Friday April 5th -Sunday April 14th is time to celebrate Victorian Youth Week this year. I will be participating in one of the many Africa Day Australia activities that will be going on as we celebrate the young people around us. I cant wait to meet with everyone and be among the young minds of Victoria. Hope to see you there.
When: Saturday 13th April 12:30- 1630
Where: Library at the Dock , 107 Victoria Harbour Promenade, Docklands Vic 3008
It was a great honor to present to the beautiful women of Africa Day Australia as a guest speaker on this momentous occasion. I thought I would share my speech below for those who couldn’t make it to share as we celebrate women and the men who allow us to stand tall. Hope you enjoy it. Let me know on the comments please.
My name is Dr Tshegofatso (Teah) Mogae. I am a bit nervous so I hope I will not have verbal diarrhoea and divulge all my secrets. I am a mum, wife, medical practitioner and I own a small business called Losika Writes. I was kindly asked to provide a speech to an awesome bunch of women to celebrate international women’s day and I thought, sure why not. I am a woman, tick so I already tick that box at least. But then I had to decide what to talk about and that was the tricky bit.
Do I talk how being born a female in 2019 still sucks compared to being born a male anywhere in the world? Or about how 1 in 2 women in Australia will experience sexual harassment in their lifetime? Or how despite working hard women earn 85c compared to $1 earnt by men doing the same jobs yet then still do the bulk of unpaid care work at home.
So you can understand how if I was to talk about the #metoo movement or how 10 women and 1 child have died since the beginning of 2019 in Australia alone or how women such as Ms Rahaf Alqanun have to literally run away from their homes and lock themselves in hotel rooms to get tell the world of the plight of women in different parts of the world how sad my talk would be. I think these issues are important discussions to be had and I am sure we can make time for each of them, but I thought I would be uplifting on this special day.
So for that I turned towards the theme for this year which is balance for better. First thing I thought was oh no, they want me to talk about how work life balance and how I am amazing at that. Well, I did say I was juggling motherhood, being a doctor, lecturer, business owner etc so I must admit that work life balance is a mythical creature in my life. On further review though, the theme is about creating a gender balanced world which I think is a great challenge we as women face.
On this, the 108th celebration of international women’s day can we try to spice things up a bit and hopefully try and get equality quicker than the 202 years projected for equality at the current rate. That means, with everything remaining the same, it will only be my great, great, great, great, great, grand daughters who would get to enjoy the fruits of our labour so I thought we could get things rolling a lot sooner. I understand that we have already made great strides as women in the recent centuries, but I am challenging us to try and pick up the pace. It was almost a hundred years ago that women discussed with the men in their lives the importance of equality in terms of casting a vote in the USA. Following that, MEN then voted to allow women to cast their own votes.
So why don’t we follow in their lead to make men be the ones working harder for our equality?
So why don’t we get the men in our lives to recognise when women are not being treated equally and to do something about it?
Why don’t we get the men in our lives to question when they are invited to board meetings or panels that don’t involve any women?
Why don’t we get the men in our lives to call out and have a zero tolerance to sexual harassment of women?
Why don’t we teach our sons that being a man doesn’t involve showing strength by beating up women but rather by building them up?
Why don’t we get the investor men in our lives to question why board members of the companies they invest in don’t have women on board?
Why don’t we get the leading mean in our lives to know that trying to rule a country with political parties, or institutions with only males at the helm is like trying to fly a 747 aeroplane with only 50% engine capacity, a recipe for disaster.
Women account for 50% of the worlds population so I think it is about time some of those men stood up and made room for our fabulousness at the table. All men come from a woman, were cared for by a woman, were nursed and probably taught by a woman to become who they are. So surely, we should ensure they know how fabulous we are.
They shouldn’t just stand up to pull our chairs or to open doors for us, they should question why we are not shoulder to shoulder with them and make room for us at the table.
It all starts with us owning our power and educating the men we birth and raise, the men we grow up with, the men we love and interact with and all men in general to stand up for our equality. So let us get to it ladies, this job needs all of us.
I was watching Jada Pinkett- Smith’s show – Red Table Talk recently about forgiveness. It was a chat with her step brother about their father and how they both coped with his addiction and the fact that he wasn’t present for most of their growing up. They both discussed how they had learned to forgive him/his actions and how he ended up dying without much resolution of his “demons”.
