This is not an easy blog to write. I will have to put down all my defences and show you some of the parts of me that you may not see. If I could have an honest word with my haters (and lovers)…if I could have a moment where I could tell you the ABSOLUTE truth, I would tell you that actually, I am not that strong and you are one of the many things that hurt me. I know you see me being strong and brave all the time. You see me walk through hatred like I don’t give AF. But the truth is you never gave me the choice. I have no choice but to take what you serve, it is not up to me.
I have been like I am all my life so I am no stranger to the loneliness of always being ganged upon. I have always been a poet, and in our culture the role I play is to tell the truth. This is not some celebrity moment or a glamorous job…it is the ability to speak in a way that everybody is moved. It is a scary gift to have in all honesty. It means that I will never be really ‘liked.’ It means that I carry the truth and we all know that the truth can be brutal. This kind of gift/calling means that everybody who deals with me is hit in a deeply spiritual space, and there is nothing I can do about it. I make people confront their demons. I can be very uncomfortable and am incapable of shallow interactions. I wish I was sometimes. Sometimes I wish I could just be like everybody else and not see things the way I do, my life would be so much more peaceful: less painful.
I want you to know that despite this annoying ability of mine to touch on nerves and be a lightning rod for uncomfortable issues in this country, I am also just a girl…not just a girl, but a deeply sensitive girl. I feel deeply. So I can feel EVERYTHING you throw at me whether you say it out loud or not. When I walk into a space and can feel that I am not liked, it is quite a vulnerable moment for me, especially since I have nothing against you, nor have I ever, done anything to you. The fact that my words touch a nerve is not something I control. I need you to remember that before western influences we had people like me, iimbhongi who were believed to pass on messages from our elders. We had our own spiritual leaders and messengers outside the church. It is extremely difficult for me to be born in a time where Africans no longer understand my role. I live in a time where Africans demonise my role. If my voice did not have spirits in it, you would not hear it. I would simply fade into twitter. It is not easy to have a voice that is always under attack.
I just want to let you know that as much as I upset you, I too am not having an easy journey for I am constantly the victim of the backlash when you are not ready to hear something. I understand where you are coming from and accept that my ideas upset you. I respect your process in how you choose to deal with what I put on the table. Please understand that my words/tweets are not personal attacks just a commentary on what my eye is seeing. You do not have to listen to me, I don’t force my tweets onto your mentions. Just like you I am using twitter to express myself. Unfortunately or fortunately for me, my words always seem to hit a home run into your minds and spirits and thus my experience of twitter is quite ‘different.’ There is nothing I can do about this as I am unwilling to change my nature, personality or character to suit South Africans. Changing who I am to suit you would be too much of a compromise. So here I am stuck between a rock and a hard place. The only way I can get you to like/hear me is if I change and become more acceptable. It has not been an easy choice to make to stay true to myself.
Everything I tweet ends up in the media, but it is not the nice things I say….just the spicy ones. In all honesty, the media has portrayed me as a total asshole. I don’t think I would mind so much if I was actually an asshole but guys I’m actually not. The media has just chosen which parts of me to share, and they have chosen to ignore the beautiful parts.
I wrote this letter to tell you about my vulnerabilities. Besides you, my other vulnerability is those rape tweets. In all honesty, those tweets were an off guard moment. I did not see them coming. Much like the times I ‘rant’ about social ills, something else came over me. I am not ready to deal with them and would like to ask the media to respect my privacy. It is a very sore place still and very confusing. I did not mean to drop those bombs, they just exploded by themselves. Please stop tweeting me about it and asking me when you see me out.I am not ready to talk about it. Please, be gentle with me… I am actually NOT that strong.