Relax, LubbyGirl. I just have a few questions to ask you, and then you can go home. No, no, I won’t lock you up if you just cooperate. Now, first question……………….
I’ve been asking myself a few questions lately. Not mafia-style questions . . . my back up against a brick wall, a bright light in my eyes, screaming in my own face (yes, it can be done).
No, I’ve pondered quiet, pensive, inner-person-searching questions – like, what REALLY makes me happy? What do I love for dinner? How come my dog looks like a hobo and everyone else’s just came from the groomer’s? How many of those little squeeze-eyed babies are there in the hospital birthing room tonight? If I write and write and nobody reads, will I still write? Those kinds of things.
And you know what I found out about myself? It doesn’t take a lot to make me happy. A night snuggling with hubby, watching old I Love Lucy episodes with him and the dog (of course he watches I Love Lucy – doesn’t everybody’s dog??). Walking around town with hubby, looking at old houses and wondering what it’s like to live in them. Strawberries!!!! Sharing a laugh and a cup of coffee with close friends. Listening to a really thought-provoking sermon and actually putting what I learned into practice.
Growing up, I remember thinking I would be happy if I had a watch and a new bicycle. Rich kids had those things, and they seemed to be happy. Of course, I never actually KNEW any rich kids, other than the one whose parents owned the house we rented when I was 10. He was a brat, very rude and unfriendly, and always bragging about what he had. Hmmm….maybe he wasn’t so happy after all. I wonder why he always hung around our poor ol’ house and all us kids, if he thought so little of us. Oh well, no matter – we were having too much fun playing Red Rover and Cowboys & Indians and marbles and so forth to worry much about his sour disposition.
When I got my first watch and bicycle – in the very same year, for Christmas!!! – I really thought I had arrived. I was just like the other kids. No more being made fun of, no more being different. Well, mostly no more being different. Foster kids are always a little bit different, but having a watch and a bicycle helped make me more like other kids. But it didn’t really, honestly, completely make me happy.
If I just had a pair of go-go boots! That would do it. Those were the ticket in the 60s. Well, I got some, but not the sexy, clingy Nancy Sinatra type. I got the clunky, short topped ones. But, hey, they were white, and they were official go-go boots. I tried to swallow my disappointment and be thankful; but truthfully, I felt even more different. But I wore them, even though they rubbed blisters on the back of my calves. And they got rave reviews from some of the other teenage girls, and that was what really mattered to me then, so it wasn’t so bad after all. I wanted to be just. like. them.
That was then. Now, I find that it doesn’t matter as much if I’m different. In fact, I rather like not being a carbon copy. I like being myself, even if that means I have granny beads and crow’s feet. My hair is white in most places, and where it’s not, it’s steel gray. The curls don’t cooperate, the straight parts don’t care if they agree with the curls or not, and the two cowlicks are my claim to fame when I go to the hairdresser.
Happiness is fleeting, but JOY is forever. I have joy in knowing my future, and it doesn’t have a THING to do with the things I have, or the opinion of others, or even whether I’m different or the same or any combination of the two. Joy comes in knowing I have a home in heaven with the LORD, and nothing can take that away from me. So, that makes me happy. Now I have both happiness AND joy, and ya can’t beat that with a stick!!!