Martin Luther King Jr once said, “We must accept finite disappointments but never lose infinite hope. ” Chanda’s Secrets created by Allan Stratton is a fictional novel. In Chanda’s Secrets only one person, that being Chanda shows an immeasurable amount of hope even though she faced a numerous amount of devastation and disappointments. Mama displays through various occasions that she is more accepting of having faith in her pride when confronted with challenges.
This novel is about how it is in human nature to hope for what is desired but also contradicts that by showing that many lose hope after being efeated by an obstacle. Hope is in human nature, it is like an instinct. Although the force of hope is strong, the attraction of doubt is much stronger. Chanda is shown as a very optimistic character that places her hope in her the hands of her loved ones. Chanda is also displayed as a strong and independent character that encounters many challenges that could have broken down her hope however only made her more dauntless.
Chanda’s strength comes from her own belief and how she has a mind of her own, how she does not blindly follow what society orders her to do, that is the source of her hope which further eeds her confidence and continues to create a cycle. This is demonstrated in-between Mama and Chanda’s conversation at their home, after visiting the cemetery; “I like Esther. She’s a nice girl. But people have started to say things. ” Said by Mama (Stratton,74). “You mean Mrs Tafa has started to say things. ‘ ‘What sorts of things? ‘ I asked as if I didn’t know. ” Chanda uttered. (Stratton, 74).
This shows that Mrs Tafa became the voice of their community to inform mama about Esther’s impact on Chanda’s reputation along with Esther’s influence on Chanda’s behaviour. This discussion between Mama and Chanda illustrates that Chanda,s faith in her friend is much greater than societies impact on her or her Mama. In this dialogue, it shows that Mrs Tafa and Mama heard rumours about Esther being inappropriate. When Chanda was confronted about these ‘rumors’ by her Mama; Chanda stood by Esther, and fought for their friendship. Even though Esther has disappointed Chanda a finite amount of times and given her many reasons to doubt her.
Chanda has not given up hope. Having said that, Chanda seemed to immediately lose all her hope for Esther when Chanda saw the ‘rumors’ with her own eyes. After going to Esther’s aunt’s house and hearing the same ccusations about Esther from her own family, Chanda was forced to open her eyes and pay attention to all the connections that were there. Later, Chanda went to the place where all the speculation could have been formed; the ‘hooker park’. After making multiple rounds of the park, Chanda was glad that Esther was nowhere to be seen.
At the very last moment before leaving, Chanda spotted Esther. This confirmed all the rumours and accusations which made Chanda feel hopeless and defeated. “the air leaves my body. I totter on my feet. ‘I believed in you,’ I whisper ‘when people called you names, I always took your side. (Stratton, 101). In this quote from the book, it is evident that Chanda has given up hope and faith in Esther when Confronted with the truth. The way this line was written shows that Chanda had a new distressing tone to her voice because she recently found out that everything she was fighting for was a lie.
All of Chanda’s hope was broken down after facing Esther’s candour form. One conflict leads towards the destruction of Chanda’s confidence in her faith and herself. One’s faith and strength come from their cause. You are only as strong as what you are fighting for. Most times; love is the source of hope but hen love is lost, so is hope. When there is no more ambition, there is no more desire. Mama had an endless amount of aspiration for Jonah to regret his past decisions and give up his need to drown in alcohol for the sake of their family.
Mama’s infinite amount of faith in Jonah’s sober return was demonstrated in a small, yet meaningful flashback discussion between Mama and Chanda at home after Sara’s death. “What I know is, if it was anyone else but Jonah, Mama would have send him packing. But somehow Jonah gets away with everything. The night he smashed the plate I went crazy. Why don’t you kick him out? I demanded. Mama’s eyes flashed ‘never say that again, you hear? You’re taking Sara’s papa.
Show some respect! ” Mama got very quiet. ‘I know it’s hard. But forgive him. He’s in pain. who isn’t? ‘ Mama didn’t answer. She knelt down, gathered the bits of plate into her apron, and closed her eyes. The last few months, while Jonah’s been out with his friends, we’ve stayed up soothing Sara’s rashes with a tea of devils claw root. Whenever I’ve heard a drunken holler from outside I’ve jumped up ready to scream. Not Mama. She’s never taken her eyes off her work. ‘Jonah’s promised to quit drinking,’ she says. ‘He will ne day, you’ll see,’ I know it’s important to believe in things. All the same, love makes people stupid. ” (Stratton,28).
In this conversation, Allan Stratton illustrates that although Mama is shown as an independent woman earlier on in the book, she is also naive and foolishly hopeful when it comes to the man she loves. Mama is willing to wait months for Jonah to get back up on his feet and make a sober arrival back home. Mama is handling this situation with Jonah really delicately even though Mama also lost a child, she is putting Jonah’s needs above her own, in the hope of him returning. With that in mind, Mama is till a strong and independent women who realised that her faith in jonah’s return became toxic for children and herself.
When Mama became aware of this, she started focusing on health and her children’s happiness more. Mama started to take care of herself when the headaches began, when the headaches were not cured; she pretended to be okay so her children won’t be worried. When Jonah finally did return, mama offered to take him in but did not chase after him or force him to change his decision like she would have. This is shown when Jonah’s sister brought him back to his family after he was infected with AIDS. Mama kneels down beside him. Jonah won’t look at her or speak. you can stay out here or come inside,’ mama says. ‘Either way, we’ll bring you a blanket and a bowl of water. ‘ She squeezes my arm and I help her to the house, she makes her way back to bed. ‘Can I leave it to you to take care of things? ” (Stratton, 108). In this scene, it is evident that Mama is much wiser and sensible when it comes to Jonah despite the fact that she still cares for him.
Although Mama continues to love and take care of Jonah, she has clearly shown that she has no hope of him coming back into their home or being able to rovide and sustain their family. Love makes people stupid. ” This quote said by Chanda is about how people hope when they are in love, which makes them more reckless. Hope is compelling because it allows the defeated to believe that there desired wished will come true. Throughout Allan Stratton’s novel, it is clearly shown how hope is in human nature, along with losing hope. Chanda and Mama had given up hope in their loved one when faced with the truth. Hope is just a way of replacing the truth; hope is just an expectation, a desire. A way of fooling yourself into thinking you will get what you want.