Returning to the Source: Starting Anew

Returning to the Source: Starting Anew...  Bellanda ®

Returning to the Source:
Starting Anew…
Bellanda ®

There is something about starting a new year that makes many evaluate the year that has just gone by. Over the last few weeks, I have heard and read an overwhelming amount of information about starting anew, broken promises, hopes, dreams, and about updating last year’s resolutions. Our eight year old, who happens to live a rather blessed life filled with love and activities of his choosing, cried on New Year’s Eve as he said, “I haven’t profited enough from 2013.”

I realize that a reflection like this is unusual for a boy his age, but he has touched upon something that many adults feel and express at the end of each new year and around birthdays. I’ve never quite understood this. Are these kind of reflections due to fear of the unknown? Regrets of the past? Hopes for a better future? Or is it something more… something more profound about man’s inability to feel truly happy? Could it be that man is driven by a desire for better and for more? If this is the case, what would happen if man was given all of time they desired? Would they finally be happy?

It is wonderful to take time at the start of a new year to evaluate the lives presently being lived, but I can’t help but wonder why so many people wait until this time of the year to awaken only to get lost again so quickly. We are given the gift of life, and with each breath the capacity to make things happen. If you are one of the lucky ones, born into a place where choice is an option and your gender, skin color or political and cultural affiliation don’t limit you to a stand still, then you are indeed blessed. You are the master of your future, if you choose to be so.

Perhaps if we stopped running around, trying to do everything, and started enjoying the simple moments we would realize how lucky we are. I know that this is more of a lifetime resolution than a New Year’s resolution, but it is also one that will help us feel more fulfilled in life. Finding something in each day that makes you smile, like a child’s laughter or taking the time to sip your favorite coffee instead of gulping it down while doing a million things at the same time takes no more than a couple of minutes, but the benefits are endless.

We are the masters of own little universe, whether we believe it or not, so we don’t have to wait for these precious moments to happen. We can make them happen by simply smiling at a stranger, or holding the door for them and wishing them a nice day. Naive? Maybe, but it is enough to bring someone else a gift and in doing so we are often rewarded by this exchange. 

I’ve been told on many occasions that I am lucky to live here in Paris, and that I should be happy. I agree that this is indeed a wonderful city, but being happy is more than just living in a particular place. It is about taking time for those you love and care about and about making choices that best meet your needs and passions intelligently. It is about taking the time to enjoy precious moments in between the rest of the things that need to get done. Most importantly, it is about finding positives in the midst of the roller coaster life so many of us live.

As some of you already know, I have been ill for almost two years. From my many activities, you might also know that I haven’t let this make me bitter or stop me completely. I’m often asked how I remain so positive in the midst of hospitals, doctors, treatments and the unknown, as I await what has been a very long and complicated final diagnosis. My answer is always, “never giving up on hope.” There comes a time when one must accept their limitations and then find a way to adapt so that you can do what you would like to do regardless of them. Accepting one’s imperfections while learning from our mistakes and the things we cannot control also helps. It is important to realize that by wasting energy on negativity and anger we only hurt ourselves, wasting precious time that could be used for something good.

At times I have had to slow down, but I’ve always searched to find a positive in each situation… even if I’ve had to dig a little deeper. Everything is about choice. Being forced to take time to slow down for health reasons, can mean cuddling on the couch with my little ones as they tell me about their day. When we think about it, as long as we are alive, there is hope and a chance to find a positive. Yes, death is something we all struggle with, but once the immediate shock and pain of the loss of a loved one has passed, it is possible to turn and focus your energy on feeling blessed to have had that person in your life, even if only for a short time during their passage here on earth. In doing so, they will live on in us and in our memories forever as you take that person with you.

All of this will help us deal with our own inevitable death. Living life’s precious moments, telling those you love how you feel so in the end our regrets are limited. The feeling that we have indeed profited from life and our loved ones is primordial.

As each new year comes around, I smile. I know that I am among the fortunate and I am thankful. I have lived another day, let alone another year. I am not sad, nor afraid of each year that passes. Yes, I am another year older, and wrinkles do come with age, but oh how lucky I am to have the chance that so many don’t get. Age is not a curse but a gift, and I’d rather avoid the alternative as long as possible. Once you get the hang of finding something positive in your everyday life and in negative situations that come your way, you’d be amazed how easy it is to do.

So, if I must make a resolution, it will be to continue doing what I am doing… mistakes and all. They are what make us learn and grow. I will continue sharing this positive attitude with those I love in hopes that they might pick up this trait. When my time does eventually come, as it will with us all, I will have no regrets. I will have lived my life as best I could, making sure that those I love know how very precious they are to me.


14 thoughts on “Returning to the Source: Starting Anew

  1. There was a lot to take in while I read your latest post, the article went into my mind and my soul. You have a gift of always writing what we think but you can magically put it into words that we all understand. Never stop writing for you are blessed and we are lucky recipients of your thought provoking words. I know that I will try to think differently after reading your blog. Thank you


    • Thank you, Josie. Your words touch my own very soul, as this is a subject that is near and dear to my heart. I’m glad that my post has somehow touched you, and I appreciate the time you took to read and comment on it. People like you make all of the time and effort well worth it. Thank you. 🙂


  2. Such a poignant article, you are so right about living in a place not being the sole reason for making you happy. You reminded me of my own journey of doing everything possible to live in southern Italy. I started off in the north of the country and there I encountered a traumatic incident that unbeknown to me began to make me ill. When I finally got to Sorrento in the south, what it had all been about, I no longer felt the euphoria I expected that I would. This beautiful place that I loved beyond everything had become tainted and I became afraid of my own shadow.
    Yes you are quite right, happiness comes from within, not from a place or solely from other people. Thank you for reminding me.


    • Thank you, Ruth… for your support and for sharing your story. I’m glad that this article has touched you and reminded you of your own awakening. Sending my very best wishes to you.


  3. What a powerful post! It’s people like you who are faced with challenges that remind people like me that I shouldn’t take my life and the people in it for granted. So thank you for that.

    It’s up to me to lead a happy and fulfilling life. I have been (so far) given everything that I need and there is no reason not to profit from life.

    I wish you the best of luck for 2014 and I really hope that your health will improve. I always say that it’s not the place where you live that makes you happy, but the people in your life.


    • Thank you so very much… your words touch me. I am glad that you found this post a powerful one and I’m happy that you got something out of it. Yes, people play an important part to happiness and in that department I am indeed blessed.

      Thank you for your well wishes. I appreciate you participation here today. I love your blog… keep doing what you do so well.


  4. Hello Bellanda
    Could you please make stickers from your quotes and put them everywhere as a reminder for people for what is life..?


    • Thank you, Jack. I will definitely keep that idea in mind. It sure would get the word out faster than my blog. 😉

      Thank you for your support and for taking the time to stop by and share your thoughts.


  5. You have indeed been through quite a year and I can understand what you are saying. Bravo for having a positive outlook on the love of living. This is a wonderful post and I leave you with a quote: Every day is a good day if you are alive.


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