The Young LGBTIA Chronicles: L for Life

2012 has been a year where the Letter L has symbolised nothing but devastating Loss in my Life. I Lost the Love of my Life, I Lost the ability to Love freely and trust completely.

My name is Nonhlanhla Amanda Mtshali. The letter L describes my sexual orientation as well as the one major feeling that I struggle to Let go of: Loss. On the 30th of June, 2012, my girlfriend was shot in front of me. She died in my arms as we rushed her to hospital. I still struggle to make sense of it all. Why her and not me? Why so much hate directed towards the most beautiful soul I have ever met? Why?

The support from my family and friends has been overwhelming and yet, one can’t get over having the Love of your Life dying in front of you. I keep reminding myself that some of my closest friends Lost their fathers and sisters, but as a good friend keeps telling me: “All Loss is the same. The Loss of Life, no matter how trivial it may seem, is a tragedy of epic proportions. Nobody should have to go through that.”

Life doesn’t bring much pleasure anymore. While I have realised that I need to start Living each day like it’s my Last, the pleasures of Life are far and few in between these days.

I am Nonhlanhla Amanda Mtshali. I am a lesbian. The Letter L to me symbolises Lesbian, Loss, Life and Love. I yearn for the day when I can smile and not mask the hurt I have. The day when I can Laugh genuinely. A day when all the pain will vanish, but the good memories will remain. Till then, I Live, Learn and Love.

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