Someone who has been an important part of my life, stopped what they were saying the other day, long enough to ask me a simple question.
“Are you happy?”
I don’t know if my chest tightened and a lump formed in my throat big enough to nearly stop the breathing because it’s a hard question or if I was just surprised at the sincerity of the asking.
Having known me on all stages of my life since I was about 22, I was aware of the underlying issues being brought out in that one question.
Our day to day, every day people don’t often ask about our state of being. Sure, we might say, “Hi. How are you?” but it’s not the same.
There was a deafening, overly long silence and I knew I needed to blink back the tears that had welled out of nowhere.
“Are you happy?”
It shouldn’t be this hard.
When you are the Happy Fun Girl, you have to stop for second and take an assessment of the situation and ask a few questions of your own. You also have to stop and be honest and grateful that you are no longer The Angry Pissed Off Girl because she’s not a very good leader.
So I carefully considered the question, with all of its hidden layers.
Are there things you would change? yes. Do you have any more clarity or direction than you did before? yes. Does everything that happened make sense? no. Do you wish it had ended up differently? yes. Can you be okay and happy just trusting God is with you? yes. Are you better now, on the other side of it all? yes.
But I couldn’t answer with a one word, “yes.” It’s still not that simple.
“Yeah. I think I am.”
“Getting there anyway.”
Then I began to ramble the way we do when we want to convince ourselves and others that there is no longer hurting. My pitch got higher.
“There are a lot of things I’m excited about right now,” I started a mental list in my head, “I’m able to do some of the things I really enjoy doing again so, yeah, I think I so.”
There was another dreadfully long pause while I sat and stewed in my response.
And then the confession.
“I get lonely sometimes.”
As soon as I said it, I wanted to take it back, those four vulnerable words. I was afraid it sounded like an invitation. I worried it resonated on the other end in a pathetic love me…love me, kind of way.
What I meant was, it’s often quiet.
Many days I’m just stuck with my own thoughts in my own head, forced to come up with my own solutions and that sometimes gets lonely. You know, not having someone to bounce things off of. No one to boss you and tell you what to do. As much as I hated that growing up, I crave it now.
My dog is only somewhat helpful. He just gives me that look that says, “I’m sorry. I don’t speak your language or know what you’re talking about. I only understand short, one word sentences.”
Let’s go over them again.
And come snuggle me.
That’s why they are man’s best friends.
Sometimes there are no easy answers to hard questions. We have to sit with the silence and find a place where we are comfortable in our own skin. No longer striving to be heard or noticed, or loved.
Trusting completely in one day at a time and the one word that holds the power to change everything.