I AM A WOMAN

I grew up in a very strict and traditional Afrikaans home. Can you imagine my surprise when I was finding my female teachers as sexy as the boys did! My friends were looking at and discussing other boys, and I looked at their girlfriends! Oh dear. I did not dare say a word.

In my innocence I didn’t even know what people like me was called. In Standard 8 (Grade 10) I found out what I was and also realised that my parents and brother can’t stand people like me. I never played with dolls or dreamed of big weddings, I liked welding and building and carpentry, but in all of this, loved being a woman.

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I lived with my secret in silence till the age of 32, when I finally told my Mom. She was very clear. “I need you to stay out of my life”.  So, I did. Having allowed myself to have a partner for the first time, I realised exactly how many people do not like “our type” very much.

I dress like other woman, wear make-up like other woman, love beautiful lingerie like other woman, yet got treated differently. I found it heart-breaking at first, because I have a weakness, people. I absolutely love and adore people, any people. I find them beautiful and amazing.  There is nothing better in the world, than loving people, no matter what flaws they might have; they are all absolutely beautiful works of art. Finding myself not being accepted by so many of them, was hard to deal with.

It amazed me when I realised that so many people think it is a choice you make. If it was a choice, I would definitely not choose to be frowned upon by so many. It just is, and always was, right from the beginning of my life.

My mom contacted me again after a few years, but I was kept away from family and friends. Nobody could know about my scandalous lifestyle. I obliged. I had enough of feeling like a leper.  Rather stay away than being reminded. Life has a weird way of turning things around though. Gremlins started seeping through the woodwork of the family tree and suddenly my stain was not so dark anymore.

It took me a long while to accept the fact that there are so many people out there in the world who will never accept the type of woman I am. But I am strong in the knowledge, that I am just that….a woman. There is no better feeling in the world than being a woman. Nothing makes you stronger than being a woman, and nothing will ever replace that wonderful feeling of gentleness, empathy and strength within a woman.  Do I feel sorry for myself, heavens no! I am a woman after all!

—oOo—

Dear friends, family and other interesting creatures,

During the month of August I have contacted a few woman and asked them to share some of their stories  Subject choice is up to the writer and I trust you will enjoy this introduction to the special females on my various platforms. If you want to be part of this series, mail me wenchy@mweb.co.za

Happy Woman’s Month!

I wish you enough,

Wenchy

Amazing Grace how cuddly you are !

I am a 31 year old, self employed, married to an amazing husband, new mom to a very expressive entertaining two month old baby. My entry is about the trials and tribulations of new motherhood. It’s a whole new world!

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Let me start at the beginning.

Finding out I was pregnant came as a big surprise, as I have always been told I would struggle, being diagnosed at a young age with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome).

When I saw those two lines appear on the pregnancy test my heart leapt. I ran out calling my husband in shrieks, he was shocked in the beginning as we had only planned for a baby in maybe two years time but elated all the same.

I let my Mom know the very next day after another 10 tests from the pharmacy confirmed we were indeed expecting our first born. Fast forward  38 weeks later, I am huge and you can actually see my child’s bottom in the shape of my tummy. I have a permanent pain in my hip and dizzy spells and sleepless nights have me wishing the days to my C-section away. Pregnancy is NOT a glamorous glowing affair, anybody who tells you they loved every moment of their pregnancy is lying to you.

When my big day came I was relieved and scared silly all at once. I could not wait to meet our little girl. She arrived without hassle and seeing her for the first time, my entire life made sense and I felt totally complete.

Everybody tells you that breastfeeding is this magical bonding time for you and your baby. For me, it was anything but! She had a terrible latch and despite it all I persevered, as it gets drilled into you “breast is best” She has since developed severe reflux. I got severe bronchitis, which I then gave to her, and she nearly ended up in hospital.

