“What should I tell you?
Well, I’ll tell you my story and you’ll draw conclusions for yourself.
What you want to believe and what not. What is the truth and what is the lie”
This is how my grandfather started his life story.
He loved to tell stories from his life and from World War II where he was a soldier. And for sure, I loved to listen. We were somehow away from all the noise, and the rest of the world. I never knew what else someone could have ever wanted more, despite the fact that we didn’t have a lot of things, so we would spend all the afternoons together, telling stories or playing games.
Until I was 6 years old, I lived with my grandparents in a small town in Romania. We had a small house, with a big garden. Every day was full of joy and learning something new about the world, the plants, the birds, the seasons. Nature in the circle of life and the beautiful serenity of life. My whole childhood revolved around the house and the garden. Around my grandparents and his war stories, which he told me so many times, I already knew them by heart. He would always start like it was the first time telling me the story:
-“My little girl, have I ever told you what the most terrible humiliation in my life was?”
Alway, eager to listen, curious, and surprised:
-“A 60-years old man came out into the street with tears in his eyes, looking at me:
-“Brothers, to whom do you leave us?”
I probably heard this story a hundred times, and never understand it. It was war. The young soldiers had to fight for their country, to recover the lost land of our country.
This year, I’ve finally understood what he meant. Because I’ve felt the same.
It was around 2006 when we started to write his story. He wanted to write his life’s memoir, but he already started to lose his eye-sight. This was one of his greatest regrets. I offered to help and write it down for him. In that year I was already married and working, and the communist regime was only a story from a long distant time. We have written dozen of pages when I was getting a little impatient. The stories were great, full of humor, full of details, but I was wondering when are we getting the part of fights, heroes like you see read in books and see in the movies? But he would always reply:
-“There are no heroes! Nobody wants to be there! Nobody wants to be a hero! When you are in the war, on the front, you only think about saving your life, how can you escape. Because, you know, my little girl, in war, there is only death and destruction.”
Maybe all he wanted is to make sure is that I don’t forget these stories, because they were real-life lessons, that should guide me in my life.
Do you have a real-life lesson from your grandparents?
Lots of love, STAY SAFE