An answered prayer – HOPE that worthy men are out there

Sometimes it really is the little things that keep the heart content. Maybe, it should always be the little things that keep the heart content… Sadly, I for one, seldom manage to stop myself dreaming about the bigger, more exciting things, and then slipping into the depressing, unhealthy comparative land of ‘er’ … she has it bett’er’, he has it wealthi’er’, she is pretti’er’ and so the list goes on and on and on entrenching a negativity in which I can’t foresee myself getting ‘there’, wherever ‘there’ actually is, ever … Then God has to haul me out of the bad space again and on I go with just trying to be me, and that is difficult enough in a world where people continually want you to be them! Ugh. Goodness knows I have flaws, but some people need even more help than I do!

After much introspection and taking into account how I came to be the me and I am, and considering the influences around me, the topic of men, and my intense distrust and long lost ability or desire to be around them, has been crashing into me at every turn. I miss my University days where I used to hang out in the guys res and just enjoy being in their company instead of my own all-girl residence. Now, it’s all been reversed, I no longer desire to be around men and find my infuriation levels near implosive at the occurrence. It appears that their repetition of topics bore me, the lack of ability to authentically communicate annoys me (that desire they have to always ‘be right’ opens up no possible chance of ‘communication’) and the whole ‘patriarchy’ thing, where their anatomy automatically makes them ‘superior’ to me just pisses me off. Then there’s the sexual innuendo lurking with almost everything! Seriously, you have 2 hands {heh heh… see what I mean? I know where his mind went there ;-) }, why aren’t you looking after yourself {ever seen some bachelor pads?}, if women are so inferior, then surely men should be doing EVERYTHING for us because we are so incapable and so inferior? If patriarchy has any truth, then one would expect it would have to been earned? Deserved? Nope, patriarchy bred chauvinism and those ‘superior’ do not have to, in any way whatsoever, prove: “Why they are superior” it must simply be ‘accepted’; why then are men ‘superior’ when they have women doing everything for them? It drives me nuts. {I think I lost some readers at ‘hands’… sigh… the point now being lost… see how difficult communication is?}

This is not a good space for me to be in as both men and women were created as God’s children and I must have something amiss here… PING! … non-Christian men! Ha! It has dawned on me that the men who have been in my life are not practicing Christians in the truth of acting out love unconditionally, not faith-filled Christians, not those wanting to have Jesus as their role model. Jesus who washed others feet, Jesus who protected the prostitute; Jesus who served others, loved and gave. The men in my life have not been in this follow Jesus’ way category. The men in my life can be summed up as: Non-communicative, in fact battle, truly battle to have an adult conversation that does not involve – money, business, sport and/or drinking; and if you attempt an adult topic like faith, religion, soul, guilt, depression, marriage, unconditional love, human relationships at their core etc, then they “need a drink”, shut down and/or revert back to what a mess the country is in, how the weathers been, the last round of golf they played, how bad the ref was, or the activity of business and/or shares. Shares in what? Heaven? No. A great healthy marriage? No. Conversation with their loved ones to let them know how special they are? No. Shares in some company, managed by someone else, owned by someone else and purely another effort to: Get more money easily… On the flip side of the coin, I am not referring to men who use Christianity as the sole reason for them to practice patriarchy and refer to the one verse in the Bible, out of context, to make sure that their wife accepts their superiority and twisted practices, because ‘the woman will rot in hell if she doesn’t’. Such manipulative, insecure GARBAGE, those men should be sent to monk-dom and never ever be allowed near any women, ever!

So, I prayed. I prayed that God would show me that there are men out there who are capable of being ‘grown up’, of participating in their marriage with equality and presence, who walk a life that will have the world knowing that they believed and practiced being the best they could in humility and openness and dedication to uplifting those they loved in every way they could, with God’s help. Not through belittling, reducing, silently or vocally manipulating and being completely selfish and sulking.

God answered.

Over the last month or so, oddly enough most of them wore glasses; I have encountered some men who have to be praised. I’m used to working with a staff of ladies who, for the most part, don’t enjoy their marriages, in fact, their kitchen tea gift: A washing up bowl overflowing with cleaning equipment! Recently, my gran told me that the old men in her complex are looking for wives to cook and clean for them! Yet, out of the blue I was in a waiting room with a lady and her two children, and she couldn’t stop praising her husband :) He cooks, cleans, sews, is home in time to help with his children, takes leave in their holidays to spend time with them and it sounded like he just loved her and his children and was actively showing them and she was actively appreciating. I don’t think I’ve ever been part of a conversation like that before. It felt good to know that it was possible.

Then I went to another function, to watch a friend’s daughter’s ballet concert. Dad was there, even though he was a stressed puppy because he’s a partner in a computer company that had updated software for an international client and it had failed, losing the backups for 2 weeks. The company was due to start year-end in 24 hours. He was at his daughter’s concert. On a different occasion he organised a special meeting with friends so his wife could meet her friend’s new niece. Little details, they count.

Another friend was battling with her newborn when they got home from hospital and she wasn’t coping, so her husband phoned friends and found a midwife whom he hired to come in and help his wife through her challenges. He may have done it so he could go back to work, as a workaholic, but, still, for him to make the effort, notice the challenge, find the right solution and be there as needed was a step in the right direction.

