WHEN I WAS FIFTEEN YEARS OLD, the more heart broken and forlorn I was, the more I wrote in my journal. Pages and pages (did I mention pages?) of teenage melancholy punctuated by a big sad-face icon. At one point in my THIRTIES I burned those journals in my fireplace as a testament to leaving that crap behind.
In my FORTIES I find I cannot write unless I am feeling happy. Conversely, I find I become happy (or happy-ER) once I begin writing. The deal with this blog was to share the happy, sarcastic, chuckle-icious moments with the internet world.
I was once labeled by a friend as being like HOLLY GO-LIGHTLY. Honestly? These days I have not been feeling very Go-Lightly, therefore not writing much at all. Last week I posted a hopeful Shakespearean sonnet. This week all that’s running through my brain is the funereal poem by W.H. AUDEN.
If I’m going to share globally it should be the happy-go-lucky part of my personality. Right? Why would I put my mid-life melancholia out into the forever land of the interwebs? You can’t burn it later on in your FIFTIES. *Sigh* God forbid I end up withe BLACK CLOUD OF THE BLOGGING WORLD Award.
Look at The Pioneer Woman. She is NEVER down. Every post is BEAUTIFUL HUSBAND! ADORABLE CHILDREN! INTERESTING RANCH LIFE! GORGEOUS PHOTOS OF FOOD! DARLING DOGS! There is never a post about angst or melancholy and I love her for that.
So, where does that leave me? In a tough time. In a melancholy place that is certainly more informed than when I was fifteen. In a place that I thought was one thing and has become another. In a place that is new territory and therefore frightening. In place that makes me realize that regardless of how old we think we are, how much we think we have learned, there is always more. For better and for worse. And under this dark cloud right now I choose to see it for the better.
DEAR INTERNET, bear with me and thank you for providing a place to write my way to a better place. In keeping with my recent post about Annie Lennox and the List of 1,000 BEAUTIFUL THINGS, here is a partial list of beautiful things that make me happy;
– Waking up knowing that all you have to do is whatever you want and hopefully it will involve coffee in bed, the person you love, and a good book.
-Good French or Italian movies (or even bad ones make me happy – who am I kidding)
– Beaches and Sunshine
– Speaking Italian
– Wandering through an ancient city for the first time
– My daughter
– My family
– An exceptional piece of art
– String quartets
– Cathedral bells ringing (although those can trigger melancholy as well)
– Love letters, love letters, love letters (sending and receiving)
Well, I do feel better after writing this post. I wouldn’t say happy. But maybe happy-ISH.
What are the things that make you happy? What are the things that take away your black clouds if you ever have them? Let’s swap lists.
Miss Holly Go-Lightly-ish
PS: If you haven’t read it yet, I highly recommend THE HAPPINESS PROJECT, by Gretchen Rubin. Based on the subject of this post, I should probably re-read it.