“If I truly love one person, I love all persons, I love the world, I love life. If I can say to somebody else ‘I love you,’ I must be able to say ‘I love you in everybody, I love through you the world, I love you in also myself.” -Erich Fromm
Happiness: the quality or state of being happy. : good fortune; pleasure; contentment; joy
Lately, I have been interested in the topic of happiness. I have been feeling so fulfilled and uplifted with my own life that I wanted to find the cause of why I feel such a natural high even in the lowest of my days and share its secrets. I instantaneously thought about my loved ones, the people whom by their presence immediately lightens and tones a mood of joy and contentment. I wanted to give tribute to the people I surround myself with, from my family, to my friends, and even the strangers I casually encounter day by day, that ultimately makes me happy. I dissected each association and found a deeper understanding and a new sense of appreciation in my relationships.
The following are true stories that roots my happiness.
Growing up, I was constantly reminded that family are the one who centers us. They are who grounds us in times that we’re either sinking too deep or floating too high. They are a reflection of what we wish to see in others. When I was on my last year of highschool, my family was evicted and we lived in a two bedroom motel with a pink heart shaped tub for half a year.
When I think about that period of my life, I don’t remember the agonizing two mile walk up the highway to get to school, I remember the deep conversation I had with my brother about our dreams and our goals. I don’t remember the adult film that was being shot two doors down, I remember my youngest brother’s first birthday. I remember us being happy– together. Although far from ideal, this era marks a turning point in my family’s life, I saw this as a test that only strengthened our bond as a unit, and ultimately made us whole.
As traumatic and catastrophic an event produced, it’s occurrence sowed roots for a fortunate mental, emotional, and spiritual growth, which eventually lead to an ineffable touch of happiness.
My family is who grounds me, they keep me on my feet. Through all my hardships, heartbreak, and wrong choices, they are who helped me regain the motivation, strength and peace within me that was once lost. That strong sense of love and belonging is indescribable, so powerful and euphoric on it’s own. It’s what makes me feel one and ultimately happily content.
Whether I’ve known them for more than half my life, a year ago, or a week ago the people I choose to spend my time with are consistently present through the great highs and the seasonal lows. One of the obvious reasons for my happiness (obvious for me) stems from the growing relationship I have with my friends, whom I also consider a part of my family. Friends are the family that you choose.
I have friends that I don’t see very often due to either conflicting schedules, or distance, but they are the ones who I can call up whenever for a chat or dinner, and time and space couldn’t keep our spirits misaligned, everything flows as if I just saw them the day before. I have friends I met a year ago that instantaneously took a piece of my heart as theirs the moment we met. These select people are who genuinely cares about my mental, emotional and spiritual growth. These are the people who makes me happy.
I was going through a flood of negative emotions the past summer, and my friends were there riding the wave with me. I remember hitching a ride with my now roommates, after jumping in her car, I started bawling profusely. It was the type of cry that won’t stop. After there are no more tears left to cry, I had explained the cause of my deep grief, my partner at the time had been arrested for domestic violence. Me, I was the victim. I was overpowered with shock and fear, “I can’t believe this is happening to me.”
I moved out of my shared place with him and moved in with my friends. Long nights of in-denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance are what they helped me through. I recall multiple times we spent just talking about life, helping me allow to think of healthier thoughts rather than dwelling in a stagnant pit of depression.
I owe a part of my life to them, for partially giving me the strength I lacked to completely drown the feeling of neediness and co-dependence. My core friends have helped me get through it by their constant reassurance and just by being there loving me through my worst time, I learned to love myself. They have helped me realize the worth within me that took me a while to see.
ALL WE NEED IS LOVE
Overall, in the very short life I’ve lived so far, I have quickly noticed that loving devotedly and being loved back in return brings most joy in anyone’s life. I have found myself most inspired and most dedicated to my life’s work when I am in love. In love with people, in love with my surroundings, in love with my friends, in love with my partner, and most of all in love with myself. When I am in the clouds floating just right, when everything makes sense, everything is alive, everything is felt. People need people, to feel nothing and everything, to create something, to make a change. Good change.
To The People That Makes Me Happy, from the bottom trenches of my soul and heart, Thank You.