Author: Thembelihle Zwane

Mira Mthimkhulu: The Blind Girl

8



I can hear voices from a distance and I feel so weak and tired. The sound of a beeping machine alerts me that I’m in hospital. 

“Baby you are awake” I try to move but my mom stops me

“Be careful you have iv-line” She helps me sit

“How are you feeling sweetheart” she’s brushing my face

“I’m okay mom”

“You scared us princess please don’t do that again” dad chirps in 

“Don’t act like you care”

“Mira….” He cuts her off

“It’s okay darling I understand let me give you guys a space” 

“Okay” says my mom then dad make his way out 

“Oh baby I’m so glad you are okay I thought I was going to lose you”

“I wanted you to save you from this marriage mom” I hear her releasing a huge sigh and feel her sitting next to me before pulling me to her arms. 

“Sweetheart it doesn’t work like that it would have hurt more had you died on me. I can’t begin to imagine how life would be without you. Please don’t do that again. You can’t save me by taking your life that will kill me beyond repairs” she says with a tearful voice 

“But Mom you are the one who said you are enduring all this pain for me I don’t want you to suffer because of me. I don’t want to be a burden” my tears stream down my face. 

“Hey you are not a burden okay I shouldn’t have said that. I’m sorry please forgive me my miracle”

“But its true mom I’m your burden if I wasn’t here you wouldn’t have to endure all this pain. Come to think of it I have never brought joy in your life. I’m a curse in your life. Your parents kicked you out because you were pregnant with me as if that was not enough you had complications and I was born blind. Now you have to endure all of this for my wellbeing it’s too much mommy” I let out a loud sob

“Hay Mira! Please don’t say that my child. You are not a curse everything that happened is not your fault do you hear me? It’s not your fault sweetheart. I had to go through everything that I went through because it was meant to be not because of you. Everything happens for the reason baby. You are the best thing that has ever happened in my life my joy my miracle my world. I’m sorry that I made you feel like a burden. I’m your mother and I have to do whatever it’s takes for you to be well taken care of. That’s what mothers do it’s their job to look after their children. Allow me to be your mother and do my job. Stop questioning my actions and decisions because I know what’s best for you. I understand that it must be hard for you but Mira life is not as easy as you see it baby. We can’t just pack up and leave. Where will we go? Your grant is not enough. You know how hard it is for you to adapt in a new environment how will you adapt on the street? Maybe you think the street is better but trust me it bad out there especially for you. I don’t want you to get raped while I’m out there hustling for you I don’t want you to even experience life in the street. I want you to go to college study whatever you want although I think your voice will take you to places. I want you to spread your wings my child and become the best you can be.” Her words touch me deep in my heart. I realize now how wrong I was for taking my life. That would have broken her more but I thought I was getting rid of the burden from her. I understand I really understand but that doesn’t make it hurt less. 

“I hear you mom but I’m afraid he will kill you” 

“He’s seeking help my baby he wants to change let’s give him a chance”

“What kind of help?”

“He’s going to have sessions with a psychologist. Your father has an ugly past baby. His demons are haunting him”

“Or maybe he’s late wife is haunting him phela taking one’s life is no child’s play” She chuckles

“Yes maybe so would you give him a chance” I sigh 

“I don’t know mom”

“Baby come on you know how sweet your father is and he said he’s moving out of the house just for you to feel comfortable”

“Well then if that there case I hear you”

“Thank you...what happened in his past”

“Let’s talk about the rude boy” I manage to smile through my tears 

“What about him?”

“What is his name?”

“Lwandlelwenkosi Nkosi”

“Mhh Okay tell me more about last night because when I remember it correctly you wanted to “juda karate” him” we giggle 

“Well…” I tell her everything and she burst into laughter when I reach the snake part.

“Mom don’t laugh!” 

“I’m sorry baby but a snake pho” she says laughing 

“A snake is also long hard and big mom”

“Ay a snake is very long baby and I’m sure it’s not hard as an erect penis”

“I never imagined it to be that size mom yooh I was so scared” she laughs

“Well it get bigger than that it will get bigger the more he grows. He seems like a good guy though”

“He is but he can be rude at times” I carry on and tell her about the mean granny.

