Am I Ready to leave? South Africa or Bust.
Hello everyone. We are sharing the journey of Ms. Bianca Mońa in a three part series, as she prepares to leave for South Africa. Please feel free to share comments and let us know when you might have felt this way, before your trip.
Highs and lows. My highs are having people that remind me of all of things I need to do.
They give suggestions and ignite ideas and generally focus me. These people make sure I
have complete to-do lists and remind me, sometimes gentle and sometimes forcefully, to
complete the tasks. These friends offer to help me pack and purge. These friends offer
space in their storage units and rent zipcar to make sure we can safely travel there in the
snow storm. And most importantly these friends send affirmations through a myriad of
tactics including prayers and pep-talks. For all of this I am grateful and humbled.
Last week, I had my greatest high. No, not a job offer. No envelopes of cash. But a good
hardy cry. It was in a public space in front of plenty of people, but there before I knew
it I was crying. Gushing, really. And it felt soooo good. It was the release I needed to
relax, to find calmness, and find honesty. The tears were a release to admit that I am
scared and elated. Nervous and fearless. Worried and careful. Sometimes experiencing
all of these emotions at the same time. But tears are healing and I have been on a high
knowing that everything is perfect and complete and will unfold magically as needed.
The Lows. The same ole, same ole. Money and doubt. But this is the fullness of life.
One can not completely appreciate the good if not for the bad. And how does one grow
if not faced with barriers or hurdles? These lows aid in building character. Right? Well
that’s what they tell me.
Bianca Mońa is an arts administrator, curator, educator, advocate, and artist. She was a consultant for the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute (Manhattan), the Sauti Yetu Center for African Women (Bronx), and gallery manager for City Without Walls (Newark, New Jersey). Most recently, she served in the education department at the Studio Museum in Harlem while founding the Newark Black Artists Oral History Project. Her artwork has been featured in the Gallery Aferro and Bushwick Open Studios. She holds a bachelor’s degree in arts administration from Dillard University (New Orleans), and two master’s degrees (art education and interdisciplinary studies) from San Jose State University and Teachers College, Columbia University. Ms. Mońa is currently embarking on her next adventure, relocating to South Africa.