Finding time to bleed

There are two pretty intense themes intertwining in my mind this week.

They are not related. Or maybe, on some deeper prophetic level, they are. We’ll see.

Stephen Covey says that, in order to be highly effective, we should start with our circle of influence, and not worry too much about our circle of concern. So, here goes.

Last Sunday, I had friends over for lunch.

Everything was going according to schedule, until 10 minutes before my esteemed guests arrived.

Let me pause, for effect.

To put things in perspective: The day was very much planned. Skip church to prep lunch in the morning (I am not a regular cooker-for-more-than-one-person person, so it takes some prepping), kuier with my peeps over lunch, be at church in the afternoon to sing at two services (which requires a certain degree of not being flapped-out), then dive back into Monday, with the week also pretty much planned and plotted out to the last minute. As is every week … #ADayintheLifeof …

So, when something interrupts the flow, it has the potential to derail a train pretty much on full speed.

Some more perspective: I am a planner. My brain is wired to see, or at least consider, the implications of actions on future actions. I’m also sort of naturally inclined to want to make sure things happen in the sequence that is most effective. Or find the path of least resistance, first in my head, then in the real world. With some trial and error, but with a clear view of how things should play out … It’s just how I roll. It doesn’t imply inflexibility. In fact, it enables flexibility, to a large degree. It basically means I make sure I have all the data I need pre-journey to be able to adjust course when needed mid-journey …

The reason why I have time to be spontaneous, or sit for hours in a coffee shop to blog, is because I plan blank rest / reflect space into my weeks. Don’t count on me for anything on a Saturday morning … just a heads-up …

So, with that in mind.

10 minutes before my guests arrive, I quicky wanted to wash the cutlery dirtied in the preparation process. To save time later …

Enter flipping sharp vegetable knife.

The word that came out of my mouth when said knife showed its true colours on my thumb, was unfortunately not hallelujah.

I intuitively knew that this was not a wound that I could just ignore, and hope that it would sort itsself out. It would bleed all over my kitchen and lounge and bathroom …

I needed to deal with it immediately.

Ran into the bathroom, and grabbed the medicine bag.

Only to discover a MASSIVE rainspider on the side of the bag. I kid you not.

Those who know me would be able to understand the intensity of the full-on assualt I experienced in that moment.

To say I HATE spiders is the understatement of the year.

I HATE spiders on the level of associating them with the demonic realm. No jokes.

So, to bleed profusely and having to deal with a spider on the medicine bag where I needed to find the solution for my wound, felt a bit like a spiritual attack.


I was actually surprised at the logical of the actions that followed. Grabbed a roll of toiletpaper to block the bleeding. Grabbed the can of Doom. Dealt with the spider accordingly. Bandaged the wound to deal with it later.

Rescued the bacon from the stove.

Restored calm to my internal scene as the guests phoned to say that they are at the gate.

Thankfully, said guests were all close friends, so I could download about the trauma immediately 🙂

Had a lovely lunch. Sang from a truthful heart about the goodness of God.

Fast forward to today: The thumb is fine, after being prayed over and given wonder-salve.

The spider entered eternity swiftly. Probably hell …

All’s well that ends well.

But reflecting on the seemingly silly “derailing” moment made me realise something about the pace of life.

Life, in all it’s fantastic fullness, actually leaves us little space to bleed.

And the places where we intuitively run to for healing sometimes have unexpected spiders to fight off. Fears to face. Mental and emotional webs to detangle from.

My thumb is teaching me about my heart.

The death of two parents cuts deep. Being single, still, cuts deep.

Community does help to bring healing. But in community we are sometimes confronted with the fears we hold deep. Fears of rejection. Fears of being taken advantage of. Fears of falling into sin.

God is faithful. We are fragile.

My thumb-wound has pretty much closed up on the outside (restoring my thumb-print … read: identity …), but it still is very tender.

Sort of like my heart. And my identity.

Selah …


Stop here if that felt intense. It’s about to go up a gear.