“Mxm uyanya ke logogo bad luck is her old self ontanga bafile uhleleleni rhaaa!!” I laugh the way she said that was funny for a moment there I thought I was listening to GC. 

“What’s funny uyadelela logogo she needs some snake she will be alright.”

“Hayi mah that’s cruel” she laughs 

“No baby I meant your kind of snake the one you touched on the rude boy” I laugh

“Please stop joking about this I was really traumatized” she giggles and I tell the rest of the story but I leave the part that we want to bring down Khumalo.

“Ncooo he gentleman mos for a young guy like him phela these fuck boys be like eyo boo lil mama hala sugababe” I giggle 

“So you still going to spend time together” Of course cooking a plan to bring down your husband.

“Well yes” 

“I want to meet him first I want to know what his intentions are”

“Haaa Mama”

“What I want to know why he’s interested in you.”

“But ma….”

“No buts Mira or else I won’t allow you two to spend time together” I sigh 

“Okay fine be nice please” 

“Why should I be nice he was rude to you?” 

“He apologized Mama”

“I will apologize too” 

“Maaa!” She laughs 

“You see that’s the reason I want to meet this boy you seem to like him. I have to make sure he doesn’t hurt you” 

“I get you and thank you for looking out for me but don’t scare him off. I know you can be mean when you want to.” She chuckles and kisses my forehead

“I love you baby I love you so much and I promise you it’s going to be okay. This nightmare will be over soon” I nod. 


The first thing I notice the next morning is that mom is not next to me. I didn’t want her to go home yesterday so dad had to ask them to allow mom to stay over. 

“Mom!” 

“In the bathroom!” She shouts back seconds later I hear her walking in.

“I have prepared a bath for you come let get you cleaned up after that you will have your breakfast.”

“Where’s muffin?”

“I didn’t bring muffin but I got you” she helps me out of the bed and guide me to the bathroom. I take off my clothes and she baths me making sure that she’s careful since I have an iv-line. Once we are done with hygiene process I get dressed in pjs and slippers before making our way back to the bed. She tucks me in carefully making sure I’m seated comfortable

“Now let’s eat” 

“What’s that?”

“Soft porridge” 

“I want something salty and greasy”

“This is not your hospital Mira open your mouth” I huff and allow her to feed me while we chat and laugh here and there. My mom and I are very close we talk about everything and anything. Gugu says I’m lucky to have a mother like her. Unlike her she can’t share everything with her mother. I hear the door opening and shutting again

“Greetings” says a man with a deep voice

“Morning doctor” Oh so it’s my doctor 

“How’s my patient doing?”

“I’m fine doctor I just want to know when will I be going home?”

“That’s good I will keep you for today then tomorrow I will let you go”

“Is there something wrong doctor?” asks my money with so much concern in her voice 

“No of course not Mrs Khumalo I just want to make sure she’s perfectly fine. She got lucky I just want to make sure she’s perfectly fine. She got lucky drowning can cause so much damage even heart failure. I advise you to monitor her when she is taking a bath and equip her bathroom to avoid her drowning in future” Huh? I know how to bath on my own I’m not a kid. Yes It’s frustrating when I’m using a bathroom that I’m not familiar with but that doesn’t mean I can’t bath myself. 

“I l know how…” my mom cuts me off

“I would do that thank you doctor”

“Do have any pains Miss Mthimkhulu?”

“No I’m fine”

“Good I will come check up on you later”

“Thank you doctor” mom says then I hear the doctor walking away. 

“Open your mouth” 

“I’m full now” I purse my lips and fold my arms against me chest

“What’s with the attitude now” she asks cheekily 

“Just because I’m blind doesn’t mean I don’t know how to bath mom” I say with annoyance in my voice

“Of course baby I know that” 

“Then why didn’t you tell him that he talks like I drowned accidentally” I say

“Yes because that’s what I told him. I didn’t want to tell them that you were committing suicide because they were going to refer you to therapy”

“I see you are protecting your husband”

“You won’t tell anybody about this do you hear me” I say nothing 

“Mira?” She warns

“What?”

