It’s time to fight!

“When I face the desolate impossibility of writing five hundred pages, a sick sense of failure falls on me, and I know I can never do it. Then gradually, I write one page and then another. One day’s work is all I can permit myself to contemplate.”  

Travels with Charley: In Search of America by John Steinbeck

Rocky and Adrian



Cue the Rocky music. Kit up. Punch the sky.

It’s time to fight!

On 11.12.13 my father gave me a wedding gift …

My Dad stood at the head table at our wedding. He held onto his speech notes, his hands trembling. He was already suffering from Alzheimer symptoms and had been nervous about speaking.

“My father’s workers on the farm,” my Dad began, “called him ‘Nyamazela’.”
“I called my boat ‘Nyamazela’ … It means ‘Never gives up‘.” “I believe my daughter is also ‘Nyamazela’.” he said, looking at me, “She’s got that ‘Never give up’ spirit like my father.”


What could to do with that? In that moment, my father gave me a ‘gift’ I could never give back. I wrestle with this every day.

Lessons I’ve learnt along the way?

    1. Being Nyamazela is not about having it all together.
      2. It’s not about being tough.
      3. It’s not about talent.
      4. It’s not about being terribly clever.
      5. It’s not about passion (though that helps).
      6. It’s not a stars-are-aligned kind of thing.
      7. It’s not for those blessed with amazing patience.
      8. It’s not about luck.
      9. It’s not even about never giving up.

Nyamazela-ness is about having NONE of these attributes, and still you get up, you take a step – maybe you don’t even know in which direction to step, and probably every fibre of your being is screaming “NOOOO!!!”. So you take that step. une étape à la fois.

So, having boldly stated that 2020 would be the year of plain sailing on the horizontal part of the step on the staircase of life, Hubby and I hit a low point after work last night. Some colourful language was used, which I won’t repeat, and I wallowed shamefully in self-pity for a good few minutes. Then we kissed and made up, licked our wounds and went to the gym in the dark and the cold. Straining our muscles seemed the most logical defence against dwelling on our other strains.

This morning I feel stronger, though my muscles are rather stiff. I hope Hubby does too. And not wanting to let my dear Dad down, I’m changing my tactics. I stand by my positive statements of 15th January 2020. This is the year of breakthrough! But it just might need a bit of a fight.  Fighting is not in my make-up. Thank God for my Hubby – ‘You, me and God‘ is our marriage motto. Thank God we have wonderful friends and family praying for and encouraging us, and I thank God for our super team at work.

Back to the gym tonight.

Cue the Rocky music. Kit up. Punch the sky.

Rocky punches the skySMALL PRINT:
P.s. There are a few times I’ve broken my rule that I only use book quotes from books I’ve actually read. Today is one of them. Travels with Charlie is one of the books my Dad recommended to everyone he met. Those who knew my Dad will not be surprised that it’s a story about a man and his dog. Dad was not a book-recommender by nature, but he loved this one and I’m ashamed to say that I’ve never read it. I will add it to the pile of books gathering on my bedside table and maybe it will give me some much-needed lessons in Nyamazela-ness!
P.p.s. For those of you who think your boss is terrible, or you could do a better job, if only you were in charge instead … running your own business is tough, my friends! Pray for your boss and managers instead. They are struggling with managing as much as you are struggling with being managed. On top of that, they have to pay you, pay business taxes, pay office rental, strategise and plan, pay commissions and provide a fulfilling, worthwhile livelihood for you and everyone else in the office. Go easy on them today.
P.p.p.s. My references to Rocky (1976) (I’m not normally a fan of the sports film genre), is from the training montage ( and the final scene (

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