Have you guys heard about the project called 100 Happy Days? My friend Carly started posting pictures on Facebook with the hashtag #100HappyDays, and it made me curious. If you check out the link, you'll see that some kid (okay, he is 27, and sadly that is a "kid" to my almost-44-year-old self) started the challenge in December because, "I believe that being happy is a choice and everyone can be happy just by appreciating little things in life one has instead of engaging in the constant chase for ever rising internal & external expectations, which leaves no time for being happy." I won't comment on the grammar, but I love the sentiment. He asks that you join the challenge, and then every day, for one hundred days, you post a picture of something that makes you happy. Anything!
Last year took a toll on my happy, optimistic self. We started 2013 with a horrible and shocking loss that shook our whole family, moved on through a lengthy hospital vigil while one of my best friends from high school prayed her 12-year-old-daughter wouldn't die (she didn't), sailed through the fall down the stairs that nearly killed me, enjoyed the summer and then launched into my dad dying, my beloved dog dying, and a ridiculous hospitalization for me because things were trapped in my uterus (yup, try to figure that one out). I started 2014 with a guarded optimism that grew as the first few months were actually pretty nice, then I got crabby all over again when this damn disc popped in my back, flattened my nerves, numbed my leg and caused constant and unending pain.
That whole complainy paragraph is to say that I'm not feeling too happy. I'm definitely not noticing things that should be making me happy, and I am probably not that fun to be around.
So! The challenge. I'm in. I'm going to post on Twitter (@muchmamadrama) if you care to follow along. I told Caroline about the idea of using Instagram for good, not evil, and she's going to start the challenge with a few of her friends...and I can't imagine a better exercise for middle-school tweens.
So here's my first picture. This was actually taken yesterday, when Whit, Jack, Caroline and I took Piper on a hike during our spring break trip. Bear in mind, Whit is still feeling crappy from the flu, Jack is still complaining about strep, and Caroline still thinks it's too cold for spring break. My back still hurts and Piper's not perfect when we drop her leash. I had plenty of negatives swirling around my brain, yet I did stop and appreciate this moment, when Caroline grabbed Piper's leash and sprinted down the path with her. It made me thankful for my beautiful, strong, healthy daughter, and my crazy puppy, and the crisp spring air, and the very lovely experience of a family hike.