Wow! What a year it has been. I already feel like a much different person than I was just a year an half ago when I was living in hoods of NE DC. Admittedly, some of that difference is both good and bad. As I often tell my friend Asa or PaPa I’ve never worked so much in my life. It has been the most exhausting year of my life. Not simply because of the physical hours committed, which have been 60-70hrs, 6-days a week; but also because of the emotionally taxing nature of the work we do. Then also is the reality of moving some 8,000 kms away from any and everything I’ve known for the last 20-odd years makes for interesting stressors.
When I look back on 2011 I think about the family and friends I left behind in the States. The wonderful network of family and friends that stretches from Orlando, Florida to Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina and of course to DC-MD-VA areas. I have missed you all at some point or another along this journey of mine. Yet in many ways it is the thought of you all that has continued to motivate me to pursue the daring dreams that have dominated my spirit for the last 7-8 years. I do truly hope that all of you will take some time to come and visit me at some point wherever I may be in Africa in the coming years.
But then as providence always seems to bestow on me, I was blessed to find a new network of friends and family. Can’t tell you how much the people I work with have engrafted themselves into my life. Often people always ask how come we at ALA always seem to hang out together, and the trite answer is that we work the same hours, but honestly I love spending time with these folks. They are some of the most intelligent, committed, considerate, and caring individuals I have ever had the pleasure to meet and I, without a shadow of a doubt, consider them to be the young leaders who will change the continent in the short term.
And of course the special young people that I have had the great privelige to meet, teach, and journey with. It was a wonderful experience to be inaugurated into the tradition of teaching with such excellent and committed students. I was so proud to see my first group of students graduate last year and I wait with much anticipation for the ones whom I have spent two years with. I’m especially anxious to see my 6 amazing mentees at graduation, don’t know if I will be able to keep it together. This and many more special moments I look forward to in 2012.
My hope is to be the On-Purpose Person that I desire to be in not only my vocational life, but in my spiritual, family, health, financial, and intellectual life.
I wish the same for you in 2012. Know thyself!
Happy Holidays and Cheers from Jozi,