“You are rude at times I will pinch your big butt you will pee on yourself I’m not your age mate. I see I’m too soft on you and you are forgetting your place” I swallow hard 

“I won’t tell anyone” 

“Good… I’m going to go home to fetch your muffin and buy you something greasy and salty. What else do you want?” 

“My phone and headset” I say

“Can you be specific on something greasy and salty?”

“Ribs fries and cheese burger”

“I will see you now. I love you my miracle”

“I love you too mommy” she kisses my lips and make her way out leaving her sweet scent behind. Just then the door opens

“Did you forget something?” 

“Doll face” my heart melt 

“Lwandlelwenkosi” I can feel him making his way towards me. 

“Hey mom told me you were admitted yesterday. I couldn’t see you because your mom was here with you...how are you feeling?” His mom must be working here

“I’m fine” The bed sinks as it accommodates him. He pulls me to his arms and hugs me. We share a long warm hug wrapped around his arms makes me feel like everything is okay. 

“I was so scared… what happened” He pulls back after a while and squeezes his sweaty palms on mine. 

“I drowned” I say with a low voice

“Oh no in a swimming pool?” The concern in his voice can’t be missed 

“No in the bathroom” He says nothing I’m not sure if he heard me or he’s studying me. I bow down my head just in case my demeanour sells me out. I don’t want to get into trouble with my mom. I know when she means something she will definitely whip my ass. 

“Dollface” he lets go of the other hand and lifts up my chin

“What happened” he asks emphasizing each and every syllable 

“I said I drowned Lwandlelwenkosi”

“You are lying I can see it in your eyes. Please talk me” 

“I don’t know what do you want me to say”

“I’m not your fool Mira Mthimkhulu” he warns

“I swear”

“Please don’t tell me that man did something to you I swear Mira I…” I cut him off

“He didn’t do anything let this go okay”

“Hey you can trust me” he caresses my cheek making me weak. I find myself singing like a canary 

“Dammit what the fuck where you thinking huh! How could you be so selfish?” He let’s go of my hands and stands up

“I wanted to free her from this pain Lwandlelwenkosi” I defend myself 

“Bullshit! Do you hear me that’s bullshi! How do you think killing yourself would have made the situation better! You are egocentric Mira! What if you died huh? How was your mom going to feel as if she’s not going through enough already!! How was I going to feel! What about Gugu? I have never seen such selfish person in my life!” I couldn’t help but cry his words are tearing my heart in two. 

“I was trying to free her from all this pain she’s enduring because…” he cuts me off I can hear he’s moving up and down. I can’t miss how angry he is

“I don’t know how it works in your world but in the real world it doesn’t work like that! You don’t go around committing suicide just because you are saving the people you love from enduring pain! It just doesn’t work like that. That’s selfish and childish!!” 

“Fuck you do you hear me! Fuck you! You think it’s easy to take a decision to end your life let alone doing it? No one wants to die Lwandlelwenkosi no matter how the bible or the pastors or whoever try to candy coat it. We don’t know what happens in the afterlife all of these things they say about going to heaven and what not are just assumptions. We are all scared of the unknown. If we were to choose I know all of us would choose to live until eternity but hey. Fine you call me selfish but my reason behind suicide was not selfish. Call me egocentric its fine but you are not the one who’s always reminded by your mother that she’s enduring abuse because of you. You are not the one who has to listen to her screaming every night begging him to stop but the next morning she plays the happy wife for you! You are not the one who live with fear that one of these days he will beat her up to death! You are not the one who feels like a burden! You are not the one who brought so much pain in your mom’s life first she was kicked out in her home because she was pregnant with me as if that was not enough I turned out to be blind a curse of a child who Is hopeless and helpless. This is one thing I could have ever done for her to set her free. Yes I admit I didn’t think meticulously about this but that doesn’t mean you should downplay my feelings nor judge my decision. I’m the one who knows how it’s like to be Mira and I’m the one facing what I’m going through even if you were to try you can never step in my shoes so don’t you dare make me feel like I’m a horrible person because if killing myself was going to help the situation like I thought it would I would do it again and again to save my mother from this hell hole!” I’m gasping between tears as I shout at him. 