I had a business meeting with a guy this week and in the conversation I learned that he had taken the time and patience to create an entire photograph album for his grandson’s first year on earth. No store quick-shop, no internet rush and buy online. He took the time and effort and personally created something. He couldn’t wait to give it to his daughter. His excitement was very precious. I don’t know many men who get excited over handcrafting their own gifts for people.

Then, the reason for this blog: the mind-blowing, over-powering awesomeness of God telling me that there are men out there who will express and show their love in presence, strength, faith and permanence in trusting God and being there in whatever way they can for their loved ones, without focusing only on themselves and their battle in/with life. A friend gave me the book: “Choosing to See” by Mary Beth Chapman. The book is about her ordeal with depression and then, thereafter, losing a child. The book is about her journey with God, which parallels mine in some ways, which would be reason for me to read it, but, what’s hit me? The unconditional love her husband has for her. His devout belief that God will be the head of his home, how he is able to be her support whilst she is being his. How, even though the divorce reasons echo on and on in the book, with their love for each other and belief in God’s plans and love being their unconquerable foundation, they both push on and persevere and know they can’t go to bed angry. They both let Hope rule their marriage and lives, and boy is it inspirational.

What I just HAD to share were the GORGEOUS lyrics that Steven Curtis Chapman wrote for his wife Mary Beth. I was blown away by how moving and truly beautiful the gesture, empathy and love were. He has such conviction and belief in God, in her and in their marriage. The lyrics honestly moved my soul and illustrated the amazing talent of this man to write his truth in such a beautiful form. Thanks to Mr & Mrs Chapman for touching me with their Hope, and slightly renewing the hope in me that has lost its luster over the last few years: that there are open, honest & loving ‘men’ out ther. Thank-you… and the lyrics are:

“I Will Be Here” (through Mary Beth’s depression)

Tomorrow morning if you wake up
And the sun does not appear
I, I will be here
If in the dark we lose sight of love
Hold my hand and have no fear
‘Cause I, I will be here

I will be here when you feel like being quiet
When you need to speak your mind, I will listen
And I will be here when the laughter turns to crying
Through the winning, losing and trying, we’ll be together
‘Cause I will be here

Tomorrow morning if you wake up
And the future is unclear
I, I will be here
As sure as the seasons are made for change
Our lifetimes are made for years
So I, I will be here

I will be here, and you can cry on my shoulder
When the mirror tells us we are older, I will hold you
And I will be here to watch you grow in beauty
And tell me all the things you are to me
I will be here

I will be true to the promise I have made
To you and to the One who gave you to me

{Music & Words by Steven Curtis Chapman}

“Go There With You”

I know you’ve heard me say these words before
But every time I say I love you the words mean something more
I spoke them as a promise right from the start
I said death would be the only thing that could tear us apart
And now that you are standing on the edge of the unknown
I love you means I’ll be with you wherever you must go

I will take a heart whose nature is to beat for me alone
And fill it up with you – make all your joy and pain my own
No matter how deep a valley you go through
I will go there with you
And I will give myself to love the way Love gave itself for me
And climb with you to mountaintops or swim a raging sea
To the place where one heart is made for two
I will go there with you

I see it in your tears – you wonder where you are
The wind is growing colder and the sky is growing dark
Though it’s something neither of us understands
We can walk through this together if we hold each other’s hand
I said for better or worse I’d be with you
So no matter where you’re going I will go there too

I will take a heart whose nature is to beat for me alone
And fill it up with you – make all your joy and pain my own
No matter how deep a valley you go through
I will go there with you

I know sometimes I let you down
But I won’t let you go – we’ll always be together

{Words & Music by Steven Curtis Chapman}

Such honest, I’m going to try, love between them. They have been truly blessed through their perseverance and dedication to God and each other as they loved through very many storms, including the death of their daughter.
This third song (of many!) that is in the first half of the book felt more like God touching me, and not just me at the window looking in on a couple who have found a way to keep going and love each other through the mountains of bad stuff…

“When Love Takes You In” (when they met their adopted daughter)

I know you’ve heard the stories
But they all sound too good to be true
You’ve heard about a place called home
But there doesn’t seem to be one for you
So one more night you cry yourself to sleep
And drift off to a distant dream

And somewhere while you’re sleeping
Someone else is dreaming too
Counting down the days until
They hold you close and say I love you
And like the rain that falls into the sea
In a moment what has been is lost in what will be

When love takes you in everything changes
A miracle starts with the beat of a heart
And this love will never let you go
There is nothing that could ever cause this love to lose its hold

When love takes you in everything changes
A miracle starts with the beat of a heart
When love takes you home and says you belong here
The loneliness ends and a new life begins
When love takes you in it takes you in for good
When love takes you in

{Words and music by Steven Curtis Chapman}

Pass It On Books – Finale & Thank-You!

Wow! I did it… 9 months after creating book one, book 100 is done and gone. Today, however, I have no idea what got into me to have created all of them! No idea why I went at the task, which now seems so odd, with such persistent energy and discipline. Crazy… but here I sit in December 2014 and on the 14/12/14 I passed on the 100th handmade, collaged, contact covered “Pass It On Book”. Heh heh, maybe it was just another “Waiting for Godot” activity ;-)

By the end of the task the inside of the books varied considerably from the originals. I changed to the Irish Feint books, so that more could be written on each page, and I added a book number to the front page.

