Category Archives: 365 days of my life

365 days of my life

Day 365 – The beginning of the end

Happy birthday both to me for tomorrow and to this wonderful project! We have been through a lot this year and even from our first day together I knew this will be an amazing adventure for me. I designed the project to start on my birthday because for me a whole year is not the one written in the calendar, but the one that passes over me, starting from the day I was born. My birthday has always been really important to me and although for almost five years now I stopped celebrating the old fashion way, my birthday will always be a very important day in my life. Not because of the presents or the attention, but because this is the day that reminds me that I am here with a purpose: my own.

Last year I celebrated my birthday into a beautiful cemetery that soon became one of my favorite places in Florence to have coffee at, to breath in the air or to read the pieces of my felow writers from time to time. From then on the adventure began and I encountered obstacles every step of the way. Day 4 for example was like a warning sign for all the closed gates I was about to knock on and I must admit I never even imagined what I was going to face while writing for this project. It all started as a joke, as a way for me to develop a certain discipline and some organizing skills. Many people around me warned me about this being a difficult journey, sometimes an almost impossible one, but I refused to listen and I wrote that first post with fear and happiness in my fingers. Along the way I introduced you to my friendsmy daughter, my better half and even my cat. I shared my pain and my depressions, my way to love and my happiness, my writings and my dreams, my vision of motherhood. I wrote under the influence of morphine, from the hospital bed, too many times from the emergency room and while having to make difficult decisions. I wanted to cheat so many times that I lost count, but I somehow managed to stay true to the path I chose, no matter what it cost me that day. I managed to disguise my feelings sometimes under beautiful metaphors, metaphors that helped me move on and not give up just because my soul was exploding or my day was so horrible that I couldn’t have handled to write about it.

I learnt a lot from this experience and while all of this started out as a joke and let’s say a childish challenge, I would never advise someone to start a project like this in that way. You never know what kind of joys or pain you will face during the next year and if you want to commit to something like this, you should always ask yourself how well do you know yourself in order to let other people know you? This project did much more than just discipline me and make me write everyday, this project has killed me, revived me and then break me again so I could only gather the good pieces of the puzzle to make myself a whole again. This project has introduced me to beautiful people who inspired me to be more than I could be. This project was a piece of my soul for 365 days and it truly served its purpose on more levels than I could ever explain.

If last year my birthday caught me in the cemetery, this year I will spend my day at work and maybe sharing a cappuccino and a piece of cake with my beautiful family in the morning. I will think about the seaside, where I used to spend my every birthday since being on Mars and make a wish upon a chosen star when I get home at midnight.

Thank you all for standing by me every step of the way, supporting me and sometimes giving me a call or sending me messages when you sensed that my words were more than it met the eye. Thank you for reading almost everyday, even on those days when nothing made sense and everything seemed questionable. This year has been both horrible and incredibly beautiful in the same time and writing here everyday was a small joy in some dark and what felt like empty days. Most of all with each day that I shared with you, I found myself on a brand new path of self-discovery, one that I am sure I couldn’t have found otherwise.

Happy birthday dear project and farewell! You have been one of my closest friends, my worst enemy and my consciousness throughout this whole year.

P.S. Tonight as I was riding the bus home, I realized I have ended the project having drinks with the same people that were with me a year ago: my writers group and my family. Beautiful ending! I couldn’t have possibly asked for more than that! Thanks guys!

365 days of my life

Day 364 – Inspiration

Because this is a special day for my project it only made sense for me to introduce you to someone who has changed my way of looking at the world. I won’t name names yet, but human beings refer to them as mentors, I like to call them giant cliffs that one would want to explore, learn from, conquer and in the end enjoy the view with.

Last year, when my mentor, G.G. Marquez died, I was determined never to sit and wait around for something I want to just fall into my lap. I said to myself that any dream is worth exploring and any idea is worth unpacking. It all started from there, from a feeling of regret and the thought that I will never find someone else again that I will look up to as much.

