Happiness

21 08 2006

I’ve been thinking a lot about happiness recently.

Probably because I’m not experiencing happiness per say.

I’m content. I’m blessed and I’m thankful. I’m even learning to enjoy small, simple pleasures again, something that I would have thought impossible a year ago. Yesterday I made muffins – a simple things, yes, but, making the time, going through the routine of it all, was both comforting and reassuring in the most bizarre way.

I felt something approaching happiness while doing that small, simple act, but I’m not experciencing happiness as I once believed it to be.

I had something of a crisis a year ago. My world, my future came pressing in on me. It’s something that many, many people experience, I’m sure, but it felt unique. It felt like that burden of fear and anxiety about the future was all mine.

I’ve got past it. I’m not sure how I did it. I know that a year ago I was crying every afternoon, and now I don’t. I can’t actually remember the day when it stopped, but it did and I think that’s the most important thing.

It has left me changed though, and while I am thankful for some of those changes, while I rejoice in the ability I have to learn and appreciate certain aspects of life that I once took for granted, I also mourn certain losses. Like my simple trust and faith in the future. Like my steady nerves which now (on certain days – though some are better than others) sometimes lay in shambles.

And, of course, happiness.

I suppose happiness becomes too complex. Once you reach a certain point, once you realize certain things about life and yourself, it becomes too qualified and dependent on too many factors. “This makes me happy as long as I don’t think about this” or “I’ll be happy with this as long as I don’t get that,” etc.

I can see now that I expect too much of it, of happiness (expecting too much is, I believe, my tragic flaw, but more on that in the future, I think). I count it and I qualify it and I equate it with perfection and though it tries to be all that I want it to be, the pressue is too much. It pulls, it strains, trying to bear all the burdens of expectation I put on it.

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