All you leave behind is the essence of a life well spent. No one can teach you how to live your life, and no one can put together the pieces of a broken wing. Time gives us all a lesson on how often we need to re-evaluate ourselves in order to be happy. We tend to forget that we’re not here by accident and our lives don’t consist in mere coincidences. The truth is that while we live we learn, but we also forget. We forget what’s good, what’s just, what’s meaningful.

I believe that we’ve all been struggling with our inner demons at some point in our lives and we fought back with different weapons. Some of us succeeded, and some of us surrendered. The line between the two is faith. Or at least that’s what happened to me. I am not a religious person, nor do I believe that I’ve been born in a certain religion. I am not a believer either but in my times of need I turned my face to the light, that light that saves souls and restores peace.

I’ve learned from my grandma, who is a woman of faith, that no matter where this life takes you, you should not loose your faith. You can forget about a lot of things, leave people behind, harm without even knowing, but you can never loose faith. The very idea that every person has an angel guarding from above, as a metaphor for that invisible hand that protects you from evil and keeps you safe, makes it easier for me to accept the fact that faith is an unshakable force.

Having a lot of time on my hands and being surrounded by events and people who completely changed my life and my line of thinking, I realized how much I can err, and in the same time how fast I can get back on my feet. This is not something to brag about, it’s just another one of those moments when you have to slow down and breathe the life you’re living and not just walk through it.

In other words – take your time to enjoy life the way it has been given to you. It’ll be too late for some of us to wake up from this fatal slumber, the slumber of forgetfulness, the kind of passivity that makes every and each one of us waste time and live meaningless lives. Most of the people I know want to live or are living an eccentric, notorious, and absolutely boring life. Why? I don’t know why. It’s maybe because the majority of people I know are very unhappy. In fact, I know more unhappy people than I care for. I feel for them but in the same time I can’t help but wonder what they are missing.

My grandma, cos I always go back to her when it comes to stuff such as this one, told me that what makes people unhappy and depressed is the reality that surrounds them and the losing faith issue. I don’t think I lived a very happy life, and that’s because no one thought me how to live one, of any kind. Or just LIVE. PERIOD. And then it seems that I hear my grandma again from over my shoulder, telling me that I lost my faith, and that everything that’s going wrong in my life is because I forgot how to pray. She never asked me to pray in a religious way, with kneeling and bowing head and hymns….none of those things. But just begin by praying in my own words, not always asking for things to happen, but just be thankful. It means so much to be able to do that and then make a habit out of it.

The same story reminds me of a saying that I found while reading “Brothers Karamazov”, by Dostoyevsky, ” “Be not forgetful of prayer. Every time you pray, if your prayer is sincere, there will be new feeling and new meaning in it, which will give you fresh courage, and you will understand that prayer is an education.”  That’s exactly what my grandma made of it, an education to me and a lesson to others.

I’m about to turn 29 here and I never felt more thankful in my entire life. Thankful of the people I know, thankful for the way the same people love me and have dedicated their lives to love me and take care of me. And in the end thankful that I can feel no physical pain, of any kind. That means a lot to me, as stupid as it might sound to others. I do feel that sometimes I’m very close to loosing my mind, I have nightmares almost every night, and I wake up tired, broken, and very very sad. Then it takes hours, even a whole day to get back together and forget about it. I was used to complain about a lot of things happening or not happening to me, and the disappointment that I feel about not being able to do more with my life.

Well, what can I say other than the very obvious: I’m very far from where I want to be in this life, but I’m growing stronger. Not because I turned out to be a stronger person myself but because I received the strength I needed from all the people who love me. And on a more optimistic note: live the life you want to live and be thankful for who you are and what you have, because you might just wake up one day and realize that all you had is gone and it will be too late to get it back. And you won’t get it back, because just like a bad book that you leave aside and refuse to read, someone else, in this whole wide world wishes she/he had that book to read.

Not sure what I want to say there but if you can pick up what I’m laying down, good for you!

I’m not teaching you about life, faith, or prayer and I don’t want to preach about what should one do in order to be happy, all I’m doing is adding a note on being thankful for the simple fact of being right there, and right now, sitting behind your desk and reading this. This means you are alive somehow and still able to give a damn about something. That’s what life is (for me anyway): being present somewhere, being able to do something, being true about myself and most of all – being thankful.

For the rest of you who haven’t found the meaning in any of this, don’t worry: life is way easier than you think, so don’t try to complicate it.

*The year I turned 28 proved to me I can do so much more. The year that I turned  29 taught me that I can take it further. Blessed I feel today.