Echoes of Loneliness
Part 1 – It’s Over
[Four Years Back – The day of the funeral]
I’ve never in my life thought this day would come so soon. Mother and father left me with a 2 year old child and I am just 20 years old. Heartbroken as I am, I still have to be strong for my little sister, Warona. Saying goodbye to mother and father is not easy at all, I can never accept the fact that they are no more, I just can’t believe it. We left the graveyard after the burial. I looked at Warona and just cried. Why does a small baby like her have to lose both parents when she’s still so young? She looks so happy and okay, she just doesn’t know what’s happening. We are so unfortunate. I don’t know what happened to my parents so I don’t trust anyone, the person behind my parents’ death could be here right now so I honestly want this fake people to leave right away. I just want to be with my little sister.
Finally they all left around 14:00. The house was so empty. I was so lonely. I was disturbed by echoes of loneliness, I was broken. Mother and father, why did you have to leave me with a small baby? Who’ll continue paying for me at school? How will I take care of my baby sister? How will we survive? I wish I could die right now. Why didn’t the whole family just die? It’s my second year at the university. For me to get to university, my father had to sell his truck. So I paid my first year’s fees but I haven’t paid my second year’s fees. This year I haven’t started at school. I am supposed to go and register in three days time but it looks like I’ll have to go to school and tell them to remove me from their system. I don’t see myself going back to school without a plan, I really don’t have money. My father was going to give me all the money in three days time but now he’s gone and gone forever.
But how can I just give up like that? No, I’ll have to go look for a part time job but will it get me enough money to pay for my fees? What about this year’s textbooks? What am I going to do? Should I also apply for Bursary? Last year when I applied, my application was declined. I’ll try again this year.
Ayanda: I am sorry for what happened. I know that I can’t take away your pain but I really want to be here for you
Me: Thank you
We broke off the hug.
We went to my bedroom. Warona is sleeping. We sat down.
Ayanda: Do you need anything?
Me: No dear, I am okay
Ayanda: Have you eaten?
Ayanda: But why?
Me: Ayanda, I can’t
Ayanda: Please Wame, you have to eat something
Me: I am not hungry
Ayanda: No, you can’t say that
Me: It’s the truth
Ayanda: When last did you eat?
Ayanda: And what about Warona?
Me: I fed her before she fell asleep
Ayanda: Okay. I’ll get you something to eat
Me: No, I don’t want to eat
Ayanda: I won’t listen to you
She got up and went to the kitchen. She then came back with something to eat and started feeding me. She’s so sweet, I couldn’t say no to her. I finished eating.
Me: Thank you
Ayanda: It’s okay. So tell me, what’s your plan from here? Where to go?
Me: Uhm… I think I should apply for Bursary and also look for a part time job
Ayanda: Do you have money for registration?
Ayanda: So where are you going to get it?
Me: I don’t know, Ayanda
Ayanda: I’ll give you the money for registration
Me: Excuse me?
Ayanda: Yes honey, I’ll give you the money for registration
Me: Ayanda, thank you so much
Ayanda: Don’t thank me, I know that you’d do the same thing for me if I was in your position
Tears streamed down my face as I hugged her.
Me: I will forever be grateful to you
Ayanda: It’s okay. I’ll come back tomorrow with the money. I’ll also help you apply for Bursary
Me: (Smiles) Thank you
She wiped off my tears.
Ayanda: You are welcome. Always smile, you are beautiful when you smile
Ayanda: I have to tell you something
Me: I am listening
Ayanda: I am moving to UK
Ayanda: By next week
Me: And what about school?
Ayanda: I’ll continue my studies that side
Me: (Smiles) Wow, I am so happy for you
Ayanda: But I am not happy
Ayanda: I wanted to stay behind so that I can always be with you but I can’t because the whole family is going to UK
Me: Come on, don’t worry about me. I will be fine. Go to UK, you’ll love it
Ayanda: Are you mad at me?
Me: Of course not, I am actually happy for you
Ayanda is actually from a rich family so everything is always going well for her, she always got the money and she doesn’t mind helping others. She’s so kind, caring and loving. She’s really the best. We met at university last year and she was always there for me. She’s not from Johannesburg like me, she’s from Kwa-Zulu Natal (KZN) and she came to Gauteng on her own because of school. Her family is back in KZN.