“Phuma futhi” (get out)

“Dollface I’m sorry”

“I said out Lwandlelwenkosi I don’t want to see you again and I don’t even know why I ever entertained you from the beginning.” He sits next to me and hold my hands 

“Baby please I’m sorry….”

“I’m not your baby I don’t need people like you in my life. When I think about it now I see that I made a wrong decision but you could have found a way to tell me that not make me feel like my feelings don’t matter. And this thing of yours shouting me is irritating me I’m not your child awuphume!” (Get out)

“I’m sorry Mira please forgive me. I went about it the wrong way please…”

“Dude leave okay!”

“What about Khumalo don’t you want me to help you to bring him down”

“No just go man”

“But your mom...”

“Let her be” He release a huge sigh 

“I’m sorry I’m really sorry. I hope you find it in your heart to forgive me” He catches me off guard with peck on my lips then make his way out.

“Suncabuza abafana manje” (you are kissing boys now)

“Hello to you too malume Sox” I can hear his footsteps as he makes his way towards my bed

“Angiythandi lentwana mtwana kwamele udlalelekude nayo” (I don’t like that boy baby you have to stay away from him)

“Why?”

“Hayi ufunani kuwe” (What does he want from you) I shrug my shoulders. 

“Don’t allow him to place his paralyzed lips on your cute lips again” I giggle

“Don’t laugh mtwana I’m serious...here take my handkerchief and wipe your lips” He hands me the handkerchief I do as he say giggling.

“Good I brought your favourite sandwich bread with butter and peanut butter”

“Thank you malume Sox”

“Oh and litchi juice” He places my sandwich on my laps and I start eating even though I’m full I don’t want to disappoint him. Spending time with malume Sox is nice because he makes me laugh. 


Few days have passed I’m out of hospital now and doing okay. Khumalo moved out of our house indeed but he comes to see us every day. Lwandlelwenkosi has been calling none stop for the past few days I don’t know why he can’t just get it that whatever that was going on between us it’s over. It’s been a while since I spend time with my mom just the two of us. Today she’s taking me out to the movies. 

“Baby you have a delivery”

“From who and what’s that?”

“I don’t know… it’s a big white teddy and your favourite chocolates here” She hands me the big fluffy teddy bear and the box of chocolates. The teddy bear smells of his scent and just knew who it’s coming from. 

“Here’s the card” I give her the teddy and chocolate then reads the card. Dollface I’m sorry I never meant to hurt you. I know I can be a jerk at times please forgive me. Let me make it up to you Mashwabada please. Love your dough. I smile but if he thinks he can buy my forgiveness he got another thing coming. There’s nothing I hate more than people downplaying my feelings. It makes me mad!

“Mmhh that smile what does the card say” mom says

“Nothing Mom” 

“Come on let me see”

“Ah.ah…let’s go now” 

“I thought you said you no longer friends with the rude boy”

“True” 

“So why is he sending you gifts”

“Who said it’s him?”

“Haibo Mira don’t give me a heart attack tu Kant how many boyfriends do you have?” I giggle 

“None Mama...Let me go put this in my bedroom then we will go” I take the teddy bear to my bedroom then we leave. We start at mugg and bean and have chocolate cake It’s mom’s favourite after that we go to watch a movie. Later we drive to the hotel where mom had organized spa for us. Its feels good being pampered once in a while especially after these stressful past few days. Spending time together just the two of us made me realize that somehow we drifted a bit apart over these two years. I’m glad we had time to spend today just the two of us and it reminded me of the good old times when it was just me and her. We are just sitting on bed having wine and mom is reading a book for me when we hear altercation on the other side of our hotel room. 

“Bonga!! Where is she!!! I want to see my wife!!!!” Oh lord here we go again. 



Write your opinion