Commode To Joy

finding happy in the crappy

Practicing Happiness

“You’re so perky,” a man from my hometown said to me earlier this week. I ran into him at the store after not seeing him for well over a decade. It was his words, more than his presence, that was a blast from the past.

I used to hear comments akin to his – perky, bubbly, etc – a lot growing up and through college. And then adult-itis set in and life got all hard and doggone there went the perky. At least on the level I’d been used to.

And now? It’s back.

I’m in a really good place in life right now. I’m happy, really happy, and it’s not in a social media presence or wishful thinking sort of way. It’s real, from the very heart of my being, where the physical and metaphysical collide.

It’s the kind of happy that, when I saw this sign at the San Jose airport, I stopped to take a picture, because #perky (okay and then I edited it, because #branding).

For many years there, upon adulting, I wasn’t in the best of places (and that’s speaking lightly). The worst of it hit when I wrapped my head (and heart) around not being able to have a second child. My physical endometriosis symptoms were horribly painful, requiring everything my body and mind had to get through it. As for my emotions? Oh goodness.

All of this happened while taking care of a toddler as a stay-at-home-mom. You know, when you’re least able to sit and hurt.

Here’s what I know. During the worst of it I fought my darndest to hold on to every ounce of happy I could. To find even the smallest sliver and take that to bed with me each night.

I went through a stretch where most nights I wrote my highlight of the day in a journal. One night I wrote, “Highlight of the Day: Going to bed.” Because sometimes you’re thankful for the day, and some days you’re thankful it’s over.

This journaling practice wasn’t because I was in a good place; I was doing it because I wanted so badly to be in a better place. I’m in a better place now. Way better. Where it’s hard to believe that this kind of happiness exists.

A post Christmas program celebration at Dunkin’ Donuts.

If you are struggling. If you’re in a crap place. If this is the hardest Christmas yet or you don’t know how you’re going to manage bills plus gifts or it’s your first holiday season without a loved one. (The list could go on and on because life can be really freaking hard.) Find the smallest ounce of happiness now, and even the sky won’t be a limit for your happiness when life takes a turn for the better.

It’s my hope for you that life takes a turn for the better soon. That you experience happiness greater than you thought possible on a regular basis.

In the meantime, pay attention. Notice happy. And when you go to bed tonight, return to that happy moment in your mind. Hold it close like a child holds his blankie, and it’ll carry you til the next spark of happiness occurs.

Categories: Encouragement

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