How to be happy

What is the secret to lasting happiness? Is it having a doting family, having a secured job? financial security?  a good portfolio? successful career? having a good business that will not fail and carry you through all the economic distress? having no worry? good health? being vegan? popularity?having a sense of pride, respect, appreciation? being a generous giver? a pretty face? being well traveled, a fulfilled bucket list?

Will a new Louis Vuitton purse give me excitement? will having a belly full of treats makes me happy? will being mindful make me happy? will decluttering ease my stress?

Are we really chasing after the wind? Will all this things grant us the joy of contentment?We all take pride in our accomplishments, we all enjoy the applaud and approval. We are happy when people appreciate us. But is that enough? Is there something more?

If we don’t have enough food to eat, we don’t know how we are going to pay the next bill, mortgage, when our jobs will reopen, are we less happy than someone who have a healthy appetite or enormous wealth? Do we fear that one day, we will get old and helpless, that our wealth won’t save us? That someone has to pull the plug on our life support. Our life wouldn’t matter if we are old and debilitated.

For years, I think that someone with autism or disabilties have no chance to survive in the world. How will they cope with society. For neurotypical individuals, it is hard, what more hardships can life can offer for them. Will they ever be fully prepared for the outside life? My good friend, before she passed, was worried that not even her relatives will handle the responsibilty of taking care of her severely disabled child, and that she is considering putting her in the home. She was worried that when she dies, no one will love her like she do. She is afraid that she will get abused and raped because of her mental status. It is hard to imagine, in this fallen world we are afraid that anything that may or can happen.

Sometimes we torture ourselves with fears and thoughts. these thoughts serve no purpose but to instill havoc and stress.

How can we get prepared  for a pandemic, when during our normal lives, we are struggling? we are struggling to make ends meet, our jobs are already dead end , our relationships are already o the fence.  Its like we are adding insult to the injury.

As we are safe In our own homes. we are itching to go out. We are anxious to return to work. We are envious of the people who are still working and making a difference by staying essential. We are envious of the rich who can afford to stay at home and not work for a lifetime and yet have some money to spare and help the needy. We are envious of the people who never worked in their life yet getting unemployment benefits that we tax payers are paying. We are envious, ungrateful, unappreciative. We think life is unfair. People in the fron tlines are dying. Where is justice for that. At the blink of an eye, we are unemployed, we are homeless, we are in debt, we are stricken with sickness. We are in need of God. If life was fair, we would be punished already for the long list of our debts! We need God’s mercy!

We only seek God in times of need. Its not to late! We can seek Him now!

For many years, I thought that happiness is a destination. That we can be happy if we achieve our dreams of becoming somebody. If only we have this or that that we can be whole.

The reason I was unhappy was instead of counting my blessings, I was looking at my neighbors green lawn that I forgot to water my own. I was resentful because I felt that people are happier than me. That I deserve to be happier.  I am suffering so other should be too. Nobody should be happier than me. Is it true that misery loves company?

I envy my friends child. I envy her perfect family. Why can’t my child be. Why is my child so different?  As felt my child is lagging behind on his academic skills. His reading and comprehension is in the lowest percentile. While some of his classmates are reading greek mythology, mine was learning to discern vocabulary. I am not fishing for sympathy, I felt defeated!

I realized that could not be proud of my son because I was looking at his disabilities. I forgot that he is smart in his own ways, he is improving, he is trying.  He did not speak until he was four, and now he is thriving! I forgot that God that make no mistakes. He is mine to love. He is my gift.

I felt that as if God is pruning me. Not to be a victim of comparison. Not to be full of hate. Not to be greedy of attention. It is not about me. Its about God. He is the source of all. What ever he gives is because is who He is and is not because we deserve it. It is humbling to be loved by Our Father that in no instance will belittle us for our shortcomings. I pray for God to change my heart and to be more like His son as we all continually seek his will.

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