As today marks the 2nd Remembrance Day, I cant use the word Anniversary, of your passing I have felt the need to reflect and write you this letter. Reflection has been such a joy for me, yes joy with tears of sadness, as I have been able to see how blessed I was to have you in my life for a short 26 years. Yolanda I am more and more convinced that you were an Angel in my life. A gift from God.
You forever built me up and walked with me along some deep dark paths. In the early years of our relationship when I was suffering from depression you stood by me, for this I will forever be grateful. Right in the beginning of our relationship we faced challenges not of our making but rather that of a country coming out of the grips of an oppressive regime, apartheid might have been coming to an end but its effects still occupied the hearts and minds of those around us. Being in a mixed relationship certainly had many staring at us with some whose hearts had been hardened by years of apartheid making sneered comments. Yet love won. We never viewed ourselves as being in a mixed relationship, we merely loved one another knowing that we came from different backgrounds.
There is that saying “dynamite comes in small packages” and you certainly displayed that to the fullest. No matter how tough the circumstance you were up to the challenge. Your height at 1,39m and your accompanying small frame never stopped you from achieving what you had set out to do. Your “dynamite” strength also shone brightly when you had a full time job, two young children and one adult child (me) to take care of and still found the time and energy to study for your bookkeeping diploma.
Your love for family, friends and colleagues always shone through. You in your own magnificent way of baking made others feel seen and appreciated. I learnt so much from you in this regard and only wish I had paid more attention when you were still here with us. I can proudly say that our girls did pay attention as evidenced by the things they do and say that come out of the Yolanda textbook. I am very grateful that in the short time you had with our girls you gave them a lifetime of lessons. Many a time both girls will say Mommy said this or Mommy did this. You truly left your mark on theirs and other people’s lives.
Today as I write this letter to you I am incredibly grateful for the two beautiful young ladies you left in my care. Not only do they have many of your physical characteristics, that remind me of your beauty, they possess much of your heart and approach to life. Everyday I am reminded of our wonderful life together. I was and continue to be blessed. Just yesterday when I dropped both girls at high school I sat in the car to reflect on how grown up they have both become. The strength and determination shown by both of them is a constant reminder of you. Milah’s love for others shines brighter than the morning sun and little Hannah’s confidence to begin this new journey with such determination. You truly loved and blessed our girls with skill sets that will assist them in succeeding in life.
This pain of grief, which very few can fully appreciate, is a constant reminder of our love for one another. I always remember the example given on our wedding day by Reverend Syre. Remember when he took the two eggs, saying this one is Sean and the other Yolanda. He then cracked them and poured them into a bowl slowly mixing them. He finished this demonstration by asking can you see Sean, can you see Yolanda. This was such a prophetic message as to how our marriage would become. There wasn’t a Sean or a Yolanda, it was us. In many ways even though you aren’t physically present I still feel that it is us.
Yolanda I have come a long way in the past two years. I still cry, I still wish to open my eyes and that this was all a terrible dream however I would only want you back as a whole person. I wouldn’t want you back to face all the pain and suffering that you went through just for my selfish wish. I know that you are pain free and for this I am grateful. Yip I still open you cupboard every now and then, what a treasure trove of memories of a life together. I have also been fortunate to write this blog, I cannot believe the number of people whose lives have been touched by your love. I also started to attend a GriefShare group which has help me along this journey which will be with me till we meet again.
When you first became ill we both promised one another to walk this journey together. No matter how difficult the obstacles. You kept your promise and always had hope even in the darkest of moments, I admire you strength and love. As I enter the third year without your physical presence I will continue our journey of love.
The 14th January will remain chiseled into my soul for as long as I am alive. The pain that took hold of my life that day still remains with me however the gratitude of a loving life spent together with all the wonderful memories and reminders softens the pounding strike of the hammer on the chisel. Thank you for a life filled with love.
To my forever Angel, thank you.
Miss you beyond comprehension
Your loving husband