Many months later I met someone who changed my entire perspective on things. I was fascinated on every single one of our meetings and more than once I lost myself into his words. When you meet someone like that, at first it’s only normal to be intimidated and slowly, your curiosity grows and knows no limits. You want to learn and understand it all, you want squeeze everything out of them and you feel like a sponge that fills itself with knowledge and runs home desperately trying to not loose a single drop on the way. After those first few meetings, if you are anything like me, you will start to feel more comfortable, not knowing that the next step is actually getting out of your comfort zone. A person like this, a mentor, or whatever you’d like to call them, will always bring out to light the best and the worst in you and that’s when your work begins. You have to accept your worst in order to believe you can be the best.

I must admit I struggled a lot in the beginning. I used to listen to all the words, analyze them, but still was trying to find a way out, a small escape door that would have ensured what I longed for: an easy path. I fought with my own thoughts so many times, thinking that it doesn’t matter that it all made sense, that wasn’t my way and my perspective. Until one day…

As a story hunter I feed myself with other people’s stories. I cherish every word they share with me and treasure every emotion they let out in front of me. When it comes to my own story I was used to dismissing anything that would hurt or get me out of my comfort zone. Until that day… A day that I will never forget and that completely changed my path and my way of looking at things. A day when I had to face my defects with no escape door around and no way of turning my gaze away. That was the day when I really started to listen and when I understood that it’s not enough to treasure one’s story, you also have to immerse yourself in it in order to truely understand it and learn from it.

So, this post is a thank you note. Thank you for metaphorically slapping me when I needed it the most. Thank you for making me doubt myself and constantly ask questions about my view of the world. And thank you for being tolerant even when I probably drove you crazy. 🙂 I still have a long way to go, but that’s the thing about learners they never stop learning.

P.S. Anyone can be your mentor and guide. You just have to listen.

365 days of my life

Day 363 – I understand…

I understand. You like being lazy, you always seek for the easy way out and don’t feel like doing anything. I understand. You think you still have some more years before starting to work at that big project you planned for a while. I understand. The world is too fast for you and your passion can wait, it’s not going anywhere anyway.

I understand because I was you many years ago and I had to loose everything in order to change everything. I used to think that dreams can wait, that everything will fall at my feet, that the world isn’t going anywhere for me to explore. So I have waited. I have waited for so long that by the time I woke up it was almost a little to late. The longer you wait, the harder it gets, the more the years pass by you, the bigger the sacrifices you have to make in order to become the person you know you are. And when you look back, when you are giving your everything to stay on float, you will realize how you have wasted all that time and all those years and you will want to go back in time and slap your lazy self to wake up.

I understand. I created a small bubble for myself for many years and whenever I stepped out of my comfort zone I took three steps back and returned to that small bubble of mine. So, wake up! Don’t waste time and never loose youself into that lazy, person. Your comfort zone is just an impediment between you and your dream. And yes, without that lazy person you wouldn’t have dreams in the first place, but there is such a thing as waiting too long and although it’s never to late to walk on your path, the price you pay is bigger, the obstacles almost impossible to overcome. Never take the easy way out, you’ll sleep more, have fun more, but the entire point is to discover yourself and overcome your own fears. Wake up! Live your dream starting now! The world isn’t going anywhere, but it will never wait for you to discover it!

365 days of my life

Day 362 – Time to…

Time to… sleep, to say good night, to have coffee with a friend, to play games with your kid, to have fun, to enjoy everything. Time to start a new chapter.

How many chapters can there be? From the looks of it, many of them. As a writer I am amazed how a person’s life can change so much in just a year, in just a month, in just a day. I am amazed how people can change from an hour to another, how chapters keep on writing themselves changing characters, themes, plot. If you look at your own book from the outside, you will see yourself running around like a mad man, chasing dreams, hopes and accomplishments, inventing and talking to other characters, using special ink to outline their trades. And then, after years, months, days, hours, when you get to take a little break from it all, you are thankful that your life isn’t boring, you are thankful that you get to chase your dreams tomorrow too, even though you sometimes wish for some boring moments and events happening in your life. That’s exactly what I need right now: a couple of hours to wish that my life was boring.

