Tag Archives: birthday

My 41st Birthday

41st-birthday

The 5th decade of one’s life seems to be the trickiest — similar to Ahmed Nurudin, fictional character created by the famous Yugoslav writer Meša Selimović, I feel that I’m still too young to give up on my dreams, but also too old to continue making them come true. I realize more and more every day that the great majority of my desires will never be fulfilled and that it’s time for me to “settle down”, whatever that’s exactly supposed to mean.

It’s expected from me to be able to pay my bills, cover the basics and more if possible, buy presents, help myself and others around me as much as I can in every possible way.  Others mostly require that I sleep less and less and work more, preferably until I get completely drained and exhausted, utterly immune to my fantasies doomed to remain covered by layers of dust and oblivion. I do understand that modern times need modern slaves, but my artistic vein speaks some very different language — for some reason, it still refuses to be suppressed.

Even though I haven’t had enough time to breathe, let alone do anything else meaningful for myself in the past 10 months, and even though almost everybody told me that I would eventually get used to it, I still haven’t accepted this pointless life I’m leading right now. My soul still aches to express itself, my camera still waits for me to shoot a beautiful photo or two, my pens, pencils and crayons still patiently sit in the same long forgotten corner waiting for me to pick them up and draw at least a couple of lines from time to time. It does seem that certain people cannot be custom tailored to fit the lifestyles imposed by those placed above us in the hierarchy of important achievements, no matter how much pressure you put on them. I still continue to succumb though because right now I have to, but deep down I haven’t forgotten who I am and what makes me happy.

Some people miss me lately and I also miss my true self as well very much, that’s something that I realize more than ever on a day like this one.

I’m 41 today, but my mind simply can’t accept that fact — I don’t know why, but it still lives in our twenties, foolishly waiting for the life to unfold itself in front of us and serve us some magic that has been supposedly kept somewhere in store just for me during all these years I’ve spent on this Planet so far.

I’m 41 today, and my body is on the contrary very well aware of our mutual true age, even more than it’s necessary — very often it actually believes to be quite older than what the birth certificate says every time I look at it.

Somewhere in between the realms of real, potential and desired lies my true age. If only my father were still here or somewhere out there within the boundaries of this dimension to give me the greetings in his unique, special way, everything would be different — alas, that cannot be, time runs only forward and forward again.

If I could ask the Heaven above for a thing or two, I’d beg for good health for me and everybody else, fair amount of fortunate occasions and one blessing — to be able to tell what road to take in order to do what I like when I like from my home, while still being able to make at least some normal, modest living.

Happy 41st birthday, Tanja… and may God listen to some of those most intimate prayers you whisper every night before going to sleep. May the nightmares stop and may there be some peace and clear sky above your head in the days that remain to you on this Earth.

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My very first zinnias

zinnias

I’m dedicating this unusual post to my fellow blogger Jim who has such an incredibly fascinating garden, home of many fabulous zinnias, among dozens of wonderful flower varieties – In Jim’s garden

His beautiful photos can truly heal the soul and as I watching them on the evening before my birthday, I commented how much I loved his zinnias’ photos and that they don’t grow so easily here where I live. Actually I had never had a zinnias’ bouquet in my home… till the next morning! 😮 🙂 Was is some weird, unusual coincidence or something else I have no idea, but the next morning I got up, my mom wished me happy birthday and showed me the flowers she bought for me. I took these, she said, because I thought you might like something new… I couldn’t believe my eyes! 😮 It was as if somebody translated them from the computer screen into my real life and it was such fun having them around, so I had to immortalize that moment with some beautiful photos. 🙂

zinnia

zinnia

zinnia

zinnia

zinnia

August 16th

Tanja-baby

It’s past midnight here in Belgrade, Serbia where I live, so it’s already August 16th – even though I have a pretty challenging relationship with this particular day in the year, it’s still my birthday. I’m 38. Seems a lot in certain ways, seems hardly enough from a different perspective… the truth is probably as always somewhere in the middle, hopefully I’m somewhere in the middle of my life path. What’s certain though is that I don’t feel 38, maybe because I spent years and years just hiding and coping. Those years are one big blur, which can be condensed into a single dot in time – for me, it’s as though that time never passed, while in reality life went far ahead without me. It’s a if I’m still in my twenties in my head, still waiting for my life to unfold, to make important decisions, to overcome these mental hurdles and start living again. Then comes August 16th again and again and puts things into their real place, reminding me that things are not as good as I try to picture them to myself, which used to hurt a lot. I would lie if I said that it doesn’t not hurt any more, it just hurts less. Every year I say that next year on this day I’ll be in some much better place, but actually both me and everybody and everything around me grow just older and things get tougher. My dad is not doing really well lately, which makes my birthday much less significant than it used to be – if I could truly make a birthday wish, it would be for him to resolve his issues and start feeling better again. This picture was taken by my dad and fully developed by him as well, and it is one of the first pictures in my life. My parents say that I always held my fists tightly closed, as if I knew I would have to battle a lot in life. This photo reminds me that 1976 was quite a long time ago, everything was done manually… and it shows you where my passion for photography came from. 🙂 He developed numerous films and photos in improvised dark rooms, he loved slides and projectors, but somehow that passion of his faded away with age and the arrival of digital photography. I developed some films and photos manually myself and I remember that I loved doing it, maybe some day I’ll show you some of that black and white work.

There were many different August 16ths – many of them were spent at the seaside, some of them abroad – once in the USA, several times in Italy. Those were all quite lonely birthdays because it’s vacation time in Serbia and the famous Ferragosto week in Italy when people run away from deserted cities and towns to enjoy their holidays to the fullest. I didn’t always have a cake, but it was always a special summer day, special because I lived it in my head as such. Tomorrow will be another “specially” modest day – there were years when I thought I had to do something extra particular on that day or make some extra efforts, but in reality, I just want to relax. I want it to be a calm, good day. I didn’t manage to make a huge progress with my battles yet, but this is the first birthday I spend blogging. I hope there are many more years ahead, so maybe, just maybe next year I’ll be able to tell you that I’m in some much better place… 🙂
Till then, I can just promise that I’ll continue to fight, with my fists tightly closed as I did in those first months of my life.