Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Every Day.

So today I thought about how important every day is. This isn't a "Live every week like it was shark week" feeling, but the idea that if something right needs to happen, it's got to happen every day, otherwise it quickly falls off the radar.

Point in case: this summer I picked up running. I got to be quite good at it. I finished my second 10k in under 50 minutes. But about mid August I just stopped practicing after it rained one day. And now I probably couldn't do a 10k in under an hour (we'll see, I'm signed up for another at the end of this month). I've noticed how easy it is to miss scripture study if I miss it for whatever reason for one day. Somehow it's able to slip the mind exponentially quicker.

So I wanted to post a few things that I think are every day.

Happiness is every day.

I have pondered T.R.'s "Journey" posts lately. I have been fortunate enough not to have suffered a lingering depression. I do at times get fits of depression. When my grandmother passed away in 1998 my grandfather suffered through some depression. What I remember from that time is the hours he would spend with his eyes closed (not sleeping, just sitting on the couch with his eyes closed). I don't know why that stuck in my mind, but the most cathartic feeling for me when I'm overwhelmed is to envelope myself in darkness like I imagine my grandfather was doing. Sometimes I think the feelings of sadness (or anxiety) that occur are the most piercing to the soul, and admittedly there are times when I can feel sadness coming and choose to focus on it just to feel those strong emotions stir around.

One thing that I resonated with in the posts was "I wouldn’t say that it just lifted, but rather that it very slowly and imperceptibly dissipated." I find that true of many of these fits of sadness. For me, they lift slowly as though a haze is breaking. Not all at once, but every day.

After such experiences, I set up certain perimeters in my life that I try to follow every day. I try to read more comic strips than news articles, I picked up running (for as long as it lasted), I try to balance reading for class with reading for enjoyment. I have certain art projects that I keep mostly finished - I find that I'm not terribly creative when I'm depressed, but my attention to detail increases, so I don't start anything new, just work on something fun. In the end, I fight every day to stay happy, whether I need it or not. And I find that when I do that consistently, I need it less often.

So for me, happiness is every day. It doesn't come in spurts, although it can be more concentrated at moments. And it isn't intense elation to accompany every moment. It's fighting every day, even when you don't need to.

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