A to Z challenge

Reflection on the A to Z challenge.

A few words on the A to Z challenge, which has concluded on the 30th of April and, to my own surprise, I managed to complete, even if with some delay in posting every now and then.

I can only say nice things about it: the idea is great, and it gives free space to individual creativity while at the same time encouraging people to write. For me, getting back to write (and this time in my second language) has been a great way to test what I could and couldn’t do, and I found out, or rather confirmed, that I love writing.

The icing on the cake has been the chance to discover other blogs and interact with other bloggers: I discovered a number of blogs that I will keep on following, and for someone who loves reading like me, it is great.

Now, a few lines of “thank you”: thanks to the organisers of the challenge, who ran it perfectly, and thanks to all of you who read patiently my going all over the place while following the alphabet; thanks to those who commented on my posts, all extremely kind and encouraging (my ego thanks you too, profoundly) and the people I have the chance to meet in person who actually complimented me “live”.


Z is for Zoo.

Z is for Zoo.

Here it comes, at the 11th hour, the last post of my AtoZ challenge and it has to be about my cats, my personal zoo.

I mentioned them here and there, but I think they deserve finally a proper introduction.

Although they are brothers, they are quite different, the opposite, actually: Maelstrom (the white one) is a cat as you would imagine a cat. Snobbish, elegant, usually comes around for food or cuddles only at his earliest convenience.

Otherwise, he can be spotted doing some work around the house: just recently, he entered an IT career by chewing my MacBook charger (not plugged) and rearranging my bedroom curtains (by removing them).
Cagliostro (the grey one) is the other way round: he loves cuddles, and follows you around the house, always.


Literally, everywhere.


Y is for You.

Y is for You. You as in Thank You.

Thank you for teaching me that the world is cold and heartless: I appreciate more a warm smile when I see one now.

Thank you for making me realize that people can lie with their words and their actions: while I thought this made me lose my inner compass, it instead makes me love truth even more when I encounter it.

Thank you for betraying my trust: I learned to give it only to those who proved me they deserved it.

Thank you for making me believe there was something wrong with me: it made me spend months trying to find out what that was, until I finally figured out there was nothing to be fixed in me, but along the journey I found out that I am truly amazing.

Thank you for all the times I cried: tears have washed my eyes, and now my eyes are fiercer than ever.

Thank you for breaking hundreds of promises: I learned how important it is to keep mine.

Thank you for making me feel lonely: when I laid awake in bed was when I realized who I was and who I wanted to be.

Thank you for all the time you told me what I should have done, how I should have lived my life ​while at the same time doing the exact opposite: it made me finally see through the kaleidoscopic inconsistencies I used to believe and cleared my head like a cold shower in a hot morning.

Thank you for hurting me for so long: while every time I got knocked down, every time I got up, every time stronger than the previous one.

Thank you, because now I am the person I wanted to be, and I couldn’t have done that without looking at you and knowing you were the person I didn’t want to be.

(PS: and Thank You because if I didn’t find out who I wanted to be and what I wanted to do, I would never have started my AtoZ challenge)


X is for X

X is for X. Lapalissian, no?

X, the incognita, how many hopes it hides behind?

How many attempts to find it, thinking that once the equation is solved, everything will finally make sense?

How many times trying to decipher its meaning, thinking that once it is done, all the pieces will fall into place, and a beautiful picture will appear in front of our eyes? Linear, clear, meaningful.

How many times instead the X, unveiled through so many efforts, so many difficulties, returned just another enigma, just another incognita? (more…)

W is for Why (but also WTF?).

W is for Why, and sometimes also for WTF?

It’s for all the unanswered whys, for all the times you wondered why you, why in the whole universe, you?

It’s for all the unanswered whys, for all the times you wondered, why now, why in the continuum of the universe, now?

It’s for all the unanswered whys, for all the times you wondered, why this, why in the endless possibilities the universe has to offer, this?


V is for Victories

V is for Victories. Plural.

Not a single, majestic, triumphal victory, but the little, often underappreciated, often underestimated and still so precious daily victories.

All the times you rose above your fears, they are victories.

All the times you sobbed “I can’t take this anymore”, and then you took it, and shone, they are victories.

All the times you thought you were drowning in your tears, but you wiped the tears away and made it through another day, they are victories.

All the times you were hurt, betrayed, abandoned and you decided nevertheless to let your mind, heart and arms opened for the world, they are victories.

All the times you found a courage you did not know you had, and you smiled acknowledging that you were tougher than you imagined, they are victories.

All the times you realised you could not make it by yourself, and put aside the pride, and asked for help, they are victories.

(and making it almost to the end of the A to Z challenge, is a small victory too)


U is for Under

U is for Under.

Under the weather, for all those days when waking up is so hard that it seems impossible. But you still get up, put up an happy face and face the world.

Under the mask, for all those times you wear a mask, “yeah, I am fine”, “how are you?” “all ok” and inside you are crying your heart off.

Under breath, for all the whispered words you wanted to shout, and instead your murmured and no one was there to listen.

Underwater, for all the emotions that shake you below the surface, and outside, you are unmoved, while inside havoc unleashes.

Under that spell, for all those times you tried to run away from something, from someone, just to find out there was nowhere to hide, nowhere to run, no place was safe enough to lick your wounds.

Under the assumption, for all the decisions you made thinking you knew it all, just to witness your certainties crumble in front of your eyes. And you powerless could only watch the remains of what you thought you had, what you thought you knew, dissipate in the fog of the unknown.

Under your skin, for all those moments that will not go away, for all these people who will not disappear from your memories, no matter how hard you try, no matter how hurt you are. Because what is under your skin cannot be scratch away; it cannot be wiped off. It is part of you, you like it or not.