Ferndale Seniors

Ferndale Seniors

HOLIDAY TIME! THAT TIME OF YEAR when we are all supposed to be happy! Set everything aside and forget your troubles. A time to experience all those warm fuzzy feelings that we only feel at this time of year. But why not all year? Why do we wait for this time of year to forget differences, express love, and be generous? Think how much better we would feel if we tried to have these feelings all year.

I am not talking about happiness. Happiness is more of a long-time feeling that is incredibly elusive, and the more one chases it, the more elusive it becomes. I am talking about those little snippets of joy that slip up on us occasionally and, if we are aware, are like a gift. Mentally, or emotionally they are like a happy little nudge from the universe which is saying, “just a little something with your name on it.”

We don’t think these moments happen often, but, the truth is that they are happening all the time and we are not aware of it. In other words, the universe is frequently nudging us with gifts, and we are ignoring them. How sad that we don’t get to have these feelings when they are right there waiting for us to notice. We don’t even have to reach. We only need to open our minds and notice.

Everyone has read articles where self-help gurus are telling us to write everyday things that made us happy the day before. We have all tried it for about a week, and run out of different stuff to write, or get bored because we are not journal-keepers. And the whole idea gets trashed.

And yet the universe just keeps sending gifts.

I am a journal-keeper. Maybe once a week or every few days. I tried the “moments of joy” list and dropped it due to running out of big new things which gave me a moment of joy.

Then one week I was troubled, and looking for anything to distract my mind while I walked my dog, Heidi. I became mesmerized by the patterns the shadows of the leafless trees made on the sidewalk. For lack of anything else, I listed this the next day. A few days later, I noticed the way Virginia’s eyes lit up just before she made a really good wisecrack. I wrote that too.

By that time, I was watching for these happy snippets from the universe. And, I think the universe was happy, because it sent me even more stuff to ponder on: The sound of Greg Pawlica laughing, Dan Martin calling with another stupid pun joke, getting hugs from people. After a while, I noticed that everything was fodder for my joy list.

I didn’t worry about repetition because some things are meant to be enjoyed over and over. I feel so peaceful at my painting table before daylight almost every morning. I love snuggling Heidi. Riding on the short bus with my seniors. There are so many things that bring me a little nudge of joy.

That was when I realized that making the list, even mentally, wasn’t necessarily the goal. Learning to open my mind and seeing the opportunities was the goal. By needing something to put on that damn list the next day, I was training myself to look and accept. I appreciate so much more around me now, and am constantly learning. Plus, I am so grateful to be given these gifts.

A word of caution. I know you will be excited and want to share, but, not everyone is tuned in, and will not appreciate what you are experiencing.

I learned this the hard way during the Chamber of Commerce Gala. A bunch of us were sitting off to the side laughing and talking. I sat back and looked at everyone, realizing how I loved each person there, and thoroughly enjoying their company at that moment.

So, I set my drink down and in loud clear tones verbalized this to all my companions. The immediate reaction was Dan Martin cutting my drinks off, followed by Joyce moving a little further away from me. So, a little discretion is advised.

Have fun, and remember to notice what makes you joyful.

Jeannie Davis 248 541 5888
Jeannie remains Number One on our own list of joys here at FF!