Everyone has a story to tell

Here I am, at the age of 50, smiling at life and enjoying the small treasures I find along the way.

Too many people are judging my lifestyle but I can finally state that I’m ok with that and happy about my accomplishments.

These days I am part of a team who’s judging 500 candidates for a job in public health care, so I have the opportunity of meeting many different people. It’s inevitable that, each time one of them enters the room, an idea of this person would take form in my mind. We all do have experiences piled up at our backs that make us judge someone at first sight.

Well, guess what? It’s so amazing to discover that every single one of them has a personal story of grief, difficulty or loneliness. There’s always a reason behind that veil of exterior shabbiness, that makes me feel guilty for the idea that I had shaped in my mind.

So, I’m forcing myself to be a as impartial as possible, and just welcome them and listen to what they have to say.

And this made me think over my own life and my own experiences. I’ve always lived my life looking for the approval of the persons I loved most, my parents, my husband, my daughters. There’s nothing wrong with that, life is a balance game. But I also realized that sometimes I was pleasing them without thinking “who am I?”. These last two and a half years my life has changed completely, it went all upside down, all that was taken for granted just disappeared and I’ve been left with empty hands and a devasted heart.

I was left looking at myself in the mirror wondering who was that person staring back at me. What are her passions? What habits does she have? What kind of clothes or hairstyle does she like or what’s her favorite food? I lived some months when I felt absolutely adrift with feelings of pain, fear and loss. After these first terrible moments I just stopped and breathed and said to myself “you are you and you’re not alone”. By magic, I realized that I had some passions, some abilities that I’d never expressed. Little by little, step by step, day by day, the real me was emerging from years of being a connector between people and a peace keeper.

Now, when I look at myself in the mirror, I’m proud of who I am, aware of my many flaws as well as my many values. This is a revelation that passed through grief but I’m so happy now that I almost feel I could fly light and free.

The message I would like to convey through this experience of mine is that we all should stop judging people at first sight instead, we should give everyone the opportunity of showing who they are because, behind a fierce look or a sad face there’s always a story which, often, tells about pain and struggle.

Be kind to yourself and to each other.


  • Luann Carnahan

    Hi Laura,
    I love listening to your podcasts. I play them at night because I don’t sleep well.

    I feel like we are kindred sisters dealing with the stresses and disappointments that life is throwing at us as of late.

    I used to journal EVERY day…..many pages some days. When I discovered junk journals during the pandemic, I threw myself into creating many of them. Curiously, I didn’t journal in them. In fact, I don’t journal at all the way I once did.

    I miss writing, but I feel so worn out in my head, the last thing I feel like doing is writing about it.

    Making journals causes me to focus on the task at hand and keeps my mind occupied.

    The world is a crazy place right now and the USA is at the worst I’ve even seen in my 68 years.

    I would love to correspond with you if you would like. I could use a friend……..

    Blessings and hugs to you!🤗😘

    • Laura Bertucci

      Hi!! I’m so excited that you’ve reached out to me. I’ve finally found someone who can share my “weird” emotions… yes I agree with you. The world is so crazy right now! I’ve shut down my tv and I try not to listen to people talking about on going emergencies. The level of anxiety to which we are exposed is too high to cope with. I’m so grateful I’ve found junk journals. Its just my way to let the stress go and focus on a teeny tiny detail. I can relate how you feel about writing, sometimes it’s as if writing down my worries just amplifies them instead of erasing them. I don’t know, it’s just so hard! Im in bed right now happy about my first day of vacation from my job but overwhelmed with all the rest. Thank you for listening to my episodes, i hope you feel less alone. Doesn’t matter where we’re from, our age and distance between us. We’re not alone in this awful mess of a world! Please keep in touch, I would love to hear from you. If it’s easier you can email me laura@myprivategarden.com . We will support each other, I promise. Take care and good night (for me) 😘

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