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Department of Home Affairs

I’m so sick and tired of our town. Probably our country but since I’m mostly here let’s focus on our town.


Quintus’ wallet was stolen. Long, long time ago. So he needed a new ID and new drivers licence. Typically young man, he has left it and only decided to do it this week.

He went to Hartbeesfontein (small farm town) near us. We checked the load-shedding schedule and they were supposed to be on. Well, he gets there and they have no water. So they are closed.

He then wanted to go to Bothaville but that wouldn’t work. By the time he would get there they would have load-shedding.

So he was forced to go to Klerksdorp Home Affairs. In town. Two blocks from the police station.

He was in line when one guy grabbed him from behind. One arm around his neck and the other a knife against his side. The second guy went through his pockets and stole his phone. Casually they turned around and walked away.

Walked. away. No rush. Arrogant. They know nothing will happen. At the same time someone else did that to a young girl in the from of the line. Someone realized there was a problem and took them into the building to help them.

As Quintus got close to his car another guy grabbed him. By that time Quintus was so upset, he just told him that he is too late. He has been robbed already.

This happens many times. Daily. It’s not acceptable.

Where is the security? No. Even worse, where’s the police at Home Affairs. They know this happens. Every day. Where are they? Don’t we pay taxes to at least be protected?

We need passports to travel. IF you survive the trip to Home Affairs.

We need IDs to renew your licence, to travel, to not get fines. But travelling to Home Affairs might get you killed.

It’s sickening that we just accept this. I’m currently very disgusted by our town. Is it even a town? I can’t even ride on the road since we have more potholes than tar.

Just breath.

Cancer survey

I was asked to help with some cancer research being done and some of the questions actually touched me in a way I didn’t expect.

I hide a lot of my feelings. My emotions. I think I’m scared of giving in to it and then drown … not swim.

I have terrible neuropathy after chemo. Permanently. Some days worse than others. We even call them my chemo legs when they are so sore that I can’t or prefer not to walk because of the pain. However, I don’t want to think of it as permanent or something in my way of having a perfectly normal life but it does influence my day-to-day life. Some days they hurt so much that I can’t / don’t want to get up to make my own coffee. She wanted to know how my legs influence my daily life. Well, even though I didn’t want to think of it like that, it does influences it much more than I want to admit.

Then much worse than that my hands shake uncontrollably. Some days worse than others but always in some form or another. I went to the Wimpy with my mom and brother this morning. I had to ask them for a straw to drink my coffee. I couldn’t get the cup to my mouth without messing. Can you imagine how that feels? Some days I can’t write properly. Some days typing is difficult. Working my phone is normally difficult.

Yes, I’m here. I’m alive. I made it. I’m hugely thankful for that. That is one of the reasons why I have been making light of the two main side effects from the chemo (excluding the fatigue way less these days and lymphedema that most patients have)

I do have those though. Daily. I can’t try to ignore it. I can’t force my hands to stop shaking. It’s there. It’s constant.

Maybe not coping with it, is my way of coping with it.

As with most things in my life.

Kyla

Kya, ek twyfel jy gaan ooit hierdie lees ,maar ek wil dit skryf.

Jy was maar ‘n 3 jarige dogtertjie toe jy die eerste keer in ons lewens ingestap of eerder ingehardloop het. Jy het nooit stilgesit nie. Nie vir ‘n oomblik nie. Net in jou slaap. Jy was by ons tot jy 6 geword het. Net so. Oornag moes ek jou wakker maak want jy moes na jou pa toe. Ek wil nie verder daaroor praat nie. Dis vir ‘n ander dag.

Ons het jou aan en af gesien terwyl jy geswerf het van jou ma, na pleegouers en daarna die kinderhuis. Soms Kersfees, soms Paasnaweek, een vakansie. Jy was altyd daar.

Op 12 het ons jou, ‘n rebelse moeilike tiener meisie, by die kinderhuis gaan haal. Twee jaar het dit my (ons) gevat om van jou die pragtige jong meisie maak wat jy is. Twee jaar. Op 19 het jy en my ma so ‘n groot uitval dat jy daardie selfde aand besluit om terug te gaan na jou ma toe. Dieselfde persoon wat jou weggegee het. Wat gesê het sy wil eerder jou Tannie wees. Wat daarna jou weer opgegee het.

Dit het seergemaak. Dit het baie seergemaak. Jy is my kind. Nie my pleegkind nie. My kind en jy het ‘n onvolwasse besluit gemaak om te gaan. Ek kon niks doen nie. Jy is oud genoeg om jou eie besluite te maak.

Nou het jy besluit om terug te gaan na jou pleegouers. Die wat jou kinderhuis toe geneem het. Weet jy hoe seer maak dit? Daai pyn? Daai mes wat voel jy kies hulle bo my?

Ek weet dit gaan nie oor my nie, maar ek is ook net mens. Ek is ook net iemand wat soveel ingesit het om jou groot te maak en die enigste persoon was wat jou nooit weggegee het nie en jy besluit om terug te gaan na mense wat jou wel weggegee het.

Dit maak seer, my kind. Dit maak seer.

Breaking the news

How do you tell someone that the glue of the family has passed away? That our back-up has passed away. That the one that you could go to for everything has passed away. That the one that google of us passed away. How. How do you do that?

I had to though. We had to.

I told my mom. It broke my heart. It completely broke my heart into pieces. My heart that was torn from my body had to tell my mom and break hers.

Michael was working and I didn’t know if I could phone him. If he would be able to handle the news in whatever situation he was in. I had to though since news spreads and our cousins knew before I could make sure it was a safe situation to phone him. This is one of my biggest regrets of that night. I should have just phoned him. Regardless.

Mark had to tell his family per whatsapp. I phoned my kids individually. Jason and Quintus knew in a way. They were prepared since I phoned them and asked that they would pray with my dad when he was still fighting for his life. Zander did not know. Not at all. He put a hoody on and just cried. The boys sat together in my room. They cried. They laughed at some of the memories and I’m glad they could. I’m glad they could feel that close to my dad and his memories and not just be broken beyond healing.

His sisters were shocked and so broken. Tommie was shocked. Just no-one believed that my dad would be the first grandparent to pass away.

He was the healthy one. He cycled. Ate well. Took his vitamins. Went for all his check-ups. He was the one who took care of himself.

This was not supposed to have happened to him.