Happy Right Where You Are – Mental Travel via the 52 Lists Project

September 8, 2016

I’m participating in a weekly writing exercise with my wife. The writing prompts or topics – 52 of them – are varied, but each one is crafted to make you think. With this third post (the other two are in the Reflections and the Social Media blogs), I’m challenged to figure out happiness.


More specifically, the exercise this week asks me to create a list of my happiest moments. This exercise does NOT make me happy, so it won’t be appearing on the list. Not because it’s a bad challenge…but because it’s too difficult. The path my life has taken has been the yellow brick road.

I say that not to imply my streets were lined with gold and there was never anything to worry or complain about. I say that understanding full well how fortunate I’ve been in life. Without ranting more about that, here are my five happiest moments in no particular order.

  • Buying a cap gun in Spain and then using it to shoot at a rooster on a rooftop next to our hotel. The rooster stopped crowing at the sunrise. At least while we were in town.
  • Every time I wake up from surgery. With my Crohn’s and associated issues, I’ve had surgery about a dozen times in my life. I’m really happy to emerge from a procedure and have more life to live.
  • Making it home in time to intercept a certified letter meant for my parents. If you know me well enough, you know what was in the letter and why my intervention meant so much to me.
  • Realizing I’ve found the right person with whom to spend my life…and that they want to spend their life with me. This makes me happy each time I think about it and then realize it anew.
  • Getting a paycheck for crafting mental images via my laptop keyboard and physical images via my DSLR. The words I write and the photos I take are in demand and I’m happy I’m able to make a living doing the things I love.

What makes you happy? I urge you, if you’re not happy where you are or can’t come up with a short list of happy moments to make some changes. And go make yourself happy.