I got married sometime in 2018 to my friend and although he resided in Germany at that time, I was unaware of the hurdles we would cross to live together. Shortly after the wedding, I took the A1 German test which was and still is a requirement for a long term visa. Although I took a few classes, I didn’t take it seriously as I was “forming” busy with work which led to my not meeting the cutoff point. I however retook the exam and thankfully “overpassed” the cut off mark.
Passing the exam, led to my application and a near six month wait for my visa. During the wait for the visa, I took short term consultancy jobs and worked as much as could. I also cried a lot as I reminded God of His promises. There were times, I just wanted to run to the airport screaming “I need to leave, my husband is not here and my life is stagnant”. One resounding lesson from God in that season was (is) that “All things work together for good, to them that love God and are called according to His purpose”. I also learnt to be sensitive. I started avoiding people who made it a point of duty to ask me “When are you going to meet your husband?”. To be fair, these people who asked did not know how hard it was for me (and le hubby) but that did not stop the question from being frustrating. So basically, when you ask a person once or twice about an issue, please watch the body language. If they seem uncomfortable, just drop it! You do not know what people have to deal with everyday behind the smiles and attempts to be strong.
You are probably wondering what is so hard about a long distance marriage. Girl, if you have been in a long distance relationship, think about the disadvantages of a long distance relationship and multiply it times 10. Besides the fact that it is not easy to be in a long distance marriage, I also couldn’t avoid the feeling of being stagnant and not progressing because I couldn’t apply for jobs since I didn’t know my fate and my documents were with the consulate. “Diaspora marriage” as some people call it is not also particularly accepted in the Nigerian context so think of the judgmental looks you will get when you move around with a wedding ring and no husband. Chai, I remember the places I avoided just to dodge people who would either look at my belly (to check if I am pregnant) or would ask the infamous question of “when are you going to meet your husband?”.
The final lesson I´d like to share today is to be careful with decisions when in a tight spot. Around the end of last year, I got an opportunity to be a missionary while I was sorting out my long term visa application. Now you must understand that being a missionary is my dream which is why I was in a fix. It was between “go and be a missionary in a foreign country that is not Germany” or go and live with your husband in Deutschland (Germany). Bro, it was a tough one but I knew deep down that being a missionary at that season wasn’t in God´s agenda for me (Yes, even if it is God’s work). The door was just opened as a test of some sort even though it wasn’t part of His agenda. The writer of Ecclesiastes says that “for everything, there is a time and season”. I was confused because I just wanted to run off from Nigeria but it was not His plan. I was torn between His plan and mine. I eventually did not go to be a missionary in 2018 but I still consider myself a missionary in Germany ;).
Looking back, I am convinced that like King David, we must always go back to God to find out His plan and strategy for every step we plan to take. God cares about us and is always willing to give us guidance.