The stress lead to a nervous breakdown due to my post natal depression. My milk dried up like spilled water in a hot pan. I have now put her on a half formula and breast milk diet,and guess what, we are both much happier, so I can tell you this, breast is only best if BOTH mother and baby are happy and fed.

As women we are bombarded with opinions and way too much conflicting information while pregnant, I advise you to follow your own gut, listening to all of that can make one’s head hurt.Your body will never be the same, unless you are a Hollywood celebrity, but then neither will your heart, it’s amazing how much you love this tiny helpless being.

The other night I was out for the first time since I found out I was pregnant,leaving our two month old daughter with my mother in law. I ended up with such engorged breasts I had to express into the toilet (not a tidy effort). At the end of a fun night of dancing and my first glass and a half of wine, I turned to my husband as I noticed dried breast milk in my hair and said “hmm 5 years ago this would have been vomit”.We laughed at how much our lives have changed and how much joy our tiny human has brought us in such a short time.

Being a new mom is amazing,terrifying and exhausting but totally worth every sleepless night when she looks up at me and smiles that big gummy smile. Don’t try and be super woman. You are not super woman. Take time to bond with your child, the dishes and laundry can wait.

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You can make contact with Bailey on Facebook


Dear friends, family and other interesting creatures,

During the month of August I have contacted a few woman and asked them to share some of their stories  Subject choice is up to the writer and I trust you will enjoy this introduction to the special females on my various platforms. If you want to be part of this series, mail me wenchy@mweb.co.za

Happy Woman’s Month!

I wish you enough,

Wenchy

 

Girl, you’ll be a woman soon.

Dear Jenna-Lee,

I remember the day I took this picture. I finally got your long hair brushed, trying to remove knots without you crying. It was quite a task!

You have grown up to be a beautiful kind girl with a delightful sense of humour. 

I am so proud of you reading proper young adult books and enjoying them! I hope when I am long gone from this life, that you will remember me as the #bonusmom who encouraged you to read and question.

Always be true to yourself and remember that you are an individual with a voice. You have choices as to who you want to be. Use it wisely.

It is not easy living in a blended family but it has been a blessing watching you grow up. Thank you for your kindness and the respect and love you have shown me. I am grateful.

I’m proud to say that’s our girl!

Happy 13th birthday darling Jenna-Lee. May God bless and keep you always.

I wish you enough,

Wenchy 

Comma

Dear friends and other interesting creatures,

You were my first love as a little  girl. Waiting for you to come home from the Airforce. 

A R5 tucked into my hand when nobody looked. The first man to buy me perfume.  A comfort after my father died. 

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A book where fiction, raw truth and courage meet.

Umbilicus: An autobiographical novelUmbilicus: An autobiographical novel by Paula Gruben
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The character, Charlotte and I are roughly the same age. I could identify with the person, the culture, the language and what living in South Africa was like as a teenager growing up during the time period the book is written in.

Many of us question who we are, what we are about, what are our details? .. and what am I going to be when I grow up? Charlotte is no different, except that Charlotte knows she is adopted and therefore has some extra questions that need answers.

I found Charlotte to be a strong character, honest about her weaknesses and flaws and open to forgiveness and truth. Charlotte’s adoptive parents showed a little less emotion than I expected to the subject matter. They seem emotionally unavailable and cold to her needs throughout the book and I questioned why they adopted two children at all.

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… He believes in me, I don’t know what he sees in me …

… trespassing on a farm outside Clarens in August 2008. We parked our day old 4×4 on the highest, smallest ledge on a koppie, after playing in the stream.

Dear friends and other interesting creatures,

From the beginning he was all in. While I analysed the unexpected love, devotion and absolute certainty he possessed about our future (not to mention the chunks of sexy that was coming my way), he was mixing our CD’S and DVD’s which at the time closed my throat with anxiety.

I came into the relationship with a healthy dose of fear, a mountain of debt, a geyser that kept flooding the basement and many children.

