There are so many ways to answer that question
The other day I was talking to a friend of mine that I haven’t seen in a little over 2 years. When she pulled up to the parking lot of my work, I almost (but not quite) dropped everything I was doing just so that I could go out to her and hug her. She had been doing a favor for her niece by bringing her dog to us that had eaten something that made her have an upset stomach. I ran out there like a momma who hadn’t seen her child in years. I think I hesitated only slightly when I got to my friend because I wasn’t sure if it was safe for me to hug her (her husband had cancer), but she gave me the open arms and I flew into them. My friend is the kind of person who is there for you. She was one of the first friends I had that helped when I needed someone to watch my baby when I had to go back to work. She let me sit on her couch and we would just talk. Even in the parking lot that familiar feeling overcame me that with this friend I could confide everything to her and she would still love me. So we talked about her grandkids, we talked about my kids and how much they have grown. We talked about her and her husband planning to travel again. We just talked. When her niece showed up to pick up her dog, I was in such a state of happiness that when her niece mentioned something about how she had not even gotten a hug, I immediately hugged her and then realized she was talking to her aunt. Seeing my friend was what I needed.
I am blessed to work with people that I get to call friends. Over the years I have found (at other jobs) that it’s hard to be friends with your boss, I mean they have to put their foot down at times and it’s not pretty. My boss now though really is a friend. You could say we grew up together (in our careers) and our families have grown up together as well. We aren’t super close, but that’s ok. I know I can count on her and she can count on me. Her office manager, and receptionist are friends too. I am lucky to have these relationships. They make me happy, but it doesn’t make answering that question any easier, when asked that in a meeting. I mean yes I am happy, I love my job, I love who I work with, and I love that I have the flexibility in my job to have my girls with me in the rig when I go on appointments, but when both sides are working hard to make sure the other side is happy it’s somewhat awkward to answer the question. I will say this it is really nice to be in a workplace where people are treated with respect and we genuinely have fun working with each together. That is happy.
Last night was church night for the kids, sometimes all three like going to church, but mostly it’s just two of the kids that really get excited to go. I pray a lot about this because church is important, but I know deep down I can’t force my kids to think or believe like I do. My hubby and I can guide and pray, and then pray some more, but at the end of the day, we plant the seeds, God waters them. Last night though, I didn’t have to fight anyone. I didn’t have to try and persuade, or try to understand why a person didn’t want to go. All three of my kiddos finished their dinners and hoped in the car to go. I am a firm believer that on the days you really don’t want to go, those are the days you should really be there. This made me happy that they all went, because even if they didn’t get much out of the message they still got to go and do fun things with their friends. In the times we are in that doesn’t happen very much, so I am happy at least for that.
Two nights ago I finished a really good book. It was one of those books that you make sure you set time aside just so you can read and not get bothered. Sadly I finished it, happily I finished it. I love books that aren’t too “heavy”. I like to get lost in the book. I like to think about what it is I read, even better when I can connect to the characters/author. It’s an escape for me. In my house my family likes to joke about the fact that while everyone (and I mean everyone) plays video games my nose is stuck in a book. I don’t do video games at all, my hand/eye coordination is probably horrible, but I could tell you some good stories based on the books I read. Like I said earlier though books are my way to unwind and escape. Sometimes my work can be stressful, sometimes being a parent/wife can be stressful. I wouldn’t trade what I do or have for anything, but I will escape it for a little bit. When reading it becomes “my time”, and this makes me happy.
Happiness is a feeling, it’s not selfish to be happy, but sometimes it’s hard to find the happiness in the world around us so we have to work at finding it. Happiness and joy are linked but you don’t have to have one in order to have the other. Joy comes from knowing who you are and being ok with it, it is knowing that you belong to Christ, it is finding peace in the moments. Happiness can come from everyday situations. You can have happiness and not know your joy yet. You can have joy and have times of not being happy. Happiness in all forms, sheets dried on the line (smells like summer), cheesecake, a child’s hug, a friend’s listening ear, a day on the couch, a motorcycle ride, time with family and so much more. So what does happiness look like for you? Until next time:
Be happy for no reason, like a child. If you are happy for a reason, you’re in trouble, because that reason can be taken from you.