Hello, my name is Rethabile. I am a Mosotho girl aged 28 years. I never had a father and I lost my mother to cancer when I was 13 years old. I was fortunate enough to be raised by my lovely grandparents who sacrificed a lot just so I can finish my studies.
When I was in high school I started taking alcohol to make myself feel better, then life after writing my exams humbled me. I applied to several schools but I was only admitted to one school. As I did not get a scholarship, I had to stay at home the whole year. I used my talent to braid people’s hair to save money to apply for schools again the following year.
I was admitted at Lesotho College of Education toward a Diploma in Education Secondary, majoring in English and Geography. At this point I realized that I had to work hard at school and pass because should fail I was going to lose my sponsorship and nobody was going to pay for me. All I ever wanted was to change my grandparents’ life for the better. Yet, after graduation came unemployment and I started to lose hope again. I had suicidal thoughts because of staying at home with nothing to do, when a friend introduced me to Help Lesotho programs of which I will forever be grateful because it changed my life for the better.
When I first started my lessons at Help Lesotho (Computer and Life Skills 2018) I thought of it as passing the time. I did not have an idea that the way I looked at life was going to change in a positive way. Although the sessions we had on Life Skills were short, they were helpful in a way because they left me so curious that I applied for Leaders-in-Training Program in February 2019. The lesson on self-esteem made me realize that I do not have control over what other people think of me. I realized that if I loved myself enough what other people think of me wouldn’t matter. I reflected on how I almost ruined my future by neglecting school because of what I couldn’t change and had no control over.
Everyday spent at Help Lesotho healed me, I stopped being angry at life in general, people who hurt me, my dad who was never part of my life, and my mother’s death. I got to realize the things I did to other people that hurt them unaware that I was hurting them.
The ability to heal, to recover or bounce back from a difficult situation is the best remedy in the world. It helped me become the best decision maker. I am able to help people and learn from them. I dealt with my fears.
In the past I used to confuse being abused with being loved. I have been in a very toxic relationship unaware that I was being abused. The only time I noticed was went the pain was inflicted physically. I was in a relationship whereby it was a crime to make a mistake. I had no problem with that until I attended Help Lesotho’s sessions and was taught about healthy and unhealthy relationships. Now I am able to speak my mind, am able to see when I am being abused physically, emotionally, and mentally.
My life has changed for the better and I am a new person that my community is proud to have around because through me they know that Help Lesotho exists, my neighbors are part of the programs and their lives are improving.