This photo must to have been taken in approximately March 2009, not long after we returned from overseas. Mani was performing (which at this age involved laughing like a pro!) for Great Meema. It is a rare gift for a child to know his great grandmother, and to understand who they are and how they are connected to one another, I am pleased Mani had this opportunity.
Mandela’s young age means he is likely to forget the details about his time with his Great Meema, and the aspects of her life, and her accomplishments he has been told about her “Mama, did you know she was a horse rider nurse, who got married!” (I had to explain that she didn’t actually perform her mothercraft nursing from a horse back). Although these details may be forgotten, however, the gift of having known and loved her and being loved by her will remain. I hope that as a consequence of having made that connection with her means that as he grows older, and learns more if his history, Mandela will have the privilege and benefit if being able to place himself in his family history, along side the woman who for 90 years before he was born was setting the bench mark for how much a person really can care, love and live.