I don’t just mean happy, I meant deliriously, fearlessly, stupidly, blissfully happy. You know that happiness that comes from being carefree, having no worries, knowing there is nothing that needs doing. You can just sit back chill and enjoy.
You know what I had to really think hard about this to find a time when I felt like this. Sure I have had moments fleeting that have come and gone of happiness like my wedding day, the birth of my children, time out with friends, holidays. They are snapshots in time they are short-lived and then the reality of life bites me on the bum.
I tried to search the memory banks to a time that I really felt that carefree happiness. It was when I was really little. It was a time when we moved from Australia to Fiji. We lived in Suva for a short time when I was 9-11yrs old. I think back on that time and I loved it.
We had a beautiful life. We went to school. Things were really very carefree. Well for me as a child they were. We did things like swim club, we had a sailing boat, we went to resorts for holidays, we went to the Fiji club on Friday afternoons for Chapmans (lemon, lime and bitters!) We spent lots of time with friends, we went to Hindii weddings, celebrated diwali with friends, learnt how to eat curry with our fingers. Met some amazing people whom I am still friends with now over 35 yrs later! I don’t remember missing home though I am sure I did desperately. I am certain I probably didn’t even want to go in the first place! I am positive my parents would tell a very different story about my memories of life in Fiji.
The thing for me is that life really changed when we came home. I started high school at 11, which was normal for the time but boy I look at my twins who are 11 this year and I can’t imagine my girls going to high school in two years time let alone next year! That first year of high school was really, really tough for me. I developed a whole load of unhealthy coping mechanisms to deal with having no friends, being awkward and bullied for a big period of that year. Finally I was fitting in so stupidly I went and changed schools only to in a different way have to learn to fit in all over again.
There are lots of patterns to my life that I can see looking back at a big picture as an outsider looking in reflecting on times, places and events. I am sure we all develop lots of different coping mechanisms some healthy some not so much.
I think we also try to chase that elusive happiness too. Whether it be trying to re-capture our youth by seeing a band we love or re-creating a day out with friends to have those feelings again.
I am not sure we can chase happiness in the sense of things, events, moments in time. Sure we can look back and have fond memories of those happenings but when we place all our happiness eggs in the external bucket it can be very hard to capture it. I am learning that to find that really deep sense of happiness and peace I am actually chasing I need to look inwards.
In the meantime I think I will go and search the pantry for some chocolate because if chocolate can’t help me feel happy there’s very little hope really!
Linking up with Essentially Jess for ibot