Category Archives: Neshni Naidoo

I Fall but Will Rise

Poem by Neshni Naidoo

Uncertain of what pushed me
Into a downward spiral I fall
No way of stopping
No way out
I bury my head under the blanket
Warm dark cozy
A cocoon of safety
Searching for a handhold
I grab onto a thought
A positive affirmation
And pull myself up
I am beautiful
I am intelligent
I am courageous
I am brave
I am amazing
I am incredible
Each thought lifts me higher
Until I can lift my head
And get out of bed
Self-doubt still lingers
Emptiness loneliness
Here in my heart
Tomorrow I will descend
Into the well I escaped
Face the demons that pulled me down
Slay them so that they trouble me no more
And pull myself as I did before
Reminding myself to fill my cup
With positive thoughts
So that the demons can’t survive

We are Divinity

Poem by Neshni Naidoo

Tall and proud we stand
On the shoulders of our motherland
We remember those who have passed
And the legacy that they left us
They taught us to be strong
To stand up when there’s wrong
That when it’s dark outside
God will be our Guide

I will strive to love
And always serve
In my heart I will see
All as a part of me
Peace it’s clear to see
Is within you and me
If we fill our thoughts with love
And speak and act with love

Love like the brilliant sun
Residing in the heart of everyone
For we are Divinity
This truth sets us free
We are Divinity
This truth will set us free

See Me

Poem by Neshni Naidoo

meek
weak
too afraid to speak
emotional
irrational
too impractical
that is what you see
when you look at me

but when I look in the mirror
what do I see

I see
a creator
a nurturer
a source of wisdom
a fountain of love

I see a Mother
who has sacrificed
her body
her time
her energy
her dreams
her life
for you to survive
for you to thrive

I see an Amazon
who has scaled mountains
slain demons
and walked through fire
while carrying you

I see a cheerleader
who has stood beside you
championed you
celebrated your victories
and comforted you in defeat

Confident Intelligent Resilient
Passionate Compassionate Perceptive
Capable Resourceful Powerful
that is what you should see
when you look at me

Warrior Woman

Poem by Neshni Naidoo

A celebration of Women, who have demonstrated their strength, their courage and resilience through the ages

We salute you.
We honour you.
We celebrate you during Women’s Month.

WARRIOR WOMAN

Wind whistles through the air
Whispering wise words in my ear
Wake up and wipe away
the web of lies you’ve spun
That you are not worthy
you are weak
your words don’t matter
you don’t need to speak

The blows, the wounds, the falls
They could not stop you
You have emerged triumphant
Stronger, wiser and powerful

Walk tall Warrior Woman
Wear your scars with pride
Your future beckons
And it is beautiful and bright

How Writing Has Helped Me

Written by Neshni Naidoo

Writing has always been a part of my life, from as early as 9 or 10 writing creative stories for school. As a child, I listened fascinated, as my grandmother – a gifted storyteller – narrated stories of her life. I believe that this, together with a voracious appetite for reading, was my inspiration for writing.

In my teens, creative writing shifted to journaling and my diary became my best friend. I poured out tales of my first crush, the mean girls at school, the loss of my dad, and my dreams and hopes for the future. At the time, I didn’t realise how important this was for my mental wellbeing. Journaling that helped me process my emotions in a positive way. There was no-one to judge me. I was able to ‘talk’ about issues that I didn’t feel comfortable sharing with anyone else.

After graduating from university and getting married, I didn’t feel the need to journal as much. My focus was outward driven – material pursuits and career development.

1999, was however, a turning point in my life. I had been a member of a Spiritual Organisation for a few years, but that year felt the call for transformation – from outward to inner focused. I started a journey of reflection, healing and growth. Immediately there was an exponential shift in my creativity. I felt as if I was tuned into a Divine Radio Station, receiving words of wisdom and ideas for value-based rhymes and songs. All of this I recorded in my little notebook but was afraid to share – afraid that it was not good enough.

This creative streak continued even after my children were born. I made up stories and songs with a moral or educational value that I would act out and sing to them.

However, I felt adrift and unsure of my place. Motherhood was beautiful but tough. In my research, I came across non-dominant writing therapy. I would write out my question with my right hand (dominant hand), switch over to my left hand (non-dominant hand) and write my response. I was blown away by the insight that I gained during these writing sessions. I understood myself, my motivation and my behaviour much better.

Non-dominant writing therapy is said to help alleviate stress, anxiety, access the voice of your inner child, gain insight into relationships and alleviate pain. (https://www.psychologies.co.uk/non-dominant-hand-writing-therapy/)

A close friend recommended writing letters about my challenges and burning them. This was another powerful tool that helped release stuck emotions and create space for healing.
(https://www.spiritualityhealth.com/articles/2021/04/19/letter-writing-burn-ritual).

I was called to write and share my experiences but still allowed ego to get in the way. All of that changed in 2011. I gave birth to my 3rd child via C-section. The night before being discharged my gynaecologist realised that something was not right. When I had a scan done the next morning, it revealed that my colon had ruptured. I had surgery and spent three and a half weeks in hospital, hovering in an out of consciousness.

