When I was a child, my friends were into boys. I wasn’t. At least not right then. I was too busy doing homework and reading and dreaming and writing poems and trying to learn English….and thinking how amazing my life would be once I spoke English and moved from Italy to England.
My fuel and my saviour was that very passion to move abroad.
My parents occasionally tried to hit me. But I ran too fast and mum’s wooden Dr School’s sandals were far too heavy to reach me! thankfully, I shall add. And I don’t even think they shouldn’t have try to hit me. But then again, they probably never would have hit me if they caught me. It was all part of the Italian drama family set up.
And then dad had his first heart attack in his forties and I remember praying God to let him live. And God listened and dad lived.
And then dad was sick again. And I prayed and it all went ok for a bit longer. I was afraid to lose my dad. The best dad ever. Generous, hard-working, kind and most importantly, a dad that would set me free. Only later I found out how hard it must have been to let me go and live my life. How selfless was dad!
After graduating I left Italy and worked at becoming an adult. By myself, abroad.
I was lost. I was at times so depressed I would stay in the house for days. I refused to take medicines. I didn’t know what to do.
And then I realised I knew it. I went out bought lots of books and got help. I started showing up big time.
Somehow, I survived and I found myself again and ended up becoming an adult.
Since then, I’ve changed careers 4 times. I’ve changed some friends and kept some others. I have very good friends. I want to meet new people all the time. I love observing people. I am never bored. Alone or not. Never have felt bored, not once. I show up.
I’ve started 3 businesses, failed at 1. Written 1 book which I have never published. It’s a good book so I have decided I will self-publish it one day soon.
I’ve made and lost money. And then made it again. It was horrible but it was the best lesson I could give myself.
Reading and learning saved me.
And now dad is sick. He is very sick this time. He suffered a cardiac arrest about 3 months ago and he’s is in a state of mild consciousness. Unable to move and to eat and to speak. Only able to blink and to softly move his head. That is it. Weak and fragile in that hospital bed. Mum goes to see him every day. She would sleep there if they let her. She shows up there, no matter what.
And I feel lost again. Like that time when he had his first heart attack when I was 10. I pray, like back then. But now I am an adult and I know more and I have my kids to look after. So, every day when I wake up, I make a decision to keep showing up. Yet, I feel lost and cry. I cry a lot. But now I know the way forward and I want to help dad. I can’t. I travel to Italy, a lot. I give him love and peace and light.
I told him “thank you dad”.
Thank you for setting me free. For letting me go. For trusting me enough. For loving me like you did. For helping me become who I am and for many more things ….And thank you for always showing up in my life, even what I was a pain and rebellious and ungrateful daughter. Which I wasn’t by the way. I just needed someone to fight against… and you were right there. Showing up for me and letting me express myself fully. Thank you dad for the life you have give me.
And I go back and read some more…..
I read to keep sane and to keep reminding myself of what matters and what significance there is in all. I read to keep showing up in my life and I do keep showing up everyday. For me, for dad, for mum, for my kids…for those who rely on me.
I show up like dad showed up every day of his life. Good and bad days. He always kept going. At times he should have stopped but he didn’t.
Dad is really sick and I am sad so I go and read some more. I get up. I show up. Simple, but it isn’t.
And here some of the books that I have come back to (as I do, time and time again for growth, for help and to continue hoping) hoping they can bring you comfort if you like me, choose to show up no matter what:
“Man’s Search for Meaning” by Victor Frankl.
“Conversations with God” Book 1, 2 and 3 by Neale Donald Walsh