Dalk?

Dalk

Dalk is jy die een

Dalk is jy nie

Maar hoe sal ek weet

as ons nie tyd saam spandeer nie?

Miskien is dit “die liefde”

Of net iets wat soos die liefde lyk

Maar hoe sal ons weet as ons nie wag nie?

Gee dit tyd

Ek dink dikwels aan jou

jou oe, jou glimlag

Eintlik droom ek, en luister na die stilte

van jou asem as jy langs my slaap

En ek wag.

February 2006 – I had recently met Lize, and was falling in love. She challenged me to write her a poem in Afrikaans. The beginning of my most harmful relationship yet, but one that led me to reconcile me with myself.

Sisters Divided

Sisters’ at War

No respite to this sibling hate

A poison buried in childhood fate

friendship fouled with resentment’s shard

love, play, laughter … sharpen its barb

Who is to blame? Their universe shattered

Mother? Father? A childhood battered

by broken vows, hardship,  lies and deceit

locked in struggle for revenge so sweet

Suffer the children. A prize in this war

While death’s cruel shadow stands at the door

Parents’ to blame, their sacred vow lost

the children a blade, to win at all cost

Yet now the years have blossomed their lives

their love twines with hate, their sibling bonds hide

Parents’ hearts’ poison course through their veins

children conceived to grow up in pain

Suffer the children to come unto Me

Forgiveness and healing in your hearts must be

See through your parents’ fools’ hearts’ and pride

turn to each other, set grievance aside

Stand then alongside, your childhood love renew

Resolute your champion, your confidante, your muse

Free your sibling friendship to explore anew

Hold on to your sister, who deep down, is you.

For Peyton and Emer:  There is nothing I or your mom can do to undo the harm we have done. That which has been done is done.  The seeds of self-destruction, planted by mom and dad, begin to blossom.  It is up to you, as young adults, to look inside yourselves, and to each other, to find forgiveness and realize that what mom and dad did to each other, had nothing to do with you, and you need not drag it around with you anymore. January 2012

My daughters, 16 and 19, continuously at each other’s throats, pursue the war their exhausted parents have long lost the will to fight.  The harm we inflict on our children through divorce, often only surface a decade later, when it is too late for regrets.

Love’s Labor’s Found

Never say never.  Or perhaps, DO say never. DO reject, cast out and abandon. it is amazing how taking a stand, even if it is the wrong stand, helps to focus the mind.  “I will never get married again” I said.  But what I was really saying was “I don’t ever want to be hurt like that again”.  After deep thought and deliberation about moving forward in my relationship, I had decided that marriage was not for me.  Little children were not for me.  And that was that.  But something interesting happened. “What was next?”  I wondered.  If I was not to marry, how could I ask … expect …. her to stay?  Beyond the defiance, there was a part of me that really wanted her to stay. But it was hidden. Buried underneath bravado, anger at my own past, resolve never to be vulnerable. And yet being vulnerable, I have discovered, is the only true path to love.  We cannot love unless we make ourselves vulnerable.  We cannot receive love, unless we tear down the walls that keep us safe.  There can only be true love when we are naked inside, exposed. To love and be loved, truly and without reserve, we cannot make ourselves safe.  No, our other makes us safe. The irony is that love lives in the same place as fear, but love overcomes fear.  Love is the opposite of fear. And in my defiance, my emphatic NO! , I had closed the door to love. to being loved.  In separating myself from what I had, I was able to find what I always wanted, right in front of me.

This love is very different. There is not that hovering fear of not being “good enough”. No uneasy suspicion that perhaps, just perhaps, there may be another, waiting to be met. Some other to sweep me away, or sweep my other way. No. Rather there is a resoluteness, a “matter of factness” that this is as it should be. It just is. I am.

And so, with new clarity about what it means to love, I have committed to a date. The 28th July 2012.

A venue: http://www.verlorenkloof.co.za.

And a bride, my Slinky.

Love’s Labour’s Lost

It has been about a year since I switched to a regime of medication to deal with my so called AADHD.  What a change to my life! Where last year was a bitter struggle to make ends meet, and to hold on to my sanity … and my relationships, it feels like now, someone threw a switch and life surges forward at pace. I’m  happy again. Work flows, opportunity hammers at my door each day, and I struggle to keep up with myself (in a good way).  My partner and I have a renewed desire for healthy living.

