And So, She Decided to Start Living The Life She’d Imagined

There is something in all of us that strives for freedom. Everyone wants to be happy and they believe they need to be. Even I do, but what does freedom actually mean? The dictionary defines it as: “the state of not being imprisoned or enslaved”, which I believe refers to the physical or psychological. Back in the day, democracy was scarce in comparison with what we have now. Thus, society today struggles with being free, people struggle with being themselves, all due to the fear of judgement. We are slaves to pop culture and what society believes is the “right” thing to do, and I’m not making random statements. I’m talking about my own experiences.

pretoria girl writes - ilka steyn

The biggest challenge I have faced, and still do, is worrying about what other people might think of me. I have said many times that I think my life would be easier if I were dumber. After all, ignorance is bliss – or so they say. 2015 was a year that challenged me in numerous ways: I was robbed, I lost a loved one, I battled anxiety and I realised I couldn’t be a teacher anymore. I no longer felt in control and I’m sure that most of you will relate to this, but for me, it was a turning point. I felt like a leaf being tossed and bullied by the wind, to go to places where I didn’t want to and do things that society expected me to do. I realised I needed to free myself and focus on becoming a writer. Writing is a part of me, as well as a healer when I go through a difficult time. To be free, you have to empower yourself with what makes you happy. However, the irony is that freedom has a price, and I chose to give up a stable income to become a freelance writer. Most people won’t understand this decision and it’s okay. It is my journey, not theirs.


All of us have a dream or hobby that gives us that freedom, but I found that being free isn’t as easy as quitting your job and something happening overnight, and then there it is; in your pocket. It is a constant journey where you have to be your own teacher and learn from your life lessons. It is the power to choose what happens next, but also being aware of your thoughts and realising that your past can drag you down. My own mind can be my biggest enemy and I’m still learning to be free. I have this cunning ability to dissect something bad that happened in the past, with the hope to understanding it, while missing out on the present. But when you achieve letting go of your past and negative people, you experience an awesome level of freedom. With this blog, I am going to share my journey, opinions and ideas about different aspects of being free and what it means.


This is me; always free.

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