My friend Crystal, who I may have mentioned yesterday, but have definitely mentioned before, is always questioning my perpetual happiness. She’s always trying to “figure” me out, because she doesn’t understand how my life “could be such shit at times” and still I find the energy to be happy. She says she remembers my world falling apart around me and still finding the time and energy to cook her a meal. I don’t remember that, but I don’t remember a lot of things from my past. She is also trying to figure that out for me to. Basically, she’s trying to therapy me. I do believe everyone could benefit from a good dose of therapy, but I tried for two years with no success, plus I like my perpetual happiness almost as much as I like Chai tea. But since we are all friends here, I’m going to let you in on a little secret…. my perpetual happiness is fraudulent.
Don’t get me wrong, I am happy. I’m happy most of the time, but there are times when I’m not and I guess there is something flawed in my character that will rarely allow me to show the other side of me. I am a natural optimist. I do believe that everything happens for a reason and that things turn out exactly the way they should. I’m not sure who to blame for that line of thinking. Probably a plethora of self-help books and motivational authors. I know that it’s ok to not be ok, but I’ve never been good at asking for help, asking for someone to hug me until I feel better, asking for someone to help solve my problems. I think because throughout the course of my life, the times that I did ask for help, I was met with disappointment. So in turn, I’m not a seeker, I’m a giver. And I’m happy there.
I’m happy and comfortable giving the last dollar that I have to someone else. I’m happy giving a massage to someone who has had a bad day, even when me and that someone aren’t even on the greatest terms. I’m happy being the person people call for help. And generally speaking, I’m just happy.
Crystal says it’s from all the sex I have, but I have only had sex with one person since I got back from Florida weeks ago and I’m still happy. Although, if I saw him again, I’d be happier, but that’s neither here nor there. Side note: Sometimes when I write stupid shit like that last sentence, I really do sit at this desk laughing hysterically. Maybe that’s also why I’m so happy. I am my biggest fan. I think I’m ridiculously funny. Even when I’m alone. And especially while drinking. But I guess it is important to be comfortable by your lonesome.
Back to the point…. I do believe that we choose happiness. I have a couple different quotes that have stuck with me over the years and I use them whenever I need to. One is “Change the way you look at things and the things you look at change.” I know that there is the mental health aspect to everything. Some people just can’t change the way they look at things. I am better at brainwashing myself than I am at being brainwashed, so it is really easy for me to just think positively.
According to my friend, I should be suicidal or depressed at the very least. Things have not always gone my way. For a long time nothing went my way. I’ve come a long way from that second floor apartment with the mouse infestation. I’ve come a long way from heating cold water up on the stove because the electric was off and the gas was on. I’ve come a long way from sleeping all day and crying all night and not being able to get out of bed because I didn’t know how I was going to make it through another day. I did go to therapy. I went to counseling. I got put on meds to “fix” me. None of that worked. So I went to the place I was comfortable, reading happy stuff and writing to get shit off my chest. And then one day I woke up and the realization hit me that it doesn’t matter how depressed I am that the lights were going to be shut off, it wasn’t going to change the situation. The only thing that was going to change the situation was me.
So whenever things were looking gloomy, I would just tell myself that crawling in bed and burying my head under the pillow wasn’t going to fix it. I had to hustle. I had to figure out what I needed to do to make things work. And I did. Of course, over time I made many stupid mistakes, even did some illegal stuff, but you grow up and you learn. And what I learned was, things typically work out for me. I’m not saying that in a gloating way. I am just saying that I used to do all that worrying and crying for nothing because things always worked out. The light bill always got paid. The rent always got paid. Christmas always happened. The Easter Bunny always delivered. Shit got taken care of. So I started thinking about things differently. I started accepting what the universe was giving me. I started being open to the idea of disappointment. It didn’t work out with a job or a friend or a romance, it wasn’t meant to be. Lessons were learned. Life moved on.
Now, I just always keep that in mind. It doesn’t matter what happens today. It was supposed to happen. What matters is, what did I do today, to make tomorrow better for me or for someone else? That’s what matters to me. So no, I’m not happy all the time. Yes, I get bummed. But I likely won’t ever show that side of me to you, because that’s not the side of me that makes me happy. It doesn’t mean that I’m a liar or that I’m not being my true self. Happiness is my true self. The other side of me, that’s the impostor. I’m not that depressed, crying person hiding in bed under the pillow. I’m the girl with the big smile telling everyone it’s going to be ok. That’s who I really am. Or at least who I choose to be.