Ottery woman gets chance to tell her story

Elizabeth Wilson with her book, Miesies.

An Ottery woman’s life-long dream to publish her story has finally become a reality thanks to the love and support of her family.

Elizabeth Wilson, 53, brought out her book called Miesies after working on the manuscript for many years and after many disappointments from publishers.

Having gone through many trials, her message to others is to follow their dreams and that anything is possible.

Ms Wilson had a tough life growing up. Her father was a black man from Zambia and her mother a coloured woman from Beaufort West who married during Apartheid. Unfortunately, her mother wasn’t able to take care of her and sent her off to her grandmother in Beaufort West when she was nine months old and that’s where she spent the majority of her childhood.

Her grandmother affectionately nicknamed her Miesies because she was a light-skinned baby and the name stuck and is now the title of her life story.

She always had a love for writing and reading and excelled at school in Beaufort West but when she was nine her father requested her to come to Cape Town, much to the dismay of her grandmother, who feared her grandchild would never return – which is exactly what happened. The two only reunited when Ms Wilson was much older with children of her own.

The book goes into detail of Ms Wilson’s life growing up, her search for her mother who she hadn’t seen since she was a child and being rejected by her. It also goes into detail about her adoptive family, meeting the love of her life, her journey raising children in Koringshof flats in Ottery, how she overcame some of the toughest times in her life and how she is trying to give back to her community.

Elizabeth Wilson with her son Darren in Ottery.

“This is my story and I feel like it can be an inspiration for other people who are going through tough times and my message is that you can become more than your circumstances.”

Ms Wilson moved into her dream home in Heathfield thanks to the help of her son Darren who she sent to Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) to study graphic designing and web development and who currently works for a London-based company.

The Wilson family from left are Darriol, Elizabeth, Darren, David and in front are Wyatt and Paris.

Since Darren was a young boy he promised his mother he would take her out of Ottery and buy her a house and in 2021 he turned this into a reality when he purchased his mother’s dream home.

“I asked him for a small house with my own washing lines but he exceeded my expectations.”

Darren was also instrumental in getting his mother’s book published and designed the book cover for Miesies.

“My mother always pushed us as her children to reach for our dreams and I wanted to support her to make her dreams of publishing her story into a reality so I’ve walked this journey with her and supported her.”

Ms Wilson thanked her husband David, her children Darren, Paris and Darriol for their love and support, her grandmother Lenie Graaf, and her editor Myra Lochner.

The book is published by Kreativ SA and will be launched on Saturday May 6 at The Novalis Ubuntu Institute in Wynberg.

To order the book or find out more about the launch, contact Elizabeth on 083 557 3737 or