LUCKILY ONE MUST WORK
Jolanta Marszałek talks with Paweł Królikowski – a theatre and movie actor about everyday life, about family and why he likes Easter
JOLANTA MARSZAŁEK: – The image of you diverges completely from a stereotype of an actor, a celebrity. I have been married to my wife for 27 years, many children…..Have you always wanted to have a big family?
PAWEŁ KRÓLIKOWSKI: – I did not plan a big family. it came from… God’s will. I and my wife (Małgorzata Ostrowska-Królikowska – known to viewers as Grażyna Lubicz from the serial ‘Klan’) have always wanted to have children. Now I could not even say how it was before Antek, Jasio, Julcia, Marcelina, Ksawery were born. We treated every child’s birth as the best thing which happened to us. The world is imperfect and children appeared as God’s gift for us, in which there is love, beauty and wisdom.
– You have never been afraid that you would not be able to face this challenge?
– When children were born, we always had something good happening to us. My wife Małgosia is a very strong woman, and is not afraid of challenges. She is always happy and active and she never resigned from work because of her maternity. Only once, when Antek was born, she used maternity period. And it was Małgosia who taught me when I was thinking how I was going to manage it: ‘Trust God and everything will be all right’.
– A big family is a big responsibility…
– Everyone must face up challenges and undertake duties. Although – I do not like using the word ‘duties’. The fact who I am and everything what I do for my family comes from me, not from coercion, that I am to earn money, build home and bring up children. My world results from this my ‘I’. Everything which I managed to do in my life, including my person, is shareable. One must not waste anything. I got a lot in my life, I think I am happy. But, luckily, one must work every day. Unfortunately, effects do not depend only on us. One can want very much, try one’s best and not be successful. We also had dark moments in our life.
– Do you find help in a prayer in such moments?
– I consider a prayer as something personal, intimate. I do not have the nature of a missionary. I know that every Catholic person with vocation for apostolic ministry, but I am not going to show anyone which direction they should go to. For me the light which comes from God is so clear that it is noticeable. If somebody does not see it, it means he might be blinded. He may also be looking at it too thoroughly and that is why he does not notice it. Life is colourful. We may like some of these colours, and not others, but they make sense only in a whole. A man cannot choose only what he likes because it would look like rails which are not connected together.
– What is your advice for solving problems?
– I will not give any advice for life because I do not feel entitled to it. Especially now when the situation, known to us, is happening in the east. This is beyond a decision of an ordinary man. I hope that vigilance of those who govern us, is not dormant.
– What does everyday life look like in your family, do all of you share your duties?
– It would be very good if there were a male and a female worlds. From the point of a man’s view it would be very convenient – after return home do nothing but look around where dinner is, have everything ironed, washed. We share our duties in a natural way – what anyone can do, does it. If my wife goes to work at 6 a.m. and returns at 9 p.m., I take care of children , make breakfast, do shopping. Another time it is the other way round. But, certainly, there are things assigned to Małgosia and which belong to me. Matters which are close to me are for example, educational matters concerning upbringing boys, and Małgosia’s – upbringing girls. What can I talk about with growing girls – a sixteen-year-old and a thirteen-year-old girls? I must admit that I am dad-teddy bear with whom they can do everything.
– So, you do not support a strict way of upbringing children, including sons?
– No, definitely, I’m not. I do not have any rules of upbringing children. They must be simply loved. One must mind teaching them good things and warning them against naivety. One must teach them from experience. And one must not teach them bad things, because it is directed against teachers. I often observed it. For example, if a father is a thief and teaches it his son, then sooner or later his son will treat him as the one whom he can rob.
– Do you influence your children’s decisions concerning their professional future?
(The oldest son Antoni is an actor, the younger one Jan writes music)
– They live in actors’ family, so they have been absorbed in this atmosphere. At home there are many talks about work, what is dearest for us. And work is also our hobby something which we have always wanted to do. When children see that somebody devotes so much energy to work, that one takes so much joy from it, despite much perplexity, that this work has a kind of amplitude, that it is not boring like screwing bolts in the plants of Ford a hundred years ago – they make their decisions on their own.
– Your son Antoni took part in the Great Test in History – a TV competition broadcast live on the Polish Television – and he showed not only his cleverness but also a lot of knowledge of a young man. Does he have this hobby from home?
– Patriotic upbringing comes from some values, about which we talked earlier. Home, family, respect for elderly people, knowledge of one’s country, a city in which one lives, one’s co-brothers. The sense of duty towards homeland is very important, it builds the man, beginning with language in which he says the first words, books that he reads. He finds out that this nation can do beautiful things. This is heritage from which he can gain a lot, but he must also take care of it, so that it would not be wasted. The most important things which the man should learn at home is respect to his relatives – mother, father, brothers and sisters, later his compatriots. If, listening to a nursery rhyme ‘Who are you?’ one feels emotions, it means that the rhyme is valuable for somebody.
– So, why are so many people emigrating?
– Homeland must also give something to its children, not only dignity or the flapping of a flag. A young person must be sure that he will be happy here, in this place; that he will have work, home, will be able to set up a family and keep it. Even if he does something bad, he will be able to rely on somebody’s help and he will return from a bad road.
– You and your wife got engaged in promoting the Centre of Assistance for Persecuted Christians which is being established in Podkarpacie. It is probably the least known sphere of Your activity…
– I have been there only once, last year, although I sign this idea with my both hands. It is incomprehensible for me that one can be persecuted only for going to church; especially that it touches people in the poorest regions of the world. Their churches are often mud huts covered with thatch, where, instead of an ornamented altar, there is only an ordinary cross. Other religions in today’s world are much more expanding and aggressive. Not only as a Christian and a Catholic person, but simply as a man I think that everyone has his place. If you are sitting on a bench and somebody comes and pushes you off it, because he does not like you sitting there, it is not right. The place on the earth is for each of us, only must we know how to live together, build our life so that it would be bearable, not at the cost of others.
– Easter is coming. What does it look like at your home?
– Similarly as most families, we spend it together. We sit at the table to eat breakfast together and we say wishes to one another. Earlier, there are, certainly, preparations. Our daughters and our youngest son, Ksawery, are grown up enough to participate in it in a beautiful way – they paint eggs, and try various techniques. On the table there are also meals which girls prepare either together with Małgosia or on their own. It is also nice time because one can celebrate not only at home but also have a walk in a the garden. One can see the awakening life.
– You like Easter, don’t you?...
– Much more than Christmas. For me it is a feast of the re-born and resurrected hope. The example of Risen Christ for us, people, is the greatest joy and hope. Regardless of in what circumstances of life the man would be, he can resurrect, can rise from a complete fall…We, people, pay attention to material things. When we have something in hand, it is easier for us to believe. Most of us are skeptical Thomas. But I do not see anything bad in it, uncertainty is of human nature. God knows about this weak feature and I think that He even looks at it with love. Therefore, I wish everyone hope for this Easter time.