I am fortunate to be able to afford personal trainers, and this has made all the difference in our training regimen. We’re becoming fit and lean.  Runnung, cycling, gym – we’re really enjoying the active lifestyle, and each other.  And so, with every new life comes new challenges. That eternal question that all men – especially divorced men – have to face: Do I Get Married?

I’ve been with my partner for close to 6 years now. The first three years could have been lifted from a Soap Opera Novel – Sex, Drugs and House Music – the roller coaster ride of a love quadrangle.  But that’s for a different Blog.  We’ve lived together for the last three years and a bit, and have been engaged  for two. Its been really good for me, even though i didn’t think so at the time. There is a self destructive part to me that yearns for the passionate turbulence and intrigue that comes with being involved with someone that is wholly unsuited to my personality. That same part forgets, quite easily, the toll that such a relationship has on ones life, one’s relationships, one’s soul.  And so I find myself with a woman who is beautiful, calm, supportive and far too patient with me for my own good, and I’m bored. And now she wants to get married.

The idea terrifies me.  More so because she wants to have children.  There she stands, tapping her foot impatiently to the rythmn of her biological clock, waiting for me to get my act together. But sixteen years – 21 if you include the marriage – of emotional blunt trauma by my ex-wife, using my daughters as the instrument of revenge, preclude me from ever again going down that path. Never again will so much power over my life be given to one person, where children become the Trojan vehicle of my destruction.  And that in itself is my ex’s ultimate victory, that I shut myself off from ever getting that close to someone that I can give them my most precious gift, the trust that allows them to bear me children.

2011 in Perspective

Almost a year down the line and no blogging! I just cannot let go of pen and paper! My study is littered with A5 Moleskin notebooks. But then again, I struggle to keep my pen on the same piece of paper, let alone in the same notebook.  I write in several at the same time, although on different themes. One for dream interpretation. One for contemplation. A daily planning and recording journal  that helps me get things done.  A felt and leatherbound, handmade book for poetry. Even an A4, leatherbound journal with handmade paper, intended for recording the profound.  Needless to say my scattered writings have yet to manifest something profound enough to record in that  journal.

What a year it has been. From January onwards a longstanding relationship with a key client ended, and so did my income. this has been an incredibly tough year, financially, mentally and emotionally. Yet strangely and most satisfying, it has been a purifying and healing year. My dream life exploded with inciteful, prescient dreams that have guided me throughout the year. Some dreams providing insight into relationships, career, money matters. Others being of a prophetic nature, giving exact information as to what was to happen with whom and by when.  it is ironic how money, or the absence of it, drives one to look inward. Or upward.  How the extra time available through being underemployed leads to a “cleaning out” process. Letting go of the old.  Dealing with matters long postponed. Examining ones health and seeking solutions to long unattended problems.

Probably the single most important action I took this year, was to recognise that my ongoing depression was unnatural, and to seek help.  I am not one for chemical medications, particularly antidepressants, as a result of an unpleasant experience after my divorce in 1996. I chose St. Johns Wort as a natural antidepressant and within weeks noticed that my mood started to lift. Having plenty of time  to contemplate, I considered how I could deal with my ongoing depression that I had been carrying with me for years. I decided that the one thing I could do, that would make a difference, would be to find someone to talk to.  Not just anyone, a professional who would really understand me.  I sent up a silent prayer and contacted two therapists that I had dealt with in the past.  The first refused to see me (was I that bad?) and the other was on maternity leave.  She however, referred me to a man practicing from Mosaic Health Centre (www.mosaiek.com). Dr Johan Ferreira.  Over the next 3 months I visited him every two weeks in a series of encounters that have changed my life. We would sit in his rooms, ensconced in couch or reading chair, and just talk. At first, my intention was to deal with my dreadful track record in relationships. Not just with women, but men as well.  I struggled to maintain healthy, non-sexual relationships with my female friends (if it wasn’t about sex the friendship faded). I could also not maintain close male friendships, particularly not when that person became involved in a serious relationship. Something about me was too intense. But in this process, as we dug deeper into my behaviour and what motivated me, it became apparent that a core underlying issue, was Adult Attention Deficit Hypertensive Disorder.  At 44 I discovered I have ADHD. Of the 16 symptoms identified, I have 15.

