I don’t know where I heard this story but I’ve always loved it.
Soraya Esfandiary was a beautiful girl studying in Zurich when the Shah of Persia saw a picture of her and decided he wanted to marry her. Although the marriage was a happy one at first, the Shah needed a male heir to continue the Pahlevi dynasty since his first marriage had only produced a girl. Soraya knew she was on the spot.
Time passed and the heir didn’t came and people began to talk (surprise, surprise). Feeling he had no other choice but to repudiate his wife, Soraya and the Shah divorced. Soraya was heartbroken since she really loved the Shah and soon become known as “the princess with the sad eyes.” After the divorce, she became a movie star and traveled all over the world, but continued to look for love. She even married again but never found that sparkle, that miracle, she had with Shah. She died alone in Paris.
I love this story. It’s so real, so full of love and sadness. Why do I begin with this? You see, some events in our lives mark us forever. Soraya, with her beautiful sad eyes and broken heart reminds me of how things can transform you forever.
Today is my birthday, the last birthday of my 20s. I feel no wiser and worry that I am only good at being young, of dreaming of what I will do when I grow up. The problem is that I am grown up already and I have even achieved some of the things I wanted to do before turning 30. My birthday encourages me to re-think my life plan and to focus on one goal: to be happy. Of course I don’t want to abandon my career plans — and to win the lottery, of course — but I also need faith to achieve my goal, the faith to trust and to know that God will guide me that things will be fine.
My 28th year was hard for me. I lost a lot, including a family. Now, I am building a new family, making new friends and creating a challenging but peaceful life. I’m so grateful for it. I have cried and laughed a lot during the last year, but have learned a lot too. I know I have sadness in my eyes, like the princess, but there is also a shine there too, and today, I will have a big smile on my face. I will start this new year grateful, happy and ready to fulfill my goals.
You see, my friends, I don’t know what life will bring but I am free to live it on my own terms, free to decide where I want to go and what I want to be.
We all need to find out what it is that makes us happy and to be grateful for the blessings we have. But we must also be prepared for the difficulties we have to face in order to be stronger and to accept the hugs from those who offer comfort and teach us the lessons of living.
Thank you for sharing this year with me. My 29th year begins.
Roxi Guerrero is a mother and office manager at CuencaHighLife.