"I’m about to finish my masters in Business Management in Germany, and I’m on a good path to male pattern baldness. Why am I talking about my almost-gone hair? Because, it is what it is. It's a natural thing, you can’t control it, so you have to make the best out of it. Why not do it with a smile on your face?
Before I tell you my story, I want to say that we all have our own bag to carry (got that from “How i Met Your Mother”). For me, it is the loss of my dad in 2009. When I was 14 years old I found him dead in my home, by suicide. It sucks, a lot. I know that, you know that, it is what it is. But let’s focus on the life that followed - how I have become who I am now. My mom and I are really close. After all that happened we became a great team, dealing with all the troubles that came up, together. Now, I am trying to take care of her and the rest of my family, and my friends that have become like so, like they always did for me. Making cute breakfasts for them, doing all kinds of small or big gestures, showing how deeply I want to give back. They always accepted me as I am, giving me this solid base, a personal safety. I think that’s so important for a kid growing up. My mind was always set to the idea of not being like anyone else, I simply wanted to be unique.
It kind of took off when I got my first tattoos, and I walked this way for a long time, trying to look different. And different is good, for sure, but after a while I figured that my appearance is not what really makes me different. I, my character, had to be unique.
Smiling. I realized that smiling is what made me different, and it allowed me to influence those around me in a beautiful way. It’s the easiest thing to do, but as we grow up we keep forgetting it. An although I’m trying not to grow up at all and just stay like the weird kid that I am, there comes a day when I have to admit I’ve become an adult. That day, I want to look back at my life thinking “Yup, I don’t regret anything, it was a great time”. That’s the ultimate goal. But I believe that in order to reach that point, you have to open your mind to everything and everyone. Let it be open for life’s adventures, new experiences, weird-looking food, dancing fully naked in the rain. Open for all kinds of human beings, listening to their stories. Give them your warmth, your care, and they’ll give twice the amount back to you. And if they don’t, they don’t, it was a nice try anyways.
I’m trying to stay positive in everything I do, even if something bad happens. After every shitty time, life gives you a great one. Enjoy those times for as long as you can. Now I’m here, 25 years old, with more hair in my face than on my head, and I’m smiling. I’m smiling about the memories of doing weird and spontaneous stuff - travelling, sliding down volcanoes and getting stung by scorpions. Smiling knowing that no matter what happens in the future; I have friends who are there for me, a family who always has my back. I know deep within my heart how important family is, believe me, you don’t want to regret not caring enough for them.
Again, smile as much as you can, the world is delightful. Be kind and thankful for life, for your family and your friends. Take risks, be crazy and enjoy every minute of wonder. Surprise the people around you with your empathy, your character. And tell everyone, the ones who really deserve it, that they are beautiful. When I can smile every day, maybe you can too."
- Maxi, Germany