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Life Series

On qualifying as an actuary


It’s been over a year and three months, and a year and two months since the disastrous attempt at getting over you that involved the comfort of another’s arms. I look at pictures of you – the ones I haven’t gathered the courage to delete, and the ones that your friends post of you on Facebook. I notice how your hairline is receding, and try to take some comfort in that; try to learn to be mean.
It’s not that I loved you, no. It’s that I took a chance on you, and I was wrong. Of course I am being ridiculous in mourning you for so long – we never could have worked out after all. But there is a pain that won’t go away despite the passing of time, and I can barely name it, define it, in order to heal from it. So I keep on having to redo saying goodbye.
So goodbye then.


This is how you say goodbye: You stay on the phone with a German lady with an accent so deep you can barely make out what she is saying; all this while the GPS screams at you to turn left – which I never do. I get lost horribly and decide to give up on the sky bar work event. So I drive to the beach, park my car there and take a nap.
I make some carrot juice when I get home and pour myself a glass of wine on top of that. I watch Miss Porter and gather the strength to delete your number; his too.
This monkey is a clown; I feel like being a clown for now.

Goodbye then, my darling


It’s raining cats and dogs tonight; so loud I am struggling to fall asleep.

Two glasses of red wine and my favourite movie later and I’ve got Joni Mitchell playing on repeat. I miss you, I realise yet again. I promised myself that I would be gentler on myself, more loving and accepting of my humanity and vulnerability; that I would be kinder to myself and allow my definition of compassion to include me. So I’m letting myself miss you; for as long as my heart needs to.

And I’m being honest by telling you, even when I don’t need to, because my sensibility needs it; this is life for me, this is living. Someday I’ll wake up and not need this, and that will be great. But for now here we are.

Have a fantastic weekend my darling…

Courage, dear heart

This time last year, I was couped up in a Birmingham library preparing for one of the biggest battles of my life – passing the CT4 actuarial board exam that had held up my qualification by three years. I had never been so scared in life. During those days, nothing else mattered. Certainly not the thousands of Rands I was flushing down the drain with that trip.

This year began with me vowing to live my life to the max; chiefly because my heart had stopped beating the minute I got a call to say my guardian mother was in ICU and things weren’t looking good. I begged, I pleaded and I prayed for her to get well. But mostly I bargained. I bargained for her health in return for never taking a single day for granted. Every day I pray to measure up to that bargain.