Today's quote is from a fascinating novel I recently read for my online family book group. One of my cousins chose the novel Moloka'i by Alan Brennert (you can read my review here). It's about a leper colony on an isolated part of the island of Moloka'i in Hawaii. It opens near the turn of the century as a little girl, the main character of the novel, is torn away from her family and sent to the colony to live. The historical setting of the novel is fascinating - I knew nothing at all about leprosy or the leper colonies - but I also related to the struggles of the characters in dealing with their horrible and isolating illness.
One of the things I liked most about the novel was the positive mindset of the main character and many of the other characters as well. You would think that a book about leprosy would be depressing, but it wasn't; it was full of hope and joy, even amidst suffering. This passage about the main character as a young woman sums that up:
"...and as she rode into Kalaupapa...she felt a surge of joy. Friends called out to her; the surf beckoned to her; her horse, on seeing her, happily nuzzled her neck. This was life, and if some things were Kapu (forbidden), others weren't; she had to stop regretting the ones that were and start enjoying the ones that were not."
- Moloka'i by Alan BrennertThat perfectly captures the way I believe I should live my own life, post-illness. I'm not always successful - I got pretty depressed this week and was wallowing in self-pity and mourning for a few days - but it is what I strive for. I am trying to make a fresh start today. As soon as I got up, I dragged my lounge chair out onto the deck. It is so beautiful and peaceful this morning out here - quiet (no lawnmowers or leaf blowers out yet!), the only sounds the birds singing and the trees blowing in the wind, with cool, fresh air.
I am trying to find my way back to a place of peace and joy, and this passage helps. Hope it helps you, too. And I highly recommend the novel for anyone who enjoys reading.
Enjoy the weekend!