Going Home, African Inspiration

Just back from visiting South Africa.  This time the trip was not to explore, discover and uncover, at least not in my usual fashion.


My beloved dad is ill, so this was a trip to reconnect to my roots, revisit my family and see them through the eyes of love, and to see them as creative people separate from myself.  To approach my family dynamic with compassion, and openness.  Holding the beacon of love like a mirror and reflecting back what I have received.  Perhaps never seen or understood prior to this time.


A time for tears and for expansion.   Listening to the birds outside and looking at the birds inside.  All those ceramic creatures my mother has gathered.  Revisiting is not complete without looking at Africa and being reminded how different it all is from my life in America.  To Africans, America seems so exotic and desirable.  The land of the free.  Yet when my heart and feet touch Africa, the motherland,  I feel a lightness of spirit and a wonder at how beautiful and young everything is. In spite of the problems and corruption.


Red soil, green fields, Cape Dutch Architecture, bright colors, innovative design.   Crafts and creative cleverness – a visual feast – that soaks my skin.   Delights my eyes, nose and ears.    I am like a little child discovering treasures. There is inspiration in egg shells, cardboard, aloes and tin. Everywhere you turn decorative twists pulsate and spark design ideas.    My heart wept and glowed and my finger snaps a million prints. So much so someone asks me if I am James Bond’s wife – another story altogether….   Leaving Africa is a struggle.  Truly it is a gift to be able to go home.

Joie de Vivre

Jen Duchene

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About Jen

Jen Duchene Astro-Numerologist, Akashic Soul Reader, Speaker, Author. Facilitating Akashic Readings and Healing plus individual and business Astro-numerology, combining transformative wisdom with sacred soulfulness to guide clients back to their authentic self.


Going Home, African Inspiration — 8 Comments

  1. Beautiful post, Jen. I can’t imagine what it would be like to be born on a different continent and pull up roots to move a world away. Your photography is lovely, really captures the essence of your home away from home now, I guess. Certainly a bittersweet trip for you. Nice that you can document and share part of it with us.

    • Dear Laurie, Happy to share. Documenting keeps it real, and yes bittersweet indeed. For me the opposite is true. I can’t imagine what it would be like to stay in the same place from birth, and yet I envy you those roots.

  2. I have left and gone home many times and am always stunned by the beauty of Derbyshire. It’s so green and the Peak District is just jaw dropping. I am also struck by how crowded everything is and how squashed together and this freedom loving Sagittarius needs space which is why I always move away to places with lots of it (Canada, Australia and the US twice. Derbyshire always feels like home though.

    • Interesting Louise that you moved to spacious areas and that you were born in a place that feels crowded. I have traveled a little in England so I can imagine the beauty and the greenness. I also think that a little bit of our hearts always stays where we are born, no matter where we land up.

  3. I grew up in L.A. but it doesn't feel like home anymore. Where I live now feels more like home. Maybe it's because my parents left L.A. 27 years ago and are both gone and there never was a single "home" I grew up in. I love my home today and the groundedness it gives me.

  4. Beautiful post. It’s more like a poem, Jen. I live back where I grew up, but I lived in NYC for many years, which I consider my other home, so I can relate to this in many ways. It took me many years to approach my family dynamics with compassion and openness, but when I did, it certainly made it easier to ride through those sometimes choppy waters in the family of origin pool. Thanks for sharing.

    • Thank you Gloria for you lovely compliment. Always fascinating to come to the family table with insight and compassion. Not easy to do so I salute your persistence and results. Moving definitely changes us.

  5. Susan, Perhaps when our family connection is gone, the sense of home goes too. I am glad that you have a home now that you love and that grounds you. So important. For some reason I cant respond with facebook…..

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