Reviewing the past…

I thought I’d schedule this as I’ve been reflecting lately about milestones.

Everyone is doing that “10 years: then and now” thing on social media, posting photos of themselves and reflecting on where they were in 2009 compared to now, in 2019. People are getting sentimental about the fact that it’s another decade passing.

Really, though, as much as I like number categories, especially round ones, anyone can celebrate decades passing and milestones. It doesn’t have to be neatly packaged into dated decades. We can celebrate the little and big things all the time.

Humans love time and rhythms. It’s why we love doing the “look back” thing, I think. It’s also a form of processing. I like to remember things – heck, I keep a daily journal because of that (and for processing them).

Just remember, we aren’t our successes or failures – and each person’s story is different. It’s what makes us who we are.

Having said that, I’ve written down some milestones below. There are many milestones I could pick out. I’m young and have been fortunate.

“Little” ones include going to some lovely musicals and participating in lovely choral performances myself, as well as trying new things, like fencing, BodyPump/ gym and the SCA.

Other (bigger?) ones include:

  • joining my university choir (LaTUCS) and travelling interstate to attend my first intervarsity choral festival;
  • meeting my partner there;
  • becoming LaTUCS vice-president then president
    • through these and other roles, learning how to better work in professional teams with people in real ways that uni doesn’t always teach you, including some hefty conflict management.
  • beginning to move out of home, learning how to best take care of myself and what works for me.

This year/ in the past twelve-ish months, I:

  • finished uni and then graduated with a double degree in Bachelor of Health Sciences and Masters of Occupational Therapy Practice
  • moved in with my partner in Melbourne
  • got a job in a specialisation of Occupational Therapy that I really love: Paediatric OT, working with autistic kids.
    • As of Friday the 20th, I’ve officially had a full year of employment as well as four school terms of work. Awesome stuff.
  • bought a car together with my partner and made great progress with getting my drivers licence (I’m hoping I’ll get it in the new year)

Throughout it all, I’ve done a heckton of development in understanding myself, including my disabilities, my sexuality, my faith and mental health – and from that, I’m learning what self-care works for me and how to get it.

I’ve struggled at times, but fortunately I’ve usually had supports around me or have gained access to them. I’ve come through okay.

I hope you have too.

Here’s to the past, the present and the future, for all of us.

Happy New Year.


I saw this last week on Eden’s website, edenland. It’s apparently the creation of Útmutató a Léleknek, a Hungarian writer. I think it’s beautiful.

Do You Believe In Mother?

A parable by Útmutató a Léleknek 
In a mother’s womb were two babies. One asked the other: “Do you believe in life after delivery?” The other replied, “Why, of course. There has to be something after delivery. Maybe we are here to prepare ourselves for what we will be later.” 

“Nonsense” said the first. “There is no life after delivery. What kind of life would that be?” 

The second said, “I don’t know, but there will be more light than here. Maybe we will walk with our legs and eat from our mouths. Maybe we will have other senses that we can’t understand now.” 

The first replied, “That is absurd. Walking is impossible. And eating with our mouths? Ridiculous! The umbilical cord supplies nutrition and everything we need. But the umbilical cord is so short. Life after delivery is to be logically excluded.” 

The second insisted, “Well I think there is something and maybe it’s different than it is here. Maybe we won’t need this physical cord anymore.” 

The first replied, “Nonsense. And moreover if there is life, then why has no one has ever come back from there? Delivery is the end of life, and in the after-delivery there is nothing but darkness and silence and oblivion. It takes us nowhere.” 

“Well, I don’t know,” said the second, “but certainly we will meet Mother and she will take care of us.” 

The first replied “Mother? You actually believe in Mother? That’s laughable. If Mother exists then where is She now?” 

The second said, “She is all around us. We are surrounded by her. We are of Her. It is in Her that we live. Without Her this world would not and could not exist.” 

Said the first: “Well I don’t see Her, so it is only logical that She doesn’t exist.” 

To which the second replied, “Sometimes, when you’re in silence and you focus and you really listen, you can perceive Her presence, and you can hear Her loving voice, calling down from above.”

