Birthday Post

Shortly after I was born

In August 1973 my sister was born. She died in November of the same year in her sleep. Her name was Aviva. Two years later on Halloween, the day they say the veil between the world of the living and the world of the dead is thinnest, my mother gave birth to me. And my parents named me Aviva.

I know if I would add I am a witch and these are my diaries, this could well be a great start for another teenage fantasy story. But it was the start of my life.

If anyone wonders: Aviva derives from the Hebrew word ‘aviv’ which means spring. I am the spring that arrived well past the fall equinox in the heart ofBerlin, not far from the place where the Germans years before decided to extinct anything Semitic. I carry the blood of both peoples. By all means if I am anything I am a stranger between worlds (hence the name of my blog).

A stranger maybe, but I was wanted. And asked to stay, I did. It will be 36 years on Monday and I still don’t know what I am actually doing here.

I love the little things: a hug, a nice word, the smell of coffee and cooking food, days with my family, sun beams breaking through clouds though not necessarily in the early morning, drew on moss in the woods, a blossom breaking open, the sound of the sea, the glimmer of light in the desert, the sight of steep rugged mountains and even the touch of snow (though the concept of winter would only be perfect if it could be wrapped up in a fortnight). I cherish the battle of strength and duration in sports and the battle of sharp minds in any arena. I fall for beauty, fantasy and multilayered storylines that challenge the brain and the heart (and I get fast impatient with those who consume and don’t care to scratch beyond the surface).

I am thankful that I have tongues to speak. – I don’t say a lot. People are an enigma to me that I fear. But I can’t help it, I am curious. As often as I got hurt, I still think it is not nature but the human being that needs to be understood. And languages, the means of communication, are funny things. Their words deliver meaning in the context of concepts. To speak another person’s tongue helps appreciate this fact and hopefully brings me closer to understanding others even with few words.

I am thankful that I am given ways to express myself. – I am highly intelligent. I am very creative as in I love to tie ideas together that have usually nothing to do with each other. I don’t say a lot. That constellation would lead to a big waste of potential if I were not given other outlets to express myself. I write because my characters are braver than me. And I create art because feelings flow with colors and memories love light. I think in pictures and paint in words and that is all I am and all I want to be.

I am thankful that I am allowed to be there for others. – Yes, I show Asperger traits. This means in particular that mimic and gestures mean nothing to me, if I haven’t learnt them textbook style. It doesn’t say that I don’t know feelings. Mother Nature just hasn’t given me the tools to read and work with them. It’s like a missing link to humanity. It’s a great recipe for a lot of confusion and pondering, a lot of pain, but an even greater interest in the unknown.
I want to be there for others. I learnt to heal. But in order to feel what needs to be healed, I put myself in the position of the other, so much so that I felt the moment of death of two of my patients-turned-friends days before I was told and knew a friend gave birth before the announcement reached me. It satisfied me, but it also drained me, almost broke me and made me shut down from the world. My friends loathed me for this step, yet I took it in self preservation and now I don’t know how to approach them again.
On the good side, I think I found a way to give by filling up my batteries – through my art. Does it help? I don’t know. I can’t make sense of the signals I get back from out there and the people I deal with. But one of the things I learnt on my way (and through a slight TV addiction): It doesn’t matter who we are, where we come from or what we’ve done or suffered or even if we make a difference. We live as if the world were what it should be to show what it can be.

Me on Rosh Ha Shana 2011

I am thankful for every thought, every person, every moment, every day. I am thankful I’ve been born, that I live and that I still have dreams and plans of great things to come. And I think that makes for a happy birthday.

One thought on “Birthday Post

  1. Dearest Aviva,

    Jus finished reading your story. It’s a beautiful one! Thank you for sharing it with us and for stepping out in faith and sharing pieces of yourself with art throughout this past year. It’s been both and honor and privilege.

    Heather 🙂

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