We start from 1

Publish date 24-08-2022

by Max Laudadio

I often go to schools, perhaps on the occasion of some special occasion, with the sole objective of being able to be true and with the hope, not so hidden, that the same will happen in the students I meet. I seek dialogue far from the classic adult-boy relationship, where the former stands as an expert all-rounder, and I do not do it to make myself recognize a role that no longer belongs to me due to age, but because I have the conviction that only by reducing the distance between us you have the opportunity to tell us in truth.

Being true, however, means being ready for disputes, for distrust, for more or less justified attacks, as well as letting go of strong emotions, sincere dialogue, the possibility of seeing beyond, risking having to open all your armor to allow them to peek inside you.
And it's not always easy.

When I walk through the door that leads me to the boys, I always notice that I am wearing an involuntary smile. Perhaps it is a passe-partout that opens the door to their attention. I know well that getting the initial approach wrong makes everything more complex and I am also aware that sometimes adolescence is a conditioning element in itself, but fortunately all these worries soon vanish, and I would not be able to explain why, it just happens . Young people are going through a complex period, made up of sacrifices, fears, uncertainties, and I feel anger when I hear statements that reduce them in value and feeling, because it would be enough to have the patience to listen to them to understand that they are something else.

In the book The Camino de Santiago by Paulo Coelho, Petrus, the spiritual guide who accompanies the protagonist Paulo on the long journey, underlines that: «The dream is the nourishment of the soul , as food is that of the body ». We adults should tattoo this sentence on our body as a reminder, to avoid becoming material executors of the killing of dreams in young people, it is like consciously piercing their soul.
A few weeks ago, after two years of pandemic limitations, I went back to middle school. They had asked me to tell about my life, passing from themes such as the choice of high school, my dreams and my journey of faith. The boys, however, went further, asking questions about happiness, its existence and how to reach it, showing that curiosity is the fuse that ignites all their thoughts, even the deepest.

A very thin boy asked the last question: «But if I really commit myself and help others: my friends, my family, and whoever needs it ... - the 180 teenagers around they were silent to him but showed interest, and their gazes fell on me when the partner concluded the question - ... how do I know when happiness is coming? ".

No one has the secret of happiness in hand but Mirko's question reminded me of another sentence said by Petrus in Coelho's book: «When you go towards a goal it is very important to pay attention to the path . It is the path that teaches us and enriches us as we travel it and, in the pleasure of research and adventure, dreams are nurtured ".
I got up before answering.
«If you give yourself and do everything you said, you will understand by yourself. I only ask you to try ». We looked at each other, and that was enough.

Max Laudadio
NP April 2022

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