By MPHO MAGIDI
Being a girl child is one of the most difficult things you could possibly be in the South Africa we live in. Being a girl child in a small town filled with different faces every year is a different story. Today we take a look into the life of a Makhanda native, Zandile Jilana.
Growing up in a university town such as this means you meet a lot of people older than you who either guide you or lead you astray. On top of that, the people in your community and your family influence the type of person you become.
“The people I have met from Rhodes University have greatly influenced the person I am today,” says Zandile, who refers to “relationships I choose to maintain and the type of person I am attempting to grow into”.
She claims that the greatest thing she ever could have done for herself was to make friends with people from Rhodes from the time she was still in high school at Nombulelo Secondary. She says joining youth programmes that Rhodes provides for local residents was the best thing she could have done for her growth as a girl child and a young person in South Africa
“I have found that there is less confusion in me compared to the friends that I have here due to the fact that I have had great influence all my life,” she says. For instance, Zandile feels she has more direction in life than many of her friends.
We know that people in their 20s are prone to be confused about their life and where they are heading. I have interviewed people of all ages and from different walks of life for my blog and they agree on one thing: life is tough, chaotic, and confusing. This is why Zandile’s clarity of vision made an impression – she seems to have more direction than many people older than her.
Is the key to living a less chaotic, less confusing, less dramatic life to grow up in a small town? To grow up around people older than you? To be groomed by the older youth who come from different backgrounds?
Or is Zandile one of the lucky ones who found the right people to lead her in her journey to becoming the woman that she wants to become? She found people from Rhodes.
See also: https://peaceinbedlam.wordpress.com/