We have approached the end of this year’s edition of exPress imPress. It has been a great year sharing our team’s thoughts and ideas with you- our readers. Mamelodi Marakalala has written a piece on how women ought to follow their own paths and not succumb to societal expectations. The last few weeks have been tough, with the militarization of many South African universities in response to the #FeesMustFall2016 movement. Khwezi passed away, having not received the justice she deserved. As South Africans, we are in the midst of one of the most challenging periods in our country’s history. Our finance minister, Pravin Gordhan, is facing fraud charges and there is increasing proof of state resources being misused. This is enough to make us despondent. In some ways, it would be easier to leave South Africa before our country goes up in flames. However, this is our home. We are facing significant challenges but we cannot give up. Our country has so much potential and we, as South Africans, have the power to change the course of our country’s future.
Until next year,
Sandiswa and the 2016 exPress imPress team
I was with a friend of mine a while ago. I don’t recall how we got there, but we ended up discussing about women of all kinds: single mothers, housewives, wives who juggle work and raising children as well as taking care of their husbands, women who only have their work and no family to come home, etc., all categories of women. And I wondered; who has the perfect life? Who is the happiest amongst those women? Initially, I thought it was the woman with her work. Whether she has children and a husband or not does not matter. Because I want to be that woman. I want a successful career. I want that so much that I don’t care about marriage and raising other humans. If that does happen, then it would have happened (at the end of the day, it’s the Universe that does all the speaking) – but it is not top priority for me. Then, it hit me that no one has it more perfect and no one can be said to be happier than another. One woman wants that and the other woman will want another. We shouldn’t judge people’s lives based on the fact that it’s a life we never want for ourselves.
So, to answer my own question: we, as women, are who we want to be! The woman who is happy is a woman who has reached her full potential or is at least trying her level best to reach it. Yes, there are circumstances in our lives. The things that are so out of our control. But be strong, woman, and go for gold. Make plans A B and C, even D, so that you can look around you someday and see everything you’ve ever wanted: either you’re a housewife taking care of the household; a working wife who can manage diapers and a million rand international deal; just a mother raising children on her own, or a woman with only career prospects and nothing else in mind…just live the life you want to live. Live the life you need to be happy in life, without regarding society’s opinions and its place for us in the world. Our desires matter too, no matter how big or how small.