The man who became the father I never had

The man who became the father I never had

I was Born in the 90’s by a single mother who at the time was 18 years old my biological father hit the road never looking back.  I was raised by my grandparents at a farm until the age of 4, my mother met a man, a teacher who was based in Tsumeb. After I turned 5 they got married and I had to move to the “big town” the excitement I was going through, being told I have a father now, a man who would protect me from all harm, My father. Before I started primary he was my teacher at home, he taught me how to read, write and count. I fell in love with books, what I loved and still love about reading is that it takes you to places you’ve never been to, as you read you can imagine everything in the story, you become part of the story. I loved day dreaming about the places  and people I’ve read about. My father was a very strict man known and respected by everyone in Tsumeb and when you’re a daughter of the most respected man in town, my high school life consisted of going to the library and back home. “NO BOYS”  Dad would always say. He would drop me off and pick me up, He was so strict with me. Looking back today I’m so grateful that I was raised by such a strict and grounded man, it has surely made me a strong young women I’m growing into today.

After being the only child for 14 years my little brother was born, “freedom!!”at last I thought. Now they have someone else to fuss about and I can live my life with out having Daddy at every Conner I turned, but no. I would go visit a friend and loose track of time, rushing home I’d see him in the dusty streets of Tsumeb  in front of our yard  waiting for me not angry just so concerned. He was my very best friend, my fashion stylist,  He was there when I failed time and time again and he would tell me to get up and try again. I loved him so dearly.

The year I was turning 19, we had planned the biggest party ever, I remember counting the months before my birthday and reminding him as he was sitting in the living room, “6 more months to go until I turn 19”, and he smiled and said “I will walk into a shop and pick your birthday gift myself”  hearing this made me more anxious, what could he have in mind I wondered. Little did I know that I only had 2 more months with him. Cancer had taken over. I saw he was in so much pain but I also saw how hard he was fighting for us. I knew the day I had to say goodbye would come eventually, but I didn’t know it would be so soon, I had only known this amazing man for 15 years. He had so much to see, I still had to make him very  proud.

On the 14th of August 2012 my father had been hospitalized, Mom called while I was at my part time job and informed me of this, I knew he was a fighter, I told Mom “don’t worry you know Dad will pull through he always dose”. He was diagnosed with throat cancer just a year after they got married, so he had been in and out of Hospital and every time he pulled through. However he couldn’t fight cancer anymore his body was in too much pain and he had to rest. The 15th of August he passed on.  This day seemed like a nightmare. I had to be strong for Mom &  my  little brother, I had to be their pillar, my father was gone, the bread winner, my strong hold was gone. I made a promise to him when I said my final goodbye as we laid him to rest, that I would become successful and that I would make him proud.

I moved to Windhoek in search for  a Job to support my mother and brothers and it has not been easy, I had to forget about studying because I now had a family to take care of. I worked as an in-store promoter and I earned very little luckily I lived at an uncle’s house so I could send mom half of my earnings  and I had to survived on the other half, Oh boy those days were tough, but along the way I met people who were strangers but they gave a helping hand, an ear to listen and a shoulder to cry on. Most days I didn’t know how I’d get by, but the promise I made to my father pushed me to work harder.

I worked in so many places, from being a waitress, to working in a retail shop, to an Apple cellphone shop, I was a receptionist, and I became a Host at a Guestfarm, this is where I fell in love with meeting new people from around the world, I called my mom one afternoon screaming and saying “I found the ONE” the job that fills my soul.

Now  I’m working  for one of the leading tourism companies in Namibia. I know I still  have a long way to go, But I’ve also come a long way and the promise I made to my father keeps me going everyday.