This Zulu woman, Mamma Rosemary, is 58.
She's given birth to 9 children.
She's buried 4.
She gives the best hugs.
Mamma Rosemary built this home with her own two hands. All of her remaining children and grandchildren live with her and her husband on a beautiful piece of land nestled in the Valley of a Thousand Hills. They bought the land many years ago from the local chief. Each child has their own seperate outside room/dwelling. There is one shared kitchen. One shared composting toilet. One shower. They don't have hot water, only cold. Only Mamma Rosemary, her daughter and son have work. Work is sparse. Money is tight. There are 13 mouths to feed.
And this is what moves me so...they are proud and joyous people. They get what community means. They share everything, including their income, which goes into a collective fund. They support each other no matter what. No one ever goes without. Ever. Daily they meet each other's physical, emotional and spiritual needs. Everyone has a part to play and collectively they strengthen the whole. They have meaning and are rooted in their traditional ways. And we call ourselves civilised?
Mamma Rosemary has been in my life since I was 10 years old. The bond shared between white child and Zulu woman is unique to South Africa. It's hard to explain the deep connection felt between us if you're not of this place. I'm ashamed to say that today was the first time that I visited Mamma Rosemary in her own home. Historical and political reasons have kept us apart.
I had a deep desire to be with her while I'm in Africa.
I had so many questions.
We spent the whole afternoon together. She made the most delicious lunch.
And we connected.
No longer separated by race or politics.
The injustice of the past faded, for a moment.
I'm so deeply moved and inspired by this warrior woman. And so deeply humbled by today. My sister and niece were there with me and it brought everyone closer.
Mamma Rosemary, siyabonga.
Because of you I feel anchored to Mamma Africa like never before.
I truly believe that the individual healing we all felt today affects the collective healing of this land.
For a very special lady who supported my brand when I started my business from enanda in 2015 😘❤️🙏🏽 she is close to my heart, she probably doesn’t know this, I can’t wait to see how she rocks this bodypiece ❤️😘😍very humble and beautiful lady. Sisi wami unobuntu, Unoqozu ngosiko lwethu. Which is why I love you so much 🙏🏽#WANITAKANGCOBO#CULTUREMEETSCOUTURE#PROUDLYZULU#ZULUWOMAN
It was a beautiful RoxFilm20 Opening Night: Liyana and what an honor and gift to perform , share a piece of my story with the audience. The film “ Liyana” was powerful and moving testament to resilience, love & the power of telling one’s own story. The producer of the film @sakheni dlamini was in attendance and was one of the kids in said film and eloquently shared the journey and beauty of making the film based in Swaziland.I feel such gratitude to have seen it with a community of folks this evening. I also had the BEST surprise seeing my mentor ( though he probably doesn’t know it) the brilliant Andrew Millington who is here in Boston introducing his award winning film @RoxFilm2.0 Zola’s Dream so go check it out! He and the incredible Lisa Simmons many moons ago created an opportunity through a drama workshop for me to act & narrate in my 1st film which opened the doors to so many more creative avenues in the industry. They literally changed my life!! Words are not enough!! So all this to say I encourage you all to attend and support the Roxbury International Film Festival......Thank to the folks who stopped to share with me about my performance it meant s lot. #storiesmatter#filmmatters#lifeonpurpose#africanfilms#zuluwoman#zimbabwean#africanmadeamericangrown#roxfilm20