Joy – Soak It In

Last year, my grandmother’s passing broke my heart into smithereens.  I still get an ache in my heart, and I think I probably will always.  However, I’m now stable (emotionally) about her passing and I know that with life, none of us get out of it alive.  She was an amazing woman, and I loved her dearly.  The reason we chose this week to visit our families in Vermont is that my grandmother’s burial is occurring a week from today.

Today, I woke up stressed.  I wanted to make sure everything was in order for our trip.  Make sure the house is spotless when we leave so the neighbor watching the house wouldn’t have to wade through an ocean of fur… And make sure Smores is happy and will be well fed… And all our packing is complete and nothing missing… And that I picked up everything from the store I needed to… And all the dishes are in good shape… And… And… And… (You get the idea!)  STRESSED!  But somewhere in the middle of my walk I let it go.   I remembered the SIMPLE PLEASURE in finding joy wherever you are.

We are only guaranteed the moment we are currently in.  It might be a miserable moment of anguish and pain.  It might be a moment filled with happiness and joy.  It might just be a moment of boredom… But you might only have that moment.  Why not chose to look at it as a gift… And you look to suck any little ounce of joy or learning out of it… It’s amazing how much fuller and richer life can feel.

We’re not wealthy by any means.  Every month I worry about if I will make enough to pay for my share of our bills.  But we are so happy most of the time… Because we have learned to enjoy what we have and be happy with it.  We have ENOUGH.  We have so much going for us…

I’ve given up on the notion that we need to spend all our efforts in life pursuing more, bigger, better….  MAYBE we will end up with more, bigger, better…  But if that’s not the case, I don’t want to spend my life unhappy with what I don’t have… Rather than happy and appreciative of what I DO HAVE.

And those times where I am truly not happy with what we have… and it no longer feels like ENOUGH… I am going to be so thankful that I can see that… Because those feelings are the cues that lead me to what will make me happy!

When I was in the dredges of unhappiness in my old job, looking for silver linings was literally what got me through the day.  I honestly believe I would have fallen apart if I hadn’t adopted that mindset.  But in the past 6 or so months I’ve fallen out of the habit of that.

A large part of that is that I started to feel guilty for my  blessings.  I mean… How lucky am I??  I get to essentially work part-time, take care of my home the rest of the time.  I don’t have to stress as much… Hubs and I have so much more time to spend having hobbies or puttering around.  And while that’s exactly what I want… It makes me feel guilty and like people (and me too I guess) don’t think I deserve it… I mean to deserve things you have to suffer right?  I think a lot of it is that deep down we live in a society that doesn’t really, truly, approve of people who are happy.  It’s easier to identify with people who are struggling, or unhappy.  “Well, see, my life’s not so bad, look how unhappy Jane over there is”…. that kind of thing.

So this morning, I took the time to really revel in each moment of my walk with Theron.  To look around and soak in the beauty of the moments.  I looked up at the most gorgeously blue sky and let myself enjoy that sight.  I looked up at trees overhead that had sun sneaking through the leaves.  I found some blackberries that are going to be SO RIPE when we get home from our vacation. I saw a deer in someone’s back yard!  So tall proud and majestic… and I let myself enjoy that.
UntitledDeer on LoftonTrees
This reminder to appreciate life could not come at a better time.  I want to go to my grandmother’s burial and find joy in the life she lived.  Not wallow in the sadness that she passed.  I still have the love from that relationship in my heart, and her passing doesn’t take that away.  She’s being buried in Pleasant Valley… Overlooking Mount Mansfield… I plan to soak in that gorgeous sight, and to find happiness that my beloved grandmother is surrounded by beauty.

There’s no reason not to enjoy what you can of your life… Enjoy the moments and see how much deeper your life can be…  Find the joy in each moment and soak it in!

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