When we have children, we often say-
I only want you to be happy
Now, I’m pretty sure that I’ve written that wanting someone to be happy is a fools journey… that this is a very big lie that we tell our children. When you’re trying to find happy, you miss out on the ride- which may be bumpy, but not necessarily bad…
What should we wish for our children? you may or may not have asked.
We should wish that they always have hope…
Hope that the rainbow shows up at the end of the storm…
Hope that first impressions aren’t always the last one
Hope that when one door closes another opens…
If we have hope, we can get to tomorrow to see that life does indeed go on.
Happiness is something we search for, often illusively. Hope is what moves us forward even if happy doesn’t even glimmer on the horizon.
If we have hope, we just might be happy along the journey. We will realize that happy is not necessarily a destination, but a way of thinking about what we are doing. When we wake in the morning, maybe we won’t think about what will make us happy in the moment: when we wake up maybe we hope that we get to do something we haven’t been able to, or see something wonderful, or whatever it is that makes us smile.
Hope does not mean toxic positivity. Hope does not mean that you walk around whistling as chipmunks help you do the laundry. Hope does not mean that random people break out into song as you walk to the subway. Toxic positivity sets you up to believe that anything can and will happen if you believe hard enough…but you can click those heels a thousand times and you probably aren’t going to end up in Kansas…
Don’t set your kids, or yourselves, up to think that happy is right over there and you can attain it. A big house won’t make you happy. Car? Nope. A better job? Maybe: maybe not.
What happens if you achieve all these goals, buy all these things, and you’re still not happy?
Happy is a state of mind, not a goal or something to check off your to do list.
See, that’s why hope is a better option. You learn to bounce back if something doesn’t quite go your way. You realize that it’s part of the journey.
Hope gets you out of bed when you don’t feel like it. Hope gets you out of the house. Hope gives you the opportunity to live.
Without hope, we are truly lost.
So as you meander on the journey that we call life, remember that the sun coming out tomorrow might not make you happy. But remember that tomorrow is indeed another day- a fresh start- a day filled with promise and hope.
side note: I felt like writing today. i may not feel like writing tomorrow. But if I don’t, I will be back