I put a big “X” on the back of both page one and two; as one book found its way passed me again and someone had written on the back of page two and the ink was bleeding through. Annoying!

I put this blog website on the bottom of the back cover so that if anyone did want to trace the roots of the book they could; but I’m still not sure about that one as it makes it look like a marketing ploy and the books were nothing of the sort at all. Only the last maybe 15 or so had the website in the back.

As people were adding their names to the quotes / thoughts of inspiration, I realised that some may want to be recognised and some may not. So in my opening inspirational examples I wrote in 5 thoughts per book, 3 of which were from anonymous and 2 had names attached. I also stopped lying about the place the quote was written. Instead of various places in KwaZuluNatal, they all became “Durban”.

I carried on with the different styles of handwriting though and using different pens for each example quote, so that was consistent.

I can in no way whatsoever keep track of the books now. I think some may not have even made it in the post, I can confirm that one definitely did not make it, so I have no idea what that story is. Interestingly though, someone has just returned a gift I posted them (I didn’t ask, but I guess some people don’t like keeping post… anyway, that’s off track) … The envelope and contents that were returned to me now has, on the front, in red ink-stamped capital letters, the official words: “MISSENT TO BERMUDA” !!! Ha ha ha ha, I laughed so hard! They even have a stamp for it! Anyway, if what I sent from London to South Africa could get missent to Bermuda, then amazing things can happen from SA to USA and to CANADA! Bizarre!

The starting points that I know the books have been released in:
Switzerland (potentially Italy, if it made its way via the one person to the other), Germany, Netherlands, Wales, Scotland, Ireland, England, America, Canada, Australia, Thailand, China, Johannesburg, Pretoria, Midlands KZN, Durban, Pinetown, France … Greece & Turkey I never heard back about, South America (2 went there, but I can’t remember which country the girl was from! My bad!), Swaziland, and one is off to a missionary school in the middle of Africa, one was going to Dubai, but I never received a follow up on it getting there, and Cape Town… I heard that one guy posted his on to his friend in Lapland I think it was! How crazy… Sadly, the one continent I never managed to send one to was New Zealand… Oh well.

Anyway, after hours and hours and hours of cutting and sticking and writing and covering and much personal funding for the tools and books and postage, I have achieved the completely random task of sending out books around the world… of “letting go”…

Strangely, I was sitting today and thinking about it and actually hoping that I don’t get all 100 books back! What would I do with them? It’s weird, but for some reason… even though I have removed 3 from our staff room (which should NEVER have been there as the staff were supposed to take them overseas!) and there was still another one I saw in someone’s pigeon hole… when I see them I can’t stand it. It’s like they’ve failed and not left the building. I look at the handcrafted nature of the books and get embarrassed that they aren’t professional in appearance as they don’t have branding and labeling. Something that I was so inspired to do has now been taken by my ego and reduced to something that I find embarrassing; surely that isn’t a good thing? Maybe I’m finally relating to those who turned up their nose at my request for them to pass one on, maybe they also felt that a book with a handcrafted collage on the front and handwritten notes inside was tacky…

Odd that I’m, in a way, not wanting to have anything to do with what I started. On the flip side, I can’t really turn it off! At the post office the other day, one of the ladies I passed one on to, passed it on to a German tourist, and she stood next to me and told me that she wondered where the book had ended up? I shrugged and said I had no idea, but, maybe, one day we would find out. So every person I have passed one on to will always have something to talk to me about. . . so hopefully I’ll be more gracious in their presence and not as ‘off’ as I’ve gone to the whole project I took on!
BIZARRE!!!!
Anyway, God breathed it and He can run with it now, I completed the 100 I promised I would. Amen.
AND – to each person who has served what God breathed to me – THANK-YOU!! For your time, efforts and contributions to my “Pass It On Book Project”. It was quite a learning experience for me indeed!

Biggest lesson: People will do what they like, how they like and often won’t take any heed at all to what you have said, asked and/or written! … I ponder how many people I gave one to are still sitting with it… sigh… Oh well, handed over and done :-)

Thanks again, be Blessed and more importantly:
Be a blessing xx

The connection between Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella & Rapunzel

There are many white lies, incorrect stories, and adjusted versions of things that older people tell children. Maybe, if someone had’ve told me the truth that “fairy” means not real or true, then I wouldn’t have wasted so much time believing. Maybe I wouldn’t have turned my life into a mess in the pursuit of ‘dreams’ and ‘goals’. Maybe I would’ve ended up content, if not ‘happy’, with my lot in life, because someone had been honest with me… maybe… could have, should have, would have, didn’t.

