I was about three or four years old when we moved there. I still remember traveling there by boat for the first time. It was storming with massive waves coming over the front of the boat. All our furniture was lashed below decks with ropes to the central pillars to keep it from sliding around. My mother was up top busy getting seasick.
My dad worked as a lawyer in the office. He was required to also do warden rounds as part of his duty in his uniform of long socks, shorts and a shirt.
The government was very good at looking after their own. Inexpensive housing and labour were provided. Each compound was like a little border town with its own unique feel, and I started my school career as a five-year-old on Robben Island.
I’ve seen in my own life that fear leads to control. What we do not understand, we have to control.
The tendency to blame others can be traced to my early childhood. No matter how much people love us, our parents, family, friends and spouses, we are all broken. We hurt each other unintentionally. Even a well-meaning joke can hurt others.
We do need to look at situations and recognized that others might have had an impact. It is not wrong to be realistic about personal relationships. But we cannot live full lives and develop into adult and content humans playing the blame game.
I can choose to play the blame game, or I can take responsibility for managing my behavior. If I had continued to blame others, I would not now be able to paint what I do. My art used to be full of anger and screams, shouting out at the world: ‘I hate you all! I do not trust any of you.’
All that happened is that I ended up isolating myself behind a wall of control and efficiency.
The wrong choices I made are MY choices. I no longer blame others for my wrong choices.
I cannot control how others treat me. But I can choose how to respond to others.
If my art spoke to you and helped you please share it.