September 30, 2013

Self Discovery I: Writing

I made an important self discovery the other day. I need to write. It's not a want or desire. It's necessary for my emotional health.

I think I was under the impression that I wrote for future generations. For my family to remember the things that we did. Or the thoughts I was thinking. Maybe for me to remember the place where I once was...emotional, physical, intellectual parts of me. 

It's not true though. When I write I discover what's most important to me. It balances out my thought process and keeps me centered, heart and mind. When I don't write, I'm not happy.

I've been considering personal happiness over the past couple of months. Am I happy? With my family? With my career path? With my company? With my religion? With me? And after these questions, I dig in further...assuming that what I'm doing doesn't satisfy...and ask more. Who else is happy? What are they doing? Should I be doing something different?

To be sure, I have what most people think will make them happy. I have a large family. We read scriptures and pray together every evening. I live in a large home in a beautiful neighborhood...everyone waves to each other when we cross paths. My brothers and I own a thriving business. I serve in my church and get to be with my sons as their cub scout den leader. I read both as an escape and also to allow the deep thoughts of others grow into a part of me. I learn new things about health and nutrition and try them out on my family. We don't suffer from any chronic disease. I volunteer as an art docent in my children's classrooms at school. And yet the question remains, creating a bit of unrest, does my life make me happy?

I'm feeling a pull. Something deep down within me. A longing to make the lives of others better. I could go somewhere, do something, make a positive impact in the world. The pull seems to say, go to another place. At a future time. Be amazing. You are more than your current situation.

My life if full of first world problems.

Meme credit: ? - It's all over Google.
Part of me likes that these are my issues. The worst thing about cooking yesterday was Jocelyn trying to make a smoothie and spilling water on the floor...so the wet sock part of the meme above really was my problem. Another larger part of me knows there are much more important things to worry about. 

What is hard for me to see, in the middle of the parenting forest, is that I am making a difference. Right here. Right now. In the lives of those who matter most to me. My family. If I can't find happiness in the here and now, I won't find it anywhere else.

And I definitely won't recognize it when it comes unless I'm writing about it.

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