Happiness - Surprisingly Easy To Find
I don't think I was ever so dissatisfied with life as when I was looking for the "big happies" - the perfect job, ideal mate, a jewel box of a home, artless proficiency at several interests, an exquisite dress sense & taste - all the surface things. And... being surrounded by the 'right' people, a perfect family. This from someone who stumbles over her own shadow, can't keep clothes clean for 5 minutes & has the fashion sense of a wild boar.
What a hopeless set of expectations I set up for myself. No wonder I spent so much time being anxious & grumbly & miserable. Nothing ever seemed right, never mind close to good enough. I couldn't take any satisfaction or find joy in what I did have. I wasted a good many years like that.
Increasingly, I'm finding far greater happiness in slowing down & appreicating the little joys that surround each & every one of us - daily. It's a marvel how many can happen in a single day & be strung out in time close enough to keep you feeling content, peaceful & smiling internally.
I was up in time to catch the sunrise this morning - it was almost WARM out there - definitely balmier than any other morning this spring. The dawn chorus of bird song - robins, phoebes, cardinals in every big tree & the different chirps of various migratory sparrows. Some of those little puff balls have another 1500 miles to fly before they hit their breeding grounds - it doesn't seem possible they can make it that far.
I didn't get much chance to drink in the fresh morning air & listen to birds. A chitter made me look down to the other end of the back step. Iggy, (Igor), was sitting there impatiently - almost drumming her back foot with impatience. "WHERE'S MY BREAKFAST??? I've got babies to see to!" I hurried back upstairs, got the food & came back down to find her still waiting. Most mornings, she hops just ahead of me to the feeding platform, making sure every few hops that I haven't forgotten the way. She scurries up & waits - she'll almost let me place it in front of her. That's always a pleasant start to the day & if I back off & wait a few minutes, Sergei & the other squirrels show up, as do several birds.
Going back upstairs, I realize SO has been up most of the night - he's worried about me. He did the laundry, everything is hung up & folded. Not a dish is on the counter & he even polished the sink. He did a stunning job in the bathroom - the tiles look like they've been spitshined. Knowing I suck at remembering medications, he set out my morning dose with ice water - right in front of my keyboard.
It's thoughtful little gestures like that warm the cockles of your heart & it's just as rewarding to create them, to do them, as it is to be on the recieving end.
Walking by a freshly cut lawn in May - lawns here are at their best in May & they look stunning when they're cared for & freshly cut. The scent of a row of freshly opening lilacs when the humidity is up. Hearing a squeal of laughter from a small child in the park as he gets a kite up with dad's help.
Coming across a field of cows & new calves & watching calves daringly running 50 feet from mom, then freaking out at the gap & racing back for a comforting suckle. Two fields over, a majestic Black Angus bull in his prime & clearly lord of his domain, casts a disdainful eye at the puny humans cycling by. You can't not be awed by the sight of such a magnificent creature.
Migrating song birds parked for a rest & a snack in trees - dozens, hundreds, with songs I don't recognize & flashes of impossibly bright feathers. A cat stalking slowly down a country road, tail & head high & going at his own slow pace. Indignation that he might be expected to stray an inch off his path. YOU can move around HIM, thank you very much.
An old man lovingly planting the vegetable garden he's been preparing for weeks. His first peppers & tomatoes are tenderly planted into place, bean & other seeds carefully spaced & covered with soil before getting a drink to settle them in. He barely speaks a word of English but always has a big smile & wave when I walk by.
Kids bursting out of school doors on the first warm spring afternoon, glad it's the end of a frustrating day inside while the sun shone so enticingly outside - so much enthusiasm, so much energy.
Finding a clutter of sleeping cats on a sun patch on your bed - sleeping so soundly they look frozen in time. They hear you come in & chirrup as they stretch so hard they toes fan out & they vibrate with it.
Phone calls from the kids & loving the fact that they're having a good weekend - save for one just getting over a wicked hangover - but he had a good time getting to that state.
Early Saturday morning watching a bevy of older females excitedly descending on a small country church to decorate it for an afternoon wedding. Later in the day watching a very young, delieriously happy looking bride carefully getting out of a lovely classic car & preparing to sedately sail in to HER wedding.
Coming across an old hot rod built on a Model A chassis with a ton of original features - marvellous!
These & many, many more are all little things, little happies that add up to a big, sustaining happy.
It's about being open to what's around you, your own little joys & an appreciation for those of other people.
They're like small seed pearls. Over time you can collect enough to make a beautiful & personally designed necklace - each part a unique memory.
Don't die a virgin. Terrorists up there are waiting for you.
Last edited by CanadaSue; 05-14-2012 at 01:02 AM.