By the time he unpacked a reasonable amount of books, I felt more at ease with whatever amount of baggage he came with.

Continue reading

A Transgender Life

Dear friends and other interesting creatures,

On the evening of the launch,  I purchased a copy of Anastacia Thomson’s book,  “A Transgender Life in South Africa” .

The book is a first hand account of a woman, who was assigned male at birth, due to external genitalia.

Continue reading

42 you said?

Dear friends, family and other interesting creatures,

Some bonds cannot be broken. Not even in death.

It may be 17 years since Tim died, but I had a very real sense of him yesterday. I could not understand why he lingered yesterday. Nothing out of the ordinary happened. Usually I am able to pin point an emotional from him, a smile, a look in his eye – yesterday I just felt him here.

He always visits, sitting on the right hand side of the bed, regardless of venue. Before he died, we had never even been in a bedroom together before.

Seeing Tim isn’t scary or creepy. It can be both comforting and heart breaking. Sometimes I smile, other times I feel renewed grief.

I am not big on “speaking to the dead”, or “crossing over”. I’m merely relating that somehow Tim keeps contact. Often followed up the next day or two in a quote or a song, an item that was of value only to us.

Have you ever experienced anything like this?

I wish you enough,
Wenchy

The Nocturnal Wenchy

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Dear Tim,

I’ve told you before. The thing with death is, I have no new pictures of you. So I had to improvise a little.

As I have been preparing for my Grahamstown festival trip next month, I could not help but think of you. Do you remember?

You were in school uniform. Matric blazer. I was sitting on the steps of the church on the square in Grahamstown. I went to a private school so no uniform. I remember I was wearing a very stretched out purple jersey and brown leather shoes I had bought at the festival.

(Remains the most expensive shoes I’ve ever owned. Haha! I would much rather buy books. I had no idea at the time how much purple was still to follow.)

The sun was setting.

You came and sat next to me. I had never seen you before. You sat, silently. I remember…

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Check your mate

Dear friends and other interesting creatures,

Random thoughts:

* My anxiety is playing up at the moment and I am not loving it. My default emotion is anxiety so it does not require an event to plague me. It is not fanTy. Forgive me if I am not as chatty as usual. Although … I’ve become really good at hiding these issues.

* I love my husband, @SirNoid. He won a big ass TV and put it in our room for me toimage watch DVD’s. Not that I watch DVD’s all day long but it made me feel special that he did that. I do not want it hooked up to our DSTV! Perfect just like that.

Oh yes, dear @SirNoid gives magnificent massages. Not sure if I could return the favour in an equally fabulous manner with my lovely illness inflamed hands, but I will try.

* Before you pick up your phone to call me, think… Is this textable? I do not answer the phone (deep psychological reasons which surfaced after my Oupa Mike died. No therapy did not help). So, unless I gave birth to you, or I let you sleep in my bed, don’t phone me. I am not going to answer. Text or email. Flowers (yellow roses really do the trick) is lovely, and you are welcome to WhatsApp me. On the odd occasion that I may call YOU, know that you are incredibly special!

* I need to colour my hair at least every 7 to 10 days for the optimum #purplehairdontcare look. Been just over 18 months of having totally purple hair and I am loving it ! Even my @SirNoid loves it ….and he was very sceptical in the beginning. 💜

* After five or so years, it appears our furniture needs replacing… as does our linen. Electrical appliances seem fine but our bedroom, bathrooms, lounges etc need some attention / updating / love. How long does these things last in your house?

* @SirNoid and I do not share a bathroom. Very progressive thinking I must say. My husband says I’m odd to not share a bathroom, but why not, if you have another bathroom that isn’t being used? Would you like your own bathroom?

* ♡ I am posting my birthday #wishlist tonight, as requested. I love that I still get asked to do this. 😄 My friends are so proper.


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I’m posting this as a request from my friend Janice who tagged me on Facebook.

