One of the things I haven’t written about recently, under I guess the theme of ‘life begins at 56’ – or, for those of you who have followed this blog, 56 1/2 – is the small matter of my leaving my job and position as company director, after some thirteen years of (mostly) faithful service, and the launch (launch, when you think of your own body, wellbeing, existence as the vessel being launched, is not a mild term) of my new life as independent consultant, contractor to my former employer, and general freelancer.

That word ‘launch’ – I have an image in my mind of careening in a barrel towards the boiling edge of the Niagara Falls – is not such a far-fetched image, when I think of (one) of the other changes looming: that of Canada, Toronto, and a Tale of Two Cities….

I have some thoughts on the subject of career change, life changes, and the business of going independent. One is the deafening silence accompanying this process: is it really happening? Does anyone notice, except me?! Another is a growing sense of possibility, of fulfillment, of sheer pleasure in the prospect of working in my own time, setting my own goals – and worrying, no doubt, over my own invoices and bills.

But hey, there is time enough to write about this. I have other news to impart.

It is, in a sense, my riposte to Hegel, or at least the Hegelian dilemma of thesis and antithesis which my friend Mark posed when I wrote about ‘freedom and commitment’. Can one be free and still commit; and vice versa? I think I have found – Rob and I have found – a (purely personal, but it’s the two of us who are on the line here, no-one else) – a solution, or ‘synthesis’. Not just ‘a’ solution, but the right, the best solution.

Rob and I, on Sunday, during a long (and, let me say, sometimes emotional and even scary) conversation, decided that we should get married.

Date, time, place, to be announced later.

So, is this the end of freedom? I don’t think so: we promised ourselves that we would never, ever, ever, subject ourselves to the kind of ordeal I have been through over the past five years – obviously, by seeking to avoid the pain of separation in the first place, but also by going easy with each other if we were ever (heaven forfend) to separate. Rob assures me the research evidence on people who marry for a second time, in their fifties, is overwhelmingly positive, and I am sure she is right.

The fact is, we have been together for almost four years; we have made it through separation and our various personal troubles and strifes; we know each other pretty well by now, we know what we are getting into, and hopefully, we know ourselves.

The fact is, Rob is the most loving, warm, caring, generous-hearted woman I know; and I know we will be fabulously and wonderfully happy together.

So break out the champagne, everyone, and Mazel tov.

A couple