The months that followed were one of the lowest points in my life. I was not able to do much which left time for reflection. Writing once again came to my rescue. I wrote poetry to express that which I could not verbalise. It has been a process, overcoming the fear and feelings of not being ‘good enough’. It took me another 10 years before I felt ready to publish my poetry in book form. As my confidence grows, I share more. The more I share, the more inspiration I receive. I know now that I am living my purpose, which was revealed to me during a meditation,

“Write, write, write
Speak also the world needs to hear your voice
Heal the world
That is your purpose
This is why I saved you”

Love Letters

Written by Neshni Naidoo

We traditionally think of a love letter in romantic terms. But did you know that you receive love letters from God every day?

It comes in the form of an answer to a prayer or a question that you voiced. This love letter appears in the most unexpected places – a song, a line in a movie, a photo, something in nature, a phone call from a friend or even a random page in a random book.

How do I know this? Well, I have received many love letters, but only when my heart was open and my mind as clear as the summer sky.

On days when I need a reminder of His Love, I find hearts. A heart-shaped leaf in my garden. A guinea fowl feather with a heart pattern on my dad’s passing anniversary. Heart-shaped cherries on a family outing to the cherry farm. A heart shape in a tree on Mother’s Day. Finding these hearts lightens and brightens my day and makes my heart expand with love.

My other love letters come in the form of signs – on cars, billboards, or buildings. Each of these is a special message that I needed to reflect on and help me on my journey. I love to sing, especially when I am driving. I was singing one of my favourite hymns, “How Great Thou Art” and when I looked across, the taxi next to me had the words, “Jesus Loves You,” on the rear windscreen. It was confirmation as if God were saying, “I hear you.”

On another day, the car in front of me had a sticker on the rear window – it was a cross with the text 29:11. This verse from the bible states:

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

– Jeremiah 29:11

This came on a day when I was paralysed by self-doubt.

There are days when I don’t see or hear anything. It is usually when I am functioning on autopilot or have filled my day with busy-ness.

This article is not a brag post but a reminder that we are blessed – we are loved. Pause, breathe and be aware – be awake. If we are sleepwalking through life – putting our attention only on the material, we will miss the miracles that surround us – we will miss the love letters that God is sending us to guide us and light up our way through the darkness.

Are you aware of the love letters you have received?

Wishing you love and light.

Every Day is a Miracle

Written by Neshni Naidoo

The last few years have been traumatic for everyone. However, even before the pandemic struck, we lost many loved ones in our family, both young and old. How do you continue with your life, knowing that a part of you is missing?

My answer came in the strangest of places. One day, I found a handwritten note in the pages of a second-hand book I had bought. It read:
“There is only one world, the world pressing against you at this minute. There is only one minute in which you are alive, this minute – here and now. The only way to live is by accepting each minute as an unrepeatable miracle, which is exactly what it is – a miracle and unrepeatable.”

How do we put that into practice?

By giving thanks for every moment we have.

By appreciating everything we have, especially this beautiful bountiful Earth we call home.

By appreciating and showing appreciation to the people in our lives.

By using our time, spending time with those we love and making good memories

Through sharing our love and serving.

By thinking before we speak or act so that we don’t have regrets.

The events of the past few years have reminded us that we are not in control. We had to adapt and learn to live with uncertainty. “How?”, I asked. The answer was revealed to me when I was out on the road.

What do we do when we are driving in mist so dense that we can only see as far as the car in front of us? We slow down, switch on the headlights and stay alert and focused. Perhaps we recite a prayer or chant, trusting that God will make sure we arrive at our destination safely.

Over the past few years, we have been forced to slow down, to take a step back from the distractions and busyness in our lives. We were given more time to reflect and re-evaluate our lives – time to understand our purpose and to focus on what is important. The headlights that light our way is the love that we have shared with our brothers and sisters. We stay calm through prayer and meditation. And it is our faith and trust in God that will carry us through these tests.

Sometimes it is hard to trust especially when we are grieving or when it seems like there is no end and no hope.

But when we falter or lose faith, it is the support from family, friends and our community, even strangers that will lift us. If we put aside our pride and reach out for help, we will find so many willing to serve – with love, without judgment and selflessly.

As time passes, let us not forget the lessons we have learned – to treasure and be grateful for every minute – to live each minute with purpose, love and joy. To live with equanimity understanding that God is the Director and trusting in His Divine Plan.

Broken

Written by Neshni Naidoo

I dove into the sea fully clothed, hoping the icy saltwater would strip the pain from my soul.
Tears streamed down my face and merged with the ocean.

I wanted to be swept away – far away from the toxic environment that was my home.

Nothing I did was right – nothing I did was good. Sometimes it felt as if I did not exist and at other times like I was a punching bag on which THEY could take out their frustration.

I didn’t ask to be born but I could choose to leave – leave this life, leave this pain.

Their words were etched in my mind.

“You are useless. You’ve been a problem child since the day you were born. You sit around doing nothing yet you want everything from me.

I’m tired of giving and giving. I’m tired of you and your stubbornness. When are you going to change?

