Nooj and I celebrated celibacy last night. Enthralled with our own prolonged states of unwedded bliss, we assured each other, men, real men, men the way we want them to be, are an endangered species. It’s long since that we’ve been disabused of fairytale expectancy, and we’ve hailed Fay Weldon for pointing out, “To believe a Mills and Boon novel reflects real life is to live in perpetual disappointment.”
It’s the sistahs that our Lord has so kindly cushioned our existence with, who inspire within us the deepest affection. So we say what we have to; what we must; what we need; to keep each other sane, to reassure ourselves that we are not alone, that we are (well, most of us anyway) not lost causes.
I’ve come to realise that any position, no matter how obscure, in religion, social sciences or even the art of being cast in or out of the narrative of love is easily defended by some astute posturing from the repository of recycled wisdom. But the little victory dance of vindication that this self-justification inspires in the cerebral colony of one, is just as easily refuted by the self-same information spewing repository. I’ll admit we are often masters of our delusion.
Beyond the brouhaha surrounding marriagabilty, there is a plain which upon reaching you realise nothing about the decisions you’ve made is right or wrong, good or evil, fair or prejudiced, there are simply differing shades of interpretation, depending on your vantage point.
For all the bravado I’ll admit that I still yearn for that unpretentiously clingwrapped marriage, clingwrap and not the distracting bling of aluminium foil, clingwrap so that I’m assured everything therein is kept safe, clingwrap so that the facade and the inner self remain consistent, clingwrap because it’s microwave safe.
Essentially too, clingwrap is easily dispensable.
And just as soon as the spirit is assuaged; the real inevitability reveals itself. Mohamed Arrington was the husband of Zaiboon Motola, the founder of Al Huda magazine. The first time I met this couple they took me out to a coffee shop for a cappuccino and regaled with me tales about their experiences with the magazine. When I left that coffee shop that day I prayed I didn’t disappoint these people.
They have been humble, affable, ready with a word of advice for any reservations I may have had…. And when my first effort was published and I cringed and suffered at every error I saw, it was Uncle Mohamed’s call that settled me. His joy was infectious; I can still hear the pride beaming through his voice. I couldn’t but go along being happy with him.
While paying me a surprise visit last week I noticed how comfortable they were with each other, they radiated happiness in each other, with each other. I was fascinated.And this morning Uncle Mohamed suddenly passed on.
May the Almighty ensconce him in His mercies and grant him the highest place in paradise.