Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Happiness is not a destination, but a manner of travelling.

I have a very wonderful Father. I have grown up admiring him, hoping to one day be just like him, and knowing I would only ever marry someone who loved me as much as he loves my Mum. Holding a job which required him to travel a great deal led to my Dad taping himself reading us bed time stories, so we'd still hear his voice every night. I had a habit of making up long, 'interesting' poems to tell him over the phone when he would call my Mum during his lunch hour. He always encouraged us to follow what we love to do, and to always put in our very best.

Something I highly value in my Dad is his ability to give subjective, wise advice. He's also excellent at cheering up someones day when they are a little down. The fact he is highly intelligent and quick witted I think gives him the unfair advantage :)

So the last little while has been a bit rough, and I began to feel a little like I was in over my head in terms of our financial situation. I felt as though I was letting a lot of people down with my poor management of our budget. It was during this time I received a lot of information to ponder over. Such as the fact that we are on a single income, and my illness in and of itself is costing us a fair bit of money we could never have foreseen needing before we had our children. Also something I had never thought of before.....

What I wish for my boys: Health, happiness, joy. It's exactly the way my parents feel about us girls. All the guilt I had over being in debt, getting so upset about it and then having a lot of health issues in the last few weeks years to deal with was all too much. I was unhappy. And in being so caught up in making up for getting us into debt I didn't see that my unhappiness was actually causing for the people in my life a lot of worry and unhappiness in itself. Much better would be to think, hmmm that's a growing pile of debt. Am I doing what I can to pay it off? Right then, moving on.

So the last few days, since these epiphatrees epiphanies I have begun to feel a lot better. And today I received an email that I really needed. Something which is going to be my focus until I am feeling 100% about things again. An article that reminded me of the quote I used in my title. And the reason I spoke of my Dad earlier on? Of course the source of my inspiration came from him. Thank you Dad.

Be happy where you are

Dr. Richard Carlson

One of the most tragic things I know about human nature is that
all of us tend to put off living. We are all dreaming of some magical
rose garden over the horizon – instead of enjoying the roses
that are blooming outside our window today. – Dale Carnegie

Sadly, many of us continually postpone our happiness – indefinitely. It’s not that we consciously set out to do so, but that we keep convincing ourselves, “Someday I’ll be happy.” We tell ourselves we’ll be happy when our bills are paid, when we get out of school, get our first job, a promotion. We convince ourselves that life will be better after we get married, have a baby, then another. Then we are frustrated that the kids aren’t old enough – we’ll be more content when they are. After that, we’re frustrated that we have teenagers to deal with. We will certainly be happy when they are out of that stage, We tell ourselves that our life will be complete when our spouse gets his or her act together, when we get a nicer car, are able to go on a nice vacation, when we retire. And on and on and on!

Meanwhile, life keeps moving forward. The truth is, there’s no better time to be happy than right now. If not now, when? Your life will always be filled with challenges. It’s best to admit this to yourself and decide to be happy anyway. One of my favorite quotes comes from Alfred D’ Souza. He said, “For a long time it had seemed to me that life was about to begin – real life. But there was always some obstacle in the way, something to be got through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, a debt to be paid. Then life would begin. At last it dawned on me that these obstacles were my life.” This perspective has helped me to see that there is no way to happiness. Happiness is the way of life.


  1. I completely agree with this. We are all only on this planet for a limited time and should make the most of every day. We can have goals (career, money, travel, what ever it is), but need to also enjoy the small moments of every day, because we won't have that day again.

  2. Michelle, you put that beautifully. Plus you added to it, I hadn't thought about my goals! Thank you :) I miss you!