Be kind, for everyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about. A personal story.

Worked late Monday night so that Tuesday would be easier. Slept late, partly because insomnia, but also anxiety for the next day’s event


On Tuesday, I was up early but the body just couldn’t get up. Texted Pearl (half) joking “Can we cancel everything and sleep?”

She replied “If you insist, it’s raining even.”

If only it was that simple.


Ivan called to say the office padlock seemed tampered with and couldn’t open. I asked him if he could find someone to break it while I got ready. I’d try my set of keys in case his were the problem. He mentioned something else was wrong, but I’d need to see for myself. I was now 200 metres away.

Upon arrival, I saw what he meant. The glass on the door was broken, not cracked but ‘carefully removed’ in one huge piece. He’d actually found still it in the door though unstable, hence putting it aside. We decided it was an attempted robbery.

Finally, several tools later, the padlock was broken and we got in, joined by Daniel. Phew! I could finally print the last batch of documents for our Mentorship Meet and Greet.


“Ivan, have you seen the printer?”Him: Uhm, where was it?Me: I left it right in this office last night before we left.Nothing.”Wait, and the laptop?” I asked, with my stomach in knots.

It still had not registered that we had been robbed until I went in and out, checking every corner.Everything looked pretty normal save for the missing electronic devices, some of which we discovered were missing much later…..But then again there was no time to process it.

I had an eery sense of calmness out of nowhere.

We started planning what next. I called Celine and Pearl to figure out the print work and then quickly packed up with Daniel’s help so that we could beat traffic and finalise set up at the venue.


What is compartmentalization you ask? It’s me getting to the venue, wearing my big girl s̶h̶o̶e̶s̶heels and offering my team the leadership they needed and deserved despite the storm brewing inside.

We made jokes, I criticized some interns for being late, complimented others for being smart and tried not to shake my head as we quickly fixed last minute documents in all the folders almost at start time, shamelessly?

I’d like to think the event was a success.


The ride home wasn’t lonely, with company of 4 happy campers; until I dropped the last one and had to face my reality. Still, I decided, I would mourn the next day.


Independence day. What does one do?Stay in bed, binge on junk and try to figure out next steps.Found multiple missed calls from a number and called back, against my (usual phone call) gut feeling <or so I thought>

A client in need of House of Penda frames. Everything in me told me to postpone since it was a public holiday but Priscilla* sounded pleasant and she wasn’t too far from me. She wanted two pairs and future me would thank me for making us money even on our worst days.

I ordered a Safe boda. Kenneth was courteous but it started to rain as soon as he got to the gate.I gave him 24 pairs for Priscilla to choose from.He’d later take shelter for 20 minutes before heading out. A ride which should have been a max of 30 minutes (to and fro) was 83 minutes but I didn’t mind.

When I was starting to get worried about the delay, I got a call.”I have 50,000 for the frames.”Me: *Jaw drop * When we spoke earlier this morning, I told you that our final price is 90,000 and though I can’t give you a discount, I’ll take care of the transport fee you’d have paid. You happily agreed.”Ha, let me send them back. My friends have even said the ones I have from Woolworth are better than yours.”

That was the last straw.I (finally)broke down.You know how you don’t deal with a major (maybe even traumatic) experience and then someone just breathes loudly and you lose it completely?


Naki (bless her soul) came to check if I wanted tea .

<sniff>”Do you have flu?” She asked.



‘Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.”I hate that this isn’t general knowledge or rather, we don’t practice it even if it is?. I mean, in an ideal world, we should even just stop at “Be Kind.” Right? Or just sort of know? No?

May you neither be the person kicking someone when they’re down, nor be kicked, at least not often

Many years ago I read a quote “tears lubricate the soul.” I find it to be true in my life, more times than not. Cry (deal) whenever you need to.

Hug a leader today. Send them good vibes and thoughtful reminders that they’re appreciated whenever you can. You have no idea which struggles they are facing and what that little act could mean to them.


As we commerate, World Mental Health Day, may we be aware of our environment and how our actions and words (and lack thereof) affect others. Our family, partners, friends, colleagues and strangers we encounter everyday are walking around with diagnosed and undiagnosed mental disorders (and general existence struggles)

We don’t always look like our pain or speak about it; we are afraid to seek help and/or can’t always afford professional services.We are hiding behind beautiful pictures, exquisite clothes and make up, plus plenty of substances and ‘enjoyments’ all the while breaking into a million little pieces inside.

We can do more for ourselves and for our loved ones but first we must acknowledge there is a problem.

Have I already mentioned, Be Kind?


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Written by Esther Kalenzi (0)

Celebrating life and humour; attempting to make a difference in deed and through my first love, writing.

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