My auntie wrote me a letter the other day (guess that's what aunties are made for) which read: "...I always thought that you could be immune from disappointments; you, who are always so strong, so balanced, who always have so many people around, who are so couragious...you young great woman!..." Ok, she is biased. After all she is my auntie. However, I also know that, by saying so, she expresses the view of many of the people in my life. The Wee Italian Chick: An Emotionless Superheroine with no problems! (not). Frankly, I am quite sick of it. I wish I could be loved for all that I am - not just for the wide smiles that make everybody happy. Luigi Pirandello, an increadibly astute 20th century Italian dramatist and novellist, extensively explored the issues of the masks people 'put on' in their lives; the conflict between "to be" and "to appear". This concept became exemplified to me during a visit to Japan where public apparences are all that is to be seen and openness to the inner self are to be blamed as a sign of weakness. In a Western world which paradoxically claims to be a lot more in touch with their innerselves,Pirandello identified how many masks we daily put on, not out of dishonesty, but more in search of approval. Pirandello says that the harmonious/chaotic cohabitation of those masks is what makes us~I partially agree, but I can't help but think that as God sees beneath all that apparelle (titles, apparence, qualifications are irrelevant to Him), similarly I wish others could do the same. However, in the midst of disappointment and misunderstandings, I choose to seek to be happy again, to praise those outstanding people who can read the book of my life with no need for glasses,my soul connections. As Dr Maathai writes, "Life is a journey and a fight;we are not able to control it, but we have the ability to pull the best out of every situation." So I should do.
Tuesday, March 6
Throughout my young life I have been in contact with a number of individuals who, for better or worse, have shaped the course and outlook on my existance. I count myself blessed with the rare ability to preserve a phoenomenal memory solely for the good things from the past; the bad,on the contrary,are subconsciously erased or mysteriously vanish into a feeble recollection.. I really like that about me. Nonetheless, at times like this, this quality can be a painful curse. 'Losing' a special friend in your life, someone you felt you had a "soul connection" with, and only being able to remember the times of blissful happiness, the intellectual intimacy that was shared and the memorable moments whilst brokeness and resentment prevent you from making ammends, and experience skeptically shouts from within that nothing is ever going to be the same again. As I am writing this post, the song "Couldn't Care Less" by The Cardigans is expressing musically what I would struggle to articulate verbally. However, the truth is that "I do care", and I wonder whether that could make a difference in mending this broken bridge...Soul Connection also refers to the rather surreal identification I feel I have found with Wangari Maathai, the Kenyan Nobel Price winner I mentioned in a previous post. This lady has really touched me not only for her achievements and public persona,but more profoundly as a woman seeking excellence in all areas of life: woman, Kenyan, mother, wife, politician, academic, daughter, Christian. This morning I was reading about her marriage breakdown, the undermining male attitude towards an intelligent,qualified and idealistic lady who, in as much as she is professionally recognised and publically acclaimed, often struggles with being accepted as a woman with her passions, desires, insecurities and simple ambitions. I am fully aware of being no way near the achievement of a Nobel price or any of her great contributions to humanity, but I can easily identify with her struggles. Since I was a little girl, I have been encouraged to "stand on my own feet"(no matter how small they may be!!!),to learn to do things by myself, to seek personal fulfilment regardless of who is or is not in your life. All this has made me into a highly independent person; what most people seem to have difficulties to comes to terms with, is that an independent individual is not a lonely one-man-band and that he does not function, or at least does not function as effectively, without the constant interaction and interchange with others. What is remarkable is that, in the midst of many outwardly perceived successes, I often feel rejected, I wish I was a little bit more ordinary.When my little sister came over to visit last summer, we often went to the cinema (to the point that we exhausted all half-decent options),so we decided to watch "My Super Ex-Girlfriend" with Uma Thurman. May be because we were in a jolly good mood when we saw it, me and Martina laughed our little heads off all night as this Hollywood rom-com confirmed a lot of undesputable stereotypes about women in general and destroyed many others about "super-women" who, for all their super-powers and charme, are often equally as insecure, needy and emotive as every other girl. Everyone dreams of supergirl, but no-one wants to get too close to her in fear.