In my posting today, I wanted to take the opportunity to dedicate this to someone I knew closely and that also supported my goals and aspirations.
This dedication goes towards a family member, a woman who had been an avid supporter of my dreams, goals and aspirations, especially over the past two years when I originally came up with the plan and idea to do what I’m currently doing and that is my attempt to race the Freedom Challenge race across South Africa and try raise money for deaf children and their education at the same time.
The woman I speak of had been in and out and part of my life for the better part of the past 20 years. The woman I speak of was my mother-in-law. I count myself privileged to have known her. I count myself privileged that she married one of the nicest guys I have come to know and raised two fantastic people, a son and a beautiful daughter of whom I had the honour and privilege of marrying. My mother-in-law was a woman of real substance and solid moral grounding, always putting others before herself. I had often found myself in awe of her selfless virtues. As with us all, she was not perfection and she could also make us grumble and frown as well as laugh and ultimately cry. She would give opinion but she would also always support you in what mattered most. She was a master of many things that her applied mind and ability could fathom out. She was never afraid to try something new.
For the better part of the past ten months, sadly my mother-in-law began her determined battle with cancer. This cancer that has left its trail of destruction with many before her and I am sure for many more after her, took hold. She was brave. She fought. She was determined. She never wanted to give in. She never bemoaned anything. She just silently fought. In this time I raked in so much more respect for her than I had ever had.
Sadly on her 68th birthday this month of August, surrounded by her husband and children she lost her battle. My own younger sibling who also played a very compassionate role towards her over these past months could never have quoted better when in saying afterwards, “I have never seen such silent courage, dignity and patience shown by someone going through so much”, made me realize as I stood there on that day and her life slowly whittled away that I was broken but also so inspired by her will and determination and that it was never going to be over till it was over with her. She also made me realize again that we have so much to be grateful for no matter what your circumstances are or hindrance. She also made me realize that you can go after what it is that you want and if you choose not to, the answers will always be no. She also made me realize that as living souls we have so much to offer others and it can effectively cost you nothing but your time and gesture.
I have always said in my quest to raise a target amount of ZAR 50 000 for Carel du Toit Centre is that I have no demands but I am hopeful.
Yes; I am raising money for Deaf children’s education and here I am dedicating a post to my mother-in-law who had cancer but I think I have hopefully shared a small message and that is that we all have the ability to make a difference and we can all serve a purpose in some way.
Whether you are fighting your own personal battle or you are just fortunate to be better off than others, we all have it in us to be that difference to others and when doing so you become part of the bigger chain reaction and ripple effect that can change someone’s life in some way or the other…
Ultimately it all starts with us as individuals and if done, will surely pass on from one to the next...
For my mother -in-law
Thank you for the lessons learnt
Catheline Yvonne “Cathy” Gouveia:
15 August 1947 – 15 August 2015