“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.”
– 1 Timothy 4:12
There is something in the nature of girls that make them think that their best friend or friends are out to compete with them. I don’t know where we get it from but it’s true it’s there. Usually we are wrong about our friends’ intentions but once we are convinced that she is up to something there is no turning back. We don’t forgive. Here is the truth, I was jealous of Miriam for getting married before me. I won’t lie about that because it’s something I have said from the beginning. I was every bit the good child, I listened at home, I did not party growing up, I did not drink nor sleep around. She did all these things and more! She was notorious with married men and went through scandal after scandal whilst I got all the plaudits for being the example of what all girls should grow up like. Now here is the kicker, you know those girls on twitter who use the hashtag #manaretrash, well they are girls like me. It is those girls who were so good growing up they expected that love and romance would treat them the same way growing up but alas, because of their naivety and high expectations today they spend more time on twitter than in real life. Miriam had a point then. She had always been good to me but all I did was judge her, all the time! In my eyes I was better than her in every respect but for some reason and this is true, she was significantly happier than me if that even makes sense! Sigh! I had failed.
“I am sorry that you think that way goodness I don’t even know what to say! You are my best friend in the whole world and for you to even think that I am speechless!”
I told her. Speechless might be the wrong word to use considering how many words I had just used to explain myself but she got it.
“Well if you are my best friend then act like it and support me! Stop always being against what I do!”
She said with a lot of annoyance in her voice. Her annoyance was real and whilst it’s easy to call her ungrateful I knew what I had done.
“I know but I can’t help being scared and worried for you! I can’t, I care too much and I am sorry that I do but it’s what friends do!”
I explained to her. I am often told that good friends are brave enough to tell you when you are doing wrong. The truth is, amongst girls, if you are constantly doing wrong things that advice stopped being welcome and starts looking like being judged.
“Well that’s fine but I know what I am doing ok. I just feel like lately you seem to judge everything I do. I need to be alone!”
She said. Wow it’s exactly what I was thinking, the judgement part.
“Let’s go back to my wedding, you were shocked and every now again you would say snide comments. Have you ever said one nice thing to me about my marriage? Have you ever come to visit me since I got married? You are supposed to be my best friend and it’s not like I live out of town. We are a few minutes apart. Just to say ‘hey girl I am coming to check in on you’ would that hurt so much? We grew up together Lungile, you and I are sisters through and through but look at the things you do. I might not have your friends or education but you know I am loyal. You know I have your back but do you have mine? Think about that before you answer!”
She went on and just like that she left.
I called after her half heartedly but truth be told I did not want her coming back because she had given me lots to think about. Her words, wow, her words had cut deep!
“Lungi you brought that one on yourself!”
A little voice told me as I walked into the car and indeed I had. I was worried though. I had no idea where she was going to sleep but deep down I knew it was with Bongani. He was her husband after all and like she had said I was judging her hard for this. Here is the reality; all fights that cause friendships to break up come from the smallest things. You will be surprised that the best of friendships fell apart at the last minute over something a discussion could fix.
I drove back to the BnB but called my mum. I wanted someone to talk to, I needed someone!
“Hi mum how are you?”
I said. I don’t know why I called her but at this moment I just felt like I needed my mother. Is that too much to ask for.
“Ewe, now you want to talk to me! What is wrong with you ka nnete?”
She started. Ok I was just calling and already I was in trouble. This is part of the reason why I don’t call her often. My mum can turn a joyous occasion into an interrogation. Ok fine this was not joyous but still she must hear what I had to say first before biting my head off.
“Mum I was just calling to check in on you. I see you don’t want to talk so it’s ok I will hang up. Good night!”
I said and before she could say anything I hung up. I switched off my phone because I knew what was going to happen next, she was going to call back and shout even more. My mother was one of those people who could hold a grudge even when it was not necessary to even hold a grudge, sigh! She called back!
“You really have a nerve Lungile Mbatha, to hang up on your mother! Is that what education teaches you?”
