In the light of memory and remembering. Through the streams of our senses. Reconnecting. Recollecting. We find our way home. -from Slave Dream, by Malika Ndlovu-from , by Malika Ndlovulovu
My mother and grand father always encouraged me to read about my history as an African American. As a child I read books like the slave narratives and poetry by W.E.B Dubois. I was raised to have pride in my African roots and embrace my African American life experience and traditions. I always have and always will study where my heritage comes from and continue to discover the contributions that Africans and African Americans have made to this world.
Little did I consider the impact this social justice course would have on my soul. There were moments in South Africa where I would cry tears of joy from the feelings of comfort and familiarity I experienced. The feeling of community, the ideology that we will make it against all odds and thrive, the melodious singing, the rhythmic dances all filled my heart and soul with the feeling of home and comfort. I no longer have to search within the pages of books to obtain my my ancestral roots and foundation. I found them in South Africa, in the community of Langa, and my encounters with amazing South African people.
There were times during the trip that I would cry to mourn the loss of pride and dignity African people faced during times of slavery, apartheid and oppression. I value the opportunity of grieving the oppression of my people in the place where many of them were stolen from.
Much like the words of Malika Ndlovu, In the light of memory and remembering. Through the streams of our senses. Reconnecting. Recollecting. I FOUND MY WAY HOME.
I wish I could bottle the joy I have from this experience and hand it out to people just like the women who work in department stores and hand out perfume samples.