When I was twenty years old, I lost my mother and I was sad, very sad for a very long time. I felt nobody could understand my level of pain so I chose not to express my sadness publicly at the time, especially not on social media. Though I shared a beautiful memory on there : this extract from a movie we used to watch together ‘It’s a wonderful life’ by Frank Capra. It’s a classic. The movie tells the story of a man wanting to commit suicide on Christmas eve, but then God sends him a guardian angel to intervene and show him how the life of his village would have been without him, and the man realizes how worthy he is and how much his life is worth living. You know, it is exactly because I faced this challenge in my life, that I have such a positive mindset. In a sense, I have learned to catch the ‘wonder’ of life! At first, when she died, I was angry, mostly at myself, although I could never understand why. But I don’t want to be an angry person. The fact that she is dead is something I will never overcome; but I did overcome the handicap of this loss. 

I still think about her all the time, but I know that everything I learned from her is still instilled in me : openness to the world, loving others. Thanks to her I am the way I am. Wow, this feels like yesterday ! I guess there was a time for me to be sad and now is the time for me to be better. Pain does not impeach you from moving forward and remaining positive, unless you let it.

(Pierfrancesco is a social media manager at the European Commission)

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