Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Changing my feathers

A few months ago, there was an article in Good Housekeeping about happiness.  Ok, there is always an article about happiness, and I rarely read them.  Sometimes, they are just touchy-feely crap and that annoys me.  Sometimes they talk about writing happiness journals.  You see the frequency that I'm on here to blog.  Do you think I really have time for that?  Anyway, I read the opening paragraphs, and it talked about choosing to be a bluebird of happiness or a pigeon of discontent.  I didn't go much further, but liked those expressions.

I want to be a bluebird, but know that I'm genetically programmed to be a pigeon.

But I want to change.  Since July of last year, our family has lost several significant members.  It's been rough, to say the least.  There was the dear family friend, who, to this day, I still call "Uncle."  He and his family were so critically interwoven with my childhood that to remove them would undo the whole fabric of my life.  He was one of the happiest people I had ever met, and you just felt good being around him.

My cousin-in-law (with whom I share a brain.  We seriously, have been able to finish each other's thoughts and sentences since our second meeting) lost her mom.  Her mom was awesome, just like her daughter.  It breaks my heart that my other brain half has to be without her mom for not only the everyday things, but for the big things too, like the birth of her child.

My great aunt, who was my grandfather's twin sister passed away last September.  I know that she had her struggles, and that maybe she was not the most pleasant to live with, but, boy, did she love me and my brothers.  Growing up, she lived across the back porch from my grandmother, and it was like having two sets of grandparents for the price of one.  My aunt always seemed happy to me, even when she was complaining.

I still cannot even begin to describe the hole that losing my Mimere has left.  She was so pragmatic about life, and NEVER complained.  I wish that I could be more like that.

This week, my mom's cousin passed away.  My mom had lived with him for a while growing up, and they all grew up together in the same four family house.  For her, it is like losing her big brother.  He was a golden boy, upon whom the sun always seemed to shine.  I'm sure that it didn't, but that was the perception.  He was another one of those happy people, even in sad times.  You couldn't help laughing when he was around, especially when he was picking on my mom, as only a "sibling" could.

It has been so many losses, but, in shedding my pigeon persona, I want to think about the gains.  I want to not want to want what others have, like my grandmother.  I want to be happy in nature, like Aunt Millie.  I want to make the best of the situation, just like Uncle Phil or John would have.  I want to enjoy my children and husband.  I want to laugh every day.  I want my life to be content.  I want to be a bluebird.

I'm trying, I really am.

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