‘You will remember me for the good times we had’, she said. ‘You will remember me for the good I have done in your life’, she said these words before she finally resorted to an eternal sleep. She was the woman who taught me how to iron my khaki shorts, wash my feet and to brush my teeth. Above all, she taught me to wear shoes, but I remember grandmother used to be cross with me upon hearing that I had developed a habit of removing shoes and hiding them in the school yard. I remember my very first time when I wore shoes. These were the days when I had to go to Form 1 at the nearby Manyene secondary school. Shoes used to hurt my feet such that they would bleed. I was more comfortable in rubber sandals and walking barefoot than in wearing shoes.
I remember, she used to grow groundnuts and sell at the nearby missionary school. She was a great woman who believed in the value of education though she could not read and write. She sacrificed and invested much in the education that she never had. Even during the toughest of times she could still afford to do menial cleaning jobs just for the sake of my upkeep. In me she saw the potential. I remember how she used to go to Teacher Maswera to re-emphasize the need for him to discipline me. She strongly felt and feared I would become a spoilt child.
With the sands of time, God saw it fit to take her from this mother earth. In the serenity of death we lost grandmother. There are no more short stories, folklore and the goodies she always brought with from the nearby grocery shop. All what is left are empty and fading memories of the once cheerful and loving woman. Each time I take a stroll down the family graveyard, tears ooze uncontrollably.
I am painfully reminded of the lives and times we shared. I always try to re-connect and re-trace the lives and times of grandmother. I only seek solace and comfort in the Lord. I believe grandmother is watching over me wherever she is. I still hear her wise words of wisdom ringing in the back of my mind…
You will remember me for the good times we had….
Surely today as I sit in my hut, I am in deep thoughts. I am remembering you for the good times we shared, the tender love and care. Life will never be the same again…..