I love those two pictures,above and below.
Both were taken two days ago by my four year old son,Achilleas. I love the first one because it's one of the few rare occasions ones that I am actually smiling and manage to look good. I love the second one because if it wasn't so out of focus,it would clearly be a very pretty picture,with lots of artistic perspective (notice the half-eaten sweet on the counter,where the young photographer left it so that he could concentrate on his artistic endeavors).
The school sure looks at its best all nicely decorated for Christmas
The big tree at the reception area,decorated by my two youngest sons
my office,decorated by me
where I now enjoy working more than ever.
So a few days ago an old friend from the past walked in here and we shared memories and exchanged news.She is my age, single, out of work. As she looked around,then looked at me smiling,seated at my comfortable desk,she exclaimed: ''Eirini,you are trully leading a blessed life!'' I almost choked on my coffee when I heard that,but she went on: ''You have everything any woman could wish for,isn't that so? A nice family with four healthy beautiful kids,a nice home,you are healthy and pretty yourself, you own the business of your dreams,you do work that inspires you,you are blessed with a happy-go-lucky disposition and so you can always see the happy side of things.I almost think that God has been too generous with you,because you have everything you ever wanted,while look at most people around you,so miserable and so unfairly treated by God''.
The truth is that my friend was not the only one to express such a view of my life. Over the years I've been listening to variations of the same,half admiring,half bitter comment,by all kinds of people,friends,acquaintances,co-workers,strangers who met me five minutes ago,even online friends. Maybe you are one of them,too. Maybe you too think that I am leading too blessed a life,that God has been too kind with me,that some kind of cosmic balance and sense of justice is precariously at stake,threatened by my perfect state of life.Usually,when people ask or comment like that,my standard answer is : "Yes,my life is truly blessed and I am deeply humbled and grateful for it''. But at this moment,as I am going through a very rough patch,I don't feel like giving that standard,sugar-coated answer,I feel like setting the record straight.
And setting the record straight means sharing this simple truth with you: My life is as much blessed or as much cursed as anybody elses. Meaning,in this reality light and shadow,peace and turmoil,contentment and dispondency,love and fear,relish and disgust,ecstasy and disappointment continually come one after the other,like the changing of seasons. Nothing is static in this reality,because this is how it should be. Ancient philosopher Heraclitus said: 'Τα παντα ρει'',meaning ,''Everything is forever flowing''.
Take my life,for example. I was an unwanted child,my mother tried her damnest to get rid of me before I was even born,but after I was born I became her beloved child. I was raised in a household grief-ladden because my odest brother had died a few months before I was born ,but I also had so much love from my older brotthers or sisters. I was a gifted child that could read and write by the age of 3,but that's exactly why I was so little popular,hated even, by my schoolmates,because they always thought I was showing off. I was really close to my father who loved me dearly,but he died when I was 15 ,when I felt that I needed him the most.I spent my teenage years wearing a special,full-body contraption,because I suffered from scoliosis. This meant that I was in pain most of the time and that other kids constantly made fun of me. The doctor that was curing me warned me never to have more than one child as this would be too much of a strain for my back. So yes,I do have four gtreat kids,but I went through agonizing back pain in my last two pregnancies which aggravated my condition.
I did marry the love of my life, but my marriage is on the rocks and had been so for a long time,all because my appeasing bullshit mechanism is busted. Plus,being married to a tour guide meant that I've spent the last 18 or so holidays (Christmas,Easter,summer etc) and other significant moments of our family history all alone.Most nights I had to go home to an empty bed and I had noone to share the news,successses and failures of the day.Not to mention the hard reality of raising four kids practically on my own.
I do have a business that I love, but this has cost me so much life energy and financial worries and time away from my kids and sometimes trouble and chaos and exhaustion,both physical and mental,that I frequently have moments of asking myself whether it is really worth it at all.
Ant there are probably a tousant other such instances in my life that can perove to you either how blessed or cursed my story is,depending on who is looking and from what perspective.I bet there are as many instances in your life that prove the same.
So focus on the positive. Enjoy your life and tell yourself that it really is a blessed life,just because it was given to you as a gift so that you can create something unique and totally unprecedented in this reality.And when rough times come,tell yourself that this,too,shall pass. It always does.
You really are living a blessed,magical life. Appreciate it! Now!
Love,peace and a blessed life