I discovered the truth too late, after too many years of dreaming and hoping and practicing that thing called faith… Turns out after 26 I got the real deal on those fairy stories. They weren’t really ‘fairy’, there was a lot of truth in them, it’s just that the stories ended on a ‘high’, falsely represented, ‘happy’ note. The ever depressing ‘happy ending’ to those of us who have yet to even begin to find reality in that idea. Here’s what happened post where the ‘caring-let’s-protect-them’ parentals left off:

Snow White

The ‘Prince’ a.k.a. John, saw her in that glass case sleeping and his body reacted and he knew he wanted babies from her to carry on his awesome genes. He knew that she could cook and clean and take care of at least 7 little ones at a time, so it made logical sense to him to follow the plan of a prosperous future and land up with Miss White. The thing is, being as loaded as he was, he didn’t think it necessary to chat to Miss White about his plans. Miss White, having just been whisked out of a very long coma wasn’t quite ‘with it’ when all the marriage stuff happened faster than her recuperation did. As it so happened Miss White was dead against having children as she believed that the world was a horrid place with war, famine, rape, pornography, money-orientated-capitalists, self-absorbed-selfie-taking narcissists, deadly virus’s from Ebola to HIV and more chaos and depression than her little heart could handle, so she had her mind and heart set on creating homes for the homeless, caring for the orphans and uplifting the lives of those with so little when she had been blessed with so much. She had no desire to procreate or have herself replicated in another human being; in fact she thought that it would be most unkind to any child. John, needless to type, was fuming! How dare this woman not realise that his genes should be carried forth into the future to benefit mankind? How dare she think that taking care of so many others was more important than looking after him and his offspring? Did she not realise that he was the reason she wasn’t still living in a hovel? John wanted a divorce; he couldn’t get it. Not because of Miss White, but because he had no degree, no ambition and no desire, other than to own the mirror his grand-mother-in-law owned and have replica’s of himself running around. This being the case, his only source of income was from his parents. His parents were traditionalists and wanted to keep up their very unsoiled appearances in their kingdom so that no-one could dare question them or their perfect lives. Thus John approached Miss White and told her that she had no choice but to have children for the sake of the kingdom. Now Miss White knew that her grandmother wasn’t going to be letting her into her old kingdom and she knew that the seven dwarves were thrilled to be bachelors in all their glory once again, so she had nowhere to go, but still, she wanted to be true to herself and her convictions. So she told John to give her a few months in the kingdom next to far far away to make her decision. He agreed. She skipped off to the neighbours, had a hysterectomy, and then returned back to be the dutiful wife, have all the sex required and, despite all the magical spells Merlin tried to get her to fall pregnant, it just never happened and the grandmother with the mirror was blamed for eternity for the fall of John’s kingdom.

Sleeping Beauty.

When Miss White was getting herself fixed up she was funded by her cousin Miss Beauty. She therefore managed to get the lowdown whilst she was recovering. Miss Beauty had become a counselor in the hospital that Miss White was recovering at. Turned out Miss Beauty’s ‘prince’ a.k.a. Jack, had not been marriage material after all. You see Jack had had a run in with a big giant who kept Fee Fi Foe Fumming all over the place, so Jack got rid of him; this had come after he’d had this nagging mother who was always talking talking talking. So when Jack heard of this Sleeping Beauty he decided to expand his criminal activities and impersonate a prince. He figured Miss Beauty would be the perfect catch for him because 1) she was a beauty and 2) she slept all the time, so she’d be sure to be quiet and wouldn’t annoy him like a certain mother and giant had. His psychologist had told him that his mother was the cause of his paranoia and schizophrenia, so he figured her opposite: a quiet beauty; would be perfect. He went along, followed the instructions in a ‘save the damsel’ booklet, took the woozy Miss Beauty to a Las Vegas Chapel and put a ring on her finger, trusting that the golden silence was going to be better than his golden eggs. Awesome honeymoon and then the drugs she’d been sleeping on ran out and all the talking she’d had to keep back whilst sleeping exploded out continuously. In trying to recover from his murdering the giant Jack was not in the right space for her eruption and, in the fifth night of her babbling about the dragon he’d killed, he reached for one of his weapons to show her he meant business and could kill again, at which point she screeched and ran out to the neighbours who called in a “domestic violence dispute”. The police arrived and arrested Jack, consequently discovering he was wanted for murdering a giant and a dragon, impersonating royalty and the case of his mother’s drowning in a bath of bean soup was still unresolved. Jack got life in jail and Miss Beauty got the golden egg laying chicken, so it transpired that she could help pay for her cousin’s hysterectomy. She decided to become a counselor because she could talk all day and even at night for certain emergency cases.

Cinderella.

One of Miss Beauty’s such cases was that of Cinderella, a depressing story to begin with, but it finished up being alright in the end. Cinderella had to get the divorce, the only princess to have suffered such an inexcusable black mark of embarrassment on her name. With no family to go to she had sought shelter in the hospital and Miss Beauty took her on board to clean her office as she had such incredible talents in the cleaning department, it was as if she’d been trained from when she was a toddler. Cinderella’s story was a sad one because the divorce was for reasons beyond her control. She had been so naive and innocent when she went to that ball that when the ‘Prince’ a.k.a. Elton-Louie had sent his servants to come and find the foot for the shoe, it was not because he wanted her, but because he wanted the other shoe. He was dealing in fashion design on the side and his completely gay nature was in love with beautiful forms and his ultimate turn on: gorgeous shoes darhling. Unfortunately, with all the hype that went into finding the shoe, his parents, and the kingdom, were under the impression that it was all for love of the marriage-kind and not love of the fashion-kind. He was still a closet case and was suddenly thrust into the spotlight that caught him in more shock and fear than a flying fairy caught in a sealed pit of hungry frogs. He went through with it all and poor Cinderella was left lonely and isolated and rejected after being turned down on their wedding night, she resorted to cleaning and fell into depression. He began his “blue-period” of social withdrawal and creating all his designs in blue. This went on for a year until the fairy god-mother rocked up again after her holiday in Bermuda with King Arthur’s Merlin who had been called back to deal with a Miss White who couldn’t fall pregnant for reasons unknown, but the conspiracy was believed to be: by the magic of her dodgy grandmother. The fairy-godmother hooked up her lawyer friend, who drew up the papers and got the divorce settled. They sent Cinderella to Miss Beauty and Elton-Louis to Cape Town.