Explain to me why are you like this? Do you want to be a failure? That is what will happen if you continue to behave in this way.”

But I can’t leave. So I absorb the insults and numb myself until I CAN leave.

Love and light
Neshni

A Message for Me

Written by Neshni Naidoo

The perfect wife, doting mother, supportive friend, gracious hostess, always smiling – that is how most people described Jodie. Very few knew that her beautiful smile hid a painful secret. She was dying. Not of a physical illness, but a dis-ease of the mind that was slowly robbing her of joy and purpose.

The shrill tone of the alarm pierced through her dream. Jodie reached over and hit ‘Snooze’. “Five more minutes,” she thought to herself. The alarm jarred her sleep again. “Why don’t you turn that damn thing off if you are not going to wake up when it rings!!” barked her husband, Reese. Cursing silently, she rolled out of bed and into the bathroom. Looking into the mirror, she wondered, “Where have the last 20 years gone? Where was the zeal, energy and passion I had at university?” She splashed cold water onto her face as if to wash away the unwelcome thoughts. As she dressed, each piece of clothing, each layer of make-up served as her armour, preparing her for the day’s battles. The finishing touch was the lipsticked smile. Jodie looked at her reflection, pleased by what she saw, and said to no-one in particular, “Let this be a good day.”

Her two children, 10-year old Sarah and 13-year old Joshua were extra slow that morning, having only got to bed at 10 after completing their schoolwork. It still added to her frustration though and she scolded, “If we don’t leave in the next five minutes, you are going to be late for school. Then you can explain to Mr Steyn why you are late!” They sped up whatever they were doing silently, knowing that it was best not to argue with mom when she was in “one of her moods.” By the time, they arrived at school, Jodie had calmed down a little and feeling guilty, she gave them each a quick hug, saying, “I’m sorry. You know I love you, right?”

The conversation at the school gate revolved around the same issues – too much homework, lack of motivation, too much screen time, and their hectic lives and what to cook for supper. Even though it was reassuring to know that other moms shared the same problems, Jodie’s insecurity still raised its ugly head. “What am I doing wrong? Why are my kids just average and not excelling at anything? Have I done enough to encourage their talents or is it too little? Leaving work to be at home with them hasn’t seemed to make any difference.” Once again, there was no stopping that nagging voice once it started.

En-route to her car, Jodie suddenly stumbled, feeling faint, then felt herself falling as everything went black. When she came to, her friend Laura was at her side, a concerned expression on her face. “Hey, you scared us when you toppled over like that. How are you feeling?”

“Weak…… a little confused…….. Don’t know what happened, “she said, the metallic taste of blood on her tongue.“

“Don’t try and get up, “said Laura, “We’ve called for an ambulance and Reese is on his way.”

The paramedics checked her vitals when they arrived. Her blood pressure was 80/60 which is why she had fainted. She had a split lip from knocking it against the gate as she fell. However, she would have to be taken to the hospital for observation and x-rays to determine if there were any other injuries. Reese arrived just as they were placing her in the ambulance.

“The kids……” she muttered.

“Don’t worry, I’ll take care of everything,” Reese assured her.

Thankfully, there were no other injuries but Jodie would have to remain in the hospital for a few days for an MRI and other tests. Initially, she was concerned about the children and how they were coping without her, but relaxed when she saw that her mum and Reese had everything under control. Not used to doing nothing, she used the time between tests, the prodding and pricking, to catch up on her reading, complete a knitting project and plan for the following week.

One morning, she picked up her diary and pen with the intention of compiling her “To-Do” list. She went no further than the date. Her hand began moving across the page as if it was being controlled by another force. A picture began to take shape. Minutes passed, as she drew, unaware of her surroundings. When she finally put down her pen, she felt spent, as if she had finished an intense workout.

Putting her pen aside, she focussed on the drawing. It was a little girl, curled up on the floor, crying. She was alone, surrounded by a protective shield. Around the shield were arrows being hurled at her and bouncing off the shield.

“THIS IS ME,” she thought. As the tears welled up, Jodie went to hide in the bathroom, trying to stifle and mute the sobs that racked through her body. Returning to her bed, she began to write. Every sentence helped her understand. With each sentence, she could feel a part of her protective shield breaking away.

After all the tests, the diagnosis was that she was stressed. The doctor gave her recommendations and suggested a psychologist help her manage her stress levels. Jodie smiled inwardly because she’d understood the message delivered with this incident and received the guidance she needed to start the healing process.

God Resides in Everyone

Poem by Neshni Naidoo

Where are the days of brotherhood
In God above the fatherhood
When we look around, we can see
War and disunity

The solution it is clear to see
Lies within you and me
If we open our hearts and free our minds
Of impurities that make us blind

Blind to the truth that we are one
That God resides in everyone
Now is the time to raise our hands
Reach out for the Promised Land

A land of peace and harmony
Of hope and tranquillity
With love in our heart and peace in our mind
Goodness all around we will find

And soon we will see a new age dawn
With God’s name on every tongue
Spreading the truth that we are one
That God resides in everyone