Collage 18th Day

by Administrator 18. January 2011 02:06

Collage …from the French ”coller”, which means glue is work of art, made from assemblage of different forms, thus creating a new whole ( according to Wikipedia ).

Even when I was just a little girl, I loved to make a collage….I cut out different pictures, of something that I loved and glued it all on the piece of paper or occasionally my bedroom wall. Arranging them in a way, that was meaningful to me. I enjoyed starring at them, looking at separate, small pieces and then taking panoramic view of the whole…letting the minute elements disappeared and take on the new “bigger” identity.


When my kids were growing up, I would take our family pictures and arrange them in a big picture frame containing few small one. Always took my time to strike a balance between photos of all family members, trying to show their uniqueness and at the same time nature of relationships. It made me happy to look at finished projects, sort of flashes of life, captured to remember forever.

 My kids are much older now, today is the birthday of my oldest son, he is turning 23….just one year younger than me, when I landed by myself at Philadelphia airport with two suitcases,  some dreams , hopes and expectations of “adventure” of the lifetime.

 I came from Poland, supposedly for a short visit but, I knew I couldn’t go back immediately. I was granted political refugee status and stayed….as you see for much longer. Fall in love with the idea of freedom here, wanted to give my children the best possible gift… the right to choose how and where to live and to have a freedom to do anything they want with their lives. 

What I always loved about this country was the variety ….. People coming from all over the world, bringing with them their culture, full of customs and traditions, languages, history, different food, code of dressing ….  and many more.


About eighteen years ago I was part of the ceremony to become Naturalized Citizen of USA…Lots of people , looking very different but repeating the same oath…It was very emotional for me, I thought about each word carefully feeling  the weight of responsibility and promise to become part of this “world”…not by the birth but by the choice. Voices carried on reciting the oath, felt happy and privileged to be part of the people, so open and  welcoming to the  “ the outsider”.


I remember my first winter here …It was in Wisconsin area...Milwaukee…very cold…since I was only aloud to bring with me two suitcases…I had to choose wisely what to take with me. I took fancy fur coat (so much for wise choice ) with me…but not the everyday warm jacket…so..the one I was wearing was not the best for cold.  I went to visit a friend of mine and there, apparently someone from her circle saw me in my cool, but never less not so warm jacket. Well, the next day this man brought me brand new, beautiful jacket as a gift. Didn’t take no for an answer …wanted to help…just said to me “pay it forward” one day….and I did every occasion I had…

 Never saw him again but I will always remember him, because he represents to me what USA is all about…this pure human spirit of extending the hand when you need it, helping each other and supporting as a way of life.


We are all” the collage in making”, with our different personality traits, numerous social roles of mothers, friends, professionals ,lovers and students…Different stages in life , trunks full of pictures and memories , passions , hobbies …stories , experiences.

 Our families are collection of different individuals, sharing life together, by destiny or by the choice, belonging to the common ancestry or creating own stories. Retaining own individuality and at the same time taking on common characteristics as the result of living together.


Our planet is not that big if you compare it to just Solar System… then it gets even smaller on the way to Milky Way and it’s hard to even imagine beyond that point….Small doesn’t mean not important its the part of divine collage of galaxies and stars...just like we, humans are part of the Earth.


 My Mom tells me, since I was..maybe four or five I was always packing “few belongings “to venture into the world…It was a bit “challenging “ ( at that age … J)…so after “dramatic” exit from my home…I waited few minutes on the outside…and …with no place to go…went back…greeted by my grandmothers and treated to some hot cocoa ( after long trip).


One day I left…but part of my heart is still there. Poland is a beautiful country with rich history, brave people, art, music, warm hearts and my personal history… I miss being there, walking on the streets of my favorite city of Krakow and breathing in history of over 750 years in making, talking and meeting with  my friends from High School and University..


 Always felt like,  belonging to bigger community…. humanity, part of the collage of all of us. All different but at the heart of a matter the same, becoming to be the new fabric, new hope and maybe the new beginning.

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The Little Prince

"People where you live," the little prince said, "grow five thousand roses in one garden... yet they don't find what they're looking for..."

"They don't find it," I answered.

"And yet what they're looking for could be found in a single rose, or a little water..."

"Of course," I answered.

And the little prince added, "But eyes are blind. You have to look with the heart."








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