What is life?
I was asked this question recently and to be honest I just stood there thinking about “life” and an adequate answer but an adequate answer for it is not precisely truthful. The reality is that life is not difficult, life is not complicated, life is not bad nor a series of challenges you go through day in day out.
Life is a challenge, life does put you through tests, and it does provide obstacles because your life knows that you can handle them. Life is beautiful.
How can you say that life is bad? How can you say that life is difficult? How can you say that life is complicated? When you can look around and see beautiful landscapes, children laughing, there’s a sunset everyday, there’s birds singing, people helping people, values, and so many more things to show you that life is beautiful. That life is a marvelous adventure that we’re in and from which we have to learn yet you still feel like life is bad.
Now, let me share this story before I tell you my answer to this question.
I went to a party with some fiends and I started to talk with one of them that was alone. I don’t like seeing people alone so I frequently start conversations with them. We started having a conversation and he told me that his family was very religious and so was he. It was lent during that time and I mentioned that he shouldn’t be eating meat. He had a hot dog and said he felt really guilty and did not want to go to hell because of it. I looked at him and laughed. (Maybe it was a bit cruel on my part now that I mention it). But I told him that it was illogical that God, the kindest being there is, would send him to hell just for eating a hot dog. I told him that everything was going to be all right.
We kept chatting about various topics and I finally reached the conclusion that he was very afraid of living.
How could this be? He was alive without living. He was afraid of living and I don’t think he is the only one. He was afraid of what people would say, what his parents would say. He told me that he wanted to be a detective but his friends laughed at him so I told him to do it.
I told him to live life how he wanted to live it. I told him to mind consequences as well but that he had to enjoy the moment, enjoy the present without worrying too much about others. This is what I told him I had learned. He seemed to not understand me so I shared my story.
When I was in my mothers womb when she was pregnant my dad used to beat her. He beat her then and after her pregnancy. When I was five years old my parents separated because my dad cheated on her. I remember seeing the woman and she was pregnant.
When I turned six years old I went to live with my grandmother and we would sleep on the floor of a cold room. That same year I had anemia I remember and it was horrible when they drew blood in that cold room. I remember that my grandmother would inject me three times a day. I hated needles.
It’s been three months since I’ve seen my dad. Why? Well because he does not want to see me, but I know that it’s not my fault. One day I saw a video of the abortion testimony of Gianna Jessen and she said something that really moved me. She said: “I don’t have to carry a cross that is not mine.”
Before this I would ask myself why had all of this happened to me, and why I did not have a dad and would question the reasons. I did not want what happened to mom happening to me. But now I understand it all.
As I shared my whole story, which is not that long because I’m 16 years old he said: “For having such a difficult life you are a very happy person”. I laughed again.
“My life was never difficult for me. It never was. I always viewed it as a magical adventure I was in and that’s how we all should view life. Everything happens for a reason and you have to be strong during that time and think that everything you go through is for a specific reason. Good things will come, God has a purpose and a reason for everything never forget it,” I said.
“Life, God and my Mother put someone in my life that made all of that worth going through. My stepfather is an angel. We all have one.” I finished.
I told him that life was beautiful, that life was for dancing, painting, looking at the stars, laughing, smiling, watching the sunset and admiring the wonderful creation that is the universe. That is life! I’m 16 years old and I thank God for my life and to my wonderful mother for being alive.
-Aylin Rodriguez Liera, 2016.