It seems unreal that 16 years ago I left the country of my birth, the thought only dawned on me the other day that I have been out of Zimbabwe for over half my life. It is also insane to think that I have spent about 14 years avoiding the country as a topic of conversation for the simple reason that the discussion always ends with the same question. "How much suffering do people need to go through before change happens?"
Each person that has fled the country will have endured what they could for as long as they could. Those that stayed have endured more… One word springs to mind when I think about the nature of Zimbabweans, the word is resilient.
There is a saying that I grew up with, it is one that I think is sums up the Zimbabwean nature and attitude towards life.
The saying is ‘make a plan.’ It is used for a lot of situations…
George, “lets meet up next week.”
Fred, “yah, lets make a plan.”
George, “ah man, there is no petrol at any of the fuel stations in Harare.”
Fred, “we’ll make a plan.”
George, “I need to go overseas but can’t buy and foreign currency in Zimbabwe.”
Fred, “no stress man, I know someone who can make a plan.”
With social media and online media companies erupting in celebrations over the last 12 hours it is safe to say that the people of Zimbabwe ‘made a great plan’ for what seems to be a peaceful transition of power.
I wanted to write about this on Monday as the blog post for the day, however I wasn’t sure that things would turn out the way that they have. Is Zimbabwe safe? In my view, not yet, but there is certainly hope, there is a way forward for the country. The people of Zimbabwe should remain resilient.
Is there something to learn from the last 37 years of Mugabe’s reign? Of course, there is tonnes to learn, the most important of which is no matter how dark times get stay resilient, make a plan that gets you the life you want and remain as stoic as possible in the process.
I wish the people in Zimbabwe a peaceful transition into new leadership, one that sees them prosper as a very deserving nation. I wish everyone else who reads this the ability to see past any cynicism over power and politics, (I am guilty of that in a big way), and see the positive - there is always a peaceful way to achieve what you want.
Have a great end to the week!
Stay Strong and Keep Moving!
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Brendan is the owner and head trainer at Raw Motion Fitness.