5 YEARS LATER
The death of my brother, niece and nephew took a toll on us all, I live to regret what I did. My hatred cost me my family and the love of my life. I haven’t seen Ise since the funeral, yes my family allowed me to attend the funeral but after that they told me to never go anywhere near them again and that’s what I’ve done. I applied for a job in Durban and moved that side instead for the sake of peace. After Bandile’s funeral I got word that Unathi was dead and they declared it a suicide which was pretty strange if you ask me but I guess she couldn’t live with the guilt. After Ise I never found a girl that made me feel the way she did so instead I just stuck to screwing around with one girl and then ended it after 2 years when she suddenly caught feelings. The one I’m currently with is great and all but she’s not Isenathi. It’s Saturday and I’m going to get my hair cut and then meet up with my friends. I bought a club this side too and it’s doing great. I make my way to Legends, that’s the only place I cut my hair. As I walk towards the entrance I see this beautiful structured lady. She’s wearing these 2 piece girls wear, her’s is a nude pink crop top and a long skirt with a pair of nude plastic heels and blazer hanging on her shoulders. DAMN!!! As I get closer to her talking on the phone facing the other side I recognise her voice or rather she has a voice similar to that of someone I know
“What time are you landing this side?”
She asks the person she’s on the phone with
“I thought you were flying in earlier. What happened?”
She asks turning around. It cannot possibly be her! What are the odds?
“Sis I’ll call you back neh, I have to go”
She says and then cuts the call
We speak at the same time, she giggles and I chuckle
“Uhhm.. how are you?”
“Good and you?”
She says coldly, she still looks as beautiful as the day I met her except her body is sexier and thicker than the last time I saw her. I have to give it to Mihlali’s mother, she has great genes and she definitely passes them on to her kids because wow! Ise looks like Hlali when she was 25
“Great, you look amazing”
I say and she smiles
“Thanks, What are you doing here?”
She asks me
“I came here for a haircut, what are you doing here?”
I say frowning confused at her question
“No, I mean in Durban”
She says and I shrug
“I moved here after I left Cape Town, and what about you?”
“Same, work brought me this side”
“hey baby, I’m done”
A guy says slipping his hand around her tiny waist
- MIHLALIKAZI MBANA TSHAWE
If life has taught me anything it is that healing comes to those who want it. When I lost my whole family everything came crumbling down on me, no day was better than the other because every other day meant waking up to my family dead and having to accept reality as it was. They were gone and they were never coming back and I needed to accept that but I couldn’t.
You see as humans we have a tendency of getting sucked in on what we want instead of what we actually need. What I mean by that is; I needed healing but I didn’t want to. I needed to grieve my family and move on but I didn’t want to, I didn’t want to get out of the dark hole I had decided to wallow myself into. It was better being stuck there than finding a way out, what is life without your whole family anyway? What exactly would I be living for when my every reason to live was all dead? I was depressed from the day of hearing the news to the day of burying them and even after, the 3 little lives I had been carrying were at an even greater risk. I got out of hospital on the day of the funeral but I still had to go back because my body couldn’t take it, I couldn’t take it. I don’t know how many times I almost lost them and each time I had prayed that they would die because I never wanted to raise them alone, I never wanted to have a constant remind of my family, I didn’t want them as much as I didn’t want my own life. If you asked me today how I made it? Honestly even I don’t have the right answer for that. Instead let me take you back to one particular day after the funeral, the day I decided that I needed to fight for the sake of the babies I was carrying.
“How are you today?”
He asks, I look at him and not respond as I always do everytime he visits me. I had shut everyone out, didn’t talk to anyone and honestly it felt easier that way. He
normally tells me about his day and everything else I’m missing out on in the world while I stay in this bed
“Well I’m good thank you for asking”
He says and sits down on the chair below the window, I never understood why he came to see me everyday when he never managed to get even a single word out of me.
“Life can be likened to a book” He starts off, I look up at him
“A book contains a story about a certain character. You find your favourite character and you fall in love with them, you invest you emotions on that character but when things don’t go the way you wish for them there’s only one person you get angry at and that’s the author am I right?”
