To Two Years of Happiness

Apr 27, 2015 by

04.27.2015 - To Two Years of Happiness

 
          “There’s a VIP section that’s 28+!” my then soon-to-be-28-year-old coworker (now friend and now a day away from 30) excitedly noted little more than two years ago, as we planned her upcoming birthday weekend at our desks.

          “That’s so extra,” I laughed. “I’m 23. I should not need to bust out my fake ID to get in anywhere anymore.”

          “But it’s 28+!” she repeated.

          “I’m 23!” I reiterated, making her laugh.

          She decided on the commoners’ part of the club at no extra cost. Ironically, I would later find myself slipping into that VIP section she spoke of. I would also find myself getting kicked out of it. I understood; I did knock over a table with the toe of my stiletto while preoccupied with the guy whose shirt I was tugging at. Surely you’ve been there.

 

***

 

          When my alarm went off this morning, I didn’t feel like celebrating today. You know those mornings that you wake up like, ugh, I have to do life today? This morning I woke up like, ugh, I have to do life today. Considering my crappy mood, I initially thought it better not to celebrate at all than to celebrate halfheartedly. But then I recalled Chrissy Stockton’s words quoted in an old blog post of mine that I happened to reread yesterday: “The more you celebrate, the more that you believe your life is worth celebrating.”

          Today, which marks two years of happiness, I sternly reminded myself, is more worthy of celebration than Italian pride back when Azzurri could play soccer, so you will pop champagne before you hit your pillow tonight. Wow, I thought next, either my beverage choices have gotten classier over the past two years or sparkling wine just happens to be what I have on hand. I smiled to myself. It was definitely the second.

          It’s kind of appropriate that I woke up today not feeling celebratory. On April 27, 2013, I did not rise in good spirits. More accurately, I wanted no part in the day ahead. I was on the brink of a panic attack due to anticipation of the uncomfortable social situation I knew I was throwing myself into: a night in Niagara with five girls I really didn’t know and a club full of people I definitely didn’t know. I cried the entire morning, trying to think of a way out of it. Ultimately, I went, partially because I had started some happiness experiment, but mainly because I have strong principles against cancelling on people.

          It sounds crazy that one night can change your perspective on your entire life, but that’s what that night did for me. I undoubtedly would have turned out happy whether it happened or not, because I had already made the decision to be. In fact, that decision was the very reason I had said yes to Niagara in the first place. Having clarified that, there is no denying that night as the point my happiness began. I noticed an immediate surge in myself afterward, and I’ve sustained that feeling since by putting it above everything else. At 23 and years deep into depression, I was in desperate need of any sort of proof that happiness was real. On this night two years ago, I got the glimpse of happiness that I needed to keep fighting for it.

          So, it is to two years of genuine happiness brought about by a girl who used to doubt its existence that I pop (untwist) my bottle. It is to the ladies, the babe in the elevator, and every stranger I encountered that night that I raise my glass. (Note to self: Invest in champagne flutes – at least the plastic kind.) And of course, it is to saying yes that I toast my champagne (sparkling wine product of Germany).

Happiness Tip: Go to Niagara.

 
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