Rapunzel.

Although Cinderella managed to slowly recover and eventually created her own cleaning company and married a doctor, Rapunzel wasn’t so lucky. It turned out her fate was similar, in a round-about-small-possibly-connected kind of way, to that of Sampson who had his hair cut by Delilah. Sampson lost all his strength when he lost his hair and so too did Rapunzel. Sadly, the problem with Rapunzel was she actually did fall head over tower for the ‘prince’ who climbed her hair and gave her a headache that never ever ended, no matter how much paracetamol she consumed. The ‘prince’ a.k.a. Timothy, or ‘Tim’ to his mates, was one of those ‘playa’s’, the guys who are interested in the hunt, the conquest, the game. He wasn’t the slightest bit interested in commitment or long-term anything. All Rapunzel knew though was LONG term. She didn’t know how to play pretend or cut her emotions or ‘be in the game’. Tim was around for a few weeks, then he got a call that there was some wicked witch in the west of a place called Oz who needed some rescuing, if he managed it, he could get in there to get her inheritance too, because, according to the grapevine of the land of far far away, the witch was pretty much going to be losing a battle with a Dorothy from Kansas very soon. Having squandered most of his parents’ money on his global-damsel-in-distress-escapades, he was keen for the dough and for cashing in on the fame once again. Problem was, Rapunzel was a serious hottie and he actually enjoyed every moment he spent with her, in fact, he knew he loved her, but he also knew he was a playa and he couldn’t settle down, but he didn’t want anyone else to have her either, so he told her he was going away for a short while and would be back after he’d raised some funds for their future, but until then, he gave her a poetry website where he would write a poem for her every day.

He did indeed write incredible poetry; he’d had years of victims, um, subjects, and practice. Rapunzel became so entranced and the spell Tim cast with his words entrenched his being in her soul. He knew he would never return to her, he knew he wanted the money and the chase he would get from all the other women he was yet to conquer, but he felt incredible things for Rapunzel, so incredible that they petrified him and he had no idea how to live them in person, so he lived them through his poetry. This left Rapunzel, whose love language was words, with nothing but unrequited, un-human, internet love.

Tim’s approach literally killed Rapunzel’s soul. She moved into a place of hell as she was separated from the only man she had ever loved or felt so strongly for. She loved him, hated him, wanted to help him, wanted him to suffer, wanted to kill him, hold him, keep him, banish him… every human emotion rocked through her in relation to him and she hated it. She hated that he had made her so helpless when she had been so strong and independent. He had taken her hair and her being with him and left her nothing. She went to psychologists, psychiatrists, spiritual-healers, hypnotherapists and medical practitioners but none of them could help her. They cut her down as a human, filled her with more self-doubt, they told her her parents had caused her misery, they gave her drugs, told her she had post-traumatic stress, depression and anxiety. They told her she was crazy because the poetry was not about her. No-one would write such brilliant stuff and not want to be with that person in person, it was, quite simply, “A ludicrous concept!” They told her she had lost the plot because it wasn’t possible to be hearing Tim’s voice when he had clearly left her, especially as the internet had posted loads of paparazzi pictures of him with the witch. Still, Rapunzel felt Tim with her, when she was washing dishes, drying her hair, showering, sleeping, driving, walking, whatever it was, he was there and she couldn’t get rid of his presence. She fought with herself, hated herself some more, grew more insecure and broke down into tears and little pieces of frustration and self-hate far too often. The specialists had her burn things, break things, draw things, shoot things, do body-shake-therapy, see a body talk consultant, take classes and do so many things that she felt like she was running in circles; and all the while he was next to her with his smile, his laugh, his bizarre comments, his allergies, his stories, and she couldn’t erase him. She went mad, so mad they sent her to the asylum next to the hospital where Cinderella was cleaning and Miss Beauty was talking and Miss White visited every now and then when she was helping out the children in the hospital and bringing joy to those who have so little…

Settle or Wait?

Yesterday, as happens often in my life, I was asked a deep question: “Do women know when they are walking down the aisle that they are making the wrong decision?” The person asking me said that she knew she was making the right decision and there was no doubt in her mind at all that she’d repeat the day in a heartbeat, but some of her friends are now divorcees and in chatting to them, most knew on the day they were making a bad decision. My answer, in my never-had-a-date, never-been-a-bride state “Yes, I believe that those brides who end up divorced knew deep down in their souls that their marriage was not going to work.” My interrogator then said: “but there’s so much pressure on that day and so many people there, you can’t just walk out after all that money, you have to go through with it.” I looked at her and said that I believe women know long before they walk down that aisle, deep down, that they are walking down the aisle for the wrong reasons and they aren’t completely convinced that the guy they are with is ‘the one’. Gen X’ers are a trial and error generation as per psychology journals, so that probably applies to marriage and different partners too. She agreed with me and then said that she guessed the embarrassment of the admission that they have made a mistake is probably too great on their wedding day and people tell them it’s just nerves in a stressful situation, but when you know, you know.

