dajamou

Where's the village?

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

What Makes Me Happy.

I have been working on figuring out what makes me happy and why. Here is as good a place as any to keep a list.

THINGS THAT MAKE ME HAPPY

1. Being "in on" things. Making memories. This is hard to describe, but the closest I can come is with examples. I love helping people move to a new house, redecorate a room, start a new business, make some kind of change. I don't necessarily have to be the architect of change, or even the catalyst. It's enough to say "I helped. I was there when that memory was made." I also love being at memorable events, like incredible concerts or plays, group vacations, retreats...I used to love being a camp counselor. Perhaps it's a way of feeling like I matter, or of proving that I exist outside my own head. A shared experience means more to me than a lone accomplishment.

2. Music. Hearing, making, experiencing, dancing. You know that question that everyone asks themselves in high school, about what handicap you would choose, if you got to choose, if you had to choose? Would you rather be blind or deaf or in a wheelchair, that kind of thing. It's kind of odd and callous in a very adolescent sort of way, but maybe it's a way of starting to grapple with empathy. I don't know. Anyway, it's always kind of stayed with me. I think the one that would hurt the most is to lose my hearing, because music has such a profound effect on me. But then again, I am a voracious reader, so who knows? Perhaps I'd compensate. This, however, is getting off the topic. The topic is, music makes me happy. It has the ability to change my mood, or enhance my mood, or let me get over myself and my mood, depending on what I hear.

3. Being with familiy. This might be a subset of Number 1, since the thing I love most about being with my family is sharing memories and experiences with them. But I think it's important enough to have on its own. In particular, I love the newest generation, the dajamou and my nieces and nephew. I love watching them change and grow and play together and develop into amazing little people. It hurts, how much I love them and miss them.

4. Color and beauty. We painted our living room bright golden sunflower two-tone yellow in our old house. And every time I went in that room I smiled a little. It never got old. Neither do rainbows, or the teensy little blue flowers that pop up in my yard every spring, or the deep cobalt blue of my enormouse tea pot, or the red cardinals and brilliantly yellow goldfinches at my bird feeder. Japanese gardens. Fireflies. A freshly polished hardwood floor. This house.

5. Traveling. I went to Greece in the 90's and it still ranks in the top 5 happiest times of my life. I love going to the Georgian Bay every summer with the dajadaddy's family. Even going back to Portland, though I lived there for 10 years, gives me a thrill because there's so much to see and do there.

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