I have been thinking a lot about time since this pandemic. I am not sure whether it is the pandemic or the fact that I am turning 33 this year. I’ve read somewhere that 25 and 33 are your building years. Like many, birthdays are a time where I do a lot of reflection.

“Where am I? Am I happy where I am? If not, what do I do to get to where I need to go? Am I proud of the woman I am now?”

If you remove all the gifts and messages that we are showered with during this day, you realise that birthdays, to some extent, can be a little lonely. Because despite adulations from those we love, this is the one day where you have to face yourself. So, time – what have you done with all the time you have been given? What have I done with mine?

If there is one thing the pandemic has been good at, it’s revealing how vain some of us have been. More importantly, how all those vanities are of no use to us now. The beautiful designer scarves and shoes are all packed away and gathering dust. The cars are in our garages offering absolutely no solace or hope. We are just grateful that we can hold our breath for 10 minutes. For those with children, you finally realise the quirks that make your children, or partners, special. Quirks that before now, might have irritated you because Mama had to work, honey! Not knowing that one day that will all hang in the balance as the global recession looms, rearing its ugly head.

What I am trying to get at is, with all this time we now have, can we say with certainty that we live lives we are proud of? Are we good people? Have we served others with the time we have been given? Have we used the privilege our education has afforded us to ensure that the girl in our community has this same privilege in the future?

When I started NAHLA, I knew that ultimately it would have to play a role in society. That it would allow the next girl to get a solid education. We haven't done it yet but as I turn 33, I realise that going forward, this is going to be my life’s mission. That NAHLA will not only draw from the strengths of women, but it will be a source of strength to others. That is what 33 and going forward will be for myself and NAHLA. I don’t know how, but I know it has to happen.

With that said, I’ll leave you with this to think about: If we all make it through this pandemic, what will we be doing with our time in future? If, like me, you feel like there’s still so much more you could do, and perhaps you feel like you haven’t done much. When all the dust settles and all of this is but a distant memory, I hope we will finally live lives we are proud of. 

“I hope you live a life you’re proud of. If you find that you’re not, I hope you have the strength to start all over again.”- Eric Roth


By: Makori Mosiuoa

Edited by: Pearl Boshomane Tsotetsi