Vic and Nelson Mandela meet


It was a horrible time of our lives when Vic started going to the Pain Clinic.  Her pain was out of control – or so I thought.  It was actually just “preparation school” for what was yet to come….  I was mortified that she was on 600 mg of morphine, a week…. When Hospice accepted Vic onto the program in 2013, a mere 9 years later, she was already on 600mg of morphine, twice per day.

I digress.

Vic needed to consult with an anaesthetist, specialising in pain control, on a monthly basis.  He would examine her and re-evaluated her pain medication. We need an original prescription for morphine. It was one of those dreadful experimental phases of her life.  But, bad things lead to great things…

The Pain Clinic was situated in an élite part of our city.  It was a mission to get to it and took many hours out of a day.

IMG_7587

“If you wish to remember me, do it with a kind deed or word to someone who needs you. If you do what I have asked, I will live forever.”

This particular day Vic was in terrible pain, and it was difficult moving her from the car into the wheelchair.  Her beautiful eyes were dark from pain and filled with tears. I remember thinking “How tiny and sad she looks”…

mandela-quote

We stood waiting for the elevator. It felt like a lifetime.  All I wanted to do was get Vic into the consulting rooms so she could get a booster shot of morphine. I was getting quite impatient, with the delay of the lift, when it started moving down.  I noticed quite a build-up of people on the outer periphery but did not pay too much attention to them. I was totally focussed on my child’s pain and discomfort.

The door opened.  Two tall men, wearing sunglasses, walked out.  There was an audible gasp in the hall.  The greatest statesman in the world, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, stood behind them.  He was so tall! In total awe I moved Vic’s wheelchair back clearing the way for this amazing man.

He walked out of the lift and walked towards us.  He stood in front of Vic. He stooped down, stuck out his hand, and said “Hello my dear.  How are you?”

“I am fine thank you Mr President,” Vic said

“I hope you feel better soon,” he said in his beautiful, raspy yet gentle voice.

He greeted me, still holding her little hand.  I will never forget his gentle eyes.  He had an aura of greatness.

Vicky and Nelson Mandela – Two great warriors locked in a moment of kinship.

“Goodbye” he said and walked away.

I know that Vic and Nelson Mandela will meet, again, in Heaven…  I believe that the two brave souls will recognise one another.  This time there will be enough time for them to linger and chat.  The people they are it will be about their loved ones, the grace they experienced in their lives… I know they will not discuss the hardship, pain or suffering they lived…

Two incredible people… Nelson Rohihlahla Mandela and Vicky Bruce.  Heroes of many… two people who made a difference, through their suffering; their bravery and inner strength.

 

Final words….


Wedding day

This weekend I again realized that there are people who are going through worse hardships than we are….

Tom, our son-in-law is a lovely, warm and hospitable man.  He has made a huge difference in our lives.  He is brutally honest as an individual.  He has embraced the family and fulfils his role within the family with enthusiasm.   Tom is bright – very bright!  As a computer nerd he lives on STRONG coffee.   He loves playing cricket with the boys.

He is Lani’s soul mate and a wonderful back-up father for the girls.

A couple of months before Tom and Lani got married Tom’s dad died from a heart attack.   A year ago Tom’s sister was travelling from Cape Town with her Mom.  Tom’s mom had been diagnosed with breast cancer and had her first chemo treatment that morning.  A tragic accident…a car landed on top of theirs and Tom’s sister was killed.  His Mom was seriously injured.  Her accident injuries healed in time.

This weekend Tom travelled to Cape Town to say goodbye to his Mom…  She is dying.   Today my dear son-in-law had to sit next to his mom’s bed and speak his final words with her.   In my heart I can see him standing in the door of her room and looking back one final time….It is extremely unlikely that he will see her again….  What thoughts went through his Mom’s mind?  What did she see?  Did she see her adult son she must be so proud of or did she see her little boy playing in the sand?

I kept thinking how unbelievable privileged we are.  We are able to be with Vic every day, every second of the day if we chose…  There is no need for cramming in “final words”.  Every day we have new words, reassuring words, words of love and support.  I cannot imagine having to get up from Vic’s bed, saying goodbye and having to walk away!

Tomorrow morning Tom will wake up; go to work…his thoughts will be filled with thoughts of his mom.  How many times an hour will his mind turn to his mom and her final journey?

My poor Tom!