Ayanda: I will call you everyday, I promise
Me: (Smiles) I believe you, Aya. So tell me, when are you going back to KZN?
Ayanda: When I am done with everything – Talking to the university, moving my belongings back to KZN and many more
Me: Oh, I hear you
Ayanda: Yes, on Monday I am going to the university with my parents. The university in UK already accepted me
Me: (Smiles) Wow, that’s amazing
Ayanda: I guess so
Me: So you came with your parents?
Ayanda: No. They’ll be here by tomorrow
Me: Okay, cool
Ayanda: Look, I’ll have to get going now. I’ll come here again by tomorrow before my parents arrives
Me: Okay, no problem
She kissed Warona and got up.
Ayanda: Please take care of yourself and your sister
Me: I will
I also got up and walked her out. I hugged her and she got in her car then left. She’s got a driver and a car. Rich people are truly blessed. I wish to have my own car one day.
I went to lock the gate then walked back to the house and locked the doors. I broke down, I cried so much. I am happy that Ayanda is going to UK but I am broken that I’ll never see her again. It looks like the people I love are just going far away from me. It looks like I’ll forever be lonely. Loneliness is a disease. What could I possibly chat about with Warona? I mean she’s just a baby. I am so lonely, no lie. I feel so alone. Mother and father, why did you have to go away? Couldn’t you at least wait for me to get married? Couldn’t you at least wait for more years? Why did you have to leave so soon? Why?
As I was crying, I heard Warona crying. I quickly wiped off my tears and went to her. She’s such a lovely baby. I just held her and kissed her forehead. She stopped crying and just looked at me. I hope that she doesn’t sense that everything is over. I really don’t want her to be going through what I am going through right now. I am not at peace.
[The Next Day]
Ayanda arrived like she said she would. We chilled outside. Warona was playing, she was really looking happy.
Ayanda: How are you today, Wame?
Me: I am okay and you?
Ayanda: I am fine. Look, I’ll give you money for registration. I really wanted to give you money for the whole year, I thought that I’d steal my father’s money but I couldn’t because he already took it to the bank but he gave me ten thousands so I added it to my money so I have only twenty thousands for you
Me: Hold on, are your parents already in Johannesburg?
Ayanda: Yes, they arrived early in the morning
Me: Ayanda, stealing is not a good thing. It’s good that you didn’t steal from your own father
Ayanda: But twenty thousands will not be enough
Me: For registration, It is going to be enough and I’ll have change. Thank you so much
Ayanda: You are welcome. I have cash, should I give it to you?
Me: Cash is also fine
Ayanda: Okay, here you go
She gave me R20 000 in cash
Me: Thank you, Aya
Ayanda: (Smiles) You are welcome. Now let’s start applying for Bursary. I brought my laptop
We did as she said we should do. I filled out my form online and attached all the necessary docvments. Now I will wait for the good news.
Ayanda: We are done now, I’ll have to go, my father can’t stop calling me
Me: Okay dear, go well
Ayanda: I’ll try to bring more money for you tomorrow. Actually I still have your account number so I’ll send money again for you tonight
Me: Aya, No. You’ve helped me enough, don’t give me money again
Ayanda: Have I ever listened to you?
Me: (Giggles) No
Ayanda: So I’ll do as I want. Bye Warona
Warona also said bye to Ayanda. Ayanda kissed my cheek and left.
Warona is two years old so she can speak but not clearly. I remember how mother never used to understand her and she’d call me and ask me “Wame my baby, what is your sister saying?” Then I’d say “Mama, she wants to sleep/eat/play”. My mom would then laugh and say “It looks like she’s your daughter, not mine. You understand everything she says. I know that one day when I am gone, Warona will be in good hands. I know that you’d do anything for her. Always look after her like she’s your own daughter”. So today she’s really gone and I am looking after Warona like she’s my own daughter. Mom, I will never let you down, I’ll do anything for Warona and I mean ANYTHING.
To be continued…