I’ve never been great at the old positive thinking lark. A few years ago two people each separately gave me copies of The Secret by Rhonda Byrne. It was a few months after our daughter had been born with physical and intellectual disabilities and I was – to put it mildly – very low and stressed. I have always had a bit of a weakness for self-help type books (especially space-clearing and feng shui) so I figured I’d give this one a go. ‘Cos it had to be a good sign that two people who didn’t know each other both felt this might help me, right? Wrong! Couldn’t finish it. It is extremely rare for me not to finish a book even if I think its garbage, but I really couldn’t plough through that. The whole ‘think positive and you will get what you want in life’ never really sat well with me and even less so at a time when all I really wanted was for my beautiful baby girl not to have disabilities. It just seemed too simplistic somehow. I know it works for a lot of people, just not for me.
Anyway, a few days ago I spotted friends of mine posting up all kinds of pics on Facebook and tagging them #100HappyDays. Being the incurably inquisitive person that I am I asked what it was about, then googled it. (Should that have a capital G? Never sure.) And its all about encouraging people to see what is in their lives that makes them happy. Well that’s my understanding of it. Find out for yourself – 100 Happy Days. The idea is you take a photo of something that has made you happy each day and share it on social media and over the 100 days you become more aware of what makes you happy and how much there is already in your life that makes you happy. I think that’s the idea anyway.
Its a strawberry planter I bought years ago and used for one season. So today I planted it up with brand new strawberry plants and thought about the strawberry jam I’ll make later this year. (Even if its only one jar!) And you know what? That did make me happy. Life can be painful, cruel, unfair and immeasurably stressful at times. But if I can find one little thing each day that makes me feel genuinely happy, then that has to be a good thing.
Right now I’m sitting at my kitchen table mentally patting myself on the back for having grabbed the half-dry washing off the line before this downpour started. Happy? Hmmm, maybe. Happy that it’s now drying on the clothes horse and not getting steadily soggier on the line. Happy that there’s two less loads of laundry waiting to be done. Not jumping around the house shouting for joy happy you understand, but yes, a quiet kind of contentment. I’ll settle for that right now. (Oh and I’m happy that I’m back blogging after a few stressful months. Did you miss me?)