At a young age, my mum was domineering and vindictive if she didn’t get her own way, she was constantly critical of my dad and wanted to rule the house with an iron fist. I grew up despising dad for being weak, and resented her so much because she picked serving herself above the needs of the family (emotionally). Things got a lot worse as I got older. I stopped speaking to both of my parents for about 12 years. They’d come to visit me to try and talk with me and I’d say hello and then that was it. I avoided them and I think I smoked marijuana to rebel against them and make them angry. I was full of anger and hate. I grew up violent.
A few months ago, we were studying a topic on forgiveness in the school, I kept feeling like I needed to forgive my mum and to show her love… I realised that to love others is to love God. I knew I needed to get rid of all the bitterness and hate in my heart. I decided to go visit mum – because she needs to forgive some of our family members, and because I knew I needed to forgive her. I went up to my mum and told her I loved her and gave her a big hug. It was the first time in my life that I’d told her I loved her, and I could see in her eyes how touched she was. My dad started crying, and my mum promised she’d forgive the other family members. We all ended up crying together. I felt SO relieved when I left and so full of peace!
I’ve learnt a lot since coming to the life-skills classes each week… I’ve gotten so much help, from God and from the Life-Gate family and now I love to serve as part of the Life-Gate team. I love to see the smiles on the faces of those we’re helping, when they realise they’re important to us and that we enjoy their company. I love being able to show love to those we reach out to through the Outreach team.