My Own Happy

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Harry was running around the oval at soccer practice the other day, jumping and laughing and tackling the soccer coach dads with the rest of his middle-of-the-school-holidays-mad teammates. I sat to the side, switching my attention between him and his brothers, who were wandering around the outskirts of the field, finding ways to amuse themselves and fill in the time.

They found a wall. They found a ball. They found some orange cones. They found a ditch on a cricket pitch (no more rhymes now, I mean it. Anybody want a peanut?). Anyway. They set up an obstacle course.

They ran together, circled cones, jumped and reached for the ball. Kicked the ball. Put it back. Wyatt got frustrated with Flynn for doing it wrong. They circled back and began again.

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They had a whole field and a rare moment of sunshine and they chose to confine themselves and create an obstacle course.

For a small moment I wondered if this was me (us, humans) in infant form. Creating obstacles, tensions, drama when there are none.

(Not that they weren’t totally happy and loving the moment, but…)

Why can’t we be content to just run and enjoy the sun and the good things given to us? Can’t we just be happy?

Except.

I was listening to the radio a few weeks ago, and a psychologist was speaking about a couple of different experiments conducted looking at how little boys and girls play differently. One study looked at group dynamics when there were three kids, and only one toy designed for just one kid to use, the second (and more interesting to my mind) looked at group dynamics when it was three kids and a sharing toy. In this instance, the boys got stuck right in and began playing together, whereas the girls spent most, if not all the time discussing how to play the game. Afterwards, the psychologists comment was ‘girls don’t know how to play’, however a female psychologist offered her own insight, saying, they are playing.

We just have different views of what play means.

The obstacle is the play. Even the drama some people crave in their lives is the play. The satisfaction in overcoming, resolving, problem solving. Haphazardness and issues in our lives (invited or not) aren’t necessarily negatives. Or your negatives aren’t my negatives. Negatives don’t have to be negative.

They’re just a part of existing.

I read a post by Sweet Madeleine recently on the subject of seeing our life as a series of problems to be solved. I think that’s kind of the issue here. Seeing obstacles as problems. Or rather problems as problems. Thinking their meaning is universal and universally negative.

It’s the same on the flip side, that happiness is universal. And that it must always be connected to joy or euphoria, but it’s so much more than that.

It’s satisfaction and delight and appreciation. It’s a life well lived. It’s none of those things. It stands on shifting sands with it’s meaning and markers of achievement always moving.

It’s more than different things make us happy, it’s that happy is differently understood and felt and experienced.

It has a different face and speaks a different language. And the faces and languages keep evolving.

I’ve been unwell lately, and in the middle of that it’s hard to be happy. Or appreciative. Except that life is still good. It is great. So overall there is happy, just very little inthemoment happy. I don’t see a problem in that. Or a negative.

Today my happy is getting through the day with everyone fed and some sunshine on their backs. Tomorrow I don’t know.

What’s your happy?

Mss&MRs

12 comments

  1. Anna says:

    My happy can be realizing I don’t know what time it is (in a life so segmented by children’s physical needs) as that signifies we are truly in the moment. My happy can be hearing my mum sing in the shower as that means she is happy. My happy can be as small as finding reduced price organic meat to as big as hugging my boys close. I am happy because I am loved by God and I am simultaneously sad that others don’t know that love yet. I am ALWAYS happy when your emails and insightful words pop up in my inbox xxxx

  2. Becs :: Think Big Live Simply says:

    Gosh I love this! I often put pressure on myself to feel happier all the time – except I’m not one of those super joyful people; I mean, I am, but not a moment to moment happy person, rather a overall happy person, just like you describe! I’ve never seen it described like this before and it’s a massive lightbulb for me…I feel joy at the whole painting, not the intricacy of the brushstrokes. I hope you are feeling less unwell beautiful xx

    • missandmisters says:

      I read somewhere that it’s biologically impossible for us to be happy all the time. Something to do with hormones and regulation or something. The good news is we can take the pressure off ourselves because our bodies know what’s what. X

  3. Mel @ Coal Valley View says:

    What a lovely insightful Post….I think there’s way too much emphasis on being ‘happy’ in our culture all the time and feeling guilty if you are not happy for some reason. It’s an awful lot of pressure and I’m often not feeling happy but am nevertheless ok or satisfied with things. I loved living in Germany where they don’t really have a word for happy, they use the word ‘satisfied’ or ‘content’ or ‘lucky’ to describe their feelings. Mel x

    • missandmisters says:

      Oh I love that. I think happy has become too broad a term and we’ve tried to pack to much into it. We could all benefit from being a little clearer in naming where we’re at. Today I’m content. X

  4. maxabella says:

    It’s so revealing, isn’t it? I don’t know many women / girls who would be content to just ‘be’ and not have a problem to solve. I think men like the destination, but women the journey. x

    • missandmisters says:

      I found it so interesting! I tried looking to see if it had been podcast(ed?) but couldn’t find it.

      I’ll disagree with you on one thing though: I’d much rather be sitting on a beach with a drink than flying on the plane to get there, ha! πŸ˜‰

  5. Sonia Life Love Hiccups says:

    “It’s more than different things make us happy, it’s that happy is differently understood and felt and experienced.” I love that. My happy is different every day. One day it could be a quiet uninterrupted cuppa, the next it could come in the form of just simply getting through the day in one piece. I hope you are feeling better huni and that you found your happy today. xx

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