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The world moved on without bringing me reprieve nor respite - by M.F.

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Time is like the wind. It lifts the light and leaves the heavy.

Student-inmate studying for a diploma from institution TM1

3rd Prize

Time entails multiple concepts that can be hard to explain. In its simplest, time is the period between the past and the present. It consistently ticks away, making it cruel teacher and an apt healer. Time, like the wind, can also bring calmness and peace or chaos and turmoil. My daughter, Sophia, was just three when I found out that she had cancer. It was terminal and needless to say, my whole world came crashing down. I remember lying down on the grass with her, watching the clouds drifting lazily across the sky. The warm sun on our skin and the gentle breeze a caress on our faces. I would close my eyes and listen to Sophia chattering like a bullet train, interspersed with her peals of laughter at whatever it was that amused. I would nod and laugh with her, even if I did not understand what she was on about.

Time is like the wind in that it is a force that is intangible. It cannot be seen nor touched. It can only be felt, Iris effects can be both subtle and profound. Time moves forward at its own pace, and we cannot slow it down or speed it up. It is always present, even when we are not aware of it.I knew that I had only months before Sophia was gone, wrenched from my embrace. It was a cruel joke and I blamed God for it, I took the time to savour what little imprisoned moments we had left, to cherish the things what made life worth living. My every waking moments were devoted to making Sophia as happy as she could be. Time flew like a wind then, before lifting the light of my heart and leaving me broken, dealing with the heavy loss.

My sweet Sophia was gone. Imprisoned in grief and sorrow days blurred together in a never-ending cycle of despair that left me feeling numb and detached I was blind and deaf to what went around me. The world moved on without bringing me reprieve nor respite. Family and friends came and went, begging me to snap out of this stupor, I was unable to break the chain of grief. I was drowning in sorrow anger and misery. ‘’Get up, daddy ". A voice as familiar as mine called. I looked around and there she stood, the one person whom I had loved and worried over throughout the night, just to be sure that she was alright. She was smiling her mischievous smile and my heart wept at the sight. I realised we were now in the garden we used to spend the lazy afternoon in, when my little girl was too weak to move much due to the effects of her medications.

“You must be strong like me, Daddy, and you must be happy again”. Tears were now streaming down my face.

“Yes munchkin, I promise I will". She giggled when I called her that. 

“I love you very much Daddy. I will always be in your heart.”

She touched my heart, and I was jolted awake, screaming for my little girl. I sat down in my dimly lit room and tried to recall my dream. Sophia's mischievous smile. Her singsong voice and most importantly, what she had said. I went over to her room and stood stared at her collection of stuffed animals. I looked down at where her little hand had touched just moments before, and I smiled. Home is where the heart should be and you will always be in my heart Sophia, forever and a day. “I promise munchkin, whatever it takes", I whispered to my heart.

"Time is like the wind. It lifts the light and leaves the heavy”. This saying captures the essence of time and its impact on my life. Like the wind, time has brought peace in me. It lifts me out from my grief and leaves the sorrow behind.

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