Welcome once again to Everyday Magic, coming to you for the first time in this brand new year of 2011! The holidays are at an end, and routine has made its annual encroachment back into our lives. But no worries there - good old routine will soon be welcome enough.
Today is all about a choice. For many years, my mother kept a little framed embroidery sample hanging in the upstairs bathroom, just above the towels. Being in such an often used room, the members of our family had many opportunities to read it throughout the day - as we went about brushing our teeth, bathing little ones, washing hands and so forth. It read as follows:
"We are as happy as we make up our minds to be."
Now as a child, this phrase was lost on me. I thought it meant that we would be happy when we made up our minds to become something. We are as happy as we make up our minds to be... nurses? To be mothers? Primary leaders? I was a long way off the mark. This little quote means that we are only as happy as we choose to be. What an idea! We can choose to be happy... just imagine the sorts of possibilities that open up.
This idea came back to me as I was sitting around on the couch a couple nights ago. I hadn't been given much homework, so I was rather bored. Without some sort of productive occupation, I'd had a relapse of homesickness and was vainly craving human companionship. I had been in such a sorry state for over an hour before it occured to me. I didn't have to be miserable. I could choose, right then and there, to be happy, have a good day, and to be content with where I was. Even though the lonliness did persist a little, I was much improved thereafter.
The decision is yours, my friends - happiness or sorrow, contentment or misery. Your pick. And while there is no doubt that our circumstances do contribute to our emotional well being, they are only what we make of them. In the words of a poet, "Environment is but [our] looking glass." We possess the ability to make the world around us completely miserable if we view it through the wrong mindset. But if we can make the world miserable, surely we can make it joyful as well?
Perhaps I am simply a broken record. The appearance of the world depends on how you look at it - I've surely said it a thousand times. But it's a true now as it was last semester. Your world is only as bright, as beautiful, as magical, and as happy as you make up your mind that it shall be.
May you be safe and cared for, my friends, 'til next we meet...