On that note, I will wisely use my break to rest my bones and feed my brain with beautiful dreams. Good night everyone!

365 days of my life

Day 361 – Some diary notes

A little dead. Maybe a little more tired than usual, but my brain is on fire. Ever since I put my body to work every night, whenever I get home I want to just talk for hours and then stay up and write. If only my tired body could understand that. 🙂

Today was kind of a mess. After forgetting about an appointment and running to make it this morning, I spent a little time with Ephia, having a “puccino” at the bar and drawing on some coloring books. I chose to have a rather poor lunch and flew away to teach a class. My student was in the mood to talk about food and cooking today which was like torture for my ears and stomach. Before going to work, with half an hour free, I sat on the steps of the train station with a delicious “panino” in my hands, admiring the strangers passing by. One cigarette later I was on the bus, riding towards what became my daily torture. Five hours of work later I was riding the bus again, this time on the way home. After changing the bus for the tram, as soon as the tram’s doors shut, that’s when my brain wakes up and is more alert than ever. So, why waste such a precious gift, I put my brain to work and let it have the time of its life. 🙂

That’s why I am a little dead. That’s why I feel like I’m floating. That’s why I have a big smile on my face. Good night!

365 days of my life

Day 360 – Really?

Day 360. Really? I won’t say I can’t believe it, but really? I can’t believe it. 🙂

I have great organizing skills. I am amazing at organizing stuff and make them work perfectly, but never for myself, always for orthers. I have come to a cross point where I have to apply all those skills for my own benefit and in the past this thing would have sucked. Now? Not so much, I actually rock! 🙂 I never took on too many things to do because I have always failed to manage my time properly. That was when everything else besides my day job was just a hobby, a hidden passion that always came second or third, or whenever. That was then. That was when I used to look upon people who dared to take a change and judge them for their weakness. If only I would have known that that was their most powerful strenght. You know what they say: better late than never.

Looking back just a few month ago, I remember how I used to complain for not having enough time to do anything, especially sleep. Well, that I didn’t actually manage to figure out yet, but everything else is doable. 🙂 So here I am, embracing god knows how many challenges, being a writer, a journalist, a mom, seldomly a wife, a teacher and having a stable job. Sounds too much? Well, I think I left out some things, but who’s counting. 🙂 The bottom line is that today was a happy day. A day when I got to do everything I set for myself to do and I can smile at myself before going to bed. Tomorrow? That’s a whole different day, and until I make it through I won’t brag about it. Good night you all!

365 days of my life

Day 359 – Work, satisfaction and motherhood

Oh yeah, the days are getting longer and the stress higher. While juggling different tasks, I found the perfect balance to get through my day with a smile on my face. My evening task allows me to keep my mind empty and just work out my body, while the other one keeps me alert and excited to be a part of something great. And the mother part, well that never ends and keeps me happy and constantly on my toes: while any other boss can only fire me, my daughter and any kid on this planet for that matter, will never stop punishing you.

This is what I now call my weekly triangle from now on, and after next week, if I will survive this one, things will look simple enough. I haven’t manage time for coffee with friends or seeing other people outside the house yet, but no worries I’ll figure that one out too. For now my main focus is to be the best I can possibly be at this new juggling game. So, to all my friends that feel let down by my absence lately, I do love you and miss you and because you are such good friends I know you understand that this is what I have to do right now. Think about how much fun we’ll have when we’ll have to catch up. 🙂

Until then, have a beautiful, perfect day! Off to a new work day, dreaming about tonight and about all the research I have planned to do. 😀

365 days of my life

Day 358 – About statements

I always had a thing about statements. They make me happy and complete. When I started using statements in my writing, I felt like a kid when discovering their favorite toy without knowing what that was until then.

