Doctors realise the extensive damage drugs have inflicted on Wandile’s body and mind. She stays for a few days in hospital before she is transferred to a drug rehab centre.

Her actions in the past few years weigh heavy on her mind. She thinks of her mother and Nonku often. Most nights she dreams of her father.

“Wandile, my angel what have you become? Who are you? I didn’t raise you to be like this!” Her father says and walks away in the dream.

She always wakes up to find her pillow wet with tears. “I’ll change, dad. I promise,” she whispers to herself.

As a crucial part of her healing process Wandile writes a letter to Nonku.

My beautiful cousin

I’m sorry that you left this world through what I said and wished for.  I apologize to you for what I did. I miss you, my sister. Please forgive me wherever you are. I’ll ask for your forgiveness until the day I die. I promise to be a good human being for the rest of my days on earth.

I think of you a lot. Your humility, care and love. I hope you are together with Ma, and taking care of her as always. You were an angel on earth.

I am so ashamed I took your life.


After three months in rehab Wandile gets out and heads straight to the cemetery. She weeps at her mother’s grave. She recollects herself and heads to Nonku’s grave. Her knees become wobbly as she nears the tombstone.

She lays flowers on the tombstone. “Forgive me, my sister. Rest in peace my blood. May your ways be filled with eternal light. I’m sorry, Nonkululeko. Please forgive me.”


There is Wandile at the entrance of the University of Kwazulu-Natal.  She went back to school. It was hard at first but she made it. She is learning every day to be a better person and forgive herself. She knows it will be a life-long journey and she is willing to stay the course.

“Your name, miss?” asks the security guard.

“Wandile Dlamini,” she says as she enters the campus.

She looks at the clear blue sky as she walks. There a light breeze. She passes a tree and is sure that the leaves are clapping for her.


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