We went on to chat about the reasons why women are settling with guys who they know deep down in their souls are not the perfect supplement to their beings. Obviously there are the 5 Love Languages differences. She goes in thinking its love so she’ll get poetry and one-on-one time with him and he goes in thinking he’ll get someone to serve him. She doesn’t get the words or one-on-one time and he doesn’t get a fresh meal and towels every night, so both feel unloved and that the marriage isn’t working, so they split. Secondly, they’ve never known perfect to exist, so they no longer believe it exists. Thirdly, they’ve had no role models to tell them they are worth perfect so they settle for someone who gives their ego attention.

Fourthly, women are taught to manipulate to get there way (as are men, sometimes even worse so than women). Any manipulator in a relationship and the other will realise eventually that it isn’t truth or real, but a manipulated fabrication. A 9 year old asked me a few months ago what kind of man I was waiting for? What kind of a man did I want? My reply: “The One God has prepared for me and is sending to my front door.” Along with that I gave her the rundown of what I’d love, what I need and how I felt a marriage should be. Her response: “Shoe, but you are going to be waiting a very long time to try and find someone like that!” So, from 9 years old this beautiful girl’s opinion of men is low. Given her context, it didn’t surprise me. But what made me sad was her belief that a perfect partner probably doesn’t exist and if he does, then you’d have to wait for him and in her generation waiting is unheard of. Her generation has parents who feel guilty about working and the relationship with their children is based on demand and supply. Scream and satisfy. No waiting, no delayed gratification, no sense of earning anything or growing responsible enough and proving yourself first. So this approach has translated itself into her perception of marriage and finding a partner. It appeared she “Doesn’t want to wait that long”. She is now 10 and already has her second boyfriend after the first ‘broke her heart’. AT TEN! What is she going to aspire to for the next EIGHTY YEARS if the ultimate journey of learning to love happens with dissatisfaction before she’s out of her teens? As she may not even want to wait that long, she’ll probably just settle with what she thinks she can cope with in the flaws of a boy; the ones she believes she can manipulate (if subconsciously) and change to become what she really wants, on her terms.

This lead onto fifthly: Women are impatient. The Wait. This is without a doubt, by my personal experience, THE worst and most horrible part of practicing faith. The Wait. Depression, loneliness, low-self-esteem, feeling rejected, worthless, becoming completely self-sufficient that you can’t even justify the need for another anymore. Becoming recluse and absent from ‘happy family’ events and functions. Declining the 40th wedding invitation because you’ve been single at every one of the ones before. Throwing yourself into work, studying, cause after cause, after cause, just trying to get through each day of “The Wait”, knowing it will go by more speedily if you are busy. It will hurt less; and kill the soul a little less, by helping others. Being busy will help to pay less attention to the hell you are living through by being separated from love. On top of that is the physical frustration and torment. The ego feeling like it’s an outcast. As you are the ‘abnormal’ one waiting on God, waiting in faith, waiting for the Universe’s perfect timing to make what will be, be. Sitting as a real-life, genuine Rapunzel waiting … It is nothing I would wish on any girl in the world with a heart full of dreams, but neither is being married to and stuck with someone who would kill her soul further more than if she were on her own. I remember dreaming of love and finding someone well over 20 years ago now. My story reads and feels both pathetic and empty, separated from love and my other half. Of course, The Wait could be life-long and the journey was never about meeting someone else, but about becoming whole within my Self, alone… I don’t think many women have the faith, perseverance, trust or self-discipline and control needed to wait, so they go ahead and ‘know’ they can ‘make it work’ by their own doing and manipulation and control of the situation. They’ve been told their whole lives “you can do anything…” the question begged here: but is it wise to?

Finally, life experience. I’m realising as I type that these aren’t separate points, they are actually just different perspectives of the same thing, human flaws and how we just replicate them generation after generation after generation. In order for women to realise they have doubts, to realise that it isn’t going to work, they’d have to be in tune with themselves. Not their friends, family or colleagues or society and its major complexities, but just in sync with themselves in the quiet of their own beings. They’d have to ask themselves and trust the answer, not let their egos get in the way, or the thoughts planted in their minds. If they are in tune with their body and soul, then they would absolutely know that something isn’t ‘clicking’.

