Anybody that knows me well will know that I don’t take social networking sites very seriously or rather, I don’t take myself too seriously when it comes to such. However, every now and then, something that I feel strongly about hits home or crosses my mind and this is one such thing.
With Women’s Day about a month away – amongst other things – I came to the realisation that there are no good women in my life. I thought this through and it’s true, there just aren’t any.
Let’s go through the list, from birth I’ve known my mother, grandmothers and aunts. Growing up was not in isolation and I got to do so with my sisters, cousins and friends. Adulthood too has consisted of a wife, a child and colleagues to name a few. Looking back at the aforementioned, it’s become apparent that the only reason I don’t think that there’s a single good woman in my life is because most have chosen not to settle for being mediocre and have instead aspired to greatness.
Going as far back as my infancy and early childhood, in addition to mother, I was blessed to have numerous mother figures in the form of my grandmothers, aunts and mothers of close friends. They were the personification of unconditional love and displayed a strength that far surpasses that of any human being. My own personal experience, there is and always was my queen…my mother. Without her, I doubt I’d be half the man that I am today. Without her, there is no me. Without her, I never would have learnt what it means to honour, respect and love a woman in such a way that through good times and bad, she never doubts feeling appreciated and for that mom, I can’t thank you enough. I am privileged to have a mother who has always given so much and expected very little to nothing in return. Through life’s tribulations, she’s kept her head high, her heart open and her faith intact and for that mom, I salute you and every single mother out there – whether in the literal or metaphorical sense – you’re all the glue that keeps the world together.
Growing up, I was blessed with siblings, extended family and certain friends who have since become so much more. In a world that still has not shown women the respect they deserve, you constantly push yourselves to be and do so much more than the world gives you credit for. I can only imagine the strength and perseverance it takes to wake up every day finding yourselves have to prove that you have so much more to offer than perceived and for that, I salute you too. May you always realise that you make the best you. No other human being let alone man should ever make you believe less.
Now, the present. In addition to having the opportunity to interact with most of those referred to above on a daily basis, I’ve further been honoured over the last few years in having met some of the strongest and greatest women in the work place and on a more personal level. The likes of my (coolest) boss (ever)/colleague/next door neighbour at work as well as my other ‘honorary mother’ who is never short of fantastic advice on life, child care (and Rooi Laventel), along with some of my fellow colleagues/friends who time after time continue to rise above the limitations instilled by an environment dominated by men despite constantly (and incorrectly) being labelled as “emotional”. They have displayed the kind of ‘never-back-down’ character that has earned them by deepest respect and appreciation. I salute you too.
On a personal level, my darling wife and daughter. It is said that “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts” and there’s no greater truth when I look back at not only the abovementioned but also the lessons I’ve taken from every situation in my life growing up. I look at you both every single day and all I see is the quintessence of greatness. You have both shown me what true love looks like, taught me what it means to be more than just a “good enough” man and accentuated what I’ve known about what it means to have and express unconditional love. Faith has gotten us this far and its faith, love and our unity as a family that I know will take us to even greater heights. To my wife, thank you for not only being a great role model to our daughter but for also living up to what I consider to be “greatness” whilst teaching me to appreciate the fact that within imperfections lies perfection.
To my mini-me, my rug-rat, my adorable baby girl. I hope that as you grow up, I will continue to remind you of all I’ve said thus far. That you continue to be blessed in such a way that you are a blessing to others. That any man worthy of your attention sees you in the same (or greater) light as I do. You’re my motivation, my inspiration, my purpose for wanting to be a better me and the best me I can be. I love you always.
So once again, with Women’s Day being about a month away, I thought that today was as good a day as any to let all the “great” women in my life know that you are an inspiration and are truly appreciated. Thank you for your many sacrifices, for your strength and undying love. Again, I salute you all.