I’m a wreck with mixed emotions and it’s uncomfortable. I’ve been trying to find an outlet other than the public but, it’s hard. The people whom I can trust and completely open up to are 12 hours away and It costs me £10 per call to load off. I admit that as costly as it may be, it’s a small price to pay if it means me calling home. Nonetheless, telephone conversations are not the same as one on one conversations in person. I guess what I’m saying is, I’m feeling so lonely. Yes! I have friends and some family but over time, I’ve realised that I’m misunderstood by them. Lol! Don’t misunderstand this… They’re good people and I’m blessed to have them, but there’s just limitations to how we relate, and in those limitations, one tends to misunderstand the other. With that said, I miss home, my family, my sisters, my aunts and my dads. Yes! Dads. I was raised by 4 significant men in my life and most recently, one touched my heart in one of the most indescribable ways. Let me tell you a bit about the men in my life:
There’s my biological dad, Mr Lekota. You’d swear he’s coloured or Afrikaans so we call him Van Wyk. I grew up as daddy’s girl and even to date, he calls me ‘my girl’. I love my dad. He taught me to be a hard worker and has believed in me since birth. In fact, both my parents have. At some point he suggested I’d probably employ him in his old days. I found that charming. I looked up to him as a businessman. Amongst the countless things I learned from him, one thing he taught me that I will forever be grateful for is reading. I have never met anyone who reads more than my dad! His bedside is filled with all sorts of books and that was inspiring. He also taught me Afrikaans better than my schools did and has improved my vocabulary a lot over the years. Van Wyk is the man!
Then there’s my uncle, Mr Ndawonde. I call him “my daddy.” He married my mom’s only sister. In January 1995, I moved from my home in Lebowakgomo to live with my aunt and her husband in Wendywood. At that time, my aunt worked in Zeerust, so she would come home fortnightly. During this time, my uncle and I grew close, I was his child. In fact, he would refer to me as “my child”, and even to date, when talking to me, he starts with “my child” or “my girl.” My daddy taught me about respect. Respect for myself, my elders and my peers. He taught me to respect myself so as to command respect from others. He taught me a lot of things and also believed in me. At some point, I wanted a career in accounting like he has. He saw me through primary and through the last 2 years of high school. Even when I moved out after matric, my daddy kept me going back home. He is a hard worker, and watching him study through adulthood and parenthood was very inspiring. I love my daddy!
Another Mr Lekota, my youngest uncle. I call him “Rangwane” but when speaking to others, I call him by his name, Grant… lol! I think it’s a cool name. We share a name, Mahlatse. Growing up, we were close and because he was the cool uncle, I always considered myself his kid, lol! Grant came through for me in my weakest time. It was a difficult time for me and not only did he pull me through, but he also pushed me forward. I thank God for giving him this ‘wisdom’. He’s currently my sponsor for all that I’m doing right now in the Uk. This was a gesture he and his wonderful wife afforded me out of their generosity. I had no clue. They planned this and approached me in the final stages of the process. All I had to do was pick my field of study and commence date. I was astonished. I remember the afternoon they told me. They called me to meet them for lunch at Melrose Arch where they informed what they would like to do for me. I was emotional. I couldn’t even stomach a drink. That afternoon changed me. Rangwane is also a hard worker and properly personifies a hustler. He has seen the worst and best. Life schooled him and with that, I’m schooled. I’m inspired by his journey through life. Recently we had a talk, and in that conversation he pointed out one thing about me that I wasn’t aware of. He helped me figure something that has been baffling me for atleast 2years now. I love my uncle, he’s bauss!
Finally, there’s the oldest dad in my life. That’s my grandfather, Mr. Madisha. We call him Papa Madisha. There are so many things I could say about my grandfather’s wisdom. From a very young age, he has taught me a lot of things about life. Papa Madisha is a priest at a local church in Lebowakgomo and has been at it for decades now. He’s a very trusted, respected and admired man. Growing up, he has always been my saint and I always prayed that his good nature would rub off on me. I remember as a young kid, every time I told a lie, I always panicked thinking he sees through me and knows the truth. He probably doesn’t know it but I listened to most of his sermons in church. As a matter of fact, to an extent, he was the only person I paid attention to. My granddad taught me to fear God, to believe in God and to praise God. He was a doctor by profession and at some point I wanted to be a doctor just like him. Hey! Don’t shake your head or roll your eyes at me… Lol! I was a kid trying to figure out what I wanted. I considered the careers of the influential people in my life. My granddad was and still is a good homeopath. Age is catching up with him but whenever he can, he’s efficient. He helped treat my daughter’s colic without hassles. I’m still beyond grateful that my daughter knows her grandparents and her great grandparents. He now continues to add the same value in my daughter’s life. They spend a lot of time together, time I will eternally be grateful for. My grandad is a rockstar and I l love him madly.
I miss these men. I’m a daddies’ girl and I have been blessed to know these men. I’m blessed to have had them groom me, nurture me and mentor me through life. They understand me, they know me and I am undoubtedly their child! I thank God for them, their wisdom and their families.