Being a ridiculously honest person I’ve never been able to hide my knowing that something was wrong with the energy between myself and a guy. My body irrationally flinches and closes off at touch, like an instinctual, uncontrollable reaction. My mind swings into analysis, pissed off that I’m not playing the game. My ego gets cross with my body and gets my mind to ‘sort this out’ and create justifications as to why I should be grateful for the attention and the touch. My ego is over the moon at the attention and my body doesn’t want it. This has been my experience with every guy who sits or stands near me, I don’t like it. Society would tell me that I have a problem, that there must be something bad in my past that I’ve blocked out to make me feel so irrationally uncomfortable around men. I’ve never been able to make myself feel any different, so I gave up trying and God blessed me with a very female environment. I’ve left it to God to sort out in His time. If I didn’t have faith that God’s got my life, then I would be faulty. I would have to be in psychology sessions and I would have to “force myself” to be comfortable around men and date them (I was genuinely told this by a counselor). Forcing my body to do what it is completely uncomfortable with. This would have created great dissonance with myself and my being. Depression, low self-worth you name it. Still, this was my experience before my 30th year. If I had forced myself to make myself love and be with someone, then I would have found myself in front of the mirror telling myself to “Get happy!” telling myself off for not being happy like I’m supposed to be in this ‘perfect’ relationship. Controlling my soul and being and forcing them to be ‘dutiful’ because I swore ‘forever’. I would be living with societal guilts and pressures that I think may overwhelm many women. That would have become my ‘norm’ if I’d done what the world told me to. If I’d bowed to the nonsense of this world; its faulty standards without faith in God and His plan, then I’d be divorced by now too.

When I was 30 though, something happened. At 30 I met a man where for the first time my desire was not to step away from him, but to step into his embrace. Not detach, but engage. Suddenly the dynamics changed, my mind was against him in every way due to the unfortunate situational context, but my body and soul relished in pure undeniable, unadulterated never-before-experienced joy! The energy was so good, so attractive, so coated in unconditional love like I had never experienced before, never known, never sung and danced in before. It was like an electric shock to my entire being. A lightning bolt from Heaven that radiated a joy I had never known existed. The realisation wasn’t on first meeting, it was only weeks after that, then it was realisation and 3 weeks of confusion, mayhem, disorientation, anger, hope, delusion, tears, joy, everything! Every emotion you could name catapulted through me in those 3 weeks. Finally, when I had to walk away, thanks to the situational context, the only thing that kept going through my mind was the realisation that I belonged by his side. That is where I fit in this life. I want to be the one standing next to him no matter what. “I love you”. I finally know what love really is! I’d never come close to thinking that about any man in my life, ever.

He felt nothing for me.

The whole experience showed me that it was possible for me to feel the intrinsic desire to tell someone I loved them and I truly meant it unconditionally, in the context of: “everything I have is Yours.” In parallel to my relationship with My Father in Heaven and understanding His love for us: what I was feeling for someone who felt nothing for me, was akin to what God feels for every human being, even though most don’t feel it for Him. I realised through this encounter that I haven’t been waiting in vain. That my body knows me and the Universe and the plans God has for me, and my physical reactions hold a far deeper meaning and knowing than I’d realised.

Naturally the rejection has been beyond hell and back over and over again. The separation from a love that I now know, for sure, exists, has been nothing short of hell and torment. The break down after being left, the depression, anxiety, tears, melt-downs, all resulting from my soul’s knowing that something so miraculously joyous does exist and I lost it, I don’t have it. This has all been traumatic. BUT what I now know absolutely, without doubt, is that real, unconditional, relaxed, companionable, enriching love does exist. I now know that what I’m hoping for, whether it ever arrives again or not, I know it does exist. I know that I am in tune with myself and my body isn’t lying to me. My ego is the liar. Even if the rest of the world tells me I’m not normal, that I’m dysfunctional, and running on the wrong schedule, I can walk away from them with conviction, because I have experienced the real deal. I know what is possible now. I’ve touched it, experienced it and been spoilt by it too. Sadly, I now have the conviction of knowing by experience what desire feels like, what unconditional means, what sacrifice is, and I know that love truly is incredible. People who haven’t experienced this, don’t ‘know’. They don’t want to ‘wait for it’. They want to settle and take what they have and ‘work with it’. I’m not about to settle and/or force and/or make it have to work as a fabrication of what I’ve dreamt of. A fabrication of love that I know I won’t have the energy or ‘fakeness’ to maintain and sustain all my life. I don’t want “she settled for less” on my gravestone. I’d prefer: “Their love was God’s gift and creation and the hard relationship work so much easier because of it.”

Maybe my one intrinsic, instinctual, I-don’t-need-you-to-say-it-back moment of “I love you” is all I’ll get in this lifetime, or maybe God is good for His Word, and I’m destined for Heaven after this wait… only time will tell… so I have to keep on keeping busy to get through each long day, just in case I’m right and God’s got this… Amen.

F.Y.I. Post – so frustrated and stuck!

I find myself completely frustrated and perplexed at the moment, feeling like the Universe has slapped a straight-jacket on me and is refusing to let me out of my cage and be set free to achieve things and be all I was made to be. It is revolting. After numerous job applications being turned down I find myself stuck in a work environment under the supervision of a boss who doesn’t trust me, and I’m one of the most trustworthy human beings on the planet! Due to expressively complicated personal circumstances the boss has been off / ‘out of office’ for a very long time, whilst I’ve been covering and managing a double workload with emails and texts behind my back going around. It is stressful when I’m sitting with 300 learners to sort out and my immediate boss doesn’t trust me. Why would God want me in this situation? Worst of all is that the stress is corroding my body and soul and leaving me even more exhausted. Why am I in this situation? Why won’t the doors I’m banging on open up to let me out?

