feel right. People are so Brocken out there and they are not even aware of it 🤞 before you know you are coght up in something that that has absolutely nothing to do with your growth. Choosing to be healthier is difficult but we are still entitled to love and gentleness when in the process. People often call it selfishness and isolation but it is important to know that you’re not entitled to their understanding.
I have had a couple of friendship and relationships that meant alot to me end Simply because I have never been one to settle or compromise. Having principles and knowing your worth is important when you’re in a long term healing journey. I have never felt entitled to anybody’s love and this has helped to easily let go of people who comes to my life without good intentions.
Please don’t get me wrong I love love, I am an easy going individual, adaptive and fun to be around but that doesn’t mean I want to be reckless and put myself in situations where my principles would be questioned. I cringe at the thought of heartbreak and I immediately remind myself that even if it takes me a lifetime to find true love I will always be satisfied with myself, even though my worst fear is hitting the age of thirty without having to live the dream of going on long drives with the love of my life while playing Rick Rocks “Aston Martin music”track on full blast. I know that dreams delayed are not dreams denied.
The more i grow the more difficult it becomes for me to keep the great FACADE at family lunches.
Please don’t get me wrong i love my immediate family (mother, sisters, brother, nieces and nephews ) i would give up anything to have them around me more often. there’s no place like home, the feeling they give me is immeasurable.
The depression comes from the extended family members ( the step mothers, the aunts, the uncles and the half siblings) it has become increasingly harder to take any of their phone calls and has got me to a point were i don’t take them at all. i fell like i genuinely have finally forgiven, understood and let go but there’s no foundation to lean back. i feel joy and relief for escaping and guilt for being the one that got away.
I love the idea of being one big family and doing family things but i honestly don’t feel close to any of them and it becomes pointless at the end. i have struggled with this for many years before i arrived at a point of my enoughness. i love my mother and my sisters, my brother was my best friend growing up but ever since i decided to move to a different town we have drifted apart immensely, we talk once or twice a month and if i am lucky the conversation would go on for over five minutes. The family dynamics has costed me the time to bond with the ones i love. If i am home to see my mother i would not leave without seeing her sister wives and their children, it is considered rude and bizarre and has put me off over the years to a point where i would make up any excuse just so i wouldn’t go at all.
I have spent two Christmases with friends and one alone as opposed to being at the Christmas lunches with family members who are secret and not so secret haters. i was raised with the concept of family being all you have and forgiveness but i honestly don’t care for my family intensely the way it seems everyone else does. i cannot count the number of times i have prayed to God to bless me enough so i can take my mother and my sisters far away from there. All i wish for them is genuine happiness and not live in a space where their faith in God is tested in the most agonizing form of emotional abuse. I love how their spirits keeps fermenting though they get stronger as they grow, they are amazing.
Christmas is coming up and i just had a conversation with my little sister the other day and i was telling her how much i want to come home because i miss them and the kids so much but i cant help the exhaustion that comes with the thought of being around the whole family. I could tell she was hurt from the way she responded, she sighed and said “Fikile you have to protect your joy”. that cut deep, i was thinking what about her joy and everyone else’s then i thought to myself that if i do go this time i am really going to sacrifice my happiness just to see my mother, i know it will make her happy to see me there.
Its hard being an adult.
Then being black.
Then being from a polygamous family and being at a place where i can see that my mother is abused along with us and has impossible choices to make. I feel so much compassion for her shes doing her absolute best with the little resources that she has and for that i am grateful so as much as i feel it is important to protect ones joy i also feel like i need to be there for the people who genuinely show me love.
Such a weird thing to experience especially when you’re fatphobia !
This is probably the most personal post but what the hell, if you see this it means we are family, i have let you in completely.
growing up in a big family nobody really cared about nursing your feelings most of the time. what is self esteem and anxiety? where have you ever heard of such because nobody in this family has ever been through it. i went through it all but nobody really understood what was going on with me.
in a homestead with more than 13 children you’re taught the fundamentals of survival in the outside world as a group and you are told to go out there and make it. conversations with your parents are rare there’s just too many things to be wary of. Nobody really cares until you do something drastic like disappearing from home, trying to commit suicide or getting pregnant in your teen years, you will sure get a nice beating from your father or big brother and if both are unavailable your uncle who lives a gazillion kilometers away will sure show up to put you back on track. This was usually the worse time of your life but it gets better.
I grew up as a fat child or a chubby child however you want to put it but i was quiet big. I was that child that everybody had something to say about and never cared how it would affect me. Mangcobo (mom) “why is this child so fat, what does she eat? why does she always have a snot? shes so dark its like she doesn’t belong to this family oh but wait there is this one Aunt from the family that she looks like. Those questions where usually followed by giggles while they walk away with their arrogance it was more crazy when these were coming from someone from outside the family that’s when i really felt the isolation. Although i was young it would bother me why people thought it was okay to throw stuff like that in my face and walk away like they have just given me the best of compliments. i struggled to understand why people would be so mean to me or why i was different from everybody else around me.
I was brought up with a mentality that i was ugly and fat and that it was okay for people to throw any kind of insults to me. I remember this one time my father came home from Durban and found me playing house games with my neighbour friends. He called all of us to give us sweets and the first thing he said to me was “this thing is ugly, this thing has snot, this thing is too dark, where doe she belong to? i couldn’t believe what i was hearing. I was in tears never cared for the sweets he was handing to me i hated being there his words kept on playing in my head and i would die a little inside. My friends were having a blast my own father had just made their day by making fun of me. they kept on repeating those lines the whole day and would laugh out loud in my face.
It took me years to finally love my body with all the curves and the lines under my eyes. If this was twenty years ago i would give up anything to lose weight but now i have instilled a different kind of self confidence within myself. one that is unbreakable. When i think about my childhood there’s so many things i wish i knew about myself that i know now , the things i would do to my body thinking it would help me look better makes me sob, i was so vulnerable and shameful of how i looked.
when i get random private messages on my Instagram account asking me why do i share half naked pictures of myself on social media i often don’t know how to answer besides tell them that i am comfortable with my body and that i have absolutely no problem with sharing it. i have come to far to have someone who didn’t see me grow up tell me how to cover my body. i no longer care about what the next person would say about how i am or how i am dressed because i spent my whole childhood believing what people were saying about me was true.
if you see me acting overly confident or walking sky high; listen, i deserve to because i have been through hell and back in my past life because of people. if you have never had take insults from your family members because of your body type then you know nothing about body dysphoria. when you don’t know who to run to because suddenly your safe place has become the one place were you’re most vulnerable and sad.