We Make Our Own Happiness

Just a day after posting about my stupid financial concerns and how they were impacting my relationship, I got a raise.  I guess I just need to learn to shut up and have faith that things will indeed work out in the end, even if they don’t always work out exactly as planned.

Despite my attempts at true happiness, it’s no secret that I have been struggling a little bit lately.  I was happy after posting my last entry here, but I could still have used a little inspiration.  Thankfully, that came along today.  I went out to lunch with Pattie, a friend who is also technically my boss, but not quite.  She is in the process of divorcing my actual boss, which has created a bit of a strain at work at times, but thankfully she has become more of a friend than a boss in recent years and I very much appreciate all that she has done for me.  It’s not that she has actually given me anything, at least nothing tangible, however she has provided me with more confidence and self assurance than I have ever had.  Pattie came to me around the time I had hit rock bottom and was the driving force behind my trip to Spain.  She did not suggest the trip, nor did she structure it in any way.  That was all me.  What she did was convince me that what I thought to be a ridiculous dream was actually quite feasible and all it was going to take was a little dedication and determination on my part and it could be done.  And it was done.  Even when so many people, including myself thought it was a crazy idea, she supported me and now here I am, still telling stories about my month in Madrid.  In fact, thanks to her, I am talking about spending my life with someone very special, something that would not be happening tonight had I never left the country.

I asked Pattie, “Why me?” and I think it puzzled her at first.  While we have known each other for almost 18 years, I never thought she took a particular interest in me or my success.  That sounds bad.  She is a truly caring person who wants to see everyone succeed, and given how many people she knows, I was curious as to what was it about me that stood out enough that she reached out to me at just the right time.  She challenged me to create a “bucket list” for my life and when I told her the only thing I could think of was a trip to Spain, she ran with it.  Had I never mentioned it to her, I would still be planning the trip, but she pushed me to do it in one year, not two and she honestly made me feel that it was possible to do it all on my own, and I did.  When I asked her, “Why me?” she answered that she still saw the potential for happiness hiding inside me despite my outwardly defeated persona.  I was depressed, no doubt, but she saw that I could do anything and that I could generate my own happiness, and thanks to her, I have done it, or at least I have been working on it.  She told me today that my biggest flaw is underestimating myself.  I have heard that before, but now I feel like I have been empowered to do something about it.  I feel like instead of saying ‘maybe’ before everything I say I will do, I will just say that I will do it.  No more of this “Maybe I will move to Spain.”  How about, “I’m moving to Spain.”?

She is absolutely right when she says if all I do is say I am going to do something, yet I take no action, one day I will wake up and it will be too late.  No, I can’t move to Spain tomorrow, but saying I will do it in April won’t mean a thing if I don’t start taking action now.  I want to be with Veronica, and of course my hope is that she will want to be with me and I have to tell myself, yes, I will live with her.  Obviously I need to be prepared in case things don’t go terrifically in October, but that doesn’t mean I would have to give up on living in Spain.  Instead of telling people, “Well, we’ll see how it goes, and I’ll have to plan things out real well, and of course I’ll have to contact certain people,” I am going to just start telling people I am moving to Spain.  OK, maybe I shouldn’t tell my boss that, as he may look at it as a reason to cut my hours in half, but look, I am not going to beat around the bush with him either.  The raise was nice, but I’m not sitting on stacks of money just yet.  I still need to see a lot more if he thinks I am going to stick around forever, and I sure as hell won’t sacrifice Veronica for my job.

Things are changing quickly around me, and I have to accept it and adapt better than I have in the past.  I could realistically be looking at having a new boss this fall/winter if things get ugly in the divorce proceedings between Pattie and my boss.  I don’t necessarily want that, but at the same time, that could make it much easier for me to finalize my decision to move.  Instead of fearing what may be coming, I should embrace the chance as a chance to make my life better.  I don’t know what’s going to happen, that much I do know.  I know that I have worked hard for a long time to be good at what I do, and I finally have the confidence in myself to say, yes, I can do this job anywhere.  I don’t need to keep hiding in the place I have been trapped for 18 years.  Moving on to a new place is natural and healthy and I’m going to do it.  By April of 2016, I am going to be back in Spain, and I won’t have a return ticket home.  That will be home.