Living as a burned survivor

Having faith is a healing process for Mpho Libone, she was burned by fire in 2019.

Mpho was married to her husband at that time when she gave birth to her beautiful son, she graduated from college with a ‘Marketing Management diploma’ and life seemed perfect, until the summer of October 2019.

One evening her brother in law and his girlfriend stopped by, so her husband decided to cook dinner for them.

“He poured some oil in the saucepan which was placed on the stove and then he prepared what was going to be cooked on that evening. All of the sudden I saw fire on the stove and I immediately jumped to cease the fire. I frantically looked for baking soda, but I grabbed a handful of flour instead and I threw it on the fire. Within seconds the fire was fuming in front of my face,” said Mpho.

She adds that she was afraid she might burn her parents’ house then she grabbed the saucepan with her left hand and she tried to take it outside, but since the flame was so high and hot the oil spilled out of the saucepan and slipped. The oil poured all over her left hand and wrist ,so she instantly threw the pan onto the kitchen floor and ran to the bathroom to put cold water on her hand.

Most people do not understand how much one struggles with the burns and dealing with people who stare at you every single day.

She says that she is now able to speak openly about how she got burned and how one can prevent getting burned.

She never understood how some people would look her in a questionable and disgusting way to an extent that some would exchange sits with the next person. It’s never easy but you learn to love and appreciate yourself.

“Sometimes when I look at all my old pictures and then I look at the mirror I questioning myself but as they say ‘everything happens for a reason ‘I have learned to accept myself. I was at the ‘burn unit’ for 2 weeks and the first week was terrifying as I was often alone unable to feel myself, as my husband or parents were caring for my son. The worst experience was my first bath. The feeling of cleaning up my scars was so painful, as well as the pain of getting in and out if the wheelchair,” Mpho shared.

She believes that her scars were healed much better than she expected because of her positivity.

She concluded by saying that it is a gift and joy to be part of the ‘adult burn community’, there are so many opportunities to share to the community and loved ones.

By Zoleka Batsha

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