So where do I begin? Well let me start by saying that who I am now is certainly not the same person that I was a few years back, first of all I was a high strung being, working the corporate world 18 hours a day 7 days a week, and although I always made time for my daughter, I hardly had any time to focus on myself.
And as I am sure you can imagine, years of that lifestyle eventually led me to say fuckit! I think the tuning point for me came when my mother had to go in for a back operation, she had seemingly gotten old overnight, and her health was deteriorating extremely fast. She barely made it through the procedure as she had complications with her heart during the process, and then contracted pneumonia while in the hospital. She ended up in ICU with drainage pipes in her lungs, heavily medicated with a whole series of pills that she needed to take for the rest of her life, and trust me her at home recovery didn't go smoothly either. It was at that stage that I decided to quit my job in order to nurse my mother and also help the farm get back on track as that had also endured the path of a downwards spiral.
As life would have it - the political unrest was not getting any easier in South Africa and on top of that we were already deep into a progressive drought at that stage (we still are) - So trying to build things up on the farm certainly came with an array of unwanted challenges, life was harder than you can possibly imagine - and then something happened, something that was the last straw on the donkeys back. A lovely diagnoses of Cancer was dished up and served for me to eat along with all the other shit I was being spoon fed. And this was not my first run around the Big C block either.
At this stage all I could think was - This is it - I am done with this shit - I want out! But with my two elderly parents and a teenage daughter that I needed to look out for, giving up simply was not the answer, and somehow I knew that I needed to get back to a state of well-being, not only physically, but mentally and spiritually as well.
Because writing has always been a form of escape for me - this became a intricate and fundamental stepping stone on my path to healing. In a heart wrenching day of severe depression, I ended up writing a poetry piece focusing on my life-path and follows though into my fears of no longer being able to be there for my daughter if I should die. Which I ended up recording as spoken word a short while later. The piece was titled Concrete Wings and should you want, you can listen to it by clicking the link below.
Another crucial part of my healing started with WHAT IF??
Oh man, it is hard to explain all the things that roll like thunder through the valleys of your minds in times like these. You start thinking about all the aspects that you set aside of yourself. You realize that you have been working so hard to try and make a living that you neglected to live your life. Questions like 'What about all the things I still need to do?' 'What about the things I still want to do' and in this case more importantly 'What about the things I never had the balls to do?' these questions pops into your mind, and haunts your waking moments.
Now for me, one of the things that I had set aside in my life was singing, and writing songs. With no formal training it was always something that I felt that I was not good enough at, and throughout my years, although I would often compose songs in my head and write the lyrics for them, and then end up singing them out loud only when I was sure that I was completely alone out of fear of judgement. Now, reaching this point in my life, I decided to give it a shot, I reached out to various artists on the blockchain in order to find someone willing to collaborate with me, a complete and utter noob to the game with absolutely no musical background or training. I mean heck, I cant even play an instrument. Let me just say that I was amazed at the response
And one of the songs that I am particularly proud of, is a song titled: Sense of Silence, a song with an ancient Celtic feel to it that was inspired by the political turmoil that the country was (is) going through. This song was written by myself, and I also did the lyrics and the vocals while the amazing DavidFar worked on composing the instrumental music as well as the production. If you would like to have a listen to that, you can click on the link below.
At this point doing things like this, helped to slowly ease me out of a deep overpowering depression, It was slow progress, but I knew that I was getting better in that aspect every day, but there was still the issue with my physical health to deal with, and I decided that I wanted to grow my own health, because I had no intent on going for any harsh chemical treatments - I simply was not going to put myself or my family through that.
As someone that has always loved reading up about the medicinal values of plants and natural alternatives, I started reading up about natural alternatives for treating Cancer, and I set out to take the first step to recovery in that direction.
Lucky for me - I had the land available to me so I started growing cannabis, then I would barter that for some home made CBD oils, which was the first product that I used, later on I also started growing Sutherlandia aka Cancerbush tea, and Moringa while I made time to forage African Potato and wild African Ginger. And used all these natural wonders as a source of treatment along with the Rife Machine. At some point I realized that, to me, healing my self stretched far beyond simply healing my physical body, it has become a daily way of life. And I loved it, I fell in love with the idea of being able to grow your own health - and I started propagating an array of indigenous medicinal and edible plants.
This not only made me feel good about healing myself step by step - but I also woke up to the fact that by cultivating beneficial plants and caring for them that I was healing the land and consequently the space that I was surrounded by. Subsequently this lead me to start doing propagation for other farmers as well as selling some plants off hand to willing buyers.
And you can read a lot more about the medicinal, edible and beneficial plants that I am working with through my various articles on Steemit that focuses in depth on them - their applications and uses. Below you can see a few of the plants that are currently flourishing in my home nursery.
Even though working with the plants was great, I felt that I was missing something, and I started at looking for natural alternatives to help heal and better my growth and soil quality without using harmful chemicals on my plants, and this was where entomology entered my life. Before I knew it I was converting an old 5000 liter water tank into a worm-farm that produces black tea as well as worm-castings, I also endeavored in cultivating Black Soldier Flies that produces fertilizer, and I am currently making all my own pesticides from home grown plants.
Although my health is still a work in progress the way I see it is that, in the process of healing myself, I have managed to find a way to contribute to healing a small fraction of the world that I live in as well, and as a nature lover and conservationist, to me, that is worth its weight in gold! Even though it required me to step out of my comfort zone and start living in complete and utter contrast to the life I had known before.
Something that I have learnt over the past few years is that taking one step forward and then having to take two steps back is not a struggle it is simply a dance of life.