On top of it and adding to the frustration is my inability to type and blog and spend time doing what I love doing, all because of the permanent state of over-dramatised crisis management at work. Work is not a person’s life. Work should not be stressful. It should not drive one to drink. People should be professional at work and get the job done; and if they can’t, then say so and pass it on, until they can. So much of frustrating! Anyway, that’s my rant. I don’t understand why God needs to me to go through this for such a prolonged amount of time, especially when it’s such an unhealthy environment. Ugh! Ugh! Ugh!

So, even though I now have 4 of 4 exam papers to set instead of my expected 2 of 2; and I have a new teacher to train as the second one to ‘fill in’; and I have an international Adobe Course that I’m weeks behind in to catch up on, stuff it, I’m writing a blog for my own soul. Topic: Settle or Wait for Marriage?

Am I A Christian? Conclusion – inconclusive …

After posting the sessions’ blogs, I sent them to the preacher. No reply. My friend Alyss Brossy sent 4 twitter requests to Louie Giglio to comment. Nothing. Joyce Meyer herself was also asked to comment. Nothing. A minister in training, nothing. 3 Christian pastors of high status and experience completely avoiding the blogs and my questions on faith and how what they are advocating doesn’t make sense when it comes to hell, suffering, religion and The Bible. Not a word. So if there is no comment and no answers to my questions, how can I believe that there is Love in their religion?

South Africa – Nuclear Energy – the world is NUTS!

This is an older post I put up on LinkedIn and it disappeared… then today I read on twitter that the nuclear stuff is going ahead – so I’m re-posting it because I feel like it – HUMPH!

Once again I’m typing in a state of incensed rage! I was supposed to be marking exam papers, but was distracted with Twitter and ended up reading that South Africa has now signed an agreement to take on more nuclear reactors through Russia! How INSANE! Psychotic. I logged into the NEWS24 article that already had 55 comments in less than an hour. I then typed a comment in protest, and the phone froze in the last sentence. Nothing, stupid technology, the phone freezes randomly all over the place, whenever it feels like it, especially when it’s something important to me, and these phones/technologies are what people place their trust and lives in? I digress. I batteried out and then re-installed and reconnected. Retyped. Hit submit and bam: site not accessible. Sorry for you, ‘this site may not exist anymore’ blah blah blah. I was angerised even more. Get on to the site again, a third time (so guess it does still exist), and bam: 121 comments have now been posted! Psychotic. I couldn’t get in to read them as the phone does what the phone wants and receives signal when it feels like it, and doesn’t when it doesn’t, it’s choice being “not” in my anger. Argh!

So I couldn’t mark papers because my fuse has blown and being objective was not an option, not that my government would care about that it appears. So angry! So I ended up typing this and if you are reading – apologies if I offend you – but these things should be typed by someone, even if the government will do what they feel like anyway! And I’m not in an emotional state to be politically correct!

I typed on that self-functioning-maddening phone that I think the whole idea of nuclear power is psychotic! Has no-one bothered to recall or remember the effects of a NUCLEAR EXPLOSION? Was it not only a few years ago that Japan was in a ghastly place because of a tsunami hitting their nuclear reactors? The hell those residents had to live through, the fear, and the South African government are saying, “Great, I’ll have some more of that!”?!?

WHY? Because Eskom can’t supply enough power. Yet, Billboards are brightly lit all night long. Rugby, cricket, soccer, racecourses for night-racing and athletics stadiums are lit with super spotlights. Office blocks do not turn off their office lights at night, shop windows keep lights on, airports and shopping malls are always lit and air-conned, etolls use electricity, and some streetlights are left on all night. Casinos are lit with crazy lighting all over the show. No wonder there is a power drain. We pump more rubbish into our atmosphere day after day and that affects the weather, which drains power through air-conditioners and heaters. This is not rocket science people! Get rid of the unnecessary excess. Get rid of the desire for money, money, money and more money.

On top of this we live in a country where it appears the mentality of many is: “Man needs to have lots of wives/women and lots of babies”! Hello! Population explosion = electricity drain = power drain = more pollution = more waste = less space = drained resources all round! This is not higher grade! Some high school boys are quite chuffed with themselves because they have managed to make more than one schoolgirl pregnant! Create more people and take more from the environment, more from the hard-working tax-payer. Take, take, take…. And how is the government dealing with it: bring in nuclear power, let’s destroy the environment, let’s take more from the earth, let’s take more by setting up hazardous nuclear reactors, let’s bring in fracking and let’s encourage population growth and self-destruction.

I sit as a teacher, seeing the education levels decreasing with unhelpful ‘policies’, the apathy increasing and less and less and less learners with any desire to work hard and become something. I see less and less learners who are going to be employed in an income bracket to earn money to pay tax to pay for all the craziness the government is implementing, and I get mad. Mad that it all has to fall. We are dealing with unnatural, unhealthy and non-sustainable short-cuts. Nothing that is being set up in this context is for the good of the earth and/or the people living on it. It’s all for instantaneous gratification and ‘power’ and not for the future of anything worthwhile and positively productive and/or sustainable. It makes me sick!

I can’t mark papers now… what’s the point anyway? We may all just be wiped out with a nuclear mistake sooner than “our” government realise they are looking at the wrong issues. They are being ‘reactive’ instead of ‘proactive’, but I don’t think they care, so long as they get to charge their phones, have their DSTV boxes on, use their laptops and internet, and have their TV’s, aircons and heaters working… SO ANGRY!