"Sionne: Never Cried"

Acrylic/mixed media
Antique linen canvas
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Sionne was a proud African woman. Yet, all around her she saw women that were not proud, and women that were suffering. She wanted those women and young girls to feel as she did.

Growing up in Harare, the capital of Zimbabwe, Sionne lived a life of privilege in comparison to many women and young girls. She knew that and she knew she must share her good fortune with other women. Too many of her sisters were suffering - lacking education, clean water and food, and enduring genital mutilation, she knew, she must be the voice of change and action.

Sionne volunteered with African Women’s Development Fund (AWDF). She started with the health and development department. Having gone to school and earned a PhD in Internal Medicine, she wanted to aid those that had physical and medical issues. Soon, she became a part of the paid staff. She didn’t need the money, but she took her career seriously, and therefore took the pay.

On a blistering hot day - with little to no breeze, a young pregnant girl came to the clinic about to give birth. She couldn’t have been more than 12 years old.. a body too small, and too underdeveloped to give birth. After 15 hours of labor, Sionne tried a c-section, but the baby died due to lack of oxygen. The young girl sobbed - at the loss of her child, but she also shed tears of fear and physical pain.

Sionne did not cry. She stitched up the child’s lower stomach, gave her some morphine and took a walk. She walked out into the bush, just in time for the sunset. She was tired. Her heart broke as the sun went down, but she never cried. She carried on.

Dimensions19" x 32"