If you think about it a person makes at least ten statements a day. I am tired. I am angry. I am hungry. These are just the regular, usual ones that we use everyday. In writing I love using shocking statements about my characters, something that will define their entire personality, but still leaving you wanting to know more. That’s what statements are: incentives.

Today I have a lot of random incentives to share. I feel dead. My brain is exploding while my body hurts and begs me to put it to rest. I love my tired self. I have wished for this kind of tiredness to come along for so long that the pain in my body is a mere impeditive to enjoy this. I wish life was easy. I wish I could wake up in the morning and lock all my sorrow, sadness, depression and darkness in a securely locked drawer. I need chocolate. I need tones and tones of chocolate and not because I am a big fan of chocolate, but because my tongue wants to feel its taste. I love my life. I was the best I could have been today. I felt both joy and disappointment and let it all out so I could feel it, not hide it. I hear my pillows, my bed, my bedtime story all calling for me to sleep. Good night!

365 days of my life

Day 357 – Florence, Sunday, the moon

Sometimes Florence is kicking my ass for not living inside its citadel’s walls. Whenever I plan an incredible Sunday a little further than our neighbourhood I always get stuck behind the schedule of the buses. That sucks. So, more than often I find myself abandoning the idea just because we don’t like to get stressed about strict hours.

Today nothing went according to my plans. Instead of going to this beautiful park on the hills of Florence in the morning, we ended up going shopping and facing the closed gates of the children’s park. While I was planning for a nice stroll and some ice cream in the evening, my daughter had other plans and dragged us to her favorite park to play for two hours, but she was kind enough and allowed us to have a cappuccino on our way back. In other words nothing worked out but it also worked out really well in the end.

So what does the moon have to do with anything? I have a special bond with the moon. She is my guide for lonely nights, my inspiration when I stop thinking and allow myself to feel, my light whenever I see only darkness around me. Tonight me and the moon were reunited, as the weather has finally allowed me to move my office on our terrace and write under her light. Additional light from a candle gnome was in play just to spice things a little. 🙂 With only eight days to go I am already sad and excited in the same time to wrap up this beautiful project and embark on a new journey that’s already out there, waiting for me to fill in the blanks.

365 days of my life

Day 356 – I never cry

When I was a little girl I used to cry as all children do in order to get what I wanted. Sometimes it worked, but most of the times it didn’t. I remember at some point hurting myself badly and starting to cry from the top of my lungs. That’s when it happened. My father came up to me and told me that only weak people cry. One should never cry, one should never allow anyone else to see their weakness, one should always be brave and never let tears fall down their cheeks. For some reason everything he said to me made sense and I stopped, or maybe it was the way he said it. The point is I hardly ever cried after that discussion and if tears were threatening to invade my cheeks I used to run away so no one could see me.

Years have passed and by the time I was a teenager many people around me thought I was inhumane. I never cried. I went through a lot: witnessing deaths, diseases, suicides, pain, my own pain, going through the normal phases a teenager goes through and nothing. Nothing could touch me and nothing could make me cry. At first it was kind of cool, to be the one who’s strenght was unbeatable, but after a while the layer of pain mixed with tears gathered in a deep corner, got thicker and thicker. I couldn’t stand being next to people who cried. At first it was because I thought they were weak, but when I grew up it was because it made me very uncomfortable to be around them. I never knew how to react or reach out to the person in front of me who was pouring their soul out, so I think feeling uncomfortable is a little to nicely described. It took me years to understand and accept that it’s ok to cry in public sometimes and that crying isn’t necesarily a way of showing everyone your weak spots.

But I still don’t cry. The minute I understood that it’s ok for everyone else to cry was the minute I understood that it was ok for me not to. Who knows, maybe I am Chandler from Friends, who needs “Chicken soup for the soul”. And speaking of, to get my point of view, watch this and you will understand the whole picture while having some laughs. Hahahaha! 🙂