It would be remiss of me if I failed to reflect upon the year gone by. A year that has gone by far too quickly. A year that I realise I was never ready nor equipped for. A year that I still feel I am readying myself for. A year of first experiences, of lingering thoughts, tuggings at my heart, that will forever be etched upon my every waking moment, and securely stowed in the treasure chests of my heart as a lifetime of memories. A brief synopsis … my feeble attempt to capture these life-changing moments will always be too inadequate to express these breath-taking moments…
One early February evening, a little soul, too little to be real and yet too real to be too little, entered and changed me life completely, forever. A little soul who bestowed upon me the privileged name of daddy.
A wife, a partner, a friend, in the person of Mia-Cara who has become my all – not because she demands it, not because of a ring on my finger, not because of an romantic gesture – but because she has my heart. A woman of strength, of courage, of perseverance. A woman I do not deserve, and yet, one who stands beside me through this daunting journey called life. In the words of Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer (The Sound of Music), “I must have done something good…“
A flight so short that was so long. A meeting of family. An introduction that was so fleeting, so profound and yet so poignant. Will a little soul remember names, faces, voices? Will they be strangers or remain family despite distance, despite a loss of familiarity?
A symposium littered with academics. Names I have only previously read about, my audience, my first conference proceeding. Nerves unsettled, mouth parched, words failing me, the exit too far to be an option.
Coloured insecurity amongst a room of strangers. A misunderstood privilege, a misdirected fear. A glimmer of friendship, of support, of realness. An exposed introvert who struggled to make sense of the contradiction.
A worshiping culture too foreign to be real, or to understand. A sea of families that would be underrepresented in my broken community. An intellectual acceptance of the Gospel that would have no place in an emotional embracing of the presence of God that breaks through poverty, hopelessness and desperateness.
Yet, it will remain a year that will forever whisper in my heart the words uttered by Andre de Villiers,