After all, in my opinion an open mind is an open heart. Like that quote from Alice in Wonderland (maybe from the 2010 movie more than the book, I can’t really remember): [Alice:] “This is impossible.” [Hatter:] “Only if you believe it is.”
It is the Great Mystery….

One Africa Performance

Right now, I’m tired after a weekend that was lovely and fun – but draining in the best sense. It was a weekend full of singing and dancing, meeting new people and visiting family. I performed in the One Africa concert on Sunday 30th in Hamer Hall.

The Boite - One Africa

(Art taken from here – artist is Michael Adonai)

For the concert, I was part of the ~350+ strong choir. We were a group of women and men, from very young children to the relatively old. We had a wide range of voices, from base to soprano (me!). It was a blast.

We performed alongside artists such as Lamine Sonko (also Artistic Director), Jimmy Mulovhedzi, Bouly and Oumy Sene Sonko, King Bell, Ajak Kwai, Tariro Mavondo and Asanti Dance Theatre, Burundian Drumming Group of Victoria.
Our band/ supporting musicians included Amadou Susso, Julius Sackey, Romy Hernandez Carbo, Kumar Shome, Zvi Belling, Mamizo Sonko, Pape Mbaye, Yacou Mbaye, Olugbade Okunade, Kofi Kunkpe, Mouad Benjoad and Nick Lester.

On Saturday I went down on the train to Melbourne to attend the afternoon rehearsal. It was the second-to-last one. We ran through the songs and even heard a few guest pieces. We also got our t-shirts. I don’t know about the others, but I began to get excited then.

The next day, Sunday, I went into the city early. The final rehearsal was at Hamer Hall, just as the concert was. We practiced and the feelings grew – this was going to be fun!

The concert ran from 14:30 to 17:00, with an interval between two halves. It had eight acts in each half (five of which in each half that I sang in). It was a beautiful celebration of African cultures, their similarities and differences to each other. There were at least five languages in the show (not counting English) and many cultural groups represented.

There were many themes explored in the concert, using traditional songs and songs composed by guest artists. The most important theme was unity and coming together. Though there is cause for sorrow, now and in the past, the celebration of life and culture is important. There is one heart — One Africa.

I have so many songs from the concert running through my head. Thank you to all who performed (whether singing, dancing, or playing instruments) as well as those who worked behind the scenes – seen or unseen. Thank you also to those who came to watch and those who supported us in other ways in the weeks leading up to the concert and on the day.

What a weekend. I had a marvelous time. Now, we just have to wait for the CD and DVD to come out. 😀

Circle of Life

Just a quick note. I had a busy weekend.

On Saturday, I went with my mum and my nana to see the Lion King Musical. It’s on right now in Melbourne at the Regent Theatre and perhaps Sydney and Brisbane too? Anyway, if you get the chance – it’s on until the end of September, maybe October – go to it. It is magical. The costumes … the actors … the set and effects… it’s all there and wonderfully done, building relationships and tension.

Of course, the story was great too. It was my first time watching it on stage and the last time I watched the film was a while ago, so even though I knew the storyline I viewed things with new eyes and, perhaps, a deeper understanding.

They really emphasize Simba’s journey. It might be a simple tale on the surface, but underneath there are deeper meanings; like the fact that, in the end, we’re all part of the same circle of life, playing our part. We just have to choose what part we play, which, while shaped by outside forces, comes down to how we act.

I love the soundtrack. My favourite song is (apart from The Circle of Life) is They Live In You/ He Lives In You (Reprise). Ask me again in a month, though. It might change – all the songs were carried well.

The costumes and set were created from a vibrant mix of various African influences, with a few additions. I loved the way they blended the human actor/ puppeteer with the animal costume. It added an extra layer to the show.

Also, the acting itself was very well done – the cast were well chosen in my view. Scar is wonderfully mean; Mufasa’s complexity of ruler-and-father, responsible-but-compassionate, is strongly illustrated. Nala’s sassiness is highlighted and given fresh prominence; the truly blended nature of Miss Rafiki was masterfully done. Of course, the story focuses on Simba and the actors there do well, especially the adult one.

It’s just a wonderful story, portrayed very well by cast and crew. Cheers all around!