On happiness

I’ve been feeling really happy.

Yep. You read it right.

Somehow I’ve tunneled through the depression and anxiety and have found myself here, crudely smacking “SAVORY thin mini CRACKERS” from Trader Joe’s ®, listening to Neil Young croon about a harvest moon while the baby sleeps and the boy does god knows what at pre-school and the watery autumn light stretches its rectangle across the dining room floor and table.

I am happy to be here.

Earlier today I was hiking with my friend K and she said that a friend of her mom’s, who happens to be French, said this showstopper the other day:

Ze defineeshun of ‘appiness eezze deezayerink vaht you already ‘ave.


That is *exactly* how I was feeling on Saturday afternoon as I sat on my bed nursing Cal after 20 hours away in the city. My best friend Noel was visiting from Colorado and AJ took the boys so I could celebrate her birthday with her. I was nervous that I would find the whole affair supremely exhausting, but once I was a single Pisco Sour in, everything just naturally followed. Another Pisco Sour, then a dinner of Vietnamese noodles at 10:30 pm (!) and dancing to the groovy beats of some crazy DJ-meets-band situation. I felt profoundly old when I asked Noel, “So DJs play with back up bands now?!”

Why, yes. Apparently they do.

We got back to her sister’s place around 2 (!), slept till 10!! and then had a greasy egg brunch, followed by a brunch dessert.


I felt high when I got home and reconnected with the boys. For the next several hours, I swooned as I brushed my lips across Cal’s suede soft, drooly cheeks and heard Jo’s breathless declaration in the sandbox, “I have a SUPER DOOPER good idea…”

I desired what I had.

What a welcome change from the dregs of daily life. The toothbrushing battles, the hope that I’ll settle into my Zoloft dose and get some relief from daily tremors of anxiety, the remnants of snack and dinner and robot collage scattered all over the floor.


Saturday’s swoon has given way to a softer, less arching happiness. The sour spray of lime on my chicken taco and a AJ’s lingering hand on my neck just before he says goodbye. I try to pay more attention to these smatterings since I re-watched the movie The Hours when I was pregnant with Cal. I felt oddly compelled to watch it during each of my pregnancies when I hit 38 weeks. Something about the depression overtones, the hypnotic Philip Glass music, the woman-centeredness of it all.

This is the part that lingers with me—a mother talking with her daughter about  a memory from her youth.

I remember one morning getting up at dawn, there was such a sense of possibility. You know, that feeling? And I remember thinking to myself, this is the beginning of happiness. This is where it starts. And of course there will always be more. It never occurred to me it wasn’t the beginning. It was happiness. It was the moment. Right then.

6 thoughts on “On happiness

  1. I’ve only just found your blog so I don’t know you too well yet but it makes me very happy to hear of someone being so happy! Yay for your happiness!

  2. OK. I don’t think I can pull off the pregnancy part but will certainly continue trying to appreciate each fleeting moment. So far I have gotten my assessments down to a few hours so there’s still room for improvement.

    So glad to read such a pleasing, happy post from you.

    Glad you have shed most of the crap.

    Carry on,

  3. This is great! I was wondering what you ended up doing that fun night in the city. Glad it only took one pisco sour to get you ready. ; )

  4. Wonderful, as always! And I’m SO happy to know you’ve found some happiness. xoxo

    On Fri, Nov 15, 2013 at 6:02 AM, An Honest Mom

  5. This post is totally delicious. Thank you for your eloquent words of profoundness. You have said for me what I have felt so many times, and as a mom of two young ones (1 whom I am also still nursing) and companion Zoloft user for major depression and anxiety during pregnancy, etc, I can particularly relate. It sure as heck is not always like this, but when it is, I shall reread this post and feel heard and acknowledged and satisfied all over again. Big thanks. ❤

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