Martyrdom is awfully hip.
Parents do it: we'll stay together-- for the kids. We'll work jobs we hate-- for the kids. We'll spend all our free time at soccer games and music lessons and ballet classes-- for the kids.
People with jobs do it: I'll pull an all-nighter, I'll skip lunch with my spouse, I'll work on Saturday and through dinner and never take a vacation.
People who have had anything at all happen to them do it: My mother was mean to me, my spouse cheated on me, my sister called me fat and my dog got hit by a truck.
There are people in this world who can legitimately not choose happiness-- the sick and the suffering. We know what happens out there. The women in the Congo; the parents of terminally ill children; the victims of hate and rage and oppression.
But for the rest of us? I think it is our duty to the truly afflicted to choose to be happy. I think it is our duty to our parents, our spouses, and our children to wake up every damn day and thank God for this chance to be alive. And so I think it is absolutely vital that we be "selfish" and do what we can to be happy, soul-nourishing inwardly-happy.
Like live near the people we love (working on it). Like start a business, like take a nap, like turn off your personal communication device and drink a cup of coffee in the sun, like take a morning off to sleep in late with your honey and plant a garden.
Sometimes what we want isn't within our power (get someone sober; buy the perfect house; retire). But a whole lot of things are, and I believe in identifying what IS possible. I can let K take the children to Vermont so I can have a week to myself (omg best decision ever, by the by). I can decide to start a hops farm (kudos, Jon). I can buy a home and live with my sweetheart (that's you, Natalie). Or whatever.
I don't know what makes YOU happy, but you should. And you should choose happiness, as often as you can, because it is a privilege-- and a sacrilege to waste it.
Delivering a wedding present.
3 months ago