A few weeks ago I was asked to be part of the BRICS Academic Review photo series revisiting the lives of icons through current influencers.
I was asked to portray JOYCE SIKHAKHANE, one of the most important leaders of the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa.
A year ago he got on one knee and proposed that we spend eternity together. 🙏🏽💍 Looking back at photos of that day, I realize that so much has changed in our lives but our love for each other has remained the same! 😻💞
Wishing the happiest of birthdays to @paulettekhumalo. Praying that God blesses you with many more years of bliss and joy. Never met someone who deserves to be happier than you. All my love! ♥️
MARU’S AUNTS 🦋
Auntie @ms_keekss, coming through with love & laughs straight from the soul.
Auntie @oceanic_mi, who’s going to do everything in her power to get baby Maru out of trouble, even when she knows he’s been a naughty boy.
Auntie @zolekamanenzhe1215, Maru doesn’t know it yet but she’s one of the most reliable people he’s going to have through his life. Loyal, strong & focused on the people she loves.
Auntie @mafenya_xoli, already so stressed about how much she’s going to spoil Maru! I can hear my boy saying, “Mama, I don’t need you, Auntie Xoli said she’ll get me anything I want.” 😅
Auntie TDK, always prepped & proper but so messy with the love! Maru’s in for a treat.
Auntie @danellejvr17, my friend. Soft & caring. Always concerned about how she’s being received, & how to love better. She’s already laid the law — I’m not allowed to post baby’s photos for a while. And if she says it, I’m taking it seriously because it could only be out of a love for family, and love itself!
Auntie Lulu, she said herself that she’s going to teach my boy the hustle. Sounds funny, but this woman has literally built from nothing ... over & over again. A titan.
Great Auntie @gracedmm, essentially a grandma to Maru. Another titan & fearless woman who isn’t afraid to be herself even in spaces that are hostile. Our relationship has taught me that we must always be willing to start over, something I will one day share with her.
Auntie @paulettekhumalo, oozing love & kindness that is unparalleled. Her emotions are like a sea - honest, open & raging. She literally tears up when a moment calls for it, laughs the loudest when it’s time & this is going to teach my son deep sensitivity.
Auntie @ma_ka_qhawe, mother of a brilliant, strong boy Qhawe who I hope will be best friends with Maru. Mama Qhawe is such a force, an absolutely breathtaking warrior woman with clear & powerful convictions.
MARU’S BIG AUNTS 🦋
My relationship with my sisters, @mi_ra_nda and @zethumkhumbuzi has grown from “sit down & stop getting us into trouble” to “stand up & let your light shine.” We hold each other’s hands through everything, and this pregnancy is a shinning example of that. They were confidants when it was too soon to tell anyone. Pillars when it looked like we weren’t going to make it to 9 months. Cheerleaders when I had to do conquer the biggest challenges while pregnant. And perfectly prepped planners of a shower that took my breath away. We fight EVERY SINGLE DAY, but I can’t imagine not having these two around me for the best & worst moments. 💙
MARU’S GRANDMA’S 🦋
My Mom @bettymkhumbuzi & Thami’s Mom @tutupooe have been pillars of strength to me during this entire pregnancy. I have been loved, smothered, literally forced to ‘put my feet up’ and importantly I have been prayed for, and blessed.
Maru is my mom’s 5th grandchild, but she’s treated this like it’s the 1st. Thami’s Mom will be a grandma for the very 1st time! Both of us are soooooo anxious. 😅💙
THE VENUE, DECOR & FOOD
Themed ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ the women in my life went out of their way to find a glasshouse in the middle of the concrete jungle. Surrounded by a beautiful fountain, tall trees & flowers we dined, laughed, cried & shared dreams for baby Maru. 🦋
BABY SHOWER HAPPINESS 🦋
Last week my family & friends organized the most beautiful, intimate shower to welcome baby Maru into the world & to equip me with so much new knowledge of motherhood.
Infinitely grateful, especially to my big sister @mi_ra_nda who led the planning & execution.
Beyond my dreams. 💙
I look up into the light, with a smile on my face, on this day, specifically, to raise my voice and say, the spirit of the women of 1956 is inside of me. I am brave, and I push forward against the plethora of challenges facing me. I am re-imagining what’s possible for me, and I am actively choosing that reality over the vulnerability and fear I feel. I smile, in the direction of the sun, because I am a mother — and I cannot bring any less than hope for my child, who must not only live in this world, but conquer it. I am women. I am hope in the darkness.