VOF: Week Two "A Different World For My Children"
“A Different World For My Children”
My name is Ivaldete Santos Das Neves. I am black and very proud and I am Brazilian. I live in a small home with my two daughters and four grandchildren. I am an artist and I work with a non profit in Rio. My story with art began when on after years of unemployment I became very depressed and my brother presented me with an old sewing machine that still worked very well. I still have this sewing machine and use it with lots of love and care. I am accustomed to saying that everything I make from this sewing machine has a little bit of the story of my life in it. When I am sewing or creating a piece of art I am dreaming and imagining beautiful things.
The house I live in needs repair. I have to fix the roof because when it rains or when there is wind it is difficult to sleep. The rain comes in through the roof and the roof has already come off twice. I know that I am not a professional yet, but I am learning. I am also learning how to take care of everyone.
One day when I was feeling depressed I resoled to take a dance class. For me dance is a form of therapy that I love and respect. When I arrived I came across a teacher that was giving a hip hop class. I felt something really beautiful, as if we already knew each other a long time, maybe in another life. And so we became friends and discovered that outside of her being my soul twin she was also my guardian angel. She saw everything about my story up close. My life, my work, my family and the sacrifices.
She made a documentary about my life, including my work. In this documentary I talk in detail about my life, my work, my kids and especially my oldest son for whom I passed thru the most difficult moments of my life.
My son Wellen was part of the world of the drug traffic and today, thank god, he is a changed man. My big fight was to help him liberate himself, which meant frequenting dangerous places. My big victory was when I was able to pay the ransom to set him free.
My youngest daughter Jessica makes me proud every day. She is a beautiful ballerina and dreams of leaving the favela and going to college for dance outside of Brasil. When she dances she uses her body to travel. She becomes completely free. When I sew and she dances we have total freedom in body and mind. We let go of thoughts of the violent world of the favela we live in.
Thanks to my guardian angel I found World Pulse. I can connect with women who share interests or have a life story that mirrors my own and because of that we can trade ideas, consul, information and maybe one day meet face to face. I came from poverty and I promised I would make a different world for my children. I haven’t fulfilled this promise yet, but with things like World Pulse I believe I can have a better future and realize my dream to open a shop with art from other countries and with women who can tell their life stories. I want to better my home and before I leave this life I want to leave a little bit more comfort for my children.