What a challenge to walk outside these past few days...it's been darn chilly or darn dark.
I had a chance to get out this afternoon and it was beautiful!
The sun was shining, the wind was barely blowing...and it was great to just get out of the house. I was thankful for the weather, for life in general, for friends old and new and all those in between. I was thankful that I was able to enjoy a day off with time to myself, time at the market and time with good friends.
Many people have talked to me lately about happiness....that I look happy...that they can sense my happiness. I am truly happy right now. I had not realized how not fully happy I had been, until situations and locations changed. I shy away from saying I was unhappy...because I didn't feel unhappy. Maybe things weren't perfect, but that was okay. But maybe I was unhappy, but I didn't realize it.
I'm in a good place right now. Sure, I'm enjoying the honeymoon period of a new job, embracing a new place to live and explore and celebrating the ample opportunities to reconnect with old friends now that we are physically closer. It's easy to be engulfed by people who are welcoming and excited for me to be here and who are ready for new beginnings. I know it will not always be this smooth and this happy...but here's hoping, right? I know the road isn't always smooth, but I'm enjoying the ride right now...I think holding in the back of my mind that life isn't always perfect, easy and fun. Knowing that in our lives and in the vocation of parish ministry, tough times are always there. But at the moment, God's light is shining through me, allowing me to love and be loved through this transition. Having awesome friends and colleagues both far and near is a huge part of that.
I've also taken time recently to celebrate the small things that bring a smile to my face.
That may be dancing in the dining room (that has no curtains) to that new Paul Simon song or my favorite 70's disco hit.
It may be knowing there are fun socks on my feet, like these, from today's walk:
Or laughing when you realize the cat has gotten her mouse toy into the oven...
In these fun, happy times, I thank God for the smiles that surround me and for the opportunity to laugh. Thanks, God, for the ability to dance, sing, laugh, smile, to be with friends or strangers, and to truly be who you created me to be. (and thanks, in advance - and in looking back - for sticking with me during those really crappy times, too.)
Until next time . . .