Saturday, July 24, 2010

I'm so Zen I'm Like Buddha...well...kinda...

You ever have one of those days where everyone you see and everything you do totally has a theme? That's been the last 24 hours for me. I just feel like I've had an epiphany or a break through...or maybe I'm just manic and haven't realized it yet...ah, the joy of being bipolar.

Anyway...the epiphany is this...No one can make me unhappy, unless I choose to let them. And that's the only power I have. That's it. I can either take your shit and let you treat me like crap and feel bad about myself, or I can love myself enough to say, you know what...Fuck you if you don't like me, if you think I'm too fat or too messy or too flighty. Whatever. That's your issue. It isn't mine, and I'm not going to take your issue on...Got it?

See, last night at about midnight I get an instant message from my cousin, who, from the magic that is Facebook, found her ex-fiance...the one that walked out and left her flat with no explanation, no goodbye....nothing. Just boom...gone. Well, turns out he's married, and she's cute and they look happy. My cousin, who I love dearly, is not a "glass half empty" person so much as she's a..."why is MY glass always empty" kind of person. As though everything in her life sucks and she's the only who has bad things happen.

Now, I love this girl, don't get me wrong. She's funny, and kind and generous and good...but she wallows a lot. I mean a lot...if something happens that's not what she wanted, she ignores all the good things in her life and says "Why does my life always suck? Why can't I have anything good?" Now, in fairness...she's a single mom, has some health issues and very little money (gosh, where have I heard that story before?), but on the other hand...she has an amazing family, a place to live, all of the necessities and quite a few luxuries...But she doesn't want to see that, she wants to focus on what's wrong. And I've been there...I've so been there. It's hard to drag yourself out of that place. It just sucks to be miserable all the time, and is a choice. Find a way to laugh, to inhabit your life so that when you look at what other people have, you don't ignore all that you have to wish for what you think they have.

Because that's the key isn't it? It's our perception. I told my cousin, yes, I'm sure they look happy in the pictures. Most people don't share the not so good times with the rest of the world. They want you to see the happy, everything's great moments, not the "my kid was up all night, and the dog peed on my only clean blanket and I got a flat tire" moments. Because we all have them, we just aren't interested in taking pictures. It's not a moment we want to keep.

Then tonight I was talking to another friend (that accommodating, picture taking friend, who we've decided to call Sam) and he was sort of having a wallowing kind of a moment, and I was totally on my soapbox with the same blunt realizations I'm giving myself and my cousin. And while I was chatting with him online, I was also watching a silly romantic comedy of the same theme...the "it's all in how you choose to see it" theme. It felt like the universe was just saying..."Yes, you idiot woman, you've finally got it."

Now, in fairness...there's a good chance I'm headed into a manic phase,and that in a week, I'll be all "boohoo, my life sucks" but I'm going to try and keep this centered in my mind, that it's all in the way you choose to live your life. If you've decided to be happy, and that nothing, not that flat tire or pissing dog or empty wallet, is going to ruin that happiness. And then maybe, just maybe...that'll be enough...

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