TB& Me: The most important thing in life is balance

Ulyosh is an artist and TB survivor from Uzbekistan. She shares her thoughts and reflections on finding balance in life after TB...

New Year is coming soon. Usually at the end of the year all events are summarized: achievements or missed opportunities for the past year. My life, as everybody else’s, has also been quite interesting and different things happened during this year. There have been frustrations but I prefer to remember happy moments, sunny minutes and joyful seconds rather than days and hours of sadness and griefs and problems.

I know I did not always successfully solve problems; managing to come out with dignity gives many advantages in the schedule of life. Before, I used to read a lot of books and articles that had success-motivated content. Nowadays I do not even look for them them. Before, I needed them when I looked for a way through and they used to support me, encourage and guide me in the right direction.

All this knowledge gave me experience which helps me stay on the surface of the sea called life. Sometimes I imagine myself staying at the seashore. Tidal waves come to my feet with noise and go away, sometimes some sea treasures emerge from the water like treasure chests, trifles, bottles with letters inside and even golden coins that glitter in the sand. I feel the breeze and the wind streaming my hair; I love listening to the wash of the waves… My rich imagination helps me “see”, “perceive” and “feel” this all. Isn’t it great after all?!

I did not only read books, but learnt from all who surrounded me, especially from children and pet animals. For example, now my cat Stepan is with me – he is on the window sill just on the edge – a part of his body is hanging down. He feels comfortable to lie this way, his eyes closed, he is drowsy. Looks like he is meditating. The most important thing in life is balance. That is his motto. I call my cat a thrill-seeker cat because I frequently see him in obviously unsafe places. But it's clear, he feels good. Why not learn from him?! I do not really mean we need to turn into thrill-seekers. What I like in him is a sense of balance and calmness everywhere and in everything. I do respect him for being so. We, people, tend to experience fear and worry; in most cases people get stressed due to petty things.

Children are philosophers as well. They get strikes from life but come to themselves quickly immediately forgetting pains and offences. They are bad at initial steps, they fall painfully, they cry, still, they try and keep on stepping again and again. They do not behave like adults who sit after falling and blame others. They just go on doing what is necessary. And this is great!