Saturday, May 22, 2010


I have been doing a lot of reflecting lately and I know where this has come from. In thirteen days I am having a big operation. They are operating on my brain. Although this is a relatively ‘safe’ operation, there are parts of me that thinks ‘what if’? So, to prepare I have written letters to my loved ones remembering the good times we have had, what they mean to me and thanking them for this and that. It’s been a nice walk down memory lane.

I have also been thinking about how my life has been shaped by people, movies and books.

The movie ‘Dead Poets Society’ came out when I was struggling in Year 11. I was miserable and started questioning if I had to ‘conform’ and finish high school or if there was another way. Thoreau’s quote, "…and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.", started my journey of wanting to ‘taste’ life and not to just go through the motions in a numb state until death. I want this for others also. I don’t want people to live no life or part of a life because they have to, for example, stay in a job they don’t like to pay the bills. Life is more precious than money.

There have also been a handful of people who have believed in me and my abilities and bolstered me up so that I could achieve more.

My teachers at my Special School sent me to Public School so I could feed my brain. My Primary School teacher promised I wouldn’t be in the ‘dummies’ class in High School and I wasn’t. One High School teacher told me I could do anything I set my mind to. One boss believed I could do the big jobs he gave me and never second guessed me. He supported, respected, breathed a sigh of relief that the job was in capable hands and let me soar. All these people built bricks of belief for me but the capstones were put on by my boss who gave me self belief and self respect and took away the feeling of needing to prove myself to others. I now know what I’m made of and what I’m capable of.

One of my favourite books “Sophie's World” by Jostein Gaarder also had an impact on my life. Gaarder’s quote, 'Wisest is she who knows she does not know.', has always kept me grounded. To know that you know, not much at all, keeps you alert to new insights and ways of doing things. I like sharing life with people who are open to new ideas and I am happy to be taught a thing or two. To be closed to this and think you know everything cheats you out of so much.

- Martha

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