As we exit this year, we should take time to be thankful for what we have in this beautiful country, but we should also celebrate the scars because they are a sign of our collective strength, writes Melanie Verwoerd.
A few months after I had lost my partner, I ran into the mother of Donncha O' Callaghan (the Irish second-row rugby player). Marie had lost her husband at a very young age and had to raise four boys and a girl on her own.
We discussed the difficulties of mourning. "You know everyone says that the first year is the hardest," said Marie. "It's not. The second year is the hardest because you expect it to be better or even over and, when it is still there, it is more challenging than you could have ever imagined."