photo credit: Larry Tomlinson
Are you happy?
Think about it – ARE YOU HAPPY?
If not, why not? Puhlease, don’t tell me about your bad hair day, or your flat tire, or the dog didn’t cooperate on your walk, or that your allergies are bad today. Why aren’t you happy?
This month our Book Club book is reading The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch with Jeffrey Zaslow. (Get used to it. I belong to a book club, and if what we are reading has any nugget to be passed on, I will find it and deliver it to you.) I had dreaded reading this book because one of our friends had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and another with esophageal cancer within weeks of each other in 2007.
The time had come to face the music. So for the last few evenings I have been reading The Last Lecture. At the beginning of the book, Pausch has found out that the chemo has not worked and he is terminal, with only a few months to live. After a very short grieving period, he decided that “I won’t die the next day, or the day after that, or the day after that. So today, right now, well this is a wonderful day… I knew then. That’s the way the rest of my life would need to be lived.”
This is a Wonderful Day – Really?
Most of us don’t view each day as a “wonderful day?” If I’m honest, I have to admit that I’m more of a whiner than I would like to be. I let the small stuff get me down and as Richard Carlson says, it’s all small stuff.
I’m not talking about the stuff that genuinely makes us sad. I’m talking about chronic complaining we seem to recognize in everyone else and miss in ourselves. Why are we telling our story? Are we hoping for help? Attention? Sympathy? Are we just blowing off steam? If this were the last story we told, would we want anyone to repeat it at our memorial? AHA!!! Now THAT’S a really interesting question! (Sometimes it takes me a while to get there.)
There are days that are genuinely sad. As much as I would like to save you from these sad days, there is nothing anyone can do to save any of us from the losses we inevitably will experience during our lives. As I say when people complain about getting old, “It’s better than the alternative.”
The Wonderful Day Checklist
To help me to remember that most days really are wonderful, I developed my own Wonderful Day Checklist. Here it is so you can use it as an example of what you might include on yours.
Numba 1 – Is the sun shining? For me this is the beginning of a great day. I know it may be hot later. I’ll let later take care of itself. The sun makes me sunny and I don’t do well without it.
photo credit: IndiePics!
Numba 2 – Is the dog happy? Stuuuupid question. The dog is always happy. If I need a pick-me-up, watching her be thrilled about EVERYTHING helps to build my enthusiasm. Wag the tail, wag the tail faster.
Numba 3 – Is the plumbing working? Ok, you’re going to think this is really dumb, but I am eternally grateful, when the shower is working and the toilet flushes. I like my comforts and for me, starting my day includes a hot shower.
Numba 4 – What did I learn/remember while I walked the dog today? When we go out for our walk, I listen to books on my MP3 player. Sometimes I learn something new. Sometimes I am reminded of something I knew before it fell out of my head when I put something else in. Now it’s back in my head.
Numba 5 – Read any good jokes lately? One of my neighbors publishes jokes every Monday and Friday morning. I save them up for when I need a laugh. I will NOT be publishing them on this website because out of the 5-10 jokes he puts out each time, 1 or 2 are probably in questionable taste and are guaranteed to offend someone or maybe everyone.
This IS a Wonderful Day – Really!
Most of us agree that no matter how long we live, none of us gets enough time. Life is way too short for complaining and whining. We just sometimes forget that. We get tired. We get worn out emotionally. We lose perspective. We adopt a pessimistic point of view – everything is personal, permanent and pervasive.
Nothing lasts forever.
This too shall pass.
AND this REALLY is a WONDERFUL day.
Pass it on!