She asked angrily. With me everything I did which was not ‘cultural’ or ‘traditional’ was blamed on education but here is the reality, where in their culture or traditions did they have cell phones? It really annoyed me.
“Mum you are shouting at me and I am the one who called you. I can’t even be happy to call my own mum does it seem right to you? You should be the person I want to call whenever I have a problem but I panic so much because I am scared of what mood you will be in when I call and worse, how you will react! How is that fair?”
I asked her with tears in my eyes, throat and voice! It’s funny how when you are emotional and angry, instead of switching off everything, crying yourself to sleep and moving on, we tend to want to settle other scores. I had not intended to tell my mother that at all and now, eish!
“So are you saying that I am not there for you?”
She asked me angrily and with lots of surprise in her voice! I knew immediately the conversation was lost. It was going to be about her!
“No I did not say that!”
I responded but she retorted,
“Because last time I checked I am the one running around with your Sangoma thing whilst you avoid doing all the right things I advise you. I am the one who sacrificed everything for that fancy education so where do you get the nerve saying I am not therefore you?”
She asked me angrily. I had made it worse. I should never have opened my mouth.
“I am sorry mum it’s not what I meant…”
I told her but she was not done,
“When you get back I need you to come to the house so we can talk! You must come to me first before you go anywhere else you hear me?”
I responded and she hung up!
“That went well!”
I told myself as I drove into the BnB. This had actually been a shitty day. I lay my head down hoping that I would pass out, I really needed that moment but it did not happen. Instead I found myself asking myself why all my things were going wrong. It all pointed to the Sangoma thing but that would be accepting that I have gone crazy. I think an hour later I slept, I can’t be sure but yeah that’s about it. That would have been about midnight then.
Two hours later there was a knock on my door!
I jumped up excited because at least she came home. She had been one of my major worries. I opened without hesitation and then I posed,
I asked out loud. It was raining and he was soaking wet and even through the rain you could smell the alcohol on his breathe!
“In my culture the men don’t sleep with the body of the deceased in the house. I have a place to sleep but I don’t want to be there. Can I sleep on your couch?”
He asked me. Whether he was lying or not I don’t know and before I could even responded he walked in, wet as he was and fell on the bed!
********* The End **********
Michael Nkululeko Maphoto (fb)
Thank you all for the well wishes. I am ok now. I don’t know if you recall I had an op a few weeks back. There were a few complications with that but it’s all sorted now. I was actually out Sunday but the medication side effects were a bit hectic.
All in all thank you for the support. We go back to business as usual.
Thank you so much Mike for your God given gift, I appreciate it. Your work is truly therapeutic, honestly.
I don’t even know where to start but I’ll try and get to the point. I’m a female varsity student who’s suppose to be doing my last year next year. I moved to live with my aunt in another province because I was going through some serious personal stuff at home. Living with her was the best option. Living with her started off well up until last year.
I have to travel quite a distance with public transport to and from campus, I get home late and she expects me cook, clean and I still have tons of varsity work to do on top of that. With the bit of time I have to study the kids are always making a noise, like literally screaming their lungs out, they don’t listen to me and she doesn’t really reprimand them. Like she just sits around like a queen and I have to do all this work and on top of that people still expect me to pass with distinctions, like?????
My aunt is now thinking of adopting another child! I’m happy for her and all, but I know all the work will be left to me! This situation has affected my marks terribly, I know I’m more capable than this and I just want to pass my final year with great marks. I don’t know what to do. I’ve become such a depressed and unhappy person. Because she doesn’t even appreciate anything I do, literally I am living to suit her needs. And when relatives call, she complains secretly that I just sit around all day, like? It’s so disappointing giving your energy for the benefits of someone else. And they treat you like crap. I’m just so tired man. Like I’m starting to think this degree is not even worth what I go through, I’m just so exhausted. Physically and mentally.
My mom, can’t pay for accommodation next to my varsity, because my sibling also has to go varsity. Should I just drop out and go work and then carry on in the future? Should I just stick it out though I know I’ll be wasting my parents money that we already hardly have?
If anyone could please be so kind to help with any assistance please contact Mike.