‘I am an orphan. 

I survived my change of environment throughout adolescence.

I battled my way through the confusion of romantic relationships in my 20’s. 

I held my ground as a sole parent in my 30’s.

I ached the changes of my womanhood that were occurring in my 40’s.

I am today in my 50’s – acknowledging who I am because of the woman I was yesterday, 

that is leading me to forward and become the woman I will be tomorrow.’


 am proud of being a woman, who addresses openly an aspect of life that many find uncomfortable – death. Death is a wonderous thing, just as birth is. I do not celebrate in death, however, I respect that it is the life cycle that can change how we perceive each moment in life.

My personal experience with death was one that I could not find anywhere else in modern times. I haven’t met anyone, aside from my siblings and family who have lived to tell their story of one much like mine. I am sharing a fragment of myself in this area of my personal life experience, in a this very short article, in hope that it may touch another’s life. My hope that it may fill your  moments of being unheard, unloved, unsafe and alone – with instead feeling a sense of  belonging in an inclusive life club, made up of magnificent girls who became women through the fortuitous happening of death that shaped their lives.

Writing and re-writing this piece has been challenging for me to condense, as I have so much to contribute in this area. I write and speak unashamedly about this aspect of life because it comes naturally to me – I sat no exam, nor learnt from the finest academic scholars in the globe. I woke one morning, kissed my mother, father and brother for what was then the last time. 

At the age of 14 years old, my life as I knew it then, from the eyes of an innocent teen revolted and began to metamorphose into one that I was not prepared for – after all, which child and young person will be, right? 

Life was more than wonderful for me, I am today and was then – the eldest of four children whom literally in a matter of hours became orphaned. From that hour that changed my life as I knew it – we now went from being a family of six to that of three. I was extremely loved, I was always safe, I was heard and never felt lonely in the safe haven of my family’s comfort. I was free to be me – the curious, outspoken, creative and intelligent girl. Ironically, all those attributes that were once……..  

Rosa Carrafa Publishing

Rosa Carrafa