I have been thinking a lot lately about the things that make me happy. I am such introvert. The only thing that makes me happy is sitting in a coffee shop writing. When does it look like when I imagine myself happy?
I imagine myself sitting in coffee shops all over the world lost in my latest literary work. I can imagine fleshing out my latest protagonist. Or working on the rising action my latest screenplay. Things like that make me smile. It’s always with my headphones on and listening to my favorite music or even my latest audiobook. That is what makes me happy. It is my peaceful place. A place where I am happy— but I am not there yet.
The truth is I have been working so hard because I still feel I have to make up those lost years of my diagnosis. It is hard to imagine that I could get through those years of so much unhappiness. Can someone like me still feel happy?
So much of my life lately has been about scheduling. I have to schedule in school, my blog, my writing, and of course my freelance work every week. I spend so much time on my computer most days that forget. I forget that a key part of my recovery is finding peace. It’s still the winter time even here in California (it was about 30 degrees when I left my house this morning.) I chalk some of my feelings with my anxiety and depression to this time of the year. I am a summer person and life is always better from May to September.
At times I am right on the edge of being happy. I am right there, but something happens. It sets me back and it makes me believe that happiness is unattainable. Lately, it has been the increase in my anxiety and the panic attacks. I default setting when it comes to my social anxiety, which is to hide away my life. Again, it can be the time of year that is affecting me. Today its depression, my old friend, that is keeping me from feeling happy about where I am at in my recovery.
What is crazy about the whole thing is that I was feeling these types of feelings last year. The person that I am now is so different. I am so much stronger now than I was a year ago. A year ago I had to take a semester off because my health was going in the wrong direction. I lost the feel of life for weeks— again. But I came out on top and finished the year strong. In the pit of my stomach, I still feel as if I can’t find happiness.
I used to think happiness for someone like me was impossible. How can I find happiness when there has always been a darkness in my life? There are things now that make me happy in a single moment. Waking up knowing that I helped someone like myself with my blog feel a little less alone in this world. Those things resemble happiness in my life.
The times when I can get out of my own head and so that I can write at my favorite coffee shop, even if now I have to drink tea. Coffee used to make me happy. At the same time making the switch that I did was worth it. My stomach has thanked me so much these last two months.
I was writing a chapter in my memoir today about this very topic and I couldn’t define the things that make me happy. I haven’t been happy in the sense that there is real balance in my life. It seems I solve one thing, my depression, and move back to my other issues. My anxiety is the best example. I have only felt depressed lately because I can’t find things to make me happy. Or it could be I am not letting the things that make me happy shine some light on my day.
I sit there at times and write for hours. Productive hours. Why can’t I find peace in that? The music I listen to when I write has always made it easier to get through my day. Why can’t I find peace? I know there is happiness out there for me, and I am missing something. It could be something I lost a long time ago.
The one good thing about life is that we can always turn over a new leaf. I have amazing goals this year, but I am ready to add one more, to find peace in this life. To find out what it is like to be happy. Traveling? Coffee shops? Finding a real hobby like photography? At some point, I will find the right thing that makes me happy in this life. In the meantime, I will continue to work on my mental health and recovery.
I thought of one thing that is coming up that will make me happy. The return of baseball season. I am always happier when I can watch baseball in my downtime.
Photo Credit: unsplash-logoNicole Harrington