“I am always happy” a friend of mine keeps telling me. Truth be told, I have never actually seen her frown, except in rare moments when my stupidity is at its peak, or I do something she disapproves of. Of course I am not the only person in her life, so there are bound to be other things that make her frown, however whenever she is with me, she is always smiling. So I couldn’t hide the smirk when I asked, “apart from me, what makes you smile?”
“I don’t know” she replied. Outrageous right! Honestly a simple, my friends, my family or even my boyfriend would have sufficed. Though the latter would have stung a great deal, because I have worked very hard to ensure no other holds that title. Selfish huh? I know. That would have been an interesting story.
I was offended by her answer even though it was mere curiosity that sprung the question. Her answer only succeeded in fueling my curiosity, but I knew better than to push for a better answer, so I let it slide. My mind though, could not entertain the idea of letting it slide, so it obsessively pondered on her answer, “I don’t know.”
“I can be happy all on my own,” is a mantra that popped into my mind, I can’t get myself to believe it though. In our own words we are all loners. We crave any chance to re-assert the bundle of happiness we find within but the more I think about it, the more strongly I believe that that’s a load of crap. Pardon my candor.
Can I really say I find happiness in my job? Or wads of money and freedom. Will a library of books really lift my spirits? Ask yourself, can we truly achieve true lasting happiness from these things? I can’t speak for you but personally I cannot. I doubt anybody does. I think of these pleasures of life as merely pieces of a jigsaw which has no formula. So at the end of the day they just form part of the puzzle and thus are incapable of completing it.
Look at it this way people revolve around people. Comedians are out there making millions by recounting anecdotes of interactions and not solitude. Think back to your fondest memories and you will find that they involve people in the form of friends, family or even strangers. I don’t ignore the fact that as the economy of trust debilitates we in turn want to bank on things that cannot fail, but in doing so we satisfy our joy-wells temporarily. For me when push comes to shove I always fall back to God, friends and family just to have a taste of true joy, true happiness.
Now I know I might sound like I’m selling, a fact that says ‘to achieve true joy, true happiness, you need people,’ well I could have totally sold that fact before, but now, I’m not so sure it’s a fact anymore, not after pondering on her answer – I don’t know. It took me some time but I finally figured out the true meaning behind her answer. I realized that she truly might just not know why she is always happy. A place I would love to be. Or she simply couldn’t express her thoughts on the source of her happiness in terms, I or anybody else would understand.
As annoying as the answer might sound, I believe it’s a very accurate one for the question posed. We cannot quantify how much of something will bring us happiness. We have come to a point in our lives where we believe we need certain things and people to be happy. While this belief might hold truth, it cannot be the most appropriate way to approach our search for happiness. It would mean that whenever this things or people fail to show up neither will your happiness. That is not fair.
This brings me to what I’ve been trying to say, we cannot afford to live a life where our happiness depends on things or people that are not always going to be there. We need to learn to lead a life where we are able to be happy no matter what, I mean happiness that still exists whether or not we are around people, in possession of the things that make us the most happy in this world or doing things that make us feel elated.
So all things considered that was why she said she didn’t know, because she couldn’t pick a specific factor in her life that held sole precedence over her happiness and that is something I believe we should all aspire for no matter how hard it might seem. I don’t know about you but that’s the kind of happiness or joy I want to feel.