The second theme on my mind is the motion set in action to investigate the amendment of Article 25 of the South African Constitution.

There are real fears, and real moral dilemmas to face by all South Africans in this season. Personal and collective decisions to be made. Wounds to heal. A nation to love.

Or a ship to jump.

A Kingdom to seek first.

I simply don’t know if Africa will ever acknowledge that she has a white child too. Even if it is one that she was forced to adopt in generations passed. It does not mean that she is loved less as a mother, from the perspective of the child who does not know any other motherland.

There is no contention to the facts: In South Africa passed, white fathers sinned, and white children benefited. Land was stolen, legitimised by unjust law.

In South Africa present, it feels like payment for the sins of the fathers is demanded from the third and the fourth generation.


I pray that the “turning of the tables” will be guided by a true desire for restorative justice, enabled by wisdom and grace, and not fueled by a destructive thirst for revenge, concealed by passing another racist law.

Revenge and justice sound so similiar in the mouths of politicians.

We all have selfish, and moral, questions.

I don’t want to sound like I’m trying to defend my white priviledge when I ask questions like: Does land ownership also imply investment portfolios with significant shares in property … like pretty much every RA and investment fund option available in South Africa?

Where do we even go to with our questions? Social media is not helpful.

Selfish questions. Practical questions. Real questions.

Can we allow one another the space to freak out about the things we fear (probably fueled largely by ignorance), and also the space to grieve  for wounds that were never given proper time to bleed, and heal? Can we hold this tention, and really be a nation that champions unity through diversity?

But I will leave that there for now.

You can draw your own prophetic lines between the two themes for now. I sort of lost the thread …


Dealing with detachment

Today is 8 months and one day since answering an unexpected phonecall on a busy side-walk.

It seems like the emotional and administrative shit-storm has subsided. Many miracles, much grace, and numerous encounters with the love of God through people later.

I’ve always been real and vulnerable about my emotional journeys. I find that writing about the unravellings I experience (hence the tapestry analogy of this blog), has helped others feel like they’re not as weird as they thought they were …

So, as a result of this intentionally introspective habbit, I sort of am a participant and an observer of my own soul-state.

Especially, since I am very much still see-sawing through the stages of grief, it is helpful to pause and recognise why I’m going through, often unintentional, shifts in behaviour. Life gets busy, and people tend to forget that bereavement is an ongoing underlying process.

The first few months after a major loss is really just a confusing mess.

I’m only realising now that I actually had a few full-on anxiety attacks. The levels of stress that depleted the nutrients in my blood have only recently started to lower. It wasn’t just the emotional stress of loosing a mother, a few years after loosing a father. And a god-father, and a grandmother. There were also other storms that I might write about, eventually.

It really did seem like the latter half of 2017 was deliberately trying to crush me. Read the Psalms. It happens.

Speaking to other people who are going through similar experiences, it seems like some of the “symptoms” are actually pretty normal. Not like many doctors seemed to recognise that. Intense lower-abdominal pain, fears of having cancer, fatigue, insomnia, defensiveness … all grief-related.

I am happy to say that it does feel like most of those intense emotions and physical symptoms were left in 2017. There is the odd insecurity relapse, and the odd massive mood-swing, but that’s not an altogether uncommon occurrence …

I’m sort of discovering a new phase now.

At first, I was slightly concerned, because if felt so unlike me. Then Dr Google helped me out.

It seems like emotional disconnection, or detachment, is a perfectly normal coping mechanism to protect the mind and soul from anxiety.

It’s like I’ve developed the ability to choose to distance myself emotionally from people and stressful situations. Not in a mental disorder / “inability to connect” way, or in a “run-and-hide“ avoidance way.

Just in a “not my circus, not my monkeys” way. With empathy being one of the top-five in my strenghtsfinder profile, this is actually a personal life-saving technique at the moment.

It’s almost a sense of objective indifference, but not to the extent of not caring. Just to the extent of “can’t deal right now”. A slightly more task-oriented approach to life.

