Today we celebrate the anniversary of our freedom as a people. This is the day, in 1994 the majority of South Africans cast their vote for the first time in their lifetime. Someone may ask… ”Why is this day a big deal as we have not addressed many of our country’s economic and social challenges?” That is definitely the case, however as a people we are no longer suffering from racial domination and all of us have a right to vote and choose who we are in a relationship with without breaking the law.
I have some people arguing that this Freedom Day is not the same and therefore cannot be celebrated. Well it is their right to feel that way but for many South Africans it is a day that we triumphed over a system that sought to make us less of in our own country. In my books that needs to be celebrated. Where I think we have a big challenge is, the matter of Covid-19 where our movement is restricted for our own good and for the sake of our fellow citizens. Someone posted something on Facebook and said, “We isolate ourselves so that when we get back together… No one is missing” – (Unknown). On this day I would like to celebrate such a commitment to humanity and such a profound perspective on respecting the value of life and connection. It is such a profound statement as I would really like to reconnect with my friends, colleagues, clients and other people in the not so distant future.
As I celebrate this day, I would like to share a few things on what this lock down has meant for me and the profound lessons I am learning.
- I realise how much freedom and choices I have after all. The biggest choice I have made is to spend this time reflecting on who I am? What defines me? What is important to me and how resilient I am?
- I realise how much have I taken my health and well-being for granted. I now know that my health is my wealth and if I don’t look after it then I can lose it. (yeah just like that). I have come face to face with the reality of my own mortality.
- I realise that I was born with gifts and I need to share these with the world. I have made a conscious decision that no matter what I refuse to die with “my own music still in me” So I need to work on sharing my gifts with the world and show up as the best I can be everyday:
- I realise how fortunate I am that I still have to choose what I eat whilst others do not have that luxury. More importantly I see the need to “count my blessings” and live a life filled with gratitude.
Finally I realise that this lockdown has been a gift to me and I am grateful to my leaders for helping me get back to self and realise that in what appears to be adversity there is a lot of hidden opportunities and all I need to do is change my paradigm and look at all with a positive eye. I am so grateful and I now realise that freedom means. As I end this, I embrace the words of Reeve Evans when she says….” We live in a world of absolute freedom and the only constraints are the ones we put on ourselves”
On that note I feel good saying “Happy Freedom Day” to all. May your find yourselves during this time and know that the biggest freedom is to be liberated from your mind.