January 7th - Happiness Is...

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Thank you to all the people who have read my blog this first week, and thank you for the 30 or so of you that read every day! You are awesome, and I appreciate you. You make me happy :)

Sarah starts off today with "how happy are you right now? Do you even know?"

Well I know some things that make me happy... 

Spa day. Literally, an entire day, the works. 
Reading an entire book in one day, all alone, in my bed, with a  quite house and no responsibilities. 
The beach.
My best friend. Who happens to live in Virginia.
Eating out, IE not having to cook and clean up after.
Broadway live.

Now these are all big things, things that cost a lot of money that I do not have...and a couple years ago I was lost trying to find happiness in my every day life where big things don't happen. In the endless piles of laundry and diapers and never-ending crying and pulling at my attention (and my hair) by my three children under the age of 3. Lost in trying to breast feed and feeling like a failure, trying to make healthy meals and again feeling like a failure, trying to exercise, trying to even get dressed for the day! Just kind of lost in a general, unhappy, life...even though I had everything I wanted. A loving husband, a home, a college education, and three beautiful children all my own, raising them as a stay at home mom... just like I wanted. 

And then I got to January 7th and read this. 

"What is missing from many of our days is a true sense that we are enjoying the lives we are living."

That was it. I wasn't enjoying the life I was living and I couldn't figure out why. Then she said

"It is difficult to experience moments of happiness if we are not aware of what it is we genuinely love." 

But I do love my kids. I know that I want to be a stay at home mom because I want to be the one to raise my kids...so what do I do?

She goes on talking about finding the "minutia [in] the mundane", (what else do you call three children's dirty diapers and laundry day after day if not mundane?) and how "we must learn to savor small, authentic moments that bring us contentment." Because honestly, big things just don't happen every day. 

But little things, small things, those happen every second of every day.

And that's when I started to change the way I thought about my life and my duties as a mother to my children (which is what takes up most of my day).  I started to look for the "simple pleasures waiting to be enjoyed" that I had often overlooked. Learning "how to recognize, then embrace, moments of happiness that are uniquely our own."

Here are some of my moments from this week. 

  • I got to have a mommy and kid playdate with a best friend, who I haven't seen since November before my sister died, and got to hear all about her new house they just bought while our kids threw popcorn all over the place. 

  • Taking the time to cherish the one on one time that changing a diaper gives to kiss little toes and have a tickle monster attack. 

  • Workout kicked my out of shape butt...and I feel so much better for it.

  • Taking the time to read books to the kids before their nap, and then rock and sing lullabies to each one before tucking them in, telling them that I love them and I wish I could stay in that moment of cuddling with them forever. 

  • Jacob and Chase and I went around the block jumping in every puddle we could find, and Indy smelled like wet dog.

  • I started cooking again, and actually based my menu off of what needed to be used in my fridge so nothing went to waste. I really hate being wasteful.

  • Packing up a bag of Riley's clothes that no longer fit so I can pay it forward and pass them on to another little girl.

  • Blogging every night. 

  • Laying in bed with Robbie and just listening to the rain.

Life is made up of moments. Most of them can be happy, if we just choose to look at them that way, if we choose to see them at all.

In high school I had the privilege of being the understudy for one of the characters in the musical "You're a Good Man Charlie Brown". We got to do one understudy show and it is one of my fondest memories. Reading today's page made me think of the finale, the song Happiness, it's one of my favorites. I think it perfectly sums this day up.

"Happiness is anyone and anything at all that's loved by you."

I also own the animated special...so if you just happen to want to have a movication you are more than welcome to hit me up. We'll have a party.

My spiritual thought, "wickedness never was happiness." -BOM

Learning about and drawing closer to my Savior, and trying to become more like him and keep his commandments and letting go of sins has brought such a joy to my life. When I'm sinning I can not feel happy, no matter how hard I try. The feeling of denial that comes when you try to burry it in distractions that you think will make you happy because you're not going to deal with it, when really you are just making yourself more miserable. Now I'm not perfect, and sometimes I forget this truth, but I'm grateful that I know that it is truth. 

Happy Saturday :)