#Unshaken: The Durban mother who moved her family into a bus shares her story

#Unshaken: The Durban mother who moved her family into a bus shares her story

Liezel Jooste, the mother of the family that moved into a bus, shares her personal story with us in honour of celebrating women who remain unshaken...

#Unshaken: Liezel Jooste shares her story with us
Liezel Jooste

Liezel Jooste is a 42-year-old mother who has been through a lot in her life, but she didn't use that as an excuse to stay in one place and feel sorry for herself. She used it as her motivation to persevere and be the best she can be.

We first heard about her about a month ago when she and her family were in the media. The reason they were in the media is because they had decided to adopt a minimalist lifestyle and move into a bus. At first, it was bizarre to many people and that is why so many people were visiting the website to read their story. 

It was then that we decided to delve into Liezel, the woman behind the story, the woman that shared such bold words about transitioning into a minimalist lifestyle with her family. A woman that looked so young and yet possessed such wisdom. 

"I am lucky enough to have a brain that is 50/50 – so I am neither left or right dominant and I have talents and abilities in both creative and analytical/technical.

"This made it hard when doing aptitude and personality tests – as in most cases I wanted to choose things that are totally opposite to each other, which doesn’t really make sense. This has, however, allowed me to work in many different industries - retail, construction, mining, production, labour law, finance, hospitality, tourism, marketing, web and digital designing, petro-chemical, and nuclear – I’ve held positions from waitress to MD and it has allowed me to gain a vast amount of knowledge, which is a good thing, as I have a very enquiring mind.

"Growing up with very wise parents I also learned a long time ago that I do not need to fit into the boxes that people would like me to – I am different, my mind works its own way – so why not embrace that?

"I am both arty and technical, need and want both in my life – so that is what I do. I feed my mind which also 'feeds' me emotionally and physically. I found what works for me! I urge everyone to do this and when you have found it, make it your life, or at the very least a large part of your life," Liezel Jooste says.

Her passion for art and science is absolutely amazing. Besides her hair colour and her mapped out body of tattoos, she has so much more underneath it all. She is the typical example of being judged by her cover, but her waters run so deep. She has such a wealth of knowledge and is the true epitome of what an unshaken woman represents. 

When asked about her choice to live in a bus, she explained herself so eloquently. 

"So, as you can see I am colourful and arty, but still practical and a number cruncher – so when it comes to the way I live, the idea only made sense to embrace who I am. We toyed with the idea of going small for many years, but in 2018 we sat back and looked at the amount we were paying on rent for a place that we hardly spent any time in – it seemed like insanity. We even owned our own house before – in fact we owned two houses at one point, but very quickly decided that it just wasn’t for us. The idea of being tied down just did not feel right.

"The decision was then made to live a more minimalistic life and be able to enjoy the things we want to. This decision was made as a family – and that is what makes it work!" Jooste adds.

"We took the steps to first move into a flat and then a caravan, before getting and converting the bus.

"I agree, minimalistic living is not for everyone, but for the financial freedom and stress relief it gives, it just makes sense to us. Then there is also the impact on the environment – of course, the ideal would be to have a completely self-sustaining spot – but that then means having land – and the whole idea of being tied down comes into play again.

"We do plan to have our house on wheels completely off grid – but already use much less power than a conventional home and only about 20 litres of water a day – excluding the washing of clothes." 

"Being mobile also means it’s a lot easier to go away for a weekend, move to a new town if needed, and, yes, there are a lot of safe and cheap places to stop when you actually start doing research into it – it really can be done!"

Liezel ended off her chat with us in such an uplifting way. She really puts things into perspective when it comes to the important things in life and how we should be living. 

"Being happy is a choice I make. I know I am responsible for my own happiness and I make choices in life that allow me to be happy. No, it hasn't been an easy journey to get to where I am today, but I embrace life and can’t wait to see where it takes me next!" concludes Liezel.

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