Travel well dear Marna….

Woman’s Day 9.8.2012


The next generation of Strong Women!!

Women’s Day is celebrated internationally in March.  In South Africa we celebrate Woman’s Day on the 9Th of August.  This day com­mem­or­ates the 9 August 1956 when 20000 women of all races and ages par­ti­cip­at­ed in a national march peti­tioning the then National Party Government against pass laws … (“Pass laws” were legis­la­tion that required African per­sons to carry a doc­u­ment on them to ‘prove’ that they were allowed to enter a ‘white area’ dur­ing the Apartheid regime).

Organized by the Federation of South African Women, the March was led by four brave women; Helen Joseph, Rahima Moosa, Sophie Williams and Lilian Ngoyi. The lead­ers delivered peti­tions to Prime Minister JG Strijdom‘s office within the Union Buildings in Pretoria.

The march was a resound­ing suc­cess and South Africa recog­nised the bravery of these women who risked arrest, deten­tion and ban­ning by declar­ing 9 August National Women’s Day

During the March the women sang Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika, which became the joint national anthem of South Africa along with Die Stem van Suid Africa, in 1994.  An interesting fact is that ‘Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika was composed as a hymn in 1897 a Missionary teacher in Johannesburg.  Five countries, Zambia, Tanzania, Namibia, Zimbabwe and South Africa adopted ‘Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika as their national anthem.  Zimbabwe and Namibia have since adopted new national anthems.

‘Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika

 
Lord, bless Africa
May her spirit rise high up
Hear thou our prayers
Lord bless us.
Lord, bless Africa
Banish wars and strife
Lord, bless our nation
Of South Africa.

I was surfing “Strong Women” and found some amazing quotes which I would like to share with you tonight.   Interesting,

The next generation of Power Houses!

when I was surfing “Women + Abuse” many, many sites with “50 Shades of Grey” came up….. I am going to have to read the book to find out why “Shades of Grey” is tagged with “women + abuse”…..

“In politics, if you want anything said, ask a man. If you want anything done, ask a woman.” Margaret Thatcher

“Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim.” ― Nora Ephron

“A girl should be two things: classy and fabulous.” ― Coco Chanel

“After all, Ginger Rogers did everything that Fred Astaire did. She just did it backwards and in high heels.” ― Ann Richards

“Yes, we praise women over 40 for a multitude of reasons. Unfortunately, it’s not reciprocal. For every stunning, smart, well-coiffed, hot woman over 40, there is a bald, paunchy relic in yellow pants making a fool of himself with some 22-year old waitress. Ladies, I apologize. For all those men who say, “Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?”, here’s an update for you. Nowadays 80%of women are against marriage. Why? Because women realize it’s not worth buying an entire pig just to get a little sausage!” ― Andy Rooney

“Perhaps if we saw what was ahead of us, and glimpsed the follies, and misfortunes that would befall us later on, we would all stay in our mother’s wombs, and then there would be nobody in the world but a great number of very fat, very irritated women.” ― Lemony Snicket

“The greater your capacity to love, the greater your capacity to feel the pain.” ~ Jennifer Aniston

“I know God will not give me anything I can’t handle. I just wish that He didn’t trust me so much.” ~ Mother Teresa

“Pick the day. Enjoy it – to the hilt. The day as it comes. People as they come… The past, I think, has helped me appreciate the present – and I don’t want to spoil any of it by fretting about the future.” ~ Audrey Hepburn

“When women are depressed, they eat or go shopping. Men invade another country. It’s a whole different way of thinking.” ~ Elayne Boosler

So, tonight I salute all the strong (and witty) women of the world.  I salute the mothers of nations, leaders, sisters and friends.  I salute my daughters.  I salute Vic for the life she has lived.  In the words of― D.H. LawrenceLady Chatterley’s Lover  “A woman has to live her life, or live to repent not having lived it.”   Vic has not wasted a single breath!

But, in conclusion, the best quote of the day:  “I, with a deeper instinct, choose a man who compels my strength, who makes enormous demands on me, who does not doubt my courage or my toughness, who does not believe me naive or innocent, who has the courage to treat me like a woman.” ~ Anais Nin, French born American author of short stories.

We all deserve husbands/partners that respect our strength!  I salute my beautiful husband who is truly “the wind beneath my wings”.   Dankie my skat!  Jy is die beste!!