I’ve always been afraid if I didn’t take life seriously I wouldn’t get anywhere. I’ve always been self-conscious about my height because that is the first thing people see and that is the first thing they make their judgement on. I’ve literally been told, “You look like a little business woman” by people in my field. I am almost 40 years old. I am exhausted trying to make people see me for who I am or to have a certain perception of me so I can feel good about myself. It has sucked the joy out of my life. But with this time off, I’ve realized I can literally experience joy and happiness right now. Have fun now. Love now. Cuddle my son now. Time moves fast enough and waiting for joy or being serious hoping to find joy later only puts life on pause now.
This week has been joyous, and blessedly, divinely slow. Time has slowed down. It feels delicious. This is what I’ve envisioned forever—the days spent in happiness, experiencing what time has to offer while guiding the ship. Taking control of our (my family’s) day instead of waiting for life to happen has made things happen. I used to seek comfort at all costs—do I know I need to seek do-ing. That is where living is. Actually experiencing life. It’s in the doing. And that slows time too. All we have is now so fuck anyone’s opinion on who you are or how you life your life.
Be joyous NOW. Anyone who stops you is lacking in some way. Don’t waste a second waiting for things to get better—figure out how to make them better through what works for you. Put life in your da. Love in your day. Joy in your day because not feeling those things drains the life right out of you. I’ve lived my life literally on my toes because of how many people hated my joy or expected me to be a certain way. Calling me a bimbo or saying I’m too loud. None of those people were there at my lowest, they didn’t see the blood welling on my wrists and I still wasn’t good enough for them whether at the bottom or the top. They didn’t like me when I hated myself either.
As a child I learned people liking you was the only way you were worthy. But they hated me at either end of the spectrum, either joyful or depressed. That is what happens when you look for outside validation—your happiness is predicated on other people’s perceptions and if they are miserable, no matter what you do will never be enough. Your joy/my joy triggers their lack of it so they lash out and tell you how you should really be. The truth is, I’ve always loved life. I only got serious because of how people perceived me and I thought I needed their permission to live. That is years wasted in misery, all hoping someone would like me. Now I just want what brings me happiness. Not things but moments that I feel joy. Dancing with my son, writing, crafting, reading, building, creating, learning, hanging out with our animals, going to the park or the pool, seeing my son experience things for the first time.
I woke up knowing that is the healing work I have to do for myself as well. I need to relish those experiences as well and not be ashamed. I am allowed to experience love and life. And that is the healing work I have to do for myself as well: stop making my son be a little version of me, also “perfect” to an adults perception and quiet and praised for how well he listens. I can stop making him behave a certain way, stop choking the fun out of him (the same thing that happened to me) and let him have his experiences, his joy. That is the child I need to heal—him and me.
Bottom line, living as I have been brings me little joy. Filling my day with bullshit at working, waiting for praise, basing my worth on praise, buying things I think will make me happy because it gives me a sense of control, never savoring the moment to really experience it, always rushing through it, always living surface to check off the experience rather than really diving into it (ie, glossing through books rather than learning and applying the lesson). I’ve been buying things to feel joy instead of DOING what brings me joy. We can’t buy happiness, especially if we are lacking something. I’ve been waiting for the right time or the right place to feel joy. Wearing a façade wherever I go. I’m ready to actually live—my way, my purpose. As I am meant to—joyfully and LOUD and honest. Fully who I am. Living on my heels, grounded in ME over on my toes, hopping to the next thing for someone else.