Expatria · Istanbul · Spirituality

The Silver Lining

While I was devastated to get fired for the first time in my life, each day that goes by I am beginning to understand that the job experience itself has a much greater spiritual significance than I ever would have thought.

The job taught me that integrity, while a quality most of us strive to cultivate in our lives, is not appreciated by all and is especially not valued by people who carry a lot of resentment and bitterness. That while having a baby is a wonderful thing and bringing life in this world is one of a woman’s roles, yada yada yada, I have not one iota of interest in becoming a crazy pregnant lady and if I ever decide to have a baby I will focus all my energy towards making it the most spiritual of experiences (i.e. not subjecting others to my crazy hormones and insane pregnant whims).

The job allowed me to connect deeply with some truly lovely people, and those friendships have carried over from the job into my life.

Helen, at first, was a virtual acquaintance and we chatted daily through Corporate Skype, ending up sharing quite a great deal about ourselves in spite of never having met in person. Yesterday, Helen came over for dinner and ended up staying until 3 in the morning; we didn’t even realize how late it had gotten and she has to work this morning! The time just flew by chatting and laughing, and so naturally. Like she had been at our house so many times before and we simply hadn’t seen each other in a while. How wonderful to make a connection through cyberspace that actually translated into real life in such a beautiful way. It gives me faith that my other virtual friendships have just as much potential to be life-altering experiences.

The second connection I made while at the Turkish Daily News was during my month wearing Braids for Uma. I kept waiting for someone at work to ask me about the braids so I could tell them about Uma being in the hospital, but not a single person did. One day on my shuttle home I sat next to a young woman who immediately asked me about my braids and asked me if I was Pippi Longstocking in disguise. We laughed and laughed. Having known each other for a grand total of 30 seconds I felt I had known her my whole life. I told her about Uma, she told me about her family, her work, her boyfriend, her dreams. Ilke was my first Turkish girlfriend, she cooked the first beautifully delicious homemade Turkish food that Steve and had, and she introduced us to a wonderful group of Turkish people who in fact will be coming to our house for a dinner party tomorrow night. Our first party in our Turkey home! I can’t believe we have been here for 7 months and we have not had a party! I have been living in The Twilight Zone.

Something tells me that my experience at the TDN, as harrowing and disappointing as it was, has led to a series of connections that henceforth will shape my (and our) experience here in Turkey for the best. I have renewed faith that indeed there are things that happen for a reason and there is always a silver lining to be found even in the most dismal of situations.


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