It’s been two weeks…

On Friday 17 May we heard the unimaginable, our colleague and friend had lost her little boy Hudson who was just over four months old. I wrote the following on Facebook on the day: A devastating day as we bid farewell to a little boy who was a fighter from birth and taken far too soon. Our hearts broken for his Mom and Dad, our souls shaken, with no words to express the pain we feel. Today I will go home and hold my little boy close, breathe him in deep and just be thankful for every moment we have together.
The blog post I have included is from Hudson’s Mom Andrea.


It’s two weeks today since I last held my son.

I have no real learnings for you. I couldn’t write a book on anyone’s grief but my own. I can tell you it still feels surreal. I still wake up wondering why he’s so quiet. I still feel the universe was unforgivingly unfair on both Hudson and us. And I still miss holding him close to my chest. I can also tell you that we haven’t touched his things, except to smell them and rub them against our faces. We haven’t even discarded the milk we’d prepared so diligently the night before he died.

It’s hard. I can go all day feeling drier than the Sahara and then I feel the longing and the emptiness in our home or I look at one of his photos, remember the time I took it and the flood of tears comes.

The only…

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The great drain debacle

There is never a dull moment in our house and after a week of lots happening including travel to World Economic Forum, Bon Jovi concert, Gramps’ birthday, Mothers Day and Rayms spending two nights I was so looking forward to a quiet night at home but alas it was not to be!

Dad had not been out of the house for more than ten minutes when our showers started filling up with toilet water and fecal matter. Joy! Our normal plumber Paul was unavailable so off to Google it was to find a drain specialist. Thank goodness for the Drain Surgeon team who arrived within an hour of our SOS call.

Not only did they manage to fix the drain issues but John and his partner were so great in involving you. Letting you look inside their plumbing truck, showing you all the equipment and just generally taking all your ‘why’s?’ in their stride.

The problem was that the main drain was blocked by roots from the tree on our driveway so they had to use the machine to clear the debris. You were so intrigued by what was happening and we had to stand and watch everything they were doing. The commentary around what was coming out of the blocked pipe was interesting with words disgusting and poo featuring prominently.

You were also Mom’s helper running inside to turn the taps on and off, flushing loos and helping pack up tools when they were finished.

What an adventure! While Mom was finalising the invoice and getting the guys a well deserved cup of tea you made your way to your room. I found you in bed – dare I say it – completely pooped from all the excitement!

You were so precious. I told you I would be through to tell you a story once the plumber guys had finished their tea and I had let them out. You asked “Mom, why don’t they come sit by me in my room and talk?”

Precious boy.

At the time of Phak’s passing


A poem written by your Dad today on the passing of Phakama Ndlovu which he is sharing with his classes. He was Phak’s English teacher in Grade 10.

At the time of Phaks’s passing

Who would have guessed you could touch me

Touch us

In the way that you have

A boy I knew so briefly

A man I never met

Your absence is a pit

Of questions and of longing

It is dark and vacuous

It makes no sense

But here together we live

On the sneering lip of its swallowing expanse

To lean over and peer below

Hold hands so as not to fall

To toss a coin into its depths

And hear its hollow chiming clink

As it vanishes into the huge abyss

I think, there is nothing I would wish than this

I do not believe in everlasting

There is only now and it is passing

Yours has added to the weight

Your passionate life, Phaks – a war cry leader

Has become a different threat

A reminder of our united debt

A chant for victory over senseless death

That this is where we live

In oppressive perpetual dread

Until the voice of violence

Is muted, silenced, spent

Our country is not a home

I tell my son, there are no monsters

It’s time to sleep

But for the rising shadow

Of fear and greed

And shame in deed

Of shots that ring out

And echo in the chamber

That once held your vital heart

That beat

And beat

And beat

By David Goodwin

A life unlived

I write this post with a heavy heart and as a departure from what up till now have been lighthearted stories about our journeys together, today’s is not.

On Saturday while away at Zebula, your Dad received a message from school to say that one of the matric boys had been in an armed robbery and was in hospital on life support. Given the level of crime we have come to live with on a daily basis we imagined the worst, fearing not only for the life of the boy but for the rest of his family.

Although we hear awful, heart breaking stories about senseless crimes all the time, we have, I think programmed ourselves to become immune in a way. I don’t believe that we would be able to continue our normal lives if we had to take in the pain and suffering of the inhumane acts that are committed.

For some reason, even though we weren’t close to the boy, his story touched us, and both Dad and I were awake in the early hours of the morning thinking of him and his family.

On Sunday evening we heard that in all likelihood his life support was to be turned off. There are two bullets lodged in his brain and there is no hope of recovery. We learnt too that his mother was killed in the robbery which took place at her offices. 

I cannot express in words how this tragedy affected us. 

The reason I am writing about this is because I held you close, breathed you in and thanked God for every precious moment I have with you praying a silent prayer that we would never have to face anything like it in our lives. You asked why I was crying and I explained that one of Daddy’s ‘boys’ had died telling you that he had been sick not wanting to expose you to the real truth.

This morning it was confirmed that they were awaiting his next of kin’s return from overseas to make a decision.

The senseless killing of this boy at the start of his journey into life shook me to the core. Here he was poised to become the man his family and school career had moulded him into and in a split second that was destroyed. No chance to become the father, doctor, community man, role model he was meant to be.

I hope that by the time you get to read this, the crime situation in this beautiful country of ours has improved and that we no longer have to live behind high walls fearful of the criminals who rob us of our freedom and our children’s futures.

I would like to call them animals but only humans are capable of inflicting senseless pain and suffering.