A lot began to make sense, with that revelation.  Appropriate medication brought the world into sharp focus for me.  Where before everyone around me seemed to be so slow, finally I was able to slow down.  And smell the roses, so  to speak (or suffer fools gladly).  The single biggest effect was the absence of anxiety.  where before I was constantly haunted by a sense of dread, now I was able to focus on the task at hand. I could plan ahead.  I could prioritize and get things done. I was able to obey the First Rule of the Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy: Dont Panic! No more mood swings. My two personalities (yes, we all have at least two) have become closer to each other than ever before, and finally, my Holy Grail of personal growth, that the man I am on the inside is the man I am on the outside, seems to be within reach.

A bizarre side effect of the anti-depressant was that it solved the “sex based” friendship problem. As a result of the medication my interest in sex fell from hero to zero in about two weeks. Now most men would not think that a good thing, but for me it was a blessing.  All of a sudden I was no longer sending the kind of signals that got me the kind of attention that could get me into trouble in the first place. Don’t get me wrong.  I was not philandering with every young thing that came along.  But I was definitely getting the attention.  I could not seem to establish and maintain a friendship with the opposite sex that did not, eventually take that turn.  Either way, no matter which way I turned, that friendship would fade.  But this social problem was solved by a pill!

It did however, cause me to look at my partner in a new light.  Where once sex was fulfilling and regular,  it now became a chore.  Not through any fault of hers, but rather because the underlying reason why I was with her, was based on sexual attraction. Not intellect, not conversation, not personalities that sparked each other off. Just sexual adventure. Not a healthy place to be for any relationship.  This revelation was motivation enough for me to seek out a new anti-depressant that does not affect the libido (yes it does exist!) and to reexamine if and how, I can find other aspects to her and us, that are worth staying together for. This process is ongoing. If you want to find out what living with your wife is going to be like at 60 or 80, try going on antidepressants for a few months.

And so, with my new-found lucidity and calmness, I was able to reconnect with my children. My youngest daughter (15) has been living with me for about two years now.  The older one has lived with her mother despite an extremely tumultuous home environment.  And just as I began to settle into my new (improved) personality (iamwill 2.0), my  18 year old daughter pitched up on my doorstep with all her belongings and moved in.  Now I have both my daughters living with me. A happy, calm and peaceful home.

My mid-life christmas is over.  But something else, much more precious has taken its place.  I finally get to be Dad.

Love’s Lesson

So deep our hurt, so painful our tears

When love’s loss and heartbreak enter our years

Torn from our other, no surgeon’s blade cleaved

This bloody, wounded sorrow our Spirit’s bereaved.

Some cast about in anger and shame

A weapon! A dagger! The other’s too blame!

With vengeance and fear, we lash out to harm

But our own hearts we pierce, revenge is no balm.

But wait just a while, this sorrow endure

Learn the lesson, and hope, and others will near

And soon love’s laughter will again touch your soul

And joy on life’s wonders, once more make you whole.

a poem for my dear friend Cindy, after she had her heart broken for the very first time – May2006

Stardust and Light

Stardust and Light

In an ancient time

When the Universe was young

And Life itself was still an infant

We were formed

In the heart of a dying star

The very matter from which we are made

Was born

Stardust.

– ♥ –

Yes, in another time and space, even older

Where time and space do not exist

In the heart of the One

You and I were conceived

An idea. An identity. Eternal.

Each of us unique, with Soul and Purpose

Beings of Light.

– ♥ –

And in the fullness of time

Through this union of Stardust and Light

And something else

Love

You were born. I was born.

Into this body, into this life.

Aspects of God.

– ♥ –

So when that time comes, one day

For our bodies to surrender Soul

and free the Light that shines through all Creation,

Though our bodies return to stardust

You and I shall still remain

Soul and purpose intact

Beings of Love

– ♥ –

For as we journey through time

Over this life, over many lives, together

All things pass away. All things are left behind.

Except each other. Except the One.

How we Live our Lives, how we Love each other and the One.

This is what remains

Eternal

 

– ♥ –