It is that time of the season where noses are red, fingers are blue, and as a resident of Freedom Park that could even mean lights off in an instant. My routine is pretty much simple as a grade 12 learner but the pandemic has shifted the paradigm of my daily activities. I often wake up during the crack of dawn and get ready for school, in the blistering cold I would observe my mother preparing a fire outside to boil water for me and the return from school in the afternoon is incomparable to my morning disaster.
The re-opening of schools was a relief for me and it raised my hopes for a better tomorrow and a promising future; however, it also prompted on the unforeseen circumstances of load shedding. Studying under the candle light was almost impossible and very discouraging at times, it fuelled even more on my anxiety and the pressure I was already faced with both from school and at home.
My mother would always say that ‘the darkest night produces the brightest stars’ at first I never understood that, but I knew that she meant well and I was going to get through the darkness with my candle light.
My mentor Thuleleni Mpanza from Momentum Metropolitan conquered the overcast darkness during my study time genuinely when she said ‘LET THERE BE LIGHT’ and surprisingly bought me a rechargeable lamp to study during the night as I prepare for my upcoming exams. This was a miracle that brightened not only my room but it touched my mother’s heart too. I have not known my mentor for a long time, but she has taught me a lot of things about life and leadership, and the importance of believing in my dreams and myself.
Our relationship has escalated to new heights in a very short period, I am amazed at all time on how eager and concerned she is about my wellbeing and my academics. She is indeed a friend that I will forever be grateful for, and her act of kindness will be the light that carries me through my darkest days.
Mahlako Ratau- Grade 12 Silver Oaks Secondary School