My son was the face and mirror of my heart, reflecting all my hopes and fears of the future, frowning at my weaknesses, glowing at my laughter’s, cracking at my inequities and always giving back the image of my face-a hearty laughter, a smile and a warm face.

Seven years after looking after my son single handedly, my mirror was a blurred image. His father took him away from me. Little did I know, that this was the beginning of the battle for my mirror.

Four years later;

Me; Hullo “ Can I have my son for a thanksgiving service with my family?” TOA: “I am actually not at home and the boy is still at school” phone hangs up

Me; “hullo can I have my son over the Christmas holiday”? TOA: “ I am traveling to South Africa, so let me see if I can get him over to you before I live”

Few Weeks Later; I traveled to my son’s school with the hope of picking him up for holiday’s.

“ You are not going to get this boy back and if you are not careful, I will take him to a place where you will never see him again…” said a matron at the school, “the father of your son has asked me to tell you so”. She added to the chagrin of my ears.

“Did I hear you right?” I asked in disbelief. “What crime have I committed that I should be denied my son?’

I tried to call up my ex-, but he switched off the phone. I lost contact with the father of my son; my heart went low. This was the beginning of a prolonged, dramatic and bitter battle between me and my ex-boyfriend.

For once I felt a total stranger to my son. I picked a white hankie from my bag, wiped my face and looked Altzwell in the face; “do you want to live with me? I asked him. With tears welling in his eyes, he looked straight into my face. “Mummy I want to stay with you, I am going nowhere but to your home” he replied. It was very disturbing moment for me and my son.

I walked out of that school like an empty eggshell, very light yet smashed, my mirror was reflecting blurred images.

For three months, I was caught in the battle lines of begging my ex-for the return of my son. The three weeks opened for me a journey and struggle to gain custody of my son Altzie. I endured and lived throughout a truly dark chapter of my life.

I sacrificed my image to the police, cried in front of probation officers, hunted down the people that could pull the strings and loosen the fight, and a true reflection of my mirror began to emerge from the darkness.

On December 27th 2010, this seemingly everlasting nightmare, finally came to an end, when with the assistance of police I was awarded the custody of my son in Kampala, - A tender reunion, a miracle.

Take action! This post was submitted in response to My Story: Miracles.

Comment on this Post


Oh, Machrine. I read this with my heart in my throat. What a story, and what an incredible mother you are. Thank you for this. I'm so glad your son is back with you.

The mirror, what a beautiful, powerful metaphor to use to allow us readers into the emotional depths of your story. You are a strong woman, I learned so much about the power of fighting and allowing yourself to break for what/whom you love. Thank you for sharing - I'm so happy that your story ended in a miracle!

Dearest Machrine

I'm so glad your story has a happy ending - I cannot even imagine how difficult living with a broken mirror for months must have been for you. (The mirror truly is such a wonderful and descriptive symbol.) Your story speaks highly of your incredibly inner strength and great love for your son. He is so lucky to have such a loving and powerful mother.

Best wishes, Sydney


Your story reflects your heart and mind strength. Ripped from you was your moment by moment reflection - "hopes and fears of the future, frowning at my weaknesses, glowing at my laughter’s" It's clear that your strength is the rightful place for your son. I am so happy for you and for him.

Our dearest love really does mirror back our deepest self- ah, and you have captured that!

You've got the ease of story telling at your fingertips and I hope that you will continue to use this gift for yourself and for your listeners/readers. And for your son!

May you bask in his sweet eyes reflecting back life's goodness!



Thank you for your enduring strength in the face of such trials and tribulations!

You have generously shared with us a difficult time in your life. You never gave up hope and your persistance in the face of a system that was not accomodating is amazing. I wish you the best. Amy