Call me “Mara”

Naomi said, “Don’t call me Naomi, call me Mara because the Almighty has made my life very bitter” – Ruth 1 v 20…

So they told me it does not matter what you go through what matters is what you are made of.

As i’m about to turn 32 i have been reflecting on the way I grew up and I am thankful for the way i was raised. Where I am from they say that it takes a village to raise a child and that was true in my case. So many people sacrificed a lot for me. Some sacrificed their relationships while other their finances and freedom. It really took a lot of people that i met along my journey to mould the person that i am today. Some broke me too, some picked up the pieces while others just watched from a distance, i learnt from them too.

Reflecting on my life and looking how far God has taken me from… i ought to smile always – Bilene, Gaza, Mozambique

There was a time that i wanted to give up and then someone would just motivate me back up and just like that i’m all smiles. Naomi’s statement at the beginning of this article reminds me of times when i did not have much and probably would have never imagined a better life than the one i had. But thinking about it letting situations change your name is crazy because situations always change just like feelings and status too.

However there comes a time in an African woman’s life where your name has to change and if it doesn’t you sort of lose respect from people around you. I can not be called Sharon even in my old age right? Im Sharon but at some point in my African life i should become a “MRS” or “Amai nhingi” meaning mother of so &so. I can be called by kids name or my husband’s surname.

Marriage becomes a goal, a dream of most African or let me say most Zimbabwean women during my time. I need it to be respected otherwise even kids younger than me will get respected more than me. I remember one time i went for a family event and we were all allocated accommodation in a nearby hotel because my parents’s place was too small for everyone. Then one of my cousin who is younger than me pitched up unannounced with his wife and then my sister took my room and gave them. They said i can just sleep on the floor in my parent’s dining room.

Do you know why? Because i was single and he was married and now his name was associated with a MR whilst mine was just Sharon. I felt discriminated against. Even with family contributions mine do not count because well i do not matter. I am a nobody until i become a MRS. My older sister the same one who took my room without my permission or even talking to me once said that i wonder what married men you are dating, or sometimes she just says you should stop dating married men and settle down.

I have not had a guy ask me out in more than 2 years but nope that does not matter because im over 30 and not married so somehow i am prostituting myself. I travel a lot and because I am not married and i work so i spend my money that way and it makes me happy. However no one believes i pay for it all on my own they still think its because i have a sponsor… probably a married man who can not marry me that is why im still single. Omg i have had enough of this really.

Can a woman not be single beautiful and independent without involving a man. Can i not be a zimbabwean woman who is a career woman who travels 2 to 3 times a year and who owns a cat ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜ okay it sounds bad but i have not had a relationship that long and i am perfectly fine in that department. I just deserve to be respected too you know. But i guess we still have a long way to change our culture and i just decided to keep my distance from family for my peace of mind.

My family sometimes bruises me and they do not even know it…

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