What resonated mostly with me was when she said “my father’s main purpose in life was not to be my father, but to have a journey of his own and I just happened to be born during his journey so I couldn’t expect him to stop everything to be my father.”
My parents separated when I was in high school and it was an acrimonious split. I have lived more than half my life without talking to my father who probably lives in the same city I grew up in which is actually a VERY small place. Sometimes I question my emotions about the whole situation whether I am angry/upset/disappointed. Despite the decades, I am still unsure how I feel and what I would like to occur to resolve my indecisiveness. At some point you start dating, get married and walk yourself down the isle Meghan Markle style, have a child and work a career that you love but still not resolve that relationship and where it stands.
My father was not really into drugs or alcohol or anything that would make me think he was a bad father. It’s like my parents got separated and his parenthood also stopped. Obviously there is bias from my point of view given this transpired whilst I was technically still a child but that is what I experienced.
Hearing Jada and her brother say those words about their father gave me peace about my father and our situation. I hope one day, before it’s too late, we can both be adults about the situation but I have peace should that not eventuate too.
I would have never believed you if you said you could make an exact duplicate of yourself but with Losika I think I may have done exactly that.
Now most people are quick to talk about our looks and how we look very similar which I suppose is common. There are however, things that he has done that have shocked me as I identify myself in them from being about his age to now. Below I have listed those that are still fresh of mind
Nail biting – now I must admit I still do this even now but I am always conscious of not doing that when he is around. But he not only bites his finger nails, he bites his toenails too which I also disgustingly did until my late teens so its not like I have shown him how to do it.
Internalising emotions- he is only four but I see so much of myself in how he handles situations and emotions. I must admit, I am still learning how to tame the tiger but I remember many a time that I promised myself I would pack my bags in the morning and run away or went to bed without eating my dinner all because mum had been upset at me. I see how he responds sometimes when he is angry at me for disturbing his play and a part of me can see the cogwheels turning in his brain and wondering if he ever thinks like I used to. I hope that as he grows, I can teach him what I have learnt so far in managing emotions and not internalising them.
Watching TV whilst lying on his back- this used to be my favourite TV watching position and I can fondly remember watching SABC 3 back in the days and trying to learn tennis and cricket because those were the only things that were entertaining after school in our limited channel TV set back then.
Spending forever chewing one mouthful- I fondly remember my mum telling me that you didn’t need to chew porridge or yogurt. Mum would say I was possible the only person who would chew WATER!!! Sadly Losika has developed the same trait of keeping each mouthful a lot longer in the mouth which can be frustrating as I try and ensure he completes his breakfast in the morning hustle and bustle.
Surely I am not the only parent who sees themselves in their child. Comment below and let me know that I am not crazy… I know I may be but hoping I am now hehe
We celebrate all milestones and this one is no exception.
We have been featured on MamaMag Eastside issue for April/May 2018 discussing the importance of “Keeping Language alive.” Grab your copy/read our article online and please support Losika Writes as we strive to celebrate our language diversity.
Our books are available as English only text or bilingual (Tswana/English and Ndebele/English books)
As a mum to an active hyperactive toddler, play is always part of our day somehow. But with working full time, having 2 side hustles- Losika Writes and home, running a household etc, sometimes one wishes that there were more hours to the day let alone dedicate some play time. So I am proud to say, I recently made time to play with my boys and we sure had a great time. I have promised myself to try and do this weekly at the minimum and so far have been going well. I thought I would share some crazy pictures we took on our escapade.
Losika Writes (www.losikawrites.com) – Bilingual children’s picture books- get your own copy and support small business
A while ago, I wrote a blog entry about ” Write it down and make it happen “ This was about how important it is to make your intentions known to the universe and working hard to make those intentions a reality.
Well, we have been working hard on one of those many “intentions”, hence the sporadic blog writing, and it is with great pleasure that I now let you in on a little secret…
Inspired by our son Losika, we have developed a collection of children’s picture books, some of which are bilingual (Tswana/English, Ndebele/English) to help in passing down our beautiful language to the next generation.
