Thursday, July 19, 2012

to be happy

At lunch today I ran into a guy from high school.  I try to avoid these encounters because I usually can't remember their name, or I have nothing to say.  I'm a turd I suppose.  But today he was our waiter.  Of course.  We made it through the lunch fine and he even tried to make Quinne smile, with no success.  She was too busy yelling at us to feed her more bananas.  During the time of our service we talked small talk about our lives and future plans.  He really wants to get out of San Luis and I plan on staying here forever.  My far in the future grandbabies will visit me here.  I told him adventures are fun, but calling this place home is really something special.  I mean we live where so many people vacation and dream of living.  His response: "I don't want to end up here living a 'fake happy' life" 

Well, damn.  How do you respond to something like that?  I wanted to remind him that he's almost thirty and he'll probably be a waiter here in miserable old San Luis Obispo forever.  But, I didn't!  I laughed and said he was crazy.  You can be anywhere and not be happy.  And you can be anywhere and be perfectly happy.  It's all what you make of it.  I told him that we were so fortunate to be here, and things could be a lot worse.  A lot worse.  Have you ever watched the news, dear cynical boy from high school?  We have it good.  To be honest I felt silly and inadequate to answer his question.  I'm just some mom who lives where she grew up and probably doesn't have much to offer in intellectual conversations about life.  That's how I felt.  

We drove around to let Quinne sleep.  As we were driving I kept thinking about what he said.  A 'fake happy' life.  What was he implying?  That staying here, having babies and just being was fake happy.  Or saying it's so beautiful and quaint is pretending that we are all happy.  As I though about my own life I have to admit that I am happy.  The real deal happy. I have been given so many wonderful people in my life and for that I am so happy.  I get to do what I love for a career and for that I am happy.  I married a really great guy and have a healthy baby and for that I am happy.  I go through a lot of ups and downs but in the end happiness is on my side.  Perfection is something I'm letting go of and seeing the beauty of life with all its good and bad.  I believe that is true happiness.  Being able to appreciate what gifts you've been given no matter what life throws at you. 

We ended up in Montana de Oro.  It is a magical place.  Endless beaches, beautiful old trees and the smell of fresh air.  It was the perfect place to be after having so many thoughts on life.  I was reminded of the beauty in life with David and Quinne by my side.  It was a perfect day.  And of course I forgot the camera.  So iPhone pictures it is.

I hope you can take a minute to remember what makes you happy!



  1. I swear, sometimes people say the weirdest/rudest things to you! (I'm thinking of Kennedy's day care...) One of my pet peeves is when I tell someone I like something and then they put me down for it because they don't like it. Rude! "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all."

  2. I think that having kids gives you a new sense of what "home" means and how important it is. Before having Kale, I swore I would never move back to the small town I grew up in. It was too sheltered, too gossipy, too close to memories about all the hard things about growing up. But now that I have a son, my perspective has changed. My idea of "home" has changed. It's one of the great gifts that kids give us.