My Italian Family

My Italian Family

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How do I start? I came to Italy for a volunteering project and one of the conditions that come along with my application was my covered accommodation. So as a result, I moved in with a middle-aged lady and her daughter, called Veronica and Miriam.

I felt instantly welcomed the moment I stepped into the apartment. Veronica had set up a little welcome dinner party for me with the local pasta recipe and one of the dishes she cooks that would later become my favourite – organic caramelised onions and pumpkins.

Veronica is a qualified general doctor as well as an anesthesiologist. She could easily be working in a clinic earning some easy money but with her vision as a doctor, she decided to work in the ambulance instead. It is not an exaggeration to say that she’s a crazy woman. With this job, she has some working hours that seem incredibly unachievable as a normal human, i.e. there are days when she has to work for 24 hours.  Even so, she’d always come home as energetic as ever, which is one thing that doesn’t stop amazes me.  It also gives me an insight into how hard medical practitioners are working and how much dedication as well as the love they need to be doing this job. For that, I pay my fullest respect to them!

She’s also recently gone through a divorce just before I arrived. We would share our stories and opinions with each other whenever we get the chance to speak. And every time, these conversations broaden my mind slightly and gave me insights into how relationships are meant to be, or more so, not meant to be. The key really comes down to 相处之道 (The way of communication) and it gives me determination in finding someone whom I can communicate with comfortably. My take from this is that having the same spirit and respect for each other is so crucial when it comes to a long-term partnership. If the relationship is no longer a source of happiness, but only comes with sorrow and pain, it may well be the time to let go and move on.

Even though she struggles with English and sometimes likes to apologise for her bad English skills, I had loved all the conversations we’ve had. She always speaks with an open-mind and an exceptional amount of positivity, and I think this is exactly the reason I found so many similarities between the both of us, or more so, something that I’m aspired to be. She has an immense love for life, for people, for travelling, and undoubtedly for her child. I definitely see a free spirit in her that I very much adore and this is the frequency I’d like to be vibrating in.

Though life has been hard on her, the darkest days have passed and I really really wish the best for her, simply because she deserves it. I can’t be grateful enough for all the things that I’ve learnt from her. I could only wish that when I’m her age and life hits me like that, I can cope with it with the same positivity and love for life.

The people who’ve touched your heart never really leave even though you may be miles apart. To my Italian family: it may be a goodbye for now, but I long for the day I get to see her and Miriam again. 

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