There are so many great stories of hope and positivity to share, that I thought I should start a feature called “Moms we look up to“.
When one is going through a really difficult time, it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that we are the only ones with problems.
A friend of over 10 years shared her story of heart break and how her children helped her to heal, which reminded me that we need to celebrate our challenges, for they build character and resilience. Nandi lost her husband very suddently when her son’s were just 4 and 2 years old respectively. Despite her excessive pain and doubts, she has fought for her dream of qualifying as a medical doctor, while continuing to be the best mom she can be. l have always admired how she lives all areas of her life in a hub of positivity. I spent some time with her and her boys over the Christmas period and they definitely have the same spirit.
Here is my interview with Nandi:
Nandi: As I read through your questions I must admit I couldn’t help but get teary as they take me through the journey I have traveled to get to the Nandipha Thandi Ndhlovu I see before me.
This journey is one which has not been travelled by many which is why I not only feel the need to share my experiences but am obliged to in order to prove that there truly a light at the end of the tunnel…
MODERN ZULU MOM: What are the biggest challenges as a working,single mom?
Nandi: No matter which profession you are in the thought of not being able to spend as much time as you possibly can with your children used to make me feel guilty. As a single mom you both wear the pants in the house and in the same breath are responsible for nurturing souls, reading the bedtime stories, making sure teeth are brushed, homework is done; the list is endless BUT as a single mom you need to master the sensitive balance of taking care of you family’s needs and still leaving space for taking care of yourself.
MODERN ZULU MOM: what is your advice to other single moms?
Nandi: 1) My biggest savior has been my support structure. When people offer to help you you need to grab that opportunity by the horns because as fearlessly strong as you are you need to realize that you are not thought of as being any lesser for needing and using help.
2) Time management: Get a schedule going and STICK TO IT. When your children know what is going on and what to expect they are calmer and everything runs much smoother.
3) Realise that you can’t do it all and make peace with it. Do your best and God will do the rest.
MODERN ZULU MOM: How did you help yourself and your sons cope with the passing of their father?
Nandi: To be honest the real question should be “How did your sons help you cope with the passing of their father?” Children are more resilient than we could ever have imagined. Through their strength and the strength they needed in me we were able to pull through. At the tender ages of 4 & 2 at first they did not understand the enormity of their loss but the comforting belief that they now had an extra special Angel looking down on them who knew them personally and loved them was the foundation of their healing. Personally I still struggle with our loss but seeing them grow into young men I’m immensely proud of and be surrounded by overwhelming love from family and friends and Gods promise to never be forsaken are my reasons to get up and face every day with resilience.
MODERN ZULU MOM: What were the biggest adjustments you had to make from having a partner to raise your children with,to doing it alone?
Nandi: It’s similar to a complete 360 degree turn! My late husband would always put our boys happiness first and made them such a priority that their well being was put at the forefront above all else. This is one of the most important lessons I have learnt from him; I aim to be the best parent to my kids and to give all I am to achieve this- life is too short to have regrets or to be stuck in the mundane world of “I wish I had”.
Being married and having a supportive partner who was not only an amazing father, loving husband but my financial backing as a student gave me the freedom to do anything my heart desired. Needless to say things are and could never be the same after such a loss but with a change in mindset, respecting your new financial platform and realizing what your true priorities are and ridding yourself of unnecessary stressors you learn to make do with what you have and make the best of it!
MODERN ZULU MOM: What is the best part about being a mother?
Nandi: Wow, where do I start…
We all know who we cry out for when the pawpaw hits the fan…well being on the receiving end and knowing that someone wholeheartedly and unconditionally loves and believes in you gives me wings! My most heart-warming moment is arriving home after a long, trying day and the second you walk though the door they lay eyes you and everything stops; their eyes light up, toys are flung to the floor and they run to you and give you the tightest bear hug- that is the only remedy I need to make any remnants of a battering day melt away.
MODERN ZULU MOM: What’s the most important belief/thing you want your sons to have/know?
Nandi: God is good all the time, all the time God is good!
This sentence has gotten me through the bleakest of days. I would know I have succeeded as a mother when I know I have been able to raise two God-fearing gentlemen who respect each and every person they come into contact with, who understand the value of hard work and LOVE life.
Thank you for the opportunity to share..xoxo
I feel very honoured that you shared this with my readers and I my friend. Yours is a story of the power of faith.
What do you think of Nandi’s story?