It’s fantastically liberating.

I do believe that we are meant to carry one another’s burdens. But it’s necessary to balance out the weights according to grace-capacity, given in seasons.

So, I’ve re-established boundaries. Pushed back demands on my time and talents. I refuse to engage with the slightest wiff of emotional manipulation, in any form.

I’ve taken ownership of my current emotional capacity. I have identified anxiety triggers to avoid.

By the grace of Jehovah-Rapha. Who’se Name I called 3am one morning not too long ago, when I felt like I was officially loosing my mind.

If you are going through this journey at the moment, may you be encouraged by the testimony that things do stabilise, eventually. If you are not going through this journey, thank you for remembering that whatever someone who is grieving seems to go through, is not about you. They’re just dealing with coming to terms with a new normal.


Gardens, with walls

A walled-in garden
with a washed fountain
is awake
to the promise portrayed.

so, when dreams
reveal reasons
for undisclosed pain
in personal seasons –

intentional shying
is the way to walk
in the nature
of selfless devotion.

Strongholds break
when actions reflect
choices made
in gentler days

for love still covers
and peace protects
to benefit
the other.

Surrendered sighs –
with unuttered admissions –
join the anthology
of pricipled purity

– a reasonable service


What’s in a name …?

Confession. I think I might be name’ist.

Let me explain.

So, trying to stay in the whole dating game thing in this day and age involves, at some point, a soul-searching honest internal debate regarding one’s doctrinal stance on online dating websites.

Alas, i went there.

Briefly, a while ago, for a short and unsuccessful stint, with the app Tinder. Let’s just say I get bored with responding to “hey, how are you”, very quickly. Thus, my departure from the afore-mentioned platform. I also kept getting the left swipe, right swipe thing mixed up, and feeling like a just accidentally rejected my future husband just became too much emotional trauma to deal with …

So now, once again fully committed to “be out there”, I joined one of the more professional, paid for sites. Where you need to fill in a personality profile and stuff, and you get to divulge your desire, or lack therof, to eventually pro-create … and such light reading.

But I digress.

It’s been one day. One the site, I mean.

I am already picking up a worrying personality flaw in myself.

I might be name’ist.

Before I even see the dude’s photo, I’ve already decided if he gets a message back … based on his name. The kings and apostles are in the game. The rest are struggling …

’Tis a new revelation I’m having of myself.

Ek is actually regtig vol stront.

There, I said it …

So, without further adue, I repent of my name’ist behavior.

I shall now be trying to not discredit another human being’s brave emoticon message based on something that his parents are to blame for …

What’s in a name, anyway … ?

Selah … 🙂

‘n Laat-lente liedjie

Waaroor sou my dagboek spekuleer
as ’n droom my jou naam sou leer

en waaroor sou ek biddend sug
as jy my alleen sou kom ontwrig?

vir nou is jy die glo
dat liefde tog sal dans in oë

wat ’n leeftyd lank al wag
om in mekaar te lag

ek mis jou hierdie somer meer
en met elke winter-seer, weer

want laat-lente moet nog rede bring
om deur herfs se stil te sing

wat baat skoonheid
wat baat roem

as dit ’n tuin
se verlang verbloem

ek bly vra
om jou naam te dra

en jou droom
te omsoom

met alles wat ek het
en wie

Awkwardly authentic

The science behind the reputation management industry is to understand how public perception is formed and managed.

Hence, being sensitive to everything that goes into encoding a message, from the “hidden meanings” in phrases and colours, to the composition of photos and design.

I am wired vocationally to be intentional. To angle messages. To phrase things in a certain way. To move words around until they fit into the right place.

Not deceptive. Not manipulative. Just intentional. There is a very fine line, granted.

That be the baggage that marketing communication carries. The accusation of manipulation is unfortunately inherent to the industry.

I have however always said “don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater” when it comes to skillsets.

The same insight into message encoding and decoding that most use for promoting consumerism and commercial gain can be used for presenting and declaring truth, and reforming culture in a positive way. #reformation. #JustSaying.

