Baby Jordan-Leigh Norton. 12 years later the mother speaks out.  

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2017-06-28
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2017-06-29

Natasha Norton says she thinks about Jordan everyday.

 

It was a cold winter’s day in June 2005 when South Africa and the world received the news that a 6 month old baby was murdered in the Cape Town suburb of Lansdowne. As South Africa came to terms with what happened, the news that her baby was murdered changed the mother’s life forever. The murdered baby was Jordan-Leigh Norton, the mom Natasha Norton.  Earlier this month it was 12-years since that fateful day, but for Natasha not a day goes by without thinking about her baby daughter.

 She recently gave an exclusive interview to Justjody.co.za Editor Jody Hendricks

“Making peace is such a strange thing for me as the last 12 years have been the most testing.  The loss of Jordan has not only had an emotional effect on me, but physical as well. I try focus on the positive as much as I can, and be in the best state of mind and body I can be. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to make peace with it, it’s all part of what makes me the women, mother, daughter and friend I am today. I know that there is an angel that watches over me every step of my journey and knowing or believing that brings me a sense of calm and peace within myself.” Natasha Norton

Have you forgiven those who were involved and found guilty?

This is a huge question and one I get asked the most. Like I said before, I have tried to focus on the positive and the people involved in taking Jordan’s life are negative and bring on negative thoughts. Forgiveness is not something I think about.

How did you cope with all the media attention surrounding the case?

The media attention was one of the hardest things to deal with. It’s not something you want to be known for and I think there was so much going on that sometimes people got lost in what they read, saw and heard that they forgot there were and still are actually people and lives behind it all. With all that being said, it has allowed me the opportunity to tell my story and meet some incredible people from all walks of life. There are no set rules to dealing or coping with these things, I’ve tried my best in every circumstance.

What is the toughest part of losing a child especially in the brutal way Jordan was taken from you?

There is no specific part that is tougher than the next. It is all tough and extremely difficult, still 12 years on. As much as people say things get easier with time I feel the total opposite, each year brings more heartache and longing. There is no doctor or pill that could ever take the pain away, we have had to suffer through it as horrible as it all is. Jordan was only 6 months old, which means never watching her take her first steps or hearing her first words. I don’t ever get to dress her for her first day of school or help her get ready for her Matric dance…..this list is endless. There are so, so many things that have been taken away from me and my family. One should never outlive their children and to lose her in such a brutal way was even worse. There are no words to describe that.

Do you ever think about “what if” Jordan was alive today?

Most definitely, I find myself wondering about it often and its all very bitter sweet. Often I think about what she would have looked like or sounded like more than anything else really. However, this is what I have been dealt and try to look forward more than back. Never ever forgetting but not for the lack of wishing it could all be different.

Murdered Six-month-old Baby Jordan-Leigh Norton.

How did you go about rebuilding your life after Jordan? Support from family and friends?

It has been a long 12 years and I’m sure there are still loads of speed bumps to come along the way. My family have been my greatest strength and support. I am so blessed to have the parents and brother that I have, they are my rock. I also have a very precious, strong, energetic 10 year old who has been my saving grace and keeps me on my toes. I am lucky to have found a partner who through the ups and downs that occur, has stood by me and been amazing.

Finding the right mind set to get through the tough times has come as a challenge sometimes but I try stay focused. Being active is also a big part of my self preservation, so whether it be gym or playing hockey I make time to stay fit. Friends also play a big role in being my support and I try my best to surround myself with great people. I have had a solid core of friends who have stood by me from the beginning and I am so thankful to have that.

Since Jordan’s death we heard 100s of stories where children have been killed not only in Cape Town but also the rest of South Africa, your advice to those mothers/parents?

It is so heart-breaking and has brought me to tears hearing about each one. Giving advice to grieving mothers/parents/families is really not as easy as it sounds. Just support each other, make sure you surround yourself with love and take all the help offered. We have all become part of “the worst club in the world” and no one even asked if we wanted to join. Our angels watch over us and take strength in knowing they are in a far better place. Every single one of us grieves differently. To all out there who have lost and have to deal with trying to get on with life even though you just want to crawl into a ball and never see the sun again, my heart goes out to you. Sending love, prayers and strength your way.

 How do you remember Jordan, she was only 6 months old when she was taken away from you. Some of the memories you will never forget?

I remember her big, piercing blue eyes. Her cute smile and her crawling all over the house. She also had this walking ring and when she was in it, boy did she move. She had a love for food too, which I’m sure all babies have. Bath time was one of her favourites and falling asleep on her Pa’s (my dad) chest. She was a loving and sweet baby, always friendly and smiling.