Of Grief and Happiness

Today, during my lunch break, I read two more essays from the book “This I Believe II” … personal philosophies of remarkable men and women; famous and normal alike. The two essays I read were, as the headline gives away, about grief and happiness, which are two emotions I currently struggle with. As some of you might now, I am going through a difficult personal situation, so my brain and emotions and everything else that belongs to a human body is a mess.

The first essay, by Wayne Coyne, is called “Creating Our Own Happiness”. How fitting since I have been told that I cannot let one single person define my life’s happiness. Happiness, I came to realize when I read the essay, can be simple, small things like the a smile from a stranger, or telling somebody you like their dress, purse, or even tell them they are cute. It has always made me happy to give to other people. But I also realized that happiness, even for a brief moment, is the warm wind caressing your skin when taking your lunch-break walk (which I did today). Stretching your muscles and feeling your body … feeling that you are alive. I guess there is a lot of happiness in every day, and we need to CHOSE to see it. We can make our own happiness, even if it is just a tiny glowing spot in the darkness that seems to consume my heard, mind, and soul. What I took away from this essay is that I want to find, and consciously recognize, one thing per day that makes me happy, even if it just for a second … and I look forward to that moment.

The second essay, by a nurse, spoke about grief. About how it is human, about how it can be … no, IS healthy, and that we have the right to grief, each of us in our own way. I grieve because I am about to lose the person that means the most to me in my life. My beloved husband, friend, partner, teammate, maybe even soulmate. And I grieve, and cry, and weep, although it is partly, if not totally, my fault that I lost him. But I still have the right to grieve. Some days the feeling is overwhelming, a darkness that slowly consumes me and kills every part of me, and it makes me feel as if I am slowly dying. I miss him, I love him, and I grieve for what I have lost, for what I have destroyed.

But maybe, in an hour, or in two, I encounter that little piece of happiness that waits for each of us every day … if we chose to let it touch our hearts. You never know what’s around the corner. And I know that for just this moment I will be alright. That I will survive, and live, and that life can be what I want it to be … I just wish it could be with my husband. But I believe that each of us has a path in life, and although I don’t know what it is, I believe it is there. Maybe the little moments of happiness can lead me down the right path.

Yours in grief and happiness,
Aileen

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