Monday, July 23, 2012

Choosing happiness.....one day at a time


Last week was a busy week, some of it happy, some of it sad. I read a book that contains daily thoughts and wisdom about loving an addict.  One of the readings last week stated that we can “choose” to be happy whether the addict in our life is actively using or not.  I have a long way to go with that, but I’m working on it.  I know I am not much use to my son or anyone else in my life if I can’t manage to make peace with the path we are on now.  He is an addict.  He is in jail.  It is what it is.
            I know that choosing happiness will be easier some days than others, and there will be days when I fail, but I’m going to try my best.  “Fun” really hasn’t been in my vocabulary since I learned of my son’s addiction and arrest.   I think it’s important to remember to have fun sometimes.  So, when I got the chance to see James Taylor in concert last Thursday, I went for it.  Seeing James Taylor has been a dream of mine since I was 16.  He was AMAZING!  He sang for 2 1/2 hours, and sounded just as good as he did 40 years ago.  I kept looking at him and thinking, “I can’t believe that I’m sitting here watching James Taylor.” For three blissful hours, I enjoyed myself, and “chose” happiness.  Just for awhile I was 16 again, without a care in the world.  I could close my eyes and imagine that I was, once again, that na├»ve teenager with my long hair hanging halfway down my back, wearing an ankle length skirt, sandals, a white gauze blouse, a headband,  a peace symbol  necklace dangling on a thin strap of leather around my neck, swaying to the music.  It felt good.  It reminded me of how much I miss having fun.

I pray that the Lord will help all of us open the gift He left us.  I know that it is only with His help that I will be able to choose happiness again.


"I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid."
~ John 14:27, NLT

8 comments:

  1. I saw James on July 9th! He was truly amazing and when he sang You've Got A Friend, I cried like a baby. I am tearing up just thinkng about it now. That evening was one of the nicest ones I have spent in a very long time. Thank you for reminding me of it. You don't know how much I needed that reminder today.

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    1. I'm glad my post reminded you of something nice. It's important that we hold onto those good memories. I'm right there with you on "You've Got A Friend," what a great job he did on that one. Fire and Rain got to me too.

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  2. I can almost see the 16 year old girl you describe...carefree and happy, singing along with the music. You portray such a wonderful evening. Good for you for choosing happiness! I hope there are countless more happy moments and many more dreams that come true.

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  3. Wow, the timing of me reading this post is interesting. I just got back from visiting my wonderful therapist and we had just talked about choosing to be happy whether the addict was using or not...and then as I was leaving he told me he was going to visit his parents at Martha's Vineyard for a week and that as a kid growing up there his best friends were James Taylor and Carly SImon's children and that he would sit in the barn and listen to James play guitar!!!!

    Its not easy to choose happy, but it is possible on some days. I've found it takes practice and determination. I also get what you mean about fun...we need to find it and experience more often!

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    1. You're so right about the practice and determination needed to choose happiness. It's not always easy , and I know there will be days when it might not be possible. It sure does the soul good on those days when we can though.

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  4. Thanks for your post - I needed to hear that! What is the title of the book? It sounds like something I need to read.

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    1. The book I referred to was Courage to Change. I bought it through the Alanon online store. It has lots of good stuff for anybody who loves an addict whether you go to Alanon or not. It has daily thoughts which are great, and also has a subject index that I use a lot to look up any particular problem I may be facing.

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