But wait! This is not a pity post. Because, you see, I go to bed every night now with a smile: my heart overflowing with gratitude from all the love and abundance I have. I wake up (most) mornings acknowledging how lucky and privileged I am to travel across the globe, country after country, doing what I love for a living, with full encouragement and support from my partner, my best friend, my greatest love. And that's the whole point: people that you see happy, most probably have worked really hard, suffered a great deal, endured and risen to the challenges in order to get to where they are.
I have noticed that the challenges life throws are always changing, testing us to see if we are ready for the next level of evolution. From escaping war-ridden Albania, to studying really hard for 3 university degrees, to almost being deported back home because of lack of work-visas in the times of Bush administration, to becoming a full-time certified public accountant, to starting to question everything I had done in my life and wonder how it is I got there, to finally realizing I couldn't understand and connect to the person I had become...that was the hardest blow of all. I do believe now that things have to go a certain way and in a particular order for a reason. I have to trust that! I don't know exactly why it had to be this way for me, but I guess there is no need to discover all mysteries of this world at the moment.
So, on a super moon evening, January 31, 2010, I finally started to learn how to dream. I guess you could say I finally started to become a child, a real child that questions life with curiosity and honesty. When I started my 9-month yoga teacher training on that super full-moon charged night (while continuing to work full-time as a Financial Controller), it was because the spirit was done waiting and being ignored in the distant corner.
Sometimes, the hardest challenge in life is the courage to look inside, to question the source of your pain, intentions and whether you're living your life or someone else's; sometimes the hardest work is to re-evaluate if your actions are in line with what you believe. And that's exactly what we did in our yoga training - a lot of self-work and discovery. A lot of confessions. A lot of tears. A lot of confusion. Of course, I took no joy in my profession of number crunching and financial reporting, and slowly I had even started to develop a sense of embarrassment towards what I was doing - but that was all I had and I didn't know how else to feel safe and protected. It was then that my suffering, our suffering was safe to be acknowledged, safe to be admitted, safe to be whispered out into the shape of words, as if losing a little bit of its weight. It was then that I realized it was ok to start to dream that I could let go of what I didn't want anymore. I had paid my dues.
Because I was programmed since birth to be "a good student," I started "applying" the limbs of yoga across all layers of my life at a rapid speed. I became a devoted vegetarian, I started to look for jobs abroad because traveling was all I was craving, and finally, I let go of an old relationship that had nothing left, yet I had kept dragging along. And it was during these years of questioning and letting go, that I met someone that I truly fell in love with. My life partner, Jay. You could call it beginner's luck if you want - but, I know everything else afterwards happened because I allowed space for it. I was learning how to manifest a dream. The dream of freedom and living truthfully.
So, that was 6 years ago. Today, on this Super Blue Blood moon of January 31, 2018, I feel like it is the completion of a long cycle. I feel like I have just graduated from so many colleges: The college of history, geography and geology from all the countries and continents we have lived, worked & visited since 2012; The college of sociology and humanities, from all the cultures we have experienced and attempted to understand in order to live harmoniously and peacefully with; The college of psychology in order to understand ourselves and each other better as we rise up to the challenges of this kind of life we have CHOSEN. Chosen. Ah, the humility and humbleness, the goose bumps I feel upon realizing that I finally have the option "TO CHOOSE."
A beautiful, poetic, courageous chapter is closing. In fact, this entire website is testimony to these past 6 years of dreamy adventures, so I won't brag about them right now. On the crazy, multi-colored full moon of this evening, I want to be super charged with clarity for new dreams to plant as seeds. My lovely friend Helen, a super talented, bubbly, inspirational human being, hosted an event for creating a vision board for this new year. Unfortunately I couldn't attend, but I was incredibly inspired by her. I also heard the full-moon calling for creating a frame for my visions, for my new dreams, for the next chapter. So, I spent this morning creating my very first vision board. Besides being a very beautiful & meditative process, it inevitably requires true soul-searching. I know it may sound silly, but when I finished, it felt as if I was inside my board, staring at myself in Milan from the other side. To seal this process, I sat on my yoga mat & surrounded the board with my good-luck charms (corals, crystals, shells, stones collected from all over the world) while listening to the rain, whispering a prayer, trusting that the universe will help me manifest my dreams, as it has done all along. In deep gratitude I bow to the ancient yoga practice that allows me to dance the way I couldn't when I was a child.
With love and light from Milan,