Cheraldine Osepa

In a City Council meeting yesterday, we discussed a fence, an old fence here in Delft. In a group app, I said: ‘A fence could tell many stories.’ Sometimes, when something comes up in the Council, in this case it was about a fence, I want to see it for myself. So I went to see the fence last week, to have a look, to see why we are discussing removing a centuries-old fence. I thought to myself: ‘Hey, fence, what stories do you have to tell?’ So I was on the fence’s side, to keep the fence. Because everything is energy. Life itself is energy and vibration and frequency. Otherwise we wouldn’t exist. 

My name is Cheraldine Osepa. I was born on Curaçao. My mother is no longer alive, but my father is. He is 85 now. My mother passed away in 2015. My mother was a very, very clever woman. Quite strict, but her goal was to make all of us successful, for everybody to study and certainly to be able to look after ourselves in life. I studied in Tilburg and Tilburg has an affinity with Curaçao through the brothers of Tilburg and the fathers of Breda. 

I am a councillor to the city of Delft now. I came to Delft because I think Delft called me. I am a person who follows the path of the wind. The wind blew towards Delft. 

I remember when I started my first business, opened my first shop, my mother said: ‘Child, we need to talk.’ I said: ‘What is it, mama?’ She said: ‘This is not something for us.’ I said: ‘What do you mean?’ She said: ‘This is for rich people, becoming a business woman and entrepreneur.’ 

My mother’s idea was: don’t go beyond the place assigned to you, because that is the place assigned to you and you should try to create your own space within that place and survive within it. But that is how people used to think. The new way is: I’ll assign myself a place, if you don’t mind, and do what I want to and improve myself. If you don’t like it, just move along. So that is what has changed. 

I am happy the generations after me have realised that that part of the upbringing, to keep quiet, accept things, don’t pay any heed, that this is passé and that time is over and will never come back. Fortunately! For fortune favours the bold. So if you don’t speak up, if you don’t find out about your origins, your history, your talents, and all you have to offer society, you won’t succeed. You have to be able to speak up for yourself, and most importantly: you have to be able to identify your pain. If you don’t identify your pain, no one will do it for you, because people can’t see inside your mind. It’s up to you to take centre stage. I’m happy this moment has arrived. 

What I want to pass on to the next generations is they can be who they are. Find yourself, stay upright. You don’t have to be strong. Because knowing your weaknesses, makes you strong. We are one.