For me, one of the most Beautiful words in the English language. It is synonymous with such words as happiness, delight, gladness, pleasure and bliss. Its meaning entails much more than the emotion of being happy. One can have Bliss, show Delight or even exhibit Laughter all while feeling Not so Happy! This is a true telltale sign of Joy! When your overall emotional state of mind is so well-balanced that the sad, unusual or even mundane issues in life can’t change your overall Satisfaction with oneself; you’ve probably obtained a level of Joy that most wish they knew and could reach.
I thank God every day for that glorious revelation!!!
No matter how hard things can get, I focus my energy and thoughts on the “Positives” in Life. There is so much we cannot change in this life and in this world. I can’t begin to tell you how to find “IT”, as I only happened up my own Joy by chance. A sudden and awkward state of “Here I am…, Good Lord…, I’m GOOD“! I can tell you what it felt like and what was happening in my life.
It was a few days after September 11th and the sadness was truly sinking in. My position with a large design/build firm was already slowing and coming to an end. I had more vested in my personal company now and had hit the ceiling salary wise. My drive to the office was a long tedious one that included a drive across a 24 mile long bridge. This was my time to think, use the speakerphone on my cellphone to catch up with friends and family and use the cruise control over the large, straight, lake view bridge. Due to still prevalent scares, the bridge would be off-limits here and there. I would start to take the long way around more often. As I showed up for work on many days I would be turned away after a few hours of light busy work. One day right after the terrorist events had shaken us all, I was permanently let go. I was told I could call back in a few months to see if things had picked up. My feeling was numb. The day a little more dim. As I drove the long way home around the lake, just a mile from my home, I called one of my college girlfriends to check on her and her family as I stopped for a red light. The large intersection was full of firefighters collecting for the cause. I quickly told my friend to hold on as I pushed the switch on the window in the rain to give him all that I had that day. Since I had not had lunch, it was quite a bit in cash and I collected the change also. As he thanked me for the donation, I smiled and offered the words that “I wish I could do more”. He reassured me and we spoke for a moment of casual things. As I got back to my phone call, it suddenly dawn on me with all the things going on in my life that day, I was Okay! I’d lost a job. I’d been wasting gas going back and forth for months. The girlfriend on the line and her family witnessed the plane through their kitchen window that crashed in a field outside of their Midwest town. My local girlfriend and I spoke that morning of her brother’s efforts at Ground Zero and the effects that it was having on our families. We had lost a church member’s child at the pentagon and I still hadn’t heard from a friend of mine in the city.
My girlfriend and I continued to talk as I impressed upon her my latest feelings. I was having the most Euphoric and Calming feelings deep inside. At the time I did not know what is was. What I did know was that it was unusual. It was Beautiful. I was enJOYing Life!
We both laughed and cried as I could not explain my feelings. It would take a few more days and discussions with a great mentor in my life to grasp the word and its meaning. The revelation of an emotion that evokes “wellbeing” in spite of the “chaos” of the details in LIFE: This was my feeling! This was what Dreams are made of! I was broke yet happy. I was suddenly Jobless but, Inspired by expanding my own entrepreneurship. Sorrow surrounded me and I still had Hope! Life was going to go on and “We” would survive! Life would go on, things will get better!!
At that moment I realized my JOY in LIFE!
Today I had a family member “step” all over my dreams as they belittled the things that I find gives me Joy. Because I chose a career and to live away from the family home front down south; I am not worthy of acknowledgment. I give her all the praise and blessings as she has had what is close to a “Perfect” life. The husband, kids, home, career, money beyond belief and society references a queen might envy are all her claim to fame. I’m very proud of her on that front. Her family brings me many elements of my Joy. She shares her mind and heart. (Even sometimes when not really wanted or needed) Yet, at a certain point everyone must draw that line in the sand. The lines that help us keep our sanity. You Know…, the one that defines who we are. My opinion is that I should not be made to feel “Guilty” for having that opinion OR nurturing the facts of MY BELIEFS!
I feel very blessed! Even with my education, career, a home and land; I still wish for a family of my own. Who wouldn’t want more money or even more notoriety and gifts in their life?! Those things simply don’t define me anymore. The quality of my life is my concern. If I feel more at home with family and friends in other parts of the world then it is my prerogative. I’m always comfortable living in other parts of the world and will eventually settle down somewhere that may not be close to the South. THAT IS A FACT! When I make decisions to make my life a little better, I feel as though a little support would be appropriately “in line”.
I get plenty of satisfaction from my business, music, travel, family and friends. I don’t need the judgment of “others” that think that I should stay miserable and under their thumb because they can offer me an “easy” way through life. The biggest problem with America right now is the expectancy of “Handouts”! I love living within my means, working for it, taking the punches and doing it my way with the help of family and friends who honestly want me to succeed and allow me to have that all important say in “my life”. I want a future that includes a family with a husband and children that will look up to the way I have lived so far. Even if I don’t get all that I desire in life, I will know that I did all that I can to make things right to the best of My Ability.
There are enough pressures in the society to make us doubt ourselves. If you love someone; you try to lift them UP! Successes and Failures are certain in life. They will come and go. I like listening to that little voice deep inside of me as it helps to guide me along with a healthy research and a dose of Faith in God. With age, it has been fine tuned to a fault. Life’s journey is a continuous growth process. It brings me Joy when I share my Joy with the world.
I often hear it said, that there are “only” two things in life that we must do. Those two things are to Die and pay Taxes. Nowhere do I find “do exactly what others tell you ” in that one plus one equals two equation! I do find that everything else in life is “OURS” to cherish, keep and explore!
The moment you start to give that back…, the power, the freedom, the happiness; you lose that ultimate emotion of JOY!
is my Treasure, Delight and I take Great Pride in it and I will
NEVER LET IT GO!!!