I am the eldest in our family. Yet, both my siblings treat me as though I was born last. I love that they are so overprotective. At one stage I told my sister, ‘Dude, if you add the ages of both your kids…I was married for longer.’ She did not appreciate that, being a teacher and all.
My siblings are amazing. Both my brother and sister are volatile while I am so chilled out. This is why they nickname me Madame Speaker when we have a family meeting. I am the goddamn UN people. I love when I can spend time with both one on one and as a collective. It’s strange and wonderful how it all works.My sister is very practical. My brother street smart while I am….the calm one.
I told my daughter that she will only understand why I love my siblings the way I do when she has a younger sibling. I remember when her stepmother gave birth to her brother,I tweeted on social media and congratulate them. At first my daughter was horrified. Only afterwards she understood. I wanted her to be able to speak to me about her brother whom she loves so much. Seriously, I would have to be a shitty human being to behave otherwise. I was not being holier than though. I just wanted my kid to be able to speak to me about everything that matters to her. Make no mistake…it hurt as I always wanted a son. But this was not about me and my need but my daughter whom I love.
The point I am making is this. Not all of us are lucky to love the siblings we are given. Most people have to search for people to call family. I am blessed in that regard. And urge everyone to welcome people….as I know how hard it is to make friends, especially in Cape Town that is so divided on racial lines.
This is why I love Johannesburg. Living there taught me the gift of diversity. In CT you would not find a salon where people are getting a weave put in while another woman is having her hair flat ironed. The division imposed by the apartheid system is alive and kicking. I told my brother that our grandfather was Black but changed his surname to marry my grandmother who could pass for white. In fact her sisters did just that. This is the story of South Africa. We all bought the lies fed to us and everything is so blurred. Yet the politicians do their best to exploit those divisions. Kinda ironic considering our past.
All it takes is just a simple conversation, I maintain Being open enough to listen and discover….damn, we are all just human. Anyhoo, that was a long rant. My point is…be grateful for the people you can call family, and don’t be scared to open yourself up to those who do not have it. Just talk, share food and see what happens.
We all bitch and complain about what we don’t have. Yet, if we took the time we would realise….we are never without what we need. Rant done. Now it’s almost 10am and time for me to sleep.
Wherever and whoever you are reading this….you are loved. You are enough and so goddamn special. Never forget that…and when you do…remind someone else and feel the joy of sharing that truth bloom inside your bones. PS…food helps and so does whiskey and good music. X