This year is the 42nd year since my birth, and I am, as we all are, having less than few reasons to acknowledge any type of celebration.
Recently ( as of the last half a dozen years) I have stopped looking at the day of my birth as a reason to commemorate, at least in a specific date, and together with the ones that are closer to me. It doesn’t mean I’m not close to them, or that I’m not having a sense of age, of maturity or all of the perks of a healthy prolonged existence but rather, that I have stopped looking at a Gregorian measure as a way to define age.
Celebrations became instead an open experience on perfectly random occasions that happen without any predicted chronological stamp and instead from the simple fortuitous way of the happenings happening as they happen. In this way, I can say I had more special occasions in my recent period as a celibate with those who are the ones really close to me, that in the years I’ve been celebrating my birth repeatedly within the yearly cycle – I can surely find one or two exceptions but that is not the point.
This approach, and I can share this uncompromisingly with you, is giving me an extra charge about the way I can summon my strength and resilience, facing these strange times of pandemic proportions. Expectations are dealt within a daily/possibility base, therefore removing the date as a compromise in the social equation. Only if possible, today or tomorrow, sometimes on weekends, but never in a medium/long term assumption of a reunion. Simple organic behaviours, steadily becoming procedural structures of new interactions, expectations and ambitions. On the plus side, these natural quarantine periods became a strong advocate for health & safety and even relational protection. It was my decision, initially taken as a disappointment to all who are part of my private and personal life – familiar or not – but this is just the way they know I’m living my life : according to my own free will and time.
They accept it ( choices and ways of living ) because they have reciprocity, random organic and always when ( safely ) possible. There’s still a strange balance in this that I’m trying to describe to myself, but it is as if I’m always available to be what others expect of me, without being always predictable and nonetheless, being cared and accepted as having this intermittent way of requesting organic engagements rather than periodic social commitment. Being single and having no children, gives me the opportunity to have this type of “life choice” and “social engagement” but also gives me the responsibility to cope with my own predicaments, alone. Living the pandemics alone is no easy task and I can assure you that I take the alone definition pretty seriously. My parents need me to and my view of being part of the solution strengthens my resolve.
I considered myself as being trained on how to be alone and therefore, able to face problems as the need to have simple and practical solutions, without disregarding complexity and awareness of topic and intelectual growth. I can face a crisis with my own personal tools and when I find myself in need I can find support in the realms of the social circle I described above. This call is rare, and mostly due to the need to share a broader spectrum of emotions than rather sharing any type of social weight in the form of a problem.
This system has a direct side effect on them by transforming my presence as if I am an unshakable pilar of strength when I’m not. At least that is how they act upon me when we keep celebrating life regularly with the openness, and kindness of acceptance, even when I ( rarely ) share my insecurities and existencial doubts.
Alone, but together, from afar and yet close enough to keep a private life socially healthy and available to prosper and evolve. This is been the key to consider this a bearable period in this unbearable pandemic times. It’s like as if we have been training to tackle individual needs as a strong social ensemble, embed in a time which blurs everything that each one of us needs as the motivation to continue life.
Analogically there is where fortytwode comes in and strengthens the word fortitude with my age : forty two.
Fortitude is there all along, deep in the relation I have with seclusion, distance, sacrifice and still being able to be a social and healthy human being, specially in face of pain and adversity. This courageous choice of mine has so many good consequences on me and on the ones around me ( proving how strong one can be when facing a challenge ) that by simply acknowledging and sharing it publicly is the best way to celebrate my life.
Strangely, around my 42nd birth day.