In life we cannot choose how to live because life is unpredictable and that’s what makes it fun. But sometimes life can be unfair, and that’s what makes us who we are, We stand up and fight when life isn’t fair.

I grew up with my brother and both my parents in a happy and warm family. We were not a perfect family, sometimes there were arguments that had negative results, but in the end we would always get along. Well that’s what I thought but I suppose that I was too young to understand the situation. It turns out that my parents were always arguing about money. My father used to get drunk and every time he got paid he wouldn’t come back home for about a week or two. When he came back he would pretend like everything was okay and wanted us to pretend too.

I remember one day we had no food to eat and my father came back drunk. In his pocket there was an envelope with money, my mother had no choice but to steal it while he was asleep. This whole family drama had an impact on my studies. I could not focus at school; I was thinking about my family falling apart. All I wanted was a happy family, a home filled with laughter that warmed up the environment around us. What my father was doing was not fair and I wanted to do something about it, but I was only 13 years old and if I had spoken out my mother would’ve told me that I was rude, like she always did, when I was upset because of my father. On the other hand my brother was turning 19. I never thought he would be like his father, truly, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. All the things they did affected me badly and I even had suicidal thoughts as I grew up.

As I went to high school my life was just getting more and more difficult. It was just too much. I was 15 and my father left us to look for a job in Port Alfred. He got fired from his previous job because he was drunk during work time. Every day he would wake up and wear his regular clothes and pretend like he was going to work. One day as I was coming back from school I saw him with his friends in a tavern near home. That day he did not come back — he went straight to Port Alfred.

I thought since the “trouble maker” was gone, we were going to live a happy life, but my brother couldn’t wait to take his father’s place. He got involved in gangsterism, he got into fights and he even sold drugs. I loved my brother but him being in a gang had a huge impact on my studies. He would get into a fight and we would have to wake up at midnight and try to stop him. I remember one Friday, I was studying Physical Sciences because on Saturday we had a test and I was sure that I was going to ace it. But when I finished studying at 12am I heard people shouting my brother’s name — he was fighting. We went outside, but the fight was already over and he was stabbed so bad that we had to call the ambulance to take him to hospital. I forgot all about the test, everything I had studied for I forgot, the only thing that was on my mind was seeing my brother laying in the cold and covered in blood. I was traumatised. From that day I knew that life sometimes isn’t fair because this incident could’ve happened at another point in time.

Life is not fair to everyone and I think it was meant to be that way because we wouldn’t have been able to get through the challenges we face every day. Imagine if life was fair how we would have been.


Tell us: Do you think that we have to experience challenges in life to become stronger people?