Well, there have been some developments. Some changes in my circumstances, some changes in my thinking – in short, my life has changed dramatically. For the better.
I thought at first that I should start this post with the explanation, then the news, such that it would be easier for my beloved readers to absorb. But, no – you can take it. So here it is.
Though I have not always been fulsome in my praise for my present nation of abode, nor the culture of its inhabitants, it seems that one thing has led to another, and I am happy – no, delighted – to announce that, instead of leaving in three months as originally planned, and long looked forward to, I will instead be staying on. Indefinitely. I have signed a new three-year contract and expect to continue renewing after that.
Some readers may be surprised at this change, but to my mind it is dwarfed by far greater changes that have lately taken place in my mind and in my heart. It is as though my entire, previous life was only a distasteful, composted soil, and from it a sapling has finally sprung, one that will eventually bear many fruit.
So let us come to those other changes that I may make sense of them for my audience.
I have formerly been cynical (to say the least) about love, marriage, child rearing and romantic relationships in general. Commenter dickycone criticized me on this post, basically saying, why do you have to declare everything as being forever? Things can change. Let life happen. At the time I thought, I think I know my own heart better than some rando on the internet. I think I know what lurks in my own heart pretty well. After all, who gazes at their own navel with more dedication than I? No one still living, that is for sure.
But somewhere along the way when I was not paying attention, life went ahead and happened. You never know who you might meet. And one day, two months ago, I walked into a café and met someone who changed my life forever.
I will not give her name. In fact, now that I am to become a serious man, I regretfully announce that this blog itself will not last much longer, because being exposed would be extremely serious for myself and others, and also because I am fervently opposed to pretty much everything I have previously written. I will delete all the content in two weeks, but in the meantime I will add another post or two in order to share what I have learnt from this journey for those who want to learn.
She is black, thirty-four years old and a single mother. Sure, go ahead and mock me all you like. A man in heaven doesn’t care. I love her. And, for the record, I love her kids, too. Especially the youngest one. The eldest, a boy, is a bit of a ratbag but will come good with a father figure in his life.
To understand this sudden change in my attitude, you would really need to meet her, and that is impossible. I will certainly not ever introduce her to the sort of troubled souls who read this site. But if you did, her smile would warm your soul. Her kindness would turn your day around. Though you will never know it, her lovemaking makes life worth living. She is so beautiful that I notice other guys looking at her in the street. And she’s six years younger than me.
Top that, fuckers.
What is her background? It is complicated, an unfortunate story. When she was young and inexperienced she fell in love with the wrong man. He escaped the country without a word to anyone and now no one knows for sure where he is, but there are rumours he runs a furniture factory in Kigali. For a while he sent money but that stopped after they had an argument. And for her mistake she has been condemned to a life of poverty and struggle, and so have her children. She’s had to do some things she’s not proud of. I will not cast the first stone.
Several other things have happened unexpectedly and in quick succession. My boss heard that I was considering staying on due to developments in my personal situation. He called me in for a meeting and I assumed the worst, that he’d already hired my replacement and that there would be nothing else available. But it wasn’t like that at all. He said he’d love me to stay, and offered me a promotion. How about that? And now I’ve signed a three-year contract, expect to make many further renewals after that, and have a reliable income to raise my ready-made family. It will be a huge amount of extra work and stress (bye bye weekends), and every little bit of it will be completely worthwhile because there is now an actual point to my life, instead of just selfishly floating around as my readers have seen me do over the past few years, and probably over my entire life to be honest.
My fiancé invited me to an Orthodox church service. We’d already agreed upon a church wedding and I thought, why not get to know her world, and that of her children, a bit better? So I went along.
It is hard to explain what happened next. No doubt my readers will dismiss it out of hand. Well, dismiss away. I guess it is an event between myself and God, no one else, so your opinions are of no significance.
I gazed up at the stained-glass windows, the chanting vibrated my body like the bass at a rock concert, the incense filled my nostrils, and the intensity of the beauty assailing my every sense organ overcame all ‘rational’ opposition, kind of the reverse of the hallucinations that occur in a sensory-deprivation chamber.
God isn’t something you can find in a test tube, or see in a telescope, or prove with formal logic, or identify with a particle collider. God is something you feel, deep in your soul, in a way that no school of thought can approach or touch upon.
I felt God.
I don’t know what God is. I don’t know if the Orthodox church is closer to the truth than other faiths, or if the ancient stories are true, or anything, really. I don’t know. But I believe.
And once this belief had fully permeated the very depths of my soul, I felt many erroneous beliefs fall away from me like autumn leaves. That races, sexes and people in general differ significantly, though all were created by the same Father. That there is no meaning in life but that we confect ourselves. That any of those ‘philosophers’ I read have anything worthwhile to say. That we should not dedicate ourselves to the poor, the weak, the unlucky and the unprivileged.
I’ve even started to change my mind about the government here. Sure, things are not perfect, but they really are trying to help the common people through socialist policies, and they are managing to control prices of some key commodities. Sure, some people have to be made to do things they don’t want to do – welcome to the real world. I really think it would work if the wreckers would stop destroying everything, most especially by leaving the country before they’ve even given it a chance. Twenty-five years is not long enough to build a utopia. They need to increase border security and make sure the soldier have copious ammunition.
I am happier today than I have ever been before in my life. I will soon stop writing here, and I have already stopped reading the sort of problematic content that I previously linked to. I am starting afresh. I urge all of you to do the same, and I earnestly hope that God reaches out to you, when the time is right, in the same way that He reached out to me. And if you consider the date, there is no better time than today to proclaim to the world Christ’s eternal Good News.