I am very seldom unintentional with anything I decide to communicate. personally speaking. (Sidebar: Apart from what blairs subconsciously from my soul-wounds and blindspots. At least I know that this happens too. That’s why accountability is a good idea.)

The problem with being so acutely intentional, is that one forgets that not everyone else is wired like that.

So, you tend to always “read into” other people’s words and actions, to try and decipher their motives, or the reason why the say and act the way they do.

You tend to then react to those imagined motives, and not just to what is being presented at face value. In essense, you jump to conclusions on their behalf, based on the intentions that you project on them.

All that this basically ends up doing, is exposing your own insecurities.

Not always the best way to keep a relationship uncomplicated.

Bad communication, in a nutshell.

The challenge, however, is when you add discernment into the mix. Because then you might actually be right about a hidden agenda or a motive that feels skew. The only way to test this, is to shine Word light. With a healthy dose of love and wisdom, and armed to the teeth for a backlash. Don’t try this at home, kids. Just putting it out there.

The other challenge with discernment, or an “intuitive” personality type (however you want to see it), is that you can also sense when people do that to you. I can literally feel a wall, or a block, when someone holds a false accusation against, or a wrong judgment of me.

It physically inhibits my freedom to speak into a situation or a relationship. I feel it like a bit in my mouth. Literally. I sometimes even “see” my words being muted, or twisted. It’s the weirdest thing to experience. Words are powerful. If they can be stolen or twisted, much damage is done. To be honest, it makes one feel rather helpless until you realise again that your battle is not against flesh and blood.

In a nutshell, I “know” in my spirit when I am being judged based on someones incorrect projected views of me. Put under a measuring bowl.

It makes me livid, to put it lightly.

There is a difference between being tested and being judged.

To be tested, is good. It will form Christ-like character.

I appreciate being tested in this way. Presented with kind truth about where I still need to mature into Godliness. It is the nature of the narrow way. Humility. Being teachable.

To be judged, however, is an unauthorised act.

I do not appreciate being judged. In fact. I seem to resist it rather fiercely, until I actually realise what’s going on.

It takes me some time to figure out why I feel trapped. I get it wrong. I first “fight” for myself. Stand up for my rights, defend my decisions … blah blah blah …

Then, I see.

And I simply stand back to let God do whatever vindication is contextually relevant.

I never claim “blameless”. I simply claim grace. Where there is sin or wrongdoing on my behalf, I repent.

“Woman, where are they …?”

Jesus was sort of adamant that we need to be rather cautious about judging.

Think “first take the plank out of your own eye.

So yes.

As believers we have a responsibility to live above reproach, and “manage our reputations” accordingly. But, it shouldn’t really be “managing”. It should actually just be living. #integrity.

To judge someone elses purity based on what you’ve decided that needs to “look like” is simply put, not mandated. False accusations are refuted by One who defends.

I know very well “what it looks like”.

It’s what I intend for it to look like to confront pretense and people-pleasing.

Authenticity is meant to sometimes be awkward.

So that others are given the space to just be.


Die vrug van die Gees, daarteenoor …

Kyk, ons gaan nou nie vir mekaar lieg nie. Hierdie was sover ’n redelike be-bliksemde jaar. Dit voel vir my of daar net links en regs klappe uitgedeel word. Almal loop deur.

Erens deur die loop van die geveg stuur ’n vriendin vir my ’n boodskap. Sy sien my in ’n gauntlet – daai tipe obstacle courses wat die gladiators en knights-of-the-roundtable moes deurgaan. As die een ding verby is, moet jy weer duck vir die volgende ding. En die goed wat kom vir jou kop het nie spons om nie. As dit jou tref, is dit lemme wat ledemate kan afkap. Ietwat dramaties.

Maar eerlikwaar. Dis akkuraat. Sy het die beeld gekry selfs nog voor ons ma skielik oorlede is.

