My People

My People
My matched set of grandchildren - Oliver and Cosette

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Newsday Tuesday! Life is good.

Here we are at the start of day #67 of my Unintentional Sabbatical! Here in the nest, life is good.

The washing machine still won't drain.
The cats seem to be tossing their litter out of the box intentionally and it feels like a hot poker in my spine when I bend over to clean up their indiscretions. 
The toilet in my bathroom is still leaking.
I can't remember the last time I actually had ALL of my clothes folded and hung and properly put away.
I'm facing a huge lifestyle change (to officially empty nester) and life is good.

I have been avoiding checking my blood pressure since my last doctor visit because I felt like *knowing* it was high was stressing me out and therefore making it higher. I took it last night and it was 157/93.
I think I've finally figured it out: my blood pressure goes up when my pain level goes up. They need to stop adding blood pressure pills and give me something that will actually stop the pain, (expletive!).
This morning I'm in considerably less pain than yesterday (which was probably the worst day ever, so far) and my bp is 133/90. Still too high for someone on five blood pressure pills a day but better.
I'm still coughing up a lung. 
I go back to the doctor tomorrow and I hard core, totally dread it. I need my mom to pull a "shirley mclaine in Terms of Endearment" and go back there and scream at them to give me something for pain. I just go, roll my eyes at the empty platitudes and leave with the impression that modern medicine has failed me. 
And still, I will tell you that life is good.

Life isn't good because I'm pretending.
Life isn't good because I'm delusional or delirious.
Life isn't good because I'm out of touch with reality. 
Life isn't good JUST in comparison to other poor suffering souls.
Life.... is good.... because it really is good.

Happiness isn't a set of circumstances or lack of circumstances - happiness is a choice.
Happiness isn't a destination, an accomplishment, a certain amount of stability or capability - happiness is the journey to all of these things.
Happiness is realizing that even in the midst of chaos and turmoil and disappointment and despair that YOU are you, regardless of what happens around you.
Happiness is your core. It's the truth about you. It's the unwavering, unconditional belief that the things that define you aren't things. It's not tangible, temporary or transient.
It's understanding that wherever you go, there you are. You can't escape you. No one can steal your happiness, you have to knowingly give it to them. Nor can anyone MAKE you happy. They can share in your joy but they cannot give it to you.

There was one time that Purple Michael and I were at a funeral for the baby of a friend of his who had been born too soon and didn't survive. It was the heaviest, saddest of sad times. Afterwards we were invited to join the family for a meal and we sat with the mommy of the deceased and the three of us laughed so hard I thought my sides would split! It wasn't in disrespect. It was a matter of being in the presence of people who have chosen joy, above all things, and who have chosen to let that joy rise up at any time, despite circumstances to the contrary.

My boys and I went to the funeral of a young friend of theirs who had died tragically. Austin was too young and squirmy to go with us so we left him at my parents' house. It was near Halloween, maybe, or maybe it wasn't but for whatever reason, when we pulled into my parents' driveway, completely oppressed by grief, out comes little Auggie dressed in his grim reaper Halloween costume. We CRACKED up!

I could give you many more examples of times that MOST people would have been devastated but me and my friends and family have found a way to laugh, appropriate or not.
I think it takes a lot more courage to laugh when other people would cry.
I think, to quote the movie, Steel Magnolias, that laughter through tears is the best emotion.
I have had many, many occasions for sadness over the course of my life, way too many in the past year. Life has not taken the path I thought it would. I never would have imagined being single at this stage of life. 
My point is that it doesn't take a Prince Charming for you to live happily ever after. 

Relationships can end - by death or change. Children grow. Husband's cheat. (not all, but some). People die. If your happiness is held hostage with only one person, you can be sure that at some point, it will fade or completely disappear.

Financial security is great (from what I've heard - never had any myself) but it is not guaranteed. History is full of examples of great financial reversals for all kinds of reasons. Stuff can be stolen. Homes can burn. Investments can take a downturn. 

Nobody ever died of good health. No matter how healthy you are, it can change in a breath... a car accident, a sudden illness. There is a young, very healthy mother who is a good friend of my sister-in-law who has just been diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer. Out of the blue. We can do things to improve our chances but ultimately, eventually, health will leave you. 

At the end of the day, all you really have is who you are. Be someone who is enough, regardless of whatever else is happening. 
Choose joy.
Life is good, y'all. 
That's all. 
Have a great day!


mawmaw said...

I had to beg for my own pain medicine last week. If you take good pain medicine now it will not be as effective when you get old. I told my doctor I did not want to get old if I had to be in pain all the time. He gave me medicine to take one time during the day or night so I could be in less pain for a little while each day.

Heather said...

What do you mean "when you get old"? I am old!