It’s the end of October, and the world oscillates between windy nervous red-yellow-brown leafs and yellow sunlight, and blue air with misty streets. There’s anticipation and there’s a deep sense of giddiness about the near future. What we do lately – I try to pace myself, in layering a wide variety of responsibilities and tasks (moving to another continent is not easy feat). Conrad is in a good productive season with breakthroughs and great steady work for the clients we have.
Occasionally we stop and ask ourselves and each other “are we insane to embark on this crazy adventure?”. The conclusions always make us more determined. The reality checks are perfect interjections.
A few years ago life was on a steady course. Great jobs, steady routine, a home, food, clothes, technology, a great church and community, and vacations… but the soul searches for things out of this world. Also, the definition of insanity is trying the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. So we decided to switch it up: Starting our own business, adopting children, pursuing affordable traveling through Europe are well defined and attainable dreams.
We are not going to Romania to get rich. At least not in a materialistic way. Yesterday I got to say hi to Arnold Schwarzenegger. I still play with the latest and greatest technology and I work with the most innovative and famous company. And I am grateful and everything I learned I take with me. Apple will always be part of my business DNA. We are determined to start our own thing.
I sometimes get discouraged about Romania as I read the harshest articles, and pessimistic outlooks about our politicians, about the increasing shallowness in the new generation, about how fed-up-with-the-system people are fleeing the country or encouraging the reader to do so. To them I say: go live outside the country if you are so disgruntled. Try it out. Maybe it will shake up some sense and gratitude. On the other hand, if you are to stay, pull up your sleeves and let’s get to work.
Conrad and I are hopelessly hopeful and positive (I let him rub-off on me). And that can be bothersome for the pessimistic bunch. I mentioned at some point that no matter how impeccable one’s track-record, the pessimists will always doubt. I am tempted to justify our decisions (the move, the business, the adoption) to people, but I am afraid it will get tiring fast. I acknowledge the noise. At times we will share our perspective, other times we will tune out the noise and smile.
A few weeks ago a friend and pastor who loves Romania deeply made a statement: during communism the Romanians’ love for Jesus was pure, their passion unaltered as the oppression and challenges and we faced were outwardly. Today we face very western temptation: greed, pride, laziness, envy. The temptation is the numbing of our soul.
Here is the reality about Jesus: he came to show us the Way and to give his life for our sins so we can Live. We distort the truth to make it palatable, and we whisper about Salvation. I have been in school when talking about Jesus could get your family in big trouble and persecution was a real thing. And yet, I remember being brave about it. Today I tend to be more censured, not out of fear for my life but because it might be offensive to someone’s ears. The oppression in this era of extreme freedom of speech is subtle and yet more effective. No past or present experience will go to waste…
Here is a quote by my former boss. It’s famous and it’s inspiring. I love sharing it during this season as it applies directly to our current decisions. We did not buy the one-way ticked to Romania because of what Steve Jobs said below, but it sure is cool to hear him especially say it.
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”
I am painfully aware at times of what I’ll miss. This week’s delights were the joyful “burrito boys” and impromptu dinners with friends, drinks with mom and birthday dinners with family.