True love is not materialistic

grandparenting in the time of Covid
grandparenting in the time of Covid
Image: 123rf.com

A lot can happen in a year. Just two weeks ago I had a grandmother, now I don’t. What hurts me the most is that lately, I had been distancing myself from my grandmom – who was both my mom and dad – because I didn’t want to disappoint her.

I did not want my failures to be seen by the person who worked so hard to ensure that I have a better life. For the past six years I have been nothing but a disappointment to my family, at least that is what I would think. As a result, I would sometimes spend a full year without going home.

I did not want them to see me in this failed state. But now that my granny is no more, I realise that she may have wanted just to see her grandson more than getting the "hopo-stairs" she wanted him to build for her. I realise now that her saying that she wanted me to build her a double storey house so she can look outside from the top window was her motivation to me and to  show me how much she believed in me.

I saw this when I went home just a month before she passed on, after 14 months of not going home. She was so happy, and whenever I wanted to explain why I couldn’t buy her her favourite cold drink or buy her a DVD player so she can play Thomas Chauke’s music or va-Senzeni (the Crazy Entertainers videos), which were her favourite, she would tell me to stop explaining and that she understood.

I realise now that we sometimes put unnecessary pressure on ourselves because we think it’s our duty to take care of our loved ones like they took care of us. This affects us in many ways, including in our careers. Life is not just too short, it’s also unpredictable.

Don’t wait until you have something in your hand before you can show someone love and allow them to love you too. With this, I say bye-bye N’wa-Nyathi, I failed but I will try again. 

Colly Hlathi, Hlalakahle, eManyeleti


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