So, take that up a notch. Running a gauntlet while bleeding from a shot to the heart … boom.

Punt is, dis redelik wild daar buite. Orals. En hier binne ook. Gereeld. Ek skryf genoeg oor dit. In Engels. Maar vandag wil ek my hart se taal praat, sonder om noodwendig weer my ingewande op skrif uit te ryg.

Want erens, te midde van ’n warboel van disillusion en minder-rooskleurige-lewens-realitieite, kleef hoop verbete vas. (Metafore van skape en stuff wat aan hulle %^# kleef kom ter gedagte, maar ons los dit maar vir eers net daar.)

Die hoop van ’n mooi toekoms.

Dat dinge somehow reg sal uitdraai. Ten goede sal meewerk.

Dat daar ’n Abba is wat weet wat die groter ewigheids-prentjie is, al voel dit soms te Jesus-wat-slaap-in-die-storm tipe stil as mens bid / huil / skree / moan / smeek / bargain 3 uur in die oggende, vir weke aanmekaar …

As ek moet begin grou aan lewenslesse uit hierdie seisoen uit, dan het ek reeds ten minste 10 hoofstukke vir ’n lywige boek.

Van die hoofstuk titels sluit in:

Nee, hy het dit nie so bedoel nie aka speel die bal, nie die man nie …
Lojaliteit hap jou soms wel in die gat (maar ek dink nie Lux Verbi sal dit so aanvaar nie)
Jou grappies is nie vir almal altyd snaaks nie. Inteendeel.
Dit vat nie net ses maande nie, en ander admin verhale.
SARS is nie jou vriend nie.

En so aan.

Van jou meer eerbare Lux Verbi tipe opskrifte sou wees – en hier slaan ek oor na die Engels …

Community is key to survival
Family and friends are gold
It’s not about you (of alternatiewelik) Get over yourself asap

En seker die lywigste hoofstuk: Yaweh El Roi. Die God wat my sien.

Maats, Afrika is nie vir sissies nie.

But then again: We were never really promised a rose garden.

As die doel van die hele oefening is om eventually so bietjie soos Jesus te lyk, dan moet ons dalk net gou weer gaan kyk na waardeur Hy gegaan het.

Dit maak my stil.

Ek het die afgelope ruk weer begin dink aan die vrug van die Gees, en ’n bietjie skaam geraak oor hoe moeilike tyd van daardie vrugte het om deur die harde bas van my self-defense te breek.

Vrugte soos lankmoedigheid. Self-beheersing. Vriendelikheid. You know, the basics.

Ok, ja, grief en mourning kom met baggage soos woede en depressie. So, giving myself some slack.

Maar mens kan seker ook nie jou algemene bebliksemdgeid vir altyd blameer op seer nie.

You gotta eventually own your emotions again. And put a check on its outflow-impact on others.

“Die vrug van die Gees, daarteenoor, is liefde, vreugde, vrede, geduld, vriendelikheid, goedhartigheid, getrouheid, nederigheid en selfbeheersing. Teen sulke dinge het die wet niks nie. Dié wat aan Christus Jesus behoort, het hulle sondige natuur met al sy hartstogte en begeertes gekruisig. Ons lewe deur die Gees; laat die Gees nou ook ons gedrag bepaal. Ons moenie verwaand wees, mekaar uittart of op mekaar afgunstig wees nie.” Classic Gal. 5.

Ten minste is ek al daar waar ek weer besef dat dit ’n vlees- vs Geesreaksie keuse is, daagliks.

In ieder geval.

Die hoop beskaam nie.

Ons word nou mooi groot.

Voorwaarts, dapper stryders …




Contrary to popular belief, I am actually a super senstitive soul. Painfully so, in fact.

I have had to wrestle many things to keep my heart soft. But a soft heart is a vulnerable heart.

I know that “soft” is not the primary perception to those with an outsider view. Perhaps that is why they still have an outsider view. Only the very close know how much courage true connection requires from me. For many reasons. Be that as it may.

