Happy… the emotion, state of feeling pleasure. Finally!
Yesterday I had the joy of joining the Universal Women’s Nurture Circle in Calgary, Alberta, led by Tina Thrussell (Shin Dao Institute, The Way of the Heart). The evening featured a self-care, Hand and Face Reflexology healing session by Sandra Catania (Reflexologist at Elan Family Wellness Centre).
We started the circle talking about why we chose to attend. Themes of community, learning and experiencing something new, being there for self, and searching for joy and happiness were some of the comments made. Every woman shone with true light and beauty, as each shared their heartfelt emotions. After the reflexology session where we worked on face and hands, we separated into two small circles, and within my circle, each woman was given a chance to speak when they received the ‘talking stick’. The idea is when the stick is passed to someone, they hold it, breathe, and allow whatever thought or idea they wish to share to be spoken without interruption, judgment or comment from others in the circle.
I know for me, in any previous experience in a group setting, where everyone is given a turn to speak, I quickly find my mind cycling through scripts of what I could and/or shouldn’t say. Last night in the talking circle, I knew it was time for something new for myself. I decided to not think of anything and simply listen to every brave woman speak her truth of what she needed to say within the safe confines of the circle. When it came to my turn, I took the talking stick with a little trepidation, but after a brief breath, came to know what was in my heart that needed to be told.
While I thanked and mentioned how grateful I was to all the glorious light and love beings there, I also passed on my thanks to the presenter. Then I took a pause and for the first time in my life, I calmly ended my turn with the statement, “I’m happy.”
A simple statement, right. I’m happy. For me though, this has been an emotion that has eluded me for the majority of my lifetime. I won’t go into the details of why it has been difficult in my life’s journey to find happiness, but I remember my mantra (as I was growing up in my teens, and in various journal entries throughout my lifetime) was always praying and begging, “Please, just let me be happy.”
I’ve had many happy and joy-filled, blissful moments in my lifetime, but they’ve been just that, moments. What I feel today, and hopefully tomorrow, and the day after, is a wholehearted sense of happy – contentedness. A statement of a fact. I am happy. Ground breaking for me to be this way, and to even publicly and with confidence state it. It was a real revelation for me as I drove home and contemplated the evening.
For me to be happy today, is not an overnight experience. It has taken me years and years of growing, sifting through the dirt, and garbage of all the self-dialogue and truth deep within. Learning who I am by taking many classes and finding new experiences to delve into, to discover that which is me. Seeking, not being afraid of going deep within, to finally come to know who I am, or even better, who I am not.
I’ve had various people in my lifetime who figure my actions, inclusions, caring, loving, etc., should make them happy. It also took me a long time to realize that people don’t make happiness for others. No – it is up to each person to find their own happiness, just as it has taken me years to find mine.
The path to happiness – true internal happiness – is not a multitude of moments, but it is like knowing that a ‘happy’ river is flowing throughout every cell in my body. I’ve found it, sensed it, and now that I know what it is, can recognize it. I know I’m not easily going to let it slip away. I’ve got a hold of it, and you better believe it is a strong grip.
So today, I celebrate! I don’t need or want to beg and pray to ‘be happy’ anymore. I am ever so grateful for all the teachers in my life, including the roomful of vibrant women last night who came, nurtured, shared their soul’s voice and embraced those simple words I had to speak. Thank you from my heart, glowing and yes – HAPPY.