Remona Aly
Monday 02 January 2017 Pause for Thought, BBC Radio 2

Soulmates & Serendipity

New Year, Soulmates & Serendipity, Pause for Thought, BBC Radio 2, Chris Evans Breakfast Show


And so it begins again, another 365 days to figure out if this is going to be my year. I wonder if I’ll surmount the ‘snowball in hell’ list carried over from 2016, I wonder if I’ll ever write that book, and I wonder if this year, I’ll finally meet my soulmate. 

Yes, the love boat sets sail every year, leaving me on the shore of singlehood, and it’s not like I haven’t tried different ports – whether it’s via misguided matchmaking aunties, the ordeal of blind dates, or the den of iniquity that is online dating sites. 

I’ve had some guys message me in shouty capitals like, “NO TIME FOR TIME-WASTERS. DO YOU WANT MARRIAGE”, while others have shown that grammar and spelling is not their forte, like: ‘I’m looking my special person who is ready for marry and enjoy with me. Drop me a massage or please block me, i dont want to send another massage by mistake.”

All these massages – or messages – pointed me towards one thing: an exit strategy. I might be limiting my chances but I see it as self preservation and more importantly, a leap of faith. 

Some things you can’t control, no matter how hard you chase serendipity. I’m learning to let things take their course in the assurance that everything is as it will be, at its time, in its place. 

But it’s not easy.

When bad stuff happens to me, or good stuff happens to others, I need to resist those two paralysing questions: “Why me?” And, “Why not me?” These two little questions can sap my endurance, stunt my determination, and weaken my faith.

But what brings me back from the cliff of despair is the reassuring wisdom from my 1400-something year old mentor, Prophet Muhammad, who said: “Know that what passed you could not have befallen you, and what has befallen you could not have passed you by. Know that victory comes with patience, relief follows distress, ease follows hardship.”

This saying renews my spirit, it teaches me the art of survival, and the mechanics of faith. Some things will happen to me, other things will pass me by. It’s about accepting the good and the bad, and navigating both with integrity. That’s the attitude I carry with me into 2017, the year Love may well befall me if it is meant for me – after all, ‘victory comes with patience…’