Friday, September 11, 2009

Happiness

I realized last Sunday that I am sublimely happy. Like, happier than I think I've ever been. Life is good.

The feeling came out of nowhere while I was waiting in my car at the airport to pick up my husband. All of sudden, sitting there alone listening to Gloria Estefan's "Conga" on my iPod, I felt an overwhelming sense of calm -- kind of like being in the eye of a tornado. All I could do was smile. It was the feeling of ultimate freedom.

Maybe it's because I'm getting older and can appreciate the details in life that elude so many of us in our youth, but I started thinking about things and came up (quite easily) with this laundry list of where I am right now:
  • 100% healthy.
  • Friends and family are all healthy.
  • Just got back from a fabulous trip to never-before seen countries.
  • Wake up every day beyond ecstatic that no one owns my time except me.
  • Money situation is stress-free, thanks to all the saving done within the last year (can afford to comfortably buy not only what I need, but also what I want ... like these. To quote Rachel Zoe: "I die.").
  • Have a fabulous family and circle of friends.
  • Married to an amazing man that not only makes me laugh constantly, but inspires me to be the best and work hard at whatever I choose.
  • Do what I love every day: Write.
  • Live daily in a country that is relatively safe compared to many, many others in the world. (Warring mujaheddin and/or bombs flying overhead in the dead of night would not be conducive to a good sleep!)
I think the most important thing on this list is the fact that I am healthy. I appreciate this above anything else, because even though one can buy better treatment for illnesses, they cannot buy excellent health (just look at Steve Jobs). As weird as it sounds, I'm so, soo thankful that I still have the ability to use my hands and fingers, that I can stand on my feet without wheelchairs or crutches and that I have no chronic problems or impediments. Sometimes I see people my age and older who are obviously going through chemotherapy or are confined to motorized wheelchairs with breathing machines and it crushes me. It's a constant reminder of how much I have to be happy about. If you're in good health, then the sky is the limit in terms of what you are capable of accomplishing. It's a liberating thing to realize. (Hats off to people who persevere in the face of adversity and overcome their health-related obstacles.)

Do you ever stop to think about how lucky you are, even when you feel like the world is weighing on your shoulders and you've seemingly got nothing to feel lucky about? I think a lot of us -- me included! -- tend to focus on the negative and what's "wrong" in our lives. Once in a while stop to think about what's "right" in your life. It might surprise you to see just how much of your life is actually positive. Understanding this can be as soothing as a mellow Bob Marley song, telling you that everything's going to be "okay".

8 comments:

Carolyn said...

You are SO RIGHT! I've been trying 2 remind me myself of what to be grateful for... it helps. :)

Glad you are so happy!!

Bonjour Madame said...

What a great post! It's good to be grateful for what we have.

Mandy's Life After 30 said...

One of things I like best about your blog (and YOU) is how uplifting you are. You write positive, meaningful things that make us think. We all definitely need to remember the things in life that we have to be thankful for - we have much to be happy about when you realize what you have. I'm so glad you are aware of your happiness.

Don't you just love Gloria Estefan?! I've got this whole dance routine that I made up years ago for "The Rhythm is Gonna Get You." I turn into a jungle creature and a sad version of "Thriller" combined. LMAO! :-)

Amber said...

Yes, I actually do think about how lucky I am...daily! In the past few years, I have watched 2 of my friends battle cancer, 1 of which is still fighting health problems.

It's been life changing for me, and one of the reasons I decided to quit my corporate job and pursue what I love.

Life is too short not to enjoy every moment! Thank you for posting this, it's a great reminder!

Being Brazen said...

Im also happy. Its funny how sometimes we need to remember to count our blessing though.

nice post :)

Crystal said...

Carolyn: You are fab, and have a *ton* to be grateful for! If you're ever feeling down, don't forget that.

Bonjour Madame: Touche! We so easily forget with our daily problems how great so many of us have it overall.

Mandy: Thanks! LOL re: your Gloria Estefan dance routine. Someday I'm going to have to see this dance firsthand...heck, I'll probably jump in and join you. She is divine. :)

Amber: I'm so glad to hear how aware you are daily of your happiness. Even though it sounds corny, it's truly a gift. So sorry to hear about your two friends -- I hope they are doing okay. Kudos to you for following your dream because you are right: Life IS too short!

Being Brazen: Thanks. One of the reasons why I love reading your blog is because you are such a happy, positive person. :)

Anonymous said...

I've been struggling with happiness now that I'm in my late 30s. I think I was the happiest from age 26 - 35...still feeling young, no back pains yet, and with my current wonderful husband and 2 dogs.

Well, I still have my husband, 2 dogs and relative good health so I must remind myself to be thankful for those things even as I head toward the cliche of mid-life crisis!

Anonymous said...

Great post! Life is good. :)
LG

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