13 верасня 2006

Are we all doomed? (Completion)

On my birthday, the first thing that happened was my Grandma called all the way from Eastern Belarus. Guess whose Grandma is the coolest babushka in the world? Kind, sweet, wise, funny, honest, hard-working, - not enough words in the dictionary - she has always been particularly nice to me. She probably did spoil me a little when I used to visit her and Grandpa while he was alive, which I did every summer, But I don't care, because having such a babushka is worth a lot. Then my Dad called - hey Dad! He reads my blog sometimes. That my Dad is coolest in the world I think is pretty much obvious by looking at me. Then my friends from San Francisco called. Then I treated myself to nice food and vacuuming my apartment. Then I took a nap. Then I went to my birthday party.

And as I celebrated, surrounded by really good people, my beloved friends and comrades, some of my fears came into a different prospective. Thinking about politics and war makes you think about death - whether your own death in a terrorist attack, or deaths of innocents abroad. It is said that a samurai must think about death every day (or maybe even every second, I don't remember). I am not a samurai and I want to live a happy life. And the truth is that you are more likely to die in a car crash than in a subway terrorist attack, even if you spend two hours a day on a subway, and hardly an hour a week in a car. The thought of a dirty bomb or some WMD is a bit scarier, and chances of it happening are very uncertain. Uncertainty is a pretty scary thing - especially when it comes to scary events.

War creates a grim background noise in your psyche, and the more intense the war, the louder the noise. How much you want to handle is up to you: you can enlist and go to Iraq, or you can move to Montana. You can be a right-wing armchair general or a lefty self-righteous freak. You can ignore it all together, which is what most Americans seem to be doing.

But as I celebrated my birthday, I celebrated being alive. Every second of it. Despite the anti-depressants, the fears, and overeating for two days before my birthday and mixing beer with vodka at the party - ouch. I've been able to enjoy it so thoroughly because I had done certain things right - I had asked the right questions, I was determined enough to get the answers, I met the right people, and had enough desire to use what I'd learn as tools to become happier and stronger. I gots skills, motherpapa. I just really wanted to get happier, because I realized how miserable my life would soon become otherwise. Compared to my birthdays a year or two ago, I felt that I had made some progress - a feeling I had almost forgotten. Not a huge amount of progress, but tangible. Thanks to everybody who helped me keep my hopes up, and also thank everybody who attended the great party (and the evil ones who didn't make it) - I love you! And you better throw your birthday parties, too, so I can attend and bite your noses.


Anonymous Ананім said...


8:40 PM  
Blogger Ivan Lenin said...

Howdy! Are you a robot?

8:49 PM  
Blogger Nilk said...

Happy birthday. Glad you had a good one, and I'm liking what I see on your blog.

ps. no, I'm not a bot.

5:24 AM  
Blogger Ivan Lenin said...

Thanks, nilk/leeianne!
I'm liking what I see on your blog, too. Feel better!

10:46 AM  
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