We are proud of the quality product and hope that you enjoy reading the books, as much as we have enjoyed creating the collection. We are continuously working to add to the collection and look forward to your support…
Head to Losika Writes and use discount code #LAUNCH to get a 20% discount on all the books…
I know they say that you go through the terrible twos and then after that, you apparently learn to regulate your emotions. Well, I currently have a 3-year-old and I can attest that although the tantrums have eased somewhat to what they were from about 18 months of age, we still have periods where someone is clearly losing the plot. How I cope with it is to think that he is briefly possessed by an energy he cannot control and as a way of asking for help, he has to cry and throw himself on the floor. Usually, this is not anything a cuddle won’t fix. I guess it is still somewhat expected at his age though so it’s all good in a way.
Have you ever, as an adult, had a moment where you feel like you were having a tantrum? For example,
You enter into a store to browse and potentially buy something only to have the store attendant follow you suspiciously around the store as you might not look like the “type” of customer who would buy anything, or they do the exact opposite and don’t even acknowledge your presence. You figure its best to leave the store without buying anything although there might be something you would have bought had they been more welcoming.
You go for dinner and have to ask for every minuscule thing for your table despite everyone else having the menu/water for the table/glasses/cutlery being brought to their table without having to ask. You then leave the restaurant occasionally before the food arrives and often without leaving a service tip.
You are a patient and present to the doctor reporting that “I need antibiotics for my sore throat” as a presenting complaint only to storm off yelling profanities when the doctor makes a clinical decision that your ailment is likely viral and they will not be prescribing any antibiotics “in case the infection goes to your chest next week” illustrated in my previous blog Things I wish patients knew…
You are driving when another driver cuts you off and suddenly you have to make them pay for what they did by honking the horn, flipping the bird, driving erratically and yelling profanities at them.
You are invited to a party at a certain time only to get there at the time stipulated or a few minutes later and people are still in the early stages of meal prep and the party is at least a few hours from being ready and you think it might be better just to leave. You are thus unable to enjoy any of the party as a result and spend the day on your phone or sulking.
You come home and despite your partner being home all day and you at work the whole time, you found the house in the same state as you left it in the morning and the dreaded “what’s for dinner?” greeting you at the door. You have a shower and go straight to bed after making yourself a sandwich to see if your partner will sort something out for themselves.
You have been leaving hints everywhere about what you would love for your birthday/mother’s day/anniversary/Xmas only for someone not to heed your advice but instead get you something you feel you have no use/need for. You smile whilst slowly dying and trying to control the emotion inside.
You have been dating for a few years and have been talking about getting married but your partner is not proposing “at the perfect time”. You have been overseas together, spent times in secluded beaches/on top of the Eiffel tower/on the edge of the Grand Canyon or other “perfect proposal locations” where you were pretty sure he would pop the question only to leave empty-handed. You don’t want to ask him when he will propose but you sulk for a little while after every disappointment.
These are some examples that have happened to a few people around me and, I must admit, may have occurred to me at some point and make me realize that there are things called adult tantrums. It can be really hard to regulate your emotions when you are in certain situations and sometimes you end up crying/yelling/sulking in response. I have read an amazing book called Don’t sweat the small stuff, and it’s all small stuff by Richard Carlson, (reviewed on my blog entry titled Books I have fallen in love with… ) and sometimes I can’t help but be carried away by my emotions despite knowing that whatever it is will certainly not matter in a few months let alone in a few days. I, however, thought I would pen a little something to say, it’s okay, adult tantrums happen to the best of us. The key is to acknowledge them for what they are and learn not to dwell on the negative mood for too long. Hopefully, with time, you learn to identify it early and diffuse the inner tantrum before it becomes a full-blown meltdown.
So I can officially join the mothers club “we have potty trained toddlers”… wooohooooo! Mr L has made me a proud mommy as 3 weeks of training has resulted in a confident user of the potty for both number 1s and 2s. Although there were initial teething issues as childcare always seemed to undo all our hard work on the days he was there, we are now singing the same song.
Now the problem is that, although we are now great with the potty, we are unable to use an adult toilet without the potty seat. This makes negotiating the world difficult as I am still to find a portable potty seat I might be able to fit into a small bag for those times nature calls whilst out shopping for example. Also, how do people deal with toddlers who need to pee whilst in the middle of the freeway?
Regardless we celebrate each milestone and I am happy with the progress so far.
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