Four names I go by:
1. Momma / Mother/ Mom
2. Nancy / Nancy Pants
3. Aunty Stel
4. Wenchy / #MammaWenchy

If in any doubt, Wenchy is the name to go with (no surname – think Madonna, Cher – they don’t need surnames and neither does Wenchy).

Only my Mammie and Bank Manager calls me by my proper name. When my name is mess up. it annoys me LOTS. It is Christel-Michel or Wenchy. I dislike being called Chris, although I guess that would be the natural way to go for people who want to be friendly but don’t know me well. Yes, I may have some issues.

(My close family and perhaps those who would give me a kidney …call me Stel. I’m old fashioned that way, so respectfully, kids get to call me Aunty Stel.)

Four places I’ve lived:
1. In my head
2. In your computer
3. Potchefstroom
4. Johannesburg

Favoured things I love to watch on TV:
1. Game Of Thrones
2. The Blacklist
3. Chicago Med / Greys Anatomy
4. Blue Bloods

Four favourite places I have visited:
1. Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe)
2. Uvongo Lagoon where the water is forever deep (South Africa)
3. Pebble Beach at Storms River Mouth in the Tsitsikamma National Park (South Africa)
4. Grahamstown (The National Arts Festival, South Africa)
…..and as a bonus:
5. McGregor (South Africa)
6. Top of Sani Pass (Lesotho)
7. Drakensberg (South Africa)

Four things I love to eat:
1. Crème Brulee
2. Baked Cheese Cake
3. Pork Belly
4. Rare Fillet Steak

Favourite drinks I love to have:
1. Water
2. Strawberry Daiquiri
3. Cappuccino
4. Salted caramel milkshake

Four books I adore:
1. Tuesdays With Morrie by Mitch Albom
2. Perks Of Being A Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
3. Seks, Drugs en Boeremusiek deur Koos Kombuis
4. The Fault In Our Stars by John Green

Four people I TRUST will respond ( … and not be beige!) You can either respond on your blog, or in my blog comment section, or Facebook , but please tag me :

1. Birthsay Girl Jenny
2. Our Ky
3. My #bestie Gail
4. Tayla-Jade
….and bonus, dear 5. Shell (You can also join her group (all about beads) while you at it!)

Anyone else who wants to play is very welcome! 😇

I wish you enough,
Wenchy

There is no great divide.

Dear friends, family and other interesting creatures,

It’s cold. The shadow creeps deeper into the black hole of a non existent shelter. The wind has no boundary and freely flows into every available space. There is a plastic sheet picked up from a delivery bay held tightly in an effort to provide warmth.

This could be me.

This could be you.

If we be truly honest, there are many of us who live from payday to payday. Take away the lifeline of your monthly income and perhaps no family or friends willing or able to help, where do you go? There is nothing that leaves you above ending up on the street … with nothing. Nothing.

People living on the street are no different from you or I. They feel hunger, love, dislike, just like us. Woman have periods. Their digestive system did not conveniently shut down because life hit them hard. There are very real issues. All people have hopes and dreams. We all want to be loved, respected and feel we are special.

Every person born, will die. Did you aid your fellow man in his journey between the beginning and end?

I was introduced to the Twitter Blanket Drive in 2013. It was the second media event I ever attended. This year I was approached to take on the role of National Brand Ambassador.

#TBD2016 needs a boost in Johannesburg as it is well established in Cape Town.

We would be grateful if you would hop over and “like” the page and stay informed. Jozi TBD Our Twitter account is @JoziTBD. We are using the hashtag #TBD2016 nationally.

Twitter Blanket Drive was started by @MelanieMinnaar ‘s single tweet. We are all influencers. We can choose to touch the lives around us. Each one, reach one.

Please join us at 6pm tonight, 26 May 2016 for soup, song and smiles as we donate blankets. Our drop in the ocean.

This could be you. There is no great divide.

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I wish you enough,
Wenchy