There were  at least two instances this week where I perceived a direct attack on my heart. That is over and above being sick again, totally broke from being previously sick, and other general realities like feeling far from what-remains-of-what-was-never-really-home, when there is an inherited house to pack up for selling. Selah. Just to say … you’re not alone in feeling pressured :).

One scenario of heart-under-attack was related to the freedom to express femininity without the fear/accusation of “being a stumbling block”. The other related to being sidelined. I won’t get to the second challenge in this blog, but I’ll ponder a bit upon the first.

I share these things because there have been many times when someone has messaged me to say that my writing gave them handles to express what they’ve been going through, but had no words for.

So, I keep sharing about the potentially awkward matters of the heart, because we are not in the habit of being open and honest about such things. May you be persoanally validated and encouraged by these jumbled thoughts.

I am so sorry if what I write about tonight is something that you have had to go through.


I was walking in a department store last Sunday in a mall, doing shopping for the Santa’s Shoebox gift I pledged to contribute at work. The girl I was buying for is 14 years old, and I was praying sincerely for her while I was buying toiletries etc to add to the gift. In the corner of my eye I noticed an older man that kept following me down the different isles. Eventually, I turned my attention to this guy, who also kept bending down right next to me to seemingly get stuff from the bottom shelves. It felt off.

I caught him taking a photo with his phone under my dress.

I didn’t have the savvy to confront him to make him delete it, which I should have done. There wasn’t anyone else in the isle, and I felt so shocked and unsafe that I freaked out, and headed straight to the counters where I alerted the (female) tellers to what I think this weirdo had done.

Their first reaction was: “Ja, hey, it’s probably your dress.”

People. I was wearing a dress that I had worn to church earlier that day, with a seam barely higher than my knees.

Now, in the first place.

Even if I was wearing a mini skirt that barely covered my ass …

How the hell it that an appropriate response to someone who had just reported a full-on invasion of privacy, if not a potential sexual harassment?! Why am I even trying to defend my dress?!

Their response irked me more than what the dude did.

Thankfully, I have a prayer group and close friends that I could immediately download this crappy experience to, and I could get out of the situation unharmed physically.

Since this eye-opener, I have had a few candid conversations. People go through crap. And they’re expected to just “laugh it off”. Not even speaking about the unimaginable agony of rape or actual sexual abuse.

Too many people go through versions of sexual harrassment. Not just females. The #metoo social media campaign of a few weeks ago just highlighted this again.

It simply is not ok.

I grew up very protected. Starting with my father, uncles and cousins, the close men in my life have been protective, respectful and honouring.

I simply don’t have another frame of reference. In my mind, this is how men are. My dad would probably literally have killed someone who harmed us in that way. He wasn’t perfect, by any means. But I knew that we were safe with him. Even when he was drunk. Story for another blog.

Same with my uncles. Same with my cousins. Same with my close friends.

I know how privileged I am. I cannot even begin to imagine what being violated by a close relative in that sense does to your soul.

So, what this “tame”, albeit uncalled for, experience did to me was firstly, almost subconsciously, despite my intellectually feminist streak, to question myself.

Was I being too revealing?

Backtrack to the sermon that morning, which was about how the noble king David had stumbled. Not that the chick in the archetypal story was even blamed for it, but somehow somewhere, a false accusation lurks.

Do you have any idea how that story haunts you if you are a single Christian woman? I literally have the fear of God in my to not ever be the reason for someone to fall from grace. General rule of thumb: Don’t bath on rooftops. Check.

So, there ’s having that false “sword” over you head.

But then also, to not be too prude to actually attract the right attention.

It’s freaking confusing.

I know the “religious baggage” adds another layer to the complicated conversation, and not many people would be willing to engage with the implications (and potential false accusations) on this level. But I guarantee you that most people who have been through some form of sexual harassment would probably have felt some form of religious judgement towards them too. The enemy is a liar.

Moving along swiftly. Unfortunately.

