There’s a woman in Russia who may be 128 years old, and unlike typical people who have relished every day of their life, she will proudly tell you that she views the entire ordeal as torture. According to a recent interview, Koku Istambulova hasn’t had a single day of happiness in the more than 46720 days that she has walked upon the Earth.
While any records proving that she is the oldest woman in the world currently exist, the Russian government claims that she was born on June 1st, 1889. That would mean that she was 27 years old when Tsar, Nicholas II, abdicated power in 1917, 55 at the end of WWII in 1945, and 102 when the Soviet Union fell in1991.
To what does she owe her longevity? According to Koku, it “was God’s will” and she “did nothing to make it happen. I have no idea how I lived until now.”
However, if there’s one thing of which she’s certain, it’s this:
“I have not had a single happy day in my life. I have always worked hard, digging in the garden. I am tired. Long life is not at all God’s gift for me – but a punishment.”
If you think that Koku might be overstating things, you’d have to admit that she’s dealt with her fair share of hardship along the way. After surviving WWII, Stalin accused Chechens of collaborating with the Nazis and deported her, and the entire Chechen nation, to Kazakhstan and Siberia by Stalin who accused them of Nazi collaboration.
Reflecting on her life, Koku had this to say:
“Looking back at my unhappy life, I wish I had died when I was young. I worked all my life. I did not have time for rest or entertainment. We were either digging the ground or planting the watermelons. When I was working, my days were running one by one and now I am not living, I am just dragging through.”