The Far-Sighted and Short-Sighted of Happiness
I tend to be a big picture person. While that is helpful in some ways, in other ways it’s problematic. So used to trying to forecast the future, I frequently can’t recognize what’s happening in the moment known as ‘now’. That kind of far-sightedness can rob one of a whole lot of happy.
Me and mine celebrated our five-month anniversary this weekend. We had a great time: dinner out, a visit to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, a long walk along the greenway, a couple of trips to the gym, among other things.
I’ve come to see the time I spend at the boyfriend’s as my version of ‘getting away to the cabin for the weekend’. It’s definitely down time and frequently it’s ‘my time’. Sure, I still struggle with quite a bit of guilt – mostly having to do with not being at the beck and call of others – and we don’t always get to do everything we want, though we do come pretty close.
We remain in the learning phase with each other, discovering all the nooks and crannies of the other’s psyches; exposing parts of our past experiences as a means of revealing what it is that makes us tick.
He makes it all very easy. I’ve never been in such a maintenance-free relationship before. In fact, we have yet to have a real argument. And, yes, I worry about such things – for I am used to such things.
Problems? Problems need solving and that’s something I’m used to doing. But joy? Oh, my… you got me stumped there.
I have to constantly remind myself to stay in the moment. But more than that, I have to remind myself that I deserve to be happy and that I have a lot to be happy about.
It’s funny how being unhappy is the thing that has become second nature for me. This kind of joy? Free from all the angst and anxiety associated with what used to pass for ‘happy’ in my life? Well, that’s rather foreign to me. It always catches me off –balance as I struggle to recognize it for what it is: happiness.
And I don’t even need the help of a gin martini to achieve that state (though, it’s always a welcome addition).
The other thing that throws me for a loop? How quiet happiness can be.
I want to rush in and fill up all the gentle lulls that occur while enjoying casually intimate, everyday moments. That’s fear in the driver’s seat; I’m terrified he will come to the conclusion that I am boring – you know, because I am not doing nearly enough. So, again, I have to remind myself to shut up and simply enjoy the moment.
It doesn’t all need to be analyzed and dissected.
It’s hard to do. I am so programmed to work at relationships, I find myself having to put on the brakes all the time. There’s nothing more annoying than someone who insists that there is something wrong when there is nothing wrong.
And there really isn’t.
Yes, we’re both human, both flawed, both possessing behaviors and habits that we could work on. The great thing? We are both mature enough to view those things as intriguing points of interest and not a reason to head to the nearest exit.
And while we can help one another grow, both of us realize that those behaviors and habits are not the other person’s to fix. In some instances it’s more a matter of adjustment than actual repair or replacement. And fixing things that aren’t broken? Well, that would be inviting problems and conflict.
So, we continue to get more comfortable with one another, still learning how to occupy the same couch. That learning curve is all a part of the journey, and to think for a moment that it has a shelf life or an end point – a time when we won’t be learning how to co-occupy this life?
Well, that would be rather short-sighted on our parts, wouldn’t it?