16:14 . When things get difficult, I tell myself that life is still a wonder, that the world is full of rainbows and sunshines. It helps me to pretend everything is okay and that things will get better. So, when I was twenty years old, I lost my mother and I was sad, very sad. But eventually I overcame my pain. Things got better.
Pierfrancesco is the social media officer of a communication agency specialising in public information campaigns across the European Union, working notably on projects such as EU Empowers.
(When talking about this topic, he said ‘- Don’t worry, I have no problem talking about my pain. I am very pragmatic about pain. – He also said that he was unsure whether people related to sadness well on social media. Personally, I do not perceive this story as a sad one per se, rather as one filled with hope and optimism – a bit to his image.)
– I use social media for my job, for my love of the European Union, I use social media to talk about causes that I believe in and that are bigger than me. I don’t really use social media to share personal feelings.
After I lost my mother, I felt nobody could understand my level of pain so I chose not to express my sadness publicly at the time. But I shared a beautiful memory on social media: I shared this video from a movie we used to watch together ‘It’s a wonderful life’ by Frank Capra – an American Sicilian director. It’s a classic. You haven’t seen it !? So, the movie tells the story of a man wanting to commit suicide on Christmas eve – but then God sends him a guardian angel to intervene and show him how the life of his village would have been without him, to show him how he is worthy to live and how life is worth living. This movie conveys such a positive message.
I think loss in general makes us appreciate life a bit more. You know, it is exactly because I faced this challenge in my life, that I have such a positive mindset. In a sense, I have learned to catch the ‘wonder’ of life! (He laughs) I’m not the kind of person who is angry because I lost my mum. I mean, I was angry with myself at first …although I could never understand why. The fact that she is dead is something I will never overcome; but I did overcome the handicap of this loss. I still think about her all the time, but now I know that everything I learned from her is still instilled in me: openness to the world, loving others. Thanks to her I am the way I am, and that will last forever. Waw, this feels like yesterday ! I guess there was a time for me to be sad – now I can be better. Pain does not impeach you from moving forward and remaining positive, unless you let it.