I vividly remember my mother’s words each time I would infuriate her. I had no idea what she meant at the time, but I got so used to hearing her words that I would imitate her. After all, I had been hearing them all my life.
Each time we would play “house,” my goal would be to play the motherly role. When “my kids” misbehaved, I would carelessly mimic my mother:
“Is this the thanks I get after the 2 months and 3 days in the hospital? I am your only mother and you will never have another. I endured all that pain so you could live.”
I never bothered to get to know her story. All I could see was the pain in her eyes each time she said those words.
Years passed by, and I still never bothered to find out until one particular day when I was asked a question I couldn’t answer.
“Shamiso, where do you get your strength from? What makes you stand out from the rest?”
I remember I turned to my mother because I somehow knew the answer lay in the story I had never bothered to ask.
This is what she had to say:
“Whenever I was pregnant, my blood pressure always shot up. Before you, I tragically lost a son. He was macerated and stayed in my womb in that state for six heart-wrenching days. The experience was horrendous, and it was by the grace of God that you were conceived. However, delivering you was no small feat. I was hospitalised for over two months and subsequently induced in order to beat my rising blood pressure. Fortunately, God heard our cry, no further complications occurred.
When you were delivered, I asked your uncle and his wife to bless you with a name, and they named you Shamiso (a marvel/miracle), and we added Patience. From a womb that carried a decomposed child, came a live baby!”
From that day, her story and her pain became my testimony. So many things started to make sense and I felt bad for making fun of the pain I knew nothing about – the pain I did not understand.
I was more than convinced that women sometimes bear pain not for them to prove how strong they are, but so that future generations find their own meaning and purpose in life.
I came to the conclusion that I was born a miracle. Born to be whomever I wanted to be, born to reach the greatest heights – even the seemingly impossible ones.
We were all come into this world through the same process, but the details are never the same. Allow me to be different, I was born that way.