Saturday 15 July…..4:44am…. It’s cold. A little coffee down the hatch. Solemn mood and mild disturbance taint the frost pink. Pink is the symbolic colour of nurturing whilst green the colour of renewal.
Have you ever wondered what your name means? Admittedly, I only ever paid attention to my first name as it is fraught with conflict.
My name is Arion Johan Bezuidenhout.
Arion= ‘Braver’, Johan= ‘God is Gracious’/ ‘Champion’, Bezuidenhout= ‘Southern Forest’. So in a nutshell I am the Brave Grace-given Champion of the Southern Forest. From an uber spiritual context my name was perfectly chosen.
It is quite cool living in Africa, as the deeply symbolic relevance of names is still widely practiced. On the flip side one also finds strange names. A more modern variation amongst more rural people is to give English names of relatable ideas. When I first heard names like ‘Litre’ or ‘Pretty’ I was confused. But understanding the history behind the manner in which names are given grew my appreciation for the interesting variation of naming.
‘To the Bone’ has posed a question in my heart, this AM. Changing the patients name from Ellen to Elia as a method to create distance between a self-harming person and the will to survive is an idea I relate to. In rehab it was also suggested by some deeply spiritual people that my name be changed. The Greek history of my name is linked to a , non-Christian, belief structure. I kept my name but have had many sleepless nights wondering if the mere symbolism of my name could link me to things that are less than desirable. Fortunately, on further inspection my name is so perfect for me when one considers the romance,and survivalist story behind it.
I feel like donning Traditional African gear of loin clothe and animal hide bearing my local heritage and combining it with my international roots….. Actually I am in stitches, not that I am being disrespectful, can you IMAGINE what my clients would think. 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 Although, I do think that many wouldn’t put it past me…🤣.
My morning reading has turned out a very simple lesson on loving kindness and forgiveness. I love this as I genuinely try hard to attain understanding and insight into the hearts and lives of others. Hairdressing, as far as I am concerned, is filled with healers. Oft unrecognized as such, but healers nonetheless. I don’t mean this in a wierd way. Our profession takes the ugliness of insecurity and flips it into something beautiful and transcendent.
In the movie, ‘To the Bone’, the struggles of eating disorders are addressed in a deeply real and sensitive way. I wept lastnight for an addiction that,so coldly, hurts it’s candidates.
I FIRSTHAND, KNOW WHAT A DEEPLY VIOLENT MASTER ADDICTION IS.
I think this is why the unction to read this mornings reading is what it was. It is a reminder that each of us has a responsibility TO NOT CAUSE HARM. I fail often in this regard, and it destroys me.
Like my name suggests I can fight. I cannot fight with my fists but my tongue can be a piece of work. Coupled to a little bit of a brain, I can be mean when under attack. (I am working on it….lol. Thankfully getting sexier as I am getting older helps. 😇) So too, is the process of ‘Owning my Truth’, helping me to discover the colorful, funny, loving and gentle gentleman in me.
In a country like ZA with so many languages, cultures, religions and tribal affiliations, ease of navigating deeply respectful care for one another is tough. The ‘Wit Ou’s’ hold onto their international heritage of creating a better life whilst a more local structure is fighting for recognition from its counterparts. Each with its agenda of upholding its particular version of ‘shame and honor’.
Like the character, Ellen/Elia, in ‘To the Bone’, finds the will to live, so to do each of us need to find the value of our collective purpose. It is not accidental that, from an uber spiritual perspective, each of us is in Africa right here, right now. Or on this globe right here, right now!
THE QUESTION IS WHAT WILL IT STAND FOR?
WILL WE BE KNOWN AS THE DESTROYERS OF GENERATIONS OR THE TENDER HEARTED THAT OWNED OUR TRUTH AND CREATED A UNITY AMONGST EACHOTHER?
Let’s not forget that the only indigenous people to ZA are the Khoisan. Let’s not forget that ALL other migrants had to dig for water wells, cook on fire, hunt for food, build cities, and fight wars. In the context of history, whether seeking greener pastures from the deserts up North Africa, to seeking refuge from the ‘war mongering’ histories of our particular tribal ancestory, we each find our present day lives intertwined and connected through a bond of seeking better.
Sadly, things have gone wrong!
The historical glimpse of a family in , ‘To the Bone’ shows us how we, easily, can inflict self-abuse onto another. Ultimately, like myself, all addicts have to own their own lives, to heal or destroy it, and live in its consequences.
SO TOO, OUR FAMILIES, COMMUNITIES, PROVINCES, COUNTRIES AND GLOBE.
Are we a generation of ‘brave grace-given champion’s’ or another ‘brushed-under the carpet, better forgotten fleck of repeated history’?
Translated that would be:
ABUTO SUHO AAIDA/ REPETERE PRAVAT.
I have come a considerable distance from the ‘washout’ that was taking 15 grams of Khat, 5 days a week in the early 2000’s. Altough I still am, ‘To the Bone’ , in terms of knowing my authentic self, being a productive citizen, kind to myself, trusting others and practicing faith, I am glad that I am heading in the right directions.
And like my favorite beauty brands are those that are ethical, animal cruelty free, sustainable and kind to our planet, like Kevin Murphy, Lulafox, Biosense, and Bodyography to name a few; I too am striving to be the best version of my beautiful self.
Others may judge you, but how you judge yourself will hurt the most…. I know!
STAY YOUR AMAZING SELF!