“This cannot be happening. God, I have to be dreaming. Please God let this be a dream”,

Hadara silently thought as she lay almost like she was paralyzed on her bed, a bed that all of a sudden seemed like the most uncomfortable place. She had just come in from seeing her sister’s lawyers and they had informed her that her sister had stated clearly, with a letter and a signed legal document that she wanted Hadara to take complete custody of her children and that if Hadara refused, they should put the children in the social system, which meant foster care.

Sarah battled cancer for almost 5 years of her life and right when they all thought it was over, it came back bigger and determined, and this time, it didn’t spare her. She was gone. Leaving her 2 beautiful daughters she had single handedly raised, after her husband walked out on her just before she was about to have the second baby. With no explanation other than ‘I can’t do this’ as Sarah had told her he said.
Sarah was Hadara’s older sister with 10 years gap between them and had been mummy to her for as long as she could remember.

Their parents had died in a car accident leaving Sarah the tough responsibility of looking after Hadara with not a lot of money and in so much debt.
Sarah had always been hardworking and very prudent so while it is not a shock she was able to manage them both and still make a name for herself in her field, it was still extremely commendable how she had managed to do it all by herself after majority of the family they knew turned their backs on them for reasons Hadara still couldn’t understand.

Hadara on the other hand, was the one who was selectively available, she was not lazy but if you wanted her to do something telling her well in advance and adding an incentive to it would do the trick.
Life had happened so fast. After she finished college, Sarah was already married to the then ‘love of her life’, with a beautiful job and expecting their precious Madissa, who brought so much joy to the family.
Before she could realize what was happening again, Sarah had been diagnosed with a rare bone cancer and the ‘love of her life’ had walked out on her while she was 8 months pregnant with little Angel who was in every way the epitome of her name.

Now, at 27, lying down in her beautiful 2 bedroom apartment, no sister and two beautiful nieces with a letter from her sister to take responsibility for her girls, no one could have told her this would all play out like this and she would have believed them.
This would have been perfect if Sarah had at least mentioned it or hinted it, but every time the topic came up, as hard as it was, what she had understood from Sarah was that their aunty Charlotte would take care of them. Aunty Charlotte was the only family they knew and had assisted them with shelter for 2 years after their parents had died. She still had a relationship with them and had been in severally to visit especially during the time when Sarah’s condition was deteriorating.

She had somehow even already realized that she would have to be the one looking after Madissa and Angel which might explain why the summer before their mum died, she requested the girls spend a few weeks at her place. Maybe just to get used to it.


“This was not the plan Sarah” Hadara said so softly with tears rolling down her cheeks.
How could she now say no and let the girls end in foster care? She would look like the horrible aunty and she might never forgive herself.

On the other hand, she knew nothing of what it meant to take care of another person, more less 2 girls of which one was 13 years and the other 10. She had a beautiful relationship with them but she had never considered that Sarah would do this. Sarah herself knew her well enough to know she should be the last option for whom to raise these two beautiful girls.

But the letter she held in her hand read otherwise.


It was 2 months since she had made the decision to take them. She could not stand to see them go to foster care when she was alive and they would forever live thinking that their aunty never loved them. What they wouldn’t understand was that she knew nothing about caring for people and she was the career woman with career goals and aspirations who really could not stand to watch anything get in her way.
The girls were beginning to heal and had become very strong in the last month or so it seemed. They began to live life without ‘mummy’ and now adjust to Aunty Hadara’s mummying skills.

It was one fight after the other. From what they wanted for breakfast, to when everyone was to get to bed and even worse for the girls that in the 5 weeks since they got back to school, Aunty Hadara had forgot to pick them up more than 10 times which had left them always very angry.


“God, it’s been 2 months. I didn’t decide I wanted this, and if anyone knows this, it’s you. I am trying with them but nothing seems to work, I feel like I’m loosing myself and also loosing these girls and Lord I don’t want any of the two, so please help me. I know I can’t be Sarah but just help me get this right. I’m so tired.”

