New york dreaming
At one time, it was one of the last places that I imagined myself. These days, I only see myself living in NYC or DC. I am a city girl at heart and so the more i think and pray the more I realize that cities give me life. I absolutely don’t see myself anywhere else than in a big city. The big city, the shows, the culture, the museums, the people, the food, the scenery, and the rich environment captivates me. I love that city and I look forward to living there very soon. :)
Amar’e Stoudemire&Alexis Welch
Photo Credit: Donna Newman
She never really lived an extraordinary life that was care-free or easy
She just served an extraordinary God, had incredible faith and loved like crazy
2 degrees, 4 babies, a husband and a career, she conquered it all and wore many hats fashionably
She glowed from her soul, and God saw her heart was like gold
I guess that is why he called her home
He wanted her to wear a new hat, now as an angel
She received wings to accompany her and help her to soar above this earthly realm to a place that’s truly flowing with milk and honey;
a place where her gift is in constant operation and rotation;
where she can rejoice, sing, clap, and be merry
I was so sad to see her go but her crown was prepared and awaiting her
I know that she is gone, but she’s not that far because all I have to do is look up and I see my angel, my jewel and my bright star.
And suddenly the ghetto didn’t seem so tough
And though we had it rough, we always had enough
There are days when I feel frustrated, and sometimes sad. This year has been one of the most rewarding and one of the most challenging in many respects. But despite everything, I am grateful. I am grateful for life, and for purpose, and just to know God. I thank God for loving me unconditionally, and giving me peace in the midst of everything. The beginning of my legal career has been rocky and challenging to say the least, but I know without a doubt that I was created for the work I am embarking upon. My heart is full some days because I feel like I want to save the world and just be impactful, but that is my grandmother’s spirit of love that empowers me. Her heart of compassion is what inspires me. I am better because of her, and I will seek greatness because of God. Truly with him all things are possible. So, I am grateful. :)
Today was an amazing day. I began my day attending a church service here in Cape Town which was great. It was great being amongst other believers that trust and believe in the same God, and whose faith is amazing. Then, I went to visit Robbens Island today where Nelson Mandela”Madiba” spent 16 years in this small prison cell and slept on blankets and a pallet in a small cell. He wrote his autobiography “A Long Walk to Freedom” there. Many political prisoners were detained there beginning in the late 1600s until the 19th century. The island was also used to house the mentally ill, and also people who had leprosy. My tour guide was once a political prisoner at the maximum facility jail. It was interesting to hear how some prisoners could only receive visits for 30 minutes. Mail sent to the prisoners was censored and if letters contained information about things taking place on the outside, that section or portion of the letter would be cut out or the letter would not have been delivered. There is a school and two churches on the island. Many of the tour guides and past prisoners not reside on the premises with their families. The ferry ride to and from the island is about 40 minutes total from Cape Town. There is a school on the island that recently closed and so children that reside on the island are required to ride 45 mins. to and from school each day. One of the things that I found most interesting is that when political prisoners were first taken to the island the prison needed to be built and the prisoner’s were forced to build the prison where they were bound for speaking out and daring to be different.
It is something how people try to hinder truth from being revealed and freedom from being attained. I realized today that freedom is never free and there is always a costs to be liberated. While on Robben Island, I thought about the people here and the daily things that they seek to fight through. The walk to freedom is definitely long, and sometimes may seem infinite but it is worth the journey for the next generation. Since being here in S. Africa, I have felt depressed and heavy hearted because of what I have experienced and felt. I just pray that things change and that the Africa that I have experienced my children won’t have to know.
I often dreamed of this magical place that I have now arrived in. It is the complete opposite of what I expected it to be. I thought the people would be warm & welcoming, it would ultimately feel like home, and that I would truly feel comfortable here. My experience here has been truly eye opening and has partially exposed me to the reality of living in a second or almost third world country. To be on the continent of Africa and 7000k miles away from the U.S. is amazing. To be in a place where many of the shops and cultures do not automatically revolve around American culture is refreshing. However, the residue of oppression from apartheid and the poverty that the people face is unfathomable in 2013.
It is devastating to see some of the townships that are 10 times worse than the projects in most urban cities, or for me as an African American woman to walk in stores in Cape Town and some white people assume that I work in the store and I am not a patron. There are many instances where I have received stares by white people because they often wonder what I’m doing in staying in their neighborhood. I have yet to see very many African business owners. Many of the business owners are white or Asian and have black Africans working for them. Much like the racism in America, it is very prevalent here. See some of the African people dehumanized in certain stores and being followed around in a store is very foreign to me in some respects. While shopping in a grocery store, I was followed on numerous occasions by security officers that looked like me. I was followed merely because I had a bag from another store. Right before the store closed, the employees had to be patted down before leaving the store. My heart went out to the employees because this is the harsh reality of oppression. For a moment, I felt like I was in the segregated south where blacks where treated like this.
My heart has been heavy since being here. It is a beautiful place that I want to see more of, but it is so disheartening to feel the sting of oppression, colonization, and apartheid. I never in a million years imagined that the mother land would feel like this.