Although women continue to experience setbacks in senior education positions, few people know about that as their stories are rarely written nor told. This study is an attempt to tell such silenced stories about me and my co-story teller, Mrs Nalo. We are mothers, wives and principals of successful secondary schools in Limpopo province. The purpose of this study is to understand the experiences and challenges of women principals in a distinctly South African context. The study is a narrative of our stories with the intention of exploring our experiences so that I could better understand how our stories speak to challenges of leadership in South African Secondary Schools. My aim is to set my story alongside hers and to look for commonalities that offer insights into the stories of women principals in South Africa. The study lends itself to combination of “auto ethnography”, ethnography as well as narrative approach. In carrying out this study we kept our daily journals. We engaged in three taped recorded conversations followed by a number of telephone conversations. I transcribed verbatim the three conversations and identified common themes across both stories and read them against the Capability Approach (CA). I took a positive and optimistic stance and recognised that we were not always able to achieve our desired functionings and that at times we were not able to realise fully the potential of our capabilities. The study again found that regardless of setbacks we encounter in achieving our functionings, we still managed to convert resources at our disposal to achieve them. I also found that although CA aims to enhance the developmental opportunities for those who have been marginalised, it turns a blind eye to invisible elements of women’s lives in their profession; that of being a mother and a wife. Its logic applies primarily to the professional aspects of women’s lives. My final argument in this study is that prioritising the professional, especially for women, limits the scope and potential of a CA. CA therefore needs to wholly consider the complexities of being a woman leader, a wife and a mother, for women to be able to enhance their ability to use capabilities and resources to achieve much-valued functionings. Key words: Auto ethnography, ethnography, narrative inquiry, capability approach, agency, functionings, women principals, South Africa; women and leadership; traditional practices; developing countries; secondary school leadership.