The second thing that the crappy experience did to me was make me full-on livid. That would be the lioness responding.

Anger and disappointment towards the women at the counter who dared to project the blame for someone else’s perversion on me.

Anger towards the spiritual implications of the experience. If you don’t operate in the spirit, you wouldn’t get the battle to be free from being the “object” of unwanted sexual attention. Lust projects. It jumps. Now, I needed to fight that off again.

Anger at lust in general. For the confusion it has caused in my life.

I am not immune to sexual temptation. I have done some stupid things in my life. I have stepped into some obvious snares. I have had to deal with the implications.

I hate lust. It’s one of the most deceptive strategies of the enemy.

Listen, I live in multiple dimensions. I don’t just experience life in the natural. I have a relatively clear, sometimes even awkwardly so, view on the spiritual dimension of situations. It makes everything more intense.

Frankly: Lust is a black-widow spider. It kills when it’s done.


‘Nothing but the blood of Jesus … “

Thirdly, I was thankful. I could get out. I could get away. It was nothing, compared to other stories.

We often unfortunately only begin to have compassion if we’ve been confronted with something on a personal level.

So, now I am aware. And I am so sorry.

If you’ve been the target of any form of sexual offense, I want you to know that what happened to you is not ok. You have all the right to be angry. May you find it in your heart to forgive.

And even worse, if you were falsely blamed for what happened to you I want you to know that my heart cries with you tonight. If no one has said this to you, I will say it: IT WAS NOT YOUR FAULT.

This world is broken. People are broken. Sin destroys.

That is the only reason why it happened.

I will say it again: IT WAS NOT YOUR FAULT.

I am so sorry for what you went through. It doesn’t make it better. But I want you to hear those words, even if it is from a stranger in a blog you may have stumbled upon. I hope you know that that it is not a coincidence.

I pray for your healing. I pray for your freedom from projected shame that was never yours to carry.

We all need a Saviour. Cry out to Him. Be real with Him. He can handle your hurt and anger. His love is the healing you need. He paid for the healing of your pain in full, with His own blood, on a cross He didn’t deserve.

I cannot help to wonder what the 14-year old girl who will be receiving my Santa Shoebox has had to face in her life.

I pray tonight especailly for her too.



This could go anywhere.

I’m not quite sure what will surface now that I actually am taking a few minutes to put thoughts to paper. Let’s see where this goes.

Maybe we can start with what’s been going better. A healthy dose of thankfulness might do us all some good.

Hence, I’m happy to report that my physical health has taken a turn for the better. The gut and the bloodlevels seem to have reached a sort of amicable truce. ‘Tis is a fragile equilibrium, but a balance nonetheless. So, yay for that.

It also seems like the life-has-no-meaning phase of grief has subsided somewhat. That’s helpful. Pretty tricky to maintain a degree of public faith-integrity where there are very real personal nihilist days.

Project Progress (as we affectionately refer to the estate admin) also seems to be moving ahead with fairly decent due diligence. Weekly encouraging email check-ins with a faceless executor, whom you need to believe is capable and compassionate, seems to be the name of that game. No one teaches you this stuff. You must just maar figure it out. Learning to swim in the deep end. Thankfully, my sister and I are both strong swimmers. We had a good coach.

The undeniable presence of joy in the midst of all the complexity has been a faithful witness to the One who it originates from.

Joy is tenacious. Joy is strength.

So, yay for joy.

I’ve also been able to pay all the doctors. And SARS. The latter has it’s own worthy testimony.

Yay for that too. Financial pressure adds its own level of intensity to an already pressed process. Breakthrough is worth acknowledging.

So, just reflecting on some of the recent milestone miracles, and the storms that preceded them, maybe the apt theme for the season is: Confronted, to conquer.

For a while, I simply just wanted to hide.

I ignored the signs my body was giving me, because I hoped the pain would just go away. But that simply is not how blood deficiencies and hormonal imbalances work. You have to take pills. And rebuke the spirit of infirmity. More than once.

