anecdote about happiness


This afternoon I was having an especially intense version of my daily internal monologue. Today’s topic was happiness, for some reason, and I had settled into debate about a great number of things.

I was asking many questions: whether or not we humans were made to experience happiness or to only desire it, whether the right to the pursuit of happiness is real or something we assumed as both a social and a self-serving species, and whether or not well-loved adages (like “be yourself”, “the best things in life are free”, “#YOLO”, whatever) actually work in any way to resolve our struggle to attain some joy.

All of these questions must have shown on my face, and what it reflected must have looked a lot like being sad, or tired, or angry, because seconds after trekking through Oble Garden, friends of mine called out “Be happy!”.

And it was serendipity. I felt endlessly amused that their shoutout after the initial hellos wasn’t “Are you okay?” or “Where are you going?” or “Hell week?”. The suggestion was to “Be happy!”, the possibility of which I was debating at that exact moment.

The timing of the situation amused and buoyed me up so much that I forgot about my whole dilemma on happiness; I knew, at least for that moment, that happiness could be real. And coincidental.


Thank you to my friends at that moment. Really cheered me up.

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