When I met my Boaz, I used to live in a prison. I was a prisoner of Zimbabwean Culture. I was a prisoner of Zimbabwean superstitious beliefs. I was ever so afraid, I had spent my whole sad childhood being told that a mother holds so much power, that if a child speaks back to a mother, she will go mad and live in the streets and be cursed for life. In Zimbabwe they call it Kutanda Botso. I was taught that if a child ever says anything negative about their mother, the ancestral spirits will be angered and they will rise, and curse that child. I grew up in a country were every single person believes that. So I was so afraid of that curse, I was terrified of Kutanda Botso, because I had a mother who struggled to love me unconditionally.
So I loved her more, like Rapanzel. The more I loved her, the more she hated me. So I would say I am sorry Mother. I bowed before her once, and asked her to forgive me, for being such a pathetic daughter, impossible to love. I told her I was sorry, and I blamed myself for being so unlovable. So I tried hard to be nice, to go the distance to make her love me, but I always ended up weeping, on the floor literally, and asking God why I was not worthy of a mother’s love. No one ever gave me the answer. Friends told me to keep on praying, and keep on loving her. But the more I was nice, the more I suffered. My already abusive marriage broke down, I lost my house, I almost lost my children. All these things she would prophecy on my life before hand, then they would come to pass.
“Please undo the curses you put on me. What do you do to me? Whatever it is, undo it” I begged her once, when I was at my darkest hour, afraid that more horror would befall me.
She would refuse to talk to me, or answer any of my questions.
So I cried out to God, and he gave me a husband. My Boaz. My King. My Redeemer.
When my Boaz met me, I was so scared. I could never sleep alone at night without having a nightmare. There was always a witch in my dreams. Each time I closed my eyes, my mother haunted me. I would wake up screaming, calling out for my mother. The one who was meant to love me. So Boaz promised me that he would never leave me at night, unless he had to.
He played me music, he nursed my broken heart, he sang for me, until I was not so afraid anymore. He treated me like a little girl, and would sing me to sleep. And I could lie down and my sleep would be sweet.
He looked me in the eye, and asked me why I was so afraid. And I told him, that I am afraid of the curses. If I say anything bad about my mother, the ancestral spirits will curse me. And I will start Kutanda Botso. That is the culture of Zimbabwe, the mother will forever be sacred, because it is her spirit which protects me. “Mudzimu wa amai ndiwo unokuchengeta,” to quote my own mother’s words.
So Boaz became so angry. And he told me that the day I would be free is the day I will boldly call out my mother for who she was. He told me that if there is any kutanda botso which is supposed to happen, or any curses which are meant to befall a person, it is my own mother who is supposed to be cursed. She is the one who will tanda botso! My Boaz would tell me.
“Whoever came up with the stupid Zimbabwean Kutanda Botso belief was a child abuser. It baffles my mind that a whole country will believe in something so stupid and evil at the same time. A superstition which protects abusers.”
Slowly the fear of Kutanda Botso started to leave me, and I became bold. In my dreams, I saw her for who she was, she was never my mother.
So I told her, and I called her by her name, and I told her to leave me alone, and never come near me, or my children, because she has never been my mother in the first place.
My Boaz taught me that a mother is a woman who cares and nurses a child, whether she birthed the child or not. A mother is a woman who gives a child unconditional love, whether the child deserves it or not. He said my “mother” has never been any of the two.
“That woman is not your mother. She prays that you become homeless. She prays that your children are taken into care. She prays that our son becomes disabled. She is not your mother.” He told me.
My King was ever so right, the moment I told her who she was, I started my journey of freedom. My Boaz made a prayer, and he said, ” God please bless me with money, so I can serve my Queen, and prepare a table for her in the presence of her “mother.”
And I made a prayer, ” Please let her live long, so she can see all her curses turn into my blessings.”
She always wished me ill, and told me that I was lazy, and I pretend to be rich when I am poor. She celebrated when I faced homelessness.
My King was so right, what a man of wisdom he is, if there was is such a thing in Zimbabwe called Kutanda Botso, then I love it! Ever since I rebuked my mother, blessings have followed me. Today my husband owns five properties in the UK. All the things she said I could never have, I have in abundance. She said a divorcee like me can never get married to a young man, my husband is a young man, younger than me. She said I will be homeless and can not even have a council house, today I own 5 properties, and I do not pay a mortgage. And that is just the beginning. She said my children would grow up to hate me, my 6 children all adore me, I am their world. She said I am lazy, but my husband says I am his most hardworking wife, I write my way into my destiny.
So if this is Kutanda Botso, then my Lord, Kutanda Botso for me means being blessed.
I am ever so grateful to my husband, who showed me how foolish and evil the Zimbabwean culture is, and that there is no such thing as Kutanda Botso, it is a belief system which was created to install fear in child abuse victims so that they can never call out mothers for abuse. No ancestral spirits will raise against anyone, I am a living proof of that.
The Genesis Of The Revelation by
Mary-Tamar was Jean