I ignored the signs that my soul was giving me, because I just wanted it to cope by itsself with the death of another parent as if it were something that has been done before. Because it is actually something that has been done before. You’ve gots this, remember … But that simply is not how a radical reality-changing loss works. It’s not a “you’ve seen this movie before” process. You have to allow yourself to be broken. Again. And to be seen by others in that vulnerable state. Again. It is highly uncomfortable, but you have to receive help offered. Again.

I ignored the warning signs of burnout because I just wanted to get on with a workload that doesn’t stop for mourning. But that simply is not how healing happens. You have to push back the fear of failure, to get perspective. You have to get off the treadmill of life to really take stock. You know ish’s gotten real if you’re left quoting Eminem: “You only got one shot, do not miss this chance …” 🙂

Denial is the broad way.

I haven’t been allowed to take that option. Ever. Narrow is the way that leads to life.

No matter how I’ve tried to sidestep difficult realities, I seem to constantly find myself in situations where my childlike faith-based self-confidence is fiercely opposed by the magnitude of the insecurity that results from technically being positioned as an adult single female orphan*. (*White priviledge acknowledged … all protocol observed … :)).

The implication of those “labels” is daunting. In practical terms, at face value, it simply means: You’re on your own now. Legally, no other human is obliged to look out for you. You have to make it work. You’re the adult now.

Thankfully, that’s not how natural or spiritual family works. I have been surrounded and carried with care and love, in an abundant beautiful and lavish manner. I am not left to fight for myself. This is 100% true, and a testimony to the calibre of precious people in my life. I also have close friends going through similiar trials. We hold up one another’s arms in the battles for hope and destiny. We all stand together, bam bam …

But technically, those “labels” reflect a current legal natural reality. And sometimes, people subconsciously treat you according to the labels that you allow them to place on you. That’s why you need to blatantly confront your own issues, know who you really are, and choose to graciously oppose misrepresentations by stepping up and staying firm in true character.

Big girl panties, on. Check.

Otherwise you will keep acting out of the temptation to compensate for insecurity. However that plays out in your life.

The struggle is real.

As if I didn’t have issues with “forced” self-sufficiency and independence already … which are, by the way, not seen as issues by people who don’t have a Biblical worldview. Chew on that for a while …

Uhg. Labels. I’ve loathed them since I can remember.

Looking at all of that, I realised that the core trials in this season has had to do with security and identity.

Faith 101.

Confronted. Acutely.

To deal deeply with the only questions that really count:

Who is God. Who am I.


‘n Afspraak met die see

Drie. Mal. Maande.

My lyf draai teen my.
Doodmoeg, seer, naar, duislig.
Omgedolwe ingewande.

Al wat ’n insecurity is, surface.
Al wat ’n versoeking is, val voor.

Liggaam, siel en gees.

’n Hart in skerwe,
’n skrapnelde lyf.

Twee dokters later, bloedtoetse en ’n sonar.

Yster en Vit D.

Opgevreet deur die stress van rou, en steeds raakvatterig probeer bly.

Want die grootmenslewe laat nie veel spasie vir weeskind wees nie.

Nou maar goed.

Pille. Verder platsak.
Maar pille help net bietjie
vir poepe.

Nie vir regte pyn nie.

Daarvoor ry mens see toe.

Want die sout-spieël sien alles
wat agter sterk persoonlikheid
soos ’n baba hik-snik:

Die Eiffeltoring vakansie
wat nou nooit gaan wees nie.
Die wonderwerk troue
wat nou nooit opgedress voor gaan word nie.
Die visarend vallei-huis
wat nou verkoop gaan word.

’n laaste Whatsapp boodskap
wat nie blou ticks het nie.

Die einde van ’n menswees.

’n Mooderliefde,
wat nog nie begrawe is nie.

Want mens weet nie mooi hoe nie.

En dan, 18 September.
8 jaar na ’n lofgebed-groet om ’n ander ICU bed.
Want serebrale malaria, was toe nie griep nie.