I sincerely apologize for having fallen off the face of the Earth for the past few months, but it has definitely been a period of growth for me that I don’t regret. I am just now starting my second semester in college and recently placed the finishing decorative touches on my very own apartment! You heard it right folks, I’m growing up and have moved on to some pretty phenomenal things.
When we last left off, I was leaving Crown Heights, and that was one of the most challenging choices I’ve ever had to make. There were so many factors that played in to it, mostly revolving around health, happiness, and missing the mountains. I was sure coming back to my great state and breathing that thinner air would be a cure all. Oh boy, was I wrong.
The journey and pursuit of happiness is not a short or pain free one. It comes with many bumps and detours, much like my beloved mountain roads. I assumed that when I came home and got my health in order my life would start looking up, and while it has, it also hasn’t. It took me a bit to realize this: regardless of where you lives there will be challenges– some the same, some different. We don’t live in a perfect world, and we ourselves are not perfect. We work hard, play harder, and sometimes when we’re going so fast in our lives we crash. We crash and have to take a look at what truly makes us happy. It’s much easier, I’ve found, to point out every single negative then it is to point out the positives. How crazy is that? Maybe it’s the, “Something better is always around the corner” mentality that doesn’t allow us to enjoy the now, or maybe it’s something deeper and within. Regardless, being happy is a constant state of effort.
In Hebrew there are two terms, emunah (eh-moo-nah) which means faith, and bitachon (bih-ta-hone) which means trust. Someone very wise once told me a little something on having these two things, “They are a muscle, and you must continue to use them. The more you use them, the stronger they become.” And I have found that to be true in every facet of life, particularly happiness. It’s a muscle, we must use it, find the little things that make us happy so that muscle is exercised and becomes strong– but the truth is, the idea of happiness is just that: an idea.
In America we live on the notion that from birth we are allowed three things, “Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”. The same wise person also told me that this is the reason we are actually so unhappy! Amazing, right? The notion that because we try so hard to be happy and sometimes aren’t (which is completely normal) makes us unhappy, leading us down this endless rabbit hole. Happiness is a state of mind that’s hard to achieve, and the sooner we can accept that, the sooner we can come to an internal understanding and peace within ourselves. It’s okay to not always be happy, and that in and of itself should make us happy.
Who am I to truly be talking about happiness though? What do I know? I’m just a tired girl going through college and trying to make every day count for something. I’m just a girl with big dreams that seem so far away. I’m just a girl who is trying to find who she is after having lost herself for a bit. The honest truth is, that’s happiness. I know that I am not alone in my exhaustion or contemplation, I know that my fears aren’t insane, and I know that one day everything will fall into a natural order.
Happiness, it’s the idea that everything will be okay at some point or another.