Some day in July when I read my horoscope from my phone app it said:
“If you could go back in time and explore a period when everything was happy and hopeful for you, Aries, it might give you a sense of serenity and security that you can tap into now. Although you do not have a time machine, you do have the ability to project yourself into the past during those moments when you are relaxed and optimistic if you work at it. This week, the universe will be sending you seemingly random memories that will form a kind of pattern for you. If you study this pattern, and look back with a real sense of purpose, you’ll be able to forge a path to a happy, successful, fulfilling future, starting immediately. So look for memories that take you back, and use them to build a new foundation.”
The writing hit home simply because these last two months I survived by tapping into the past and remembering. The months of June and July are difficult for me and my kids. Perhaps more difficult than any other time since my kids’ birthdays and both our anniversaries, engagement and wedding, fall in June and July respectively. And even after almost five years it still feels difficult to accept his absence.
As my horoscope indicates, the past was a time when everything was happy and hopeful for me. Looking back I long for that sense of security and serenity that I once had. And remembering the past and living it gives me some kind of hope that maybe just maybe things will change somehow for the better for me.
The Webster’s Dictionary defines Hope as: to cherish a desire with expectation of fulfillment, to long for with expectation of obtainment, to expect with desire.
And to Wait is: to look forward expectantly, to stay in place in expectation.
The late Elie Wiesel wrote:
“If everything was concentrated in the present, there would be no possibility of transcending the present. We are suspended between the absolute past and the absolute future over which we have no control. It’s a creeping flame. Sometimes it brings light and sometimes fire or destruction. Take away the waiting, what remains?”
For some time now I have been waiting for things to change in my life. Sometimes I get impatient but then I try to convince myself that there might be a reason why it’s taking too long. At other times I think that it will take forever or it won’t even happen. But then again what if it does? Who knows when or how or what may happen to change one’s life. But I do know this for sure: that my life without waiting would be so empty.
Friedrich Nietzsche once claimed that the formula for his happiness was: “a Yes, a No, a straight line, a goal…”
I used to think that if I worked hard and did my best in everything I tried, I would be happy too. My line, my path was pretty straight. I had a great job teaching and coordinating the math department in an international school. I had my home, my family, my husband and two kids, and was living a blessed life until we decided to put an end to it and move to Canada in search of a better life.
But wasn’t what we had already the best? Why did we take all we had and all the blessings given to us for granted? Did we defy providence by turning our back to it all? Did we make the universe and the gods angry by leaving all that behind? All that serenity and security that comes with a loving and caring home and a steady job, we lost it all when we moved.
Unlike Nietzsche, at some point in my life that straight line changed its course and curved into a U-turn.
Unfortunately I could not set it straight again. I continue to live and face all obstacles thrown in my face. I listen to those around me and nod in agreement and go along for a while. That kind of makes me more angry and sad. Because that’s not who I am. The going along does not define my character.
I wait and wait and wait. In my mind I want to leave all this and go somewhere where the sun always shines. In my head I play Harry Nilsson’s song:
“Everybody’s talking at me
I don’t hear a word they’re saying
Only the echoes of my mind.
People stopping, staring
I can’t see their faces
Only the shadows of their eyes….”
There was a time in my life when I had my dreams and my visions that were different than everyone else’s. I had the courage to swim against the current and take risks in order to fulfill my dreams. Life for me was not to listen to the voices around me but to “the echoes of my mind,” just like in the song. To hear that inner voice inside telling me I can do it. Is it too much to ask for that kind of courage and hope again?
Søren Aabye Kierkegaard wrote:
“The greatest hazard of all, losing one’s self, can occur very quietly in the world, as if it were nothing at all. No other loss can occur so quietly.”