It’s easy to get lost when the calendar starts to clear and the lunches no longer need to be packed. Instead, days are filled with I want-to and I should-be and lazy moments of deciding exactly what to do. And my happy gets lost in the pile of wet beach towels and muddy flip-flops. You know me well enough by now to know I over-analyze every situation and event and I’m not good at pretending a moment is happy when it isn’t. I try to live this one crazy life with a sense of authenticity. And that’s a gift I hope to give to my kids…it’s okay to feel the full realm of emotions. But within that realm it is always possible to find the happy.
I’ve been looking for a summer project other than making sure book three is published and completing the other two books mostly on paper and partially in my head. I’ve contemplated reading a certain number of books before school starts, studying French poetry, baking a new macaron recipe every week or training for a triathlon. But I decided on our five hundred mile drive this weekend, my goal will be simpler. I’m going to find the happy in my days and tiny moments. Because as I’ve said before, it’s not the big things—the books being published, the games being won or the gorgeous vacations—that make our lives happy. It’s the glimpse of the camellia blooming on the deck, the smile of a freckle-faced little girl pretending to be happy at her brother’s baseball game, the pitch that turns into a strike you didn’t know he could throw, the cover of the Parisian journal a dear friend gave you and handing back the rest of the bag of your favorite Cool Ranch Doritos to a toothless seven-year-old.
Are you ready to fast forward through my obsession with moments? Sorry…you can’t because I think it’s a constant battle to remember it’s not the big things in life that matter. Especially in the zip code I live in where sometimes the motto seems to be “Go big or go home.” And it is easy to think your happy place is in someone else’s backyard. So my mission, my project if you will, this summer is to find the happy. The happy that exists if there’s sand between my toes or sweat dripping down my cheeks on the baseball field. The happy that can be elusive or as obvious as the Empire State Building. Will you join me and share your happy moments with me?