Chota

Chota

Thursday, 10 November 2016

{quotable thursdays}

{Domenico di Michelino, Dante holding the Divine Comedy, Santa Maria del Fiore, Florence, 1465}

« Nel mezzo del cammin di nostra vita
mi ritrovai per una selva oscura,
ché la diritta via era smarrita. »

Midway upon the journey of our life
I found myself within a forest dark,
For the straightforward pathway had been lost.

So begins Dante's Divine Comedy. It is fitting for a number of reasons this week--for one, this weekend, I turn 35. In the time Dante was writing, 35 was considered midlife, and thus his journey begins at 35, in the middle of his life's journey. It reminds us that in life we often have to take arduous journeys to reach our final destination. 
The world seems like a rather dark place right now; with so many unknowns. We must journey through the storms, and here's hoping that light appears soon through this dark tunnel.
I for one, will try to leave the troubles of the world behind me this weekend, and instead, celebrate life.
I read Dante's Divine Comedy in an undergraduate course in my early 20s. Then, I had dreams of being an Art Historian and travelling to and living in Italy regularly. In someways, I fulfilled that dream. But our 30s are often about fulfilliing the dreams we had in our 20s or realising that our paths have taken a different route. I think most importantly, our 30s are realising that 'happily ever after' doesn't really exist. I often hear people telling me that I must be so lucky working in a profession that I love. It's as if somehow, if you do what you love, it's not work. This is a bubble worth popping. First of all, we don't live in a world where we actually do what we love; we live in a world where administration and bureaucracy often takes up most of our time. My job is a lot of hard work. It took a ridiculous amount of years with uncertainty, making very little money, and very little rewards to finally get to this place... and even my dream job is full of stress, moments where I feel like giving up, and too many times when I feel like I'm just not good enough. Whatever dreams we had in our 20s--being a mum, finding a perfect husband, getting that envious successful job, buying a house--our 30s are about coming face to face to reality with those dreams--kids screaming, husband's smelly socks that need washing, the stress and work of being successful, paying a mortgage...
That's just to say, that the next time you look over at someone and think 'hey that person is so lucky' because of their job, their shoes, their house, or their partner, it might be worth thinking about the arduous journey that person probably took to get there.

I am grateful for the lovely people who have accompanied me on my journey-it has not been easy, and it still isn't-but it has been worth it.


xo
L

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