I’ve had a day or two to reflect on The Present. Now I know what the biggest gift is that I ever gave my children.
It’s not ipads, iphones, mopeds, wads of confirmation cash or anything consumerist. Although all those things add up. The price for this item was much, much higher and is still being paid.
In 1998-99, I made a promise. A promise that the children would be brought up in their mothers’ home country. In 2004, just before the eldest would’ve started school, I made that promise come true. The initial price, as you know if you read the earlier posts, was to be in a country where I didn’t have a job, couldn’t speak the language and was supporting a whole family. Including non-working partner. All while paying for two houses. It was a major, major risk.
In 2019, I’m still here. I have a job. A fairly good one actually. I can speak the language to a standard good enough for citizenship, even if I rarely show it and I still support a whole family, one way or another, if you have a basic understanding of the welfare state. I’m only paying for one house now.
On the face of it, it doesn’t sound too bad. Consider the previous posts as the ultimate balancing of the accounts though. I would never have chosen this place, this life if it had been just me. I delivered what everyone else wanted and now I’m alone at the dining table, left with the bill.