Wednesday, August 11, 2010


I've received some good advice this week from a few friends and strangers. It's the kind of advice that I already knew in my head but my heart wasn't really there yet. The truth of the advice is beginning to penetrate my heart and it took everybody's advice to get me here.

The week began at church. It was Youth Sunday, which I remember with great fondness from my own teenage years (oh-so-many years ago). Two brilliant young women gave homilies to the congregation. (I gave the sermon one year when I was a teenager, which was quite the radical activity in my Southern Baptist Church.) One of them spoke about how happiness isn't supposed to be a destination, rather it's a choice we can make about how to live our lives. I suppose you could say the same thing about anything - peace, joy, contentment, even LOVE....

I really am an upbeat and happy person for the most part, although my husband doesn't always believe it about me because I also have a tendency to think about EVERYTHING and I might sometimes be just a wee bit hard on myself. I have to point out to him that just because I have a multitude of emotions, perhaps even many within a single afternoon, that doesn't negate my overall happiness. I'm certainly not gloomy. As a matter of fact, the adjective "perky" is used to describe me (to my FACE) much more than I would like, as an almost-39-year-old woman who is attempting to develop a poised, professional reputation.

And yet...

I will admit that I have a tendency to focus on the shadow instead of the sunshine. If I could burn calories with angst, I'd be slim as a rail.

I intend to remind myself each day to stop thinking about my destination and instead focus on each day's journey. As one of my friends pointed out this week, none of us really know where we'll be in a year. It's not a stretch for me to be happy about where I am right now - because I truly believe I'm in exactly the right place. I don't know where I'm going, but I'm clearly on a path.

Just remind me, when you see me, that if I'm living for tomorrow then I'm not living at all. (Another great quote from Sunday.) I might glare at you if I'm in one of my moods, but deep down I'll know you're right.


Renee said...

"There is no way to happiness - happiness is the way."

~Thick Nhat Hanh

JennInAustin said...

I think that might be the exact quote she used - thanks! I just couldn't remember the details.