“Where your world ends, mine begins.“
I often ask myself what am I doing back here in my country of origin. The lack of purpose and the complete meaninglessness is very strong, despite having a job where I serve as a healer for others. There is always something missing, it’s never perfect, it’s always something I lack everywhere I go and everything I do. It is haunting me and I cannot escape. I cannot escape myself…
Since we’re approaching the end of the year now, there is a time for recollection… I remember being in Strasbourg and being tormented by the same thoughts, although I was much better paid and in a civilized world, in high contrast with the primitivism here in Romania. Yet, my eyes were looking blankly at the ceiling of my house there in France, searching for a meaning. I couldn’t find one, so I remembered a quote I once saw on the internet, a quote that serves also as the title of this article and the subtitle of my entire blog: “the only way is through”. That moment I understood that my quest was in vain, that I will never find peace and running away from what I am or what I am meant to be… was, is and will be fruitless. Running away, as a strategy, was no better than staying and facing myself and my inner issues; it was only postponing a fight with my daemons, with the daemon of loneliness and the one of nothingness especially. I was beginning to get tired, after many places where this struggle made me live, both in Romania and in France. And after a while, everybody becomes frail, and it was my turn to be so at the beginning of this year. Faced with the uncertainties of living abroad, with dehumanized work and no horizon of hope, I said Stop. There was no future; I was walking on the road to become an average doctor lost somewhere in France, on the border with Germany. A dream for many, a curse for me.
I knew that if I return to Romania, it will be forever. I returned with no dreams, just a huge disgust. I had no fuel left to ignite any passion whatsoever. But I was lucky enough to hear about the position on which I am today at the hospital, and I spent a hot summer learning for the exam like a dog. Nobody cared, and the exam was savagely difficult. Not even today can I celebrate victory. It was bitter and it was tense. Being outspoken had consequences. But I managed to succeed and even build a second home in Baia Mare. Everything was only suffering, and there is a reason for which I named my recently published book “Zbucium”, which is approximately translated by “Struggle” or “Torment”. Yes, I managed to write my journey taking place during the last 7 years, a period that corresponds roughly to my last year of psychiatric training and what happened afterwards. I am happy to have been able to write this book in Romanian (available for download on the side of the blog), as it might be the only thing I leave behind me, the result of my struggle to not give up and fight against the odds.
Yet, destiny finally defeated me. I am back to my home country and everything I lived and experienced equals zero, as I cannot apply anything I know or can do. Romania is rotten and this is all I can see. I had some hopes I will partner with intelligent interesting dedicated people back in my country, but found none. I am alone and the only choice I am presented is to lock myself in a private “ivory tower”, to choose to live in a bubble that has nothing to do with the outer Romanian world. A bubble of beauty and music and books and foreign languages, a bubble that knows everything that is going on in the World but can do nothing, a bubble that can’t be seen by other Romanians who are only focused on how much money they earn, sacrificing relationships and friendships in the process. This is my bubble. This is the rest of my life.
I wrote in Romanian quite a lot. It is my mother tongue and it’s obvious that I can be much more expressive when I’m using it. But what for? Why should I write in Romanian? For whom? Am I going to make a difference? Am I going to help in some way? No. The article advertising my book was somehow final. I see no reason to continue, and this is why the swing in the image of this article is still and covered in snow. It has stopped. The pendulum of time has stopped. There is no child playing with it. There is no life left.
The motto of this article highlights the same thing: where your world of perceptions and convictions ends, my way of seeing things begins. I do not care if you don’t understand me or if you misunderstand me. I left the common ground. But if you care to get to know me, or if you’re curious enough to come to the edge of your world, I shall wait you at the gates. Otherwise, I’m ok with being seen as a weird person; I’m no longer competing for popularity.
Five working days per week I go to the hospital and work to help people. I do my best given the circumstances and what is available there. My mission is to bring balance in a disastrous situation (and country) and to enhance the professional level of the medical service provided. But here on the blog I want it to be a different world, completely separated from the mundane, from the misery of my people. In a mediocre society, they speak mediocre things. I don’t want to bring here that stuff. I will stop it at the gates. But this doesn’t mean I won’t tell you stories about the things I encounter in my life. On the contrary.
I always regarded writing as therapeutic. Boredom is best countered with creativity, with doing something. In my ivory tower, the only thing I can do is to write, as long as we have the internet. So I will write about many things, about my life and how I feel it, about what I encounter in my life and how I see it. Forget about the social media accounts I used; my blog was and still is my partner in fighting with the void in myself.
Is it true that the only way is through? Is it true that avoiding things is a worse strategy than facing them? Until now, running away proved to definitely be a bad choice. So, here I am! Not running away, not going abroad, easily accessible at my workplace. Let’s see if giving up avoidance is a better choice!
I will end with a quote from Carl Jung, someone who often spoke to my soul. He says in his autobiographical book, a few years before his death, that his life taught him something of great value, something that is still hard to apply, something that isn’t for anyone. He says that his conclusion for the best way to live one’s life might be formulated as…
“an affirmation of things as they are: an unconditional “yes” to that which is, without subjective protests, acceptance of the conditions of existence as I see them and understand them, acceptance of my own nature, as I happen to be”.