The last several months life has thrown me some major curveballs that I frankly never saw coming, and those curveballs have caused me to have to deal with things I never expected to go through. As each of them hit I felt completely unprepared to deal with the mix of emotions hitting me all at once from what felt like all sides – feelings of shock and disbelief, sadness and profound grief, worry and fear, hopelessness, and an entire slew of other emotions that caught me completely and totally off-guard, making these last few months some of the most emotionally challenging months of my life.
Yet with all the difficult challenges I was going through, l knew that the simple fact remained that the sun was going to come up again every morning, things were still going to need to get done, life was still going to have to be lived, and I was going to have to force myself to continuously put one foot in front of the other even though at moments I didn’t think I had the strength nor desire to. I knew I was going to have to find a way to get beyond all the emotions, face circumstances as they were, figure out how I could best deal with the circumstances I’d been given, recognize that while I couldn’t change the difficult circumstances I could still make a decision to choose to be happy – I could choose to focus my attention on trying to be the best “me” I could be and then choose to have faith that somehow, someway, and at some point (whether it be in this life or the next one) God would make it all okay.
I’m not going to pretend it was easy for me to choose to be happy, and I’m not going to pretend that it was just a one-time choice where everything suddenly became hunky-dory after I made it because that wouldn’t even be close to being true… The truth is that over the last several months it wasn’t just a daily struggle to choose to be happy, it was often a minute-to-minute battle where I literally had to force myself to remember that I did, in fact, have the ability to choose to be happy. And there were even a few days when I lost that battle and fell to pieces, but with each new sunrise came another opportunity to pick myself up and choose to be happy. And I discovered that for every day I was able to choose to be happy, in spite of the circumstances, I felt myself becoming stronger, more capable, and at peace.
I share this because I know that I’m not the only one who’s had to deal with curveballs in life (and I recognize that so many are dealing with curveballs much worse than my own) but no matter how different our curveballs are, the one thing for certain is that it always helps to know we aren’t alone in our struggles… it helps to know there are others who understand how hard it can be to remember that happiness is a choice we can make…it helps to know we aren’t the only ones that get overwhelmed and fall to pieces once in a while… and it helps to know others are finding a way during tough times to still make the choice to be happy.
While we may not be able to stop curveballs from coming into our lives, we can always make the choice to be happy. BE HAPPY!
~Amy Rees Anderson