I don’t know where my “Happy Place” is. I’m not sure I even have one. A fantasy I have is living in a house on the ocean, warm, sunny weather, about 75 degrees, pink lemonade in colorful plastic glasses. Unless I win the lottery, (that’s another happy place) that’s not realistically going to happen. My life is really a collection of special moments that I have had already. My go-to place now is in the past.
Those positive memories in my mind, sometimes hard to get access to, are my happy places. My happy place is watching The Office with my seventeen year old daughter lying next to me, the sound of our laughter co-mingling. Browsing in the supermarket slowly, holding on the cart and looking at every new product is fun. For me, it’s a state of mind. I’m not going to lie and say it always works because there are times when I can’t conjure up a happy place. Those are the times when I curl up in bed, hurting, safely tucked in under the covers, trying to keep my pillow cool and my body warm, my dog snoring beside me. I accept those moments too, afterall, you can’t appreciate the happy places without the unhappy ones.
Creme Brulee ice cream from Ben & Jerry’s, is a happy moment as well as a maple lollipop sent from a friend that I treasured for months before I gave myself permission to lick the amber sweetness. Helping other people makes me feel good, doing a good deed. Just the other day I saw an elderly neighbor looking upset and I helped her out; she was confused and worried about a “missing” eight year old boy; I drove her around the neighborhood as we tried to find the location of a dawdling boy who hadn’t yet made it to his neighbor’s house for his ride to camp.
Filling my bird feeder after it’s been empty for a while with sunflower seeds so that the beautiful cardinal family and finches will come back makes me happy. I get happier after they find the food when they sing and dance, chirp and flutter and sing their melodious songs to each other. At night, watching fireflies is a happy moment, every time I see a deer I gasp with joy or a gray bunny rabbit hopping across our front yard.
I wish I had a happy place that I could go to easily but I don’t; it would reassure me and help me to feel peaceful and safe. That’s not my world though, it would be simpler if I had one. So, I try different things all the time, looking at old photographs when my children were young, doodling on a notepad, having the perfect peach, listening to my favorite songs and singing out loud, clear, strong and off-key. Those things make me happy, but to be honest, I have to work at it to find them.