He asks but I still don’t respond trying very hard to understand where he’s going with this. He lets out a sigh
“You and I both know I’m right. We get mad at the author forgetting that this person was telling a story and they won’t change the events just to make us feel better, it’s not our story as readers at the end of the day but his/her story”
He says and gets up
“You get different kinds of book, and maybe sometimes it’s easy to predict the ending and sometimes it’s not and when the ending is not what we hoped for or wished for
then we get frustrated but what off the characters? They are blind sighted by the author, they don’t know what their ending is and that’s how our lives are. I’m a firm believer of our lives being prewritten and we are just acting out our roles. I’m not going to preach to you about God because the state you are currently in doesn’t not allow you to believe in God, you blame him for everything that has happened in your life just as readers blame the writer for not getting the happy ending they wanted or expected”
He says and then goes back to sit down
“Losing our loved ones doesn’t take away our choices, you still have a choice. You can either grieve your family in a healthy manner, be positive and want life for the sake of the babies you are carrying or stay depressed and lose them. But remember if you choose to stay depressed you only prolonging the pain and the suffering you are in, you are holding yourself back. There’s always light at the end of the tunnel but you can only reach that light only if you keep moving. The darkness is all fun and games until you allow it to eat you up and you never the same person again and filled with regrets and what ifs. There’s a reason you lost 3 people at the same time only for you to gain another three”
“I’m not a motivational speaker or whatsoever and I don’t know what you are going through, I’ll never know what you are going through and you don’t have to be
strong, it’s ok to grieve but don’t let your grief consume you”
“What you do about what I just said to you is entirely up to you”
He say and then takes out his phone and starts pressing it. I never expecting such to be coming out of his mouth. Yes I know he’s smart and everything but I never thought that he would be the one saying all of this. After that whole speech he doesn’t say anything there after. He always visits me after visiting hours and I never asked why or how he manages to get in here but I’m not complaining. He’s the one person who doesn’t look at me as if I’m sick or dying, he doesn’t give me a pity look as my family and friends do. He looks at me the same way he has always looked me from the minute we met and for some weird reason that makes me feel better and for a while I forget that I’m stuck in a hospital pregnant with triplets whose lives including mine are in danger.
I never looked at life the same after his speech, I realised that I needed to pick myself up and face grief head on. Most days were harder than most and I wanted to stay closed off from everyone, I actually did stay closed off and buried my emotions. I gave birth when I was 8 months pregnant, two of them were healthy and ok but the other had Chronic Lung Disease; refers to long-term
breathing and lung problems in premature babies. It is also known as bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD). Chronic lung disease is a serious complication of prematurity resulting from poor lung growth and lung injury. It can occur when babies are born prematurely and need respiratory support to help them breathe. As if losing my family was not enough, I gave birth and one of my babies had to stay in hospital for 3 months recovering and it was painful to experience. For the first time after losing Bandile and my kids I prayed, I prayed that God saves him, I allowed my emotions back on and allowed myself to be vulnerable and act human. Shutting everyone out didn’t help, it didn’t make the pain any better it only worsened it so if feeling again was going to allow me to get the healing I needed then that’s what I needed to do and the journey hasn’t been easy not by one single bit, it’s been difficult but at least now I am able to look back at the way everything turned out and smile for having made it. I still think about them every single day but my memories of them now are happy memories because my family was a family of happy people.
I knock on the door
She says and pulls me in for a hug
I say and the little rascals run in and break our hug apart hugging their grandmother
“Hello my babies”
She says hugging them back, we make our way to the lounge while greeting each other and the 3 going to put their things in their rooms. I gave birth to 2 girls and one boy and we named them Ntandoyethu Bandile (boy), Nichume Siphosethu and Ntandoyenkosi Athini. They were named by their grandparents.
I ask looking around, it’s Saturday and it’s shockingly quiet
“They didn’t come back this weekend, their parents went to their sports day today”
She says as we sit down
“I see, you must miss them neh?”
“I’m glad they gone, atleast it’s nice and quiet or rather was”
She says and we both laugh
I say and she laughs
“You know I love my grandchildren and I am always happy to see them”
She says with a smile. Bakho’s kids are in a boarding school and they are happy I guess. Yoza gave birth to another set of twins, apparently she and I were pregnant at the same time because she gave birth a month after the triplets were born so my babies have people their age to play with in the family. Lara still has the twins only and they are so grown and sweet.
“I know Mah, so there’s something I wanted to talk to you about”
I start off, she looks at me worried
She says and I nod not wanting to beat around the bush
“Khaya asked me to marry him”