Hadara cried while praying as she slept off right after she had a fight with Madissa with Madissa’s last words being ‘you’ll never be my mother’.
Words that were true but that she didn’t need to hear from a girl who she really was doing everything for.


It was now 13 months since Hadara became a ‘Mother’, it was not looking pretty at all. Madissa had developed an attitude that didn’t let anyone speak to her, bubbly Angel had become so withdrawn that in a whole hours conversation, you could get barely 5 sentences from her.

Work was crazy. Hadara had received 7 warnings on different occasions about her lateness to work and delay in delivering projects which was very unlike her who was always on top of everything and was always in everyone’s good book.
As she packed her suitcase for work, it was as if someone across the room spoke to her in such a hushed clear smooth voice,

“leave the job”.
It was like the seventh time she had heard something similar and she had constantly brushed it away. She had even reduced praying about her struggling with the girls because the voice seemed to always say that when she went to talk about what was going on with the girls in prayer.

“God, this cannot be you, I know because I have just 3 more months till I get to that manager position and then open the company I talked to you about. Plus we could use the extra income with the girls needs growing daily, help me to stay focused on you.”
“Hadara, leave the job”. The voice came again.

It was too profound and clear.
Hadara had become so agitated with the thought that this really could be God.
“God please don’t do this, I love my job, you know this, I can’t come and sit at home as a full time mother-wanna-be, I need something to distract me from the hurt I come home to everyday with these girls who are beginning to be strangers to me”.

She rushed off to finish packing her bag, dropped the girls off at school, had the most tiring day at work, got home, made dinner for the girls who now ate in their rooms and found her way to her bed.

That night, she had a dream and it was like she was 9 again. The atmosphere was very familiar, the faces, the sounds, she had been here.
It was the night mum and dad had the car accident and everyone was there at the hospital. No one wanted to tell them what had happened but somehow, she already knew, the silence and tears gave it all away.

The dream went in parts, in one part, she saw Sarah and a lawyer with several aunties sitting round a table. They were telling Sarah that she was old enough to go and start a life for herself but that Hadara needed to go with one of them.
She saw how angry that made Sarah, she watched Sarah fight them and give reasons why she would take care of Hadara.

The meeting ended with the aunties walking out leaving Sarah sobbing profusely with the lawyer who just told her that her life would never be the same.
The next part, she was in Sarah’s room, David was there. Sarah’s husband that had walked out on her. He was saying that he wanted Hadara out of the house if not he was going to leave. She saw pregnant Sarah, kneel down and ask him why, with tears just pouring down her face. She explained that she was the only family Hadara had and that she needed her.

In the next part, it wasn’t her. It was Madissa and Angel. They were both grown and all so beautiful, but they looked like a mess. She followed them as they both walked on the street and they ended up in a shelter. It couldn’t be called a house.


Hadara woke up sobbing. The dream was all too real and she needed no one to tell her that all she saw in that dream was what had happened and what would happen if care wasn’t taken.
She was too weak to pray so she knelt by the side of her bed and cried it all out. Something in her told her that God didn’t need her to talk, all He needed her to do was obey.


She walked into her office, cleared her table, took a letter to her almost-office if she had stayed just another 3 months and dropped her dreams, her plans, and the future she had envisaged for herself on the table with ‘Resignation Letter’ plastered boldly at the top.
She was doing this.

Whatever this was, she didn’t know. Where she was going, she wasn’t sure. In that moment, all that mattered was that she was being obedient and that alone, somehow gave her all the peace she needed.
She walked back into the house that morning with a peaceful atmosphere she hadn’t experienced in a while.

Angel hugged her as soon as she saw her. She didn’t know why but she knew God was definitely up to something.
It was her turn to trust, it was her turn to learn to love, it was her turn to be a mummy and it was her turn to sacrifice.