Thursday, February 09, 2006

14 things to be happy about--on my way to 14,000!

When I was in college, my first year roommate had the book 14,000 Things to be Happy About. We delighted ourselves hour after hour with reading the random accounting of pleasures in Barbara Ann Kipfer's life. We began to grab some of our favorites and post them on our door; floormates would watch for the weekly installment. Eventually our fascination moved to journaling in our own "happy books." My writing journal in that same period is an accounting of a confusing time--feeling out of place at the college, distressed about some home life events, wishing for that "special someone" who alludes most everyone at the time they are seeking it, and wondering ad nauseum what my purpose is in life. (For those of you who are interested, this particular quest continues!) In contrast, my "happy book" is filled with moments of simple pleasures, and I suppose tuning my eye to a night when the stars were particularly bright, or a suitemate laughed with gusto, or a particular piece of music moved something inside of me, somehow created balance in that disorienting period of time.

My life right now is no less disorienting....new place, new faces around me, but many of the same questions. I am definitely needing to refocus my eye on those momentary glimpses of joy. Though I haven't the stamina or time for 14,000, why don't I aim for 14:

1. the dragon fly lightset that brightens our garden window at night

2. a steaming hot cup of coffee (about to make one now!)

3. how the pleasure of a clean home always convinces me that a few minutes of simple effort can buy me hours--even days!-- of satisfaction

4. the robin's egg blue of the sky on this exceptionally sunny February day

5. working on homemade Valentine's Day cards with Kyra

6. a relatively sleep-filled night as Lucas exits one of his bad phases and seems to be more himself

7. days like yesterday when day care provides lunch--pure bliss to not have that extra night before task!

8. hearing my own voice over the monitor in Kyra's room--she listens as she sleeps to a CD I recorded for a family Christmas present....my biggest fan!

9. the feeling of warmth I get inside when I see my incredible partner walking from a distance at the campus we share--his form and his gait still draw something out of me every time

10. the many wonderful years I will celebrate bring married to this exceptional partner come July

11. Carr's whole wheat crackers--a cookie that I can call a cracker!

12. playing my guitar, and having the blisters/callouses to prove it

13. our bird feeder

14. writing this blog!

What would you put on your list? What is making you happy today?

2 comments:

Allie D. said...

The sunshine and being able to walk outside without a coat on (albiet just barely) is putting a smile on my face today!

Also, I just had my eyebrows done, and that is making me feel somewhat better about my general appearance lately. :)

When Elias, yesterday at the fire department, revealed to me for the first time that he knows to call 911 if he's ever in trouble. Although I reminded myself I need to make sure that he doesn't play with our phones too much these days, I was beaming with pride.

I'm also realizing that the days seem cloudier for me, mentally, when I allow myself to feel down about things that I really shouldn't- that I have a choice to let little things upset me, and that I need to remember that if I'm mad about something mundane, it's usually because of a bigger problem that needs fixing. Although this might not fit into the "makes me happy" category as such, making this kind of a realization does lift a weight.

Heather R. said...

my cat flopping over on my pillow and purring in my ear while I go to sleep...

the look my little Scott gives while taking my face in his hands - pure, joyful, love - like a laser - so intense...

and when he stopped playing with playdough to turn and look at me to say a very purposeful "Heather", for the first time...

the time his brother gave me a bandaid because I had a boo-boo on my back (I threw my back out and was laying on their floor!)...

having friends who say "We hate her!" when I'm rejected by a potential love interest...

laughing outrageously with teacher friends over "funtinis" on a friday afternoon...

friends who jump up from a rehearsal and run to hug you...

people you've known more than half your lifetime - who knew and liked you before you were "grown-up" ;-)...

a first-grader who ran out from the lunchroom to ask me how my interviews for grad school went...

a fifth-grader who uses a music term appropriately and spontaneously :-)...

having friends you can count on to love you even though they had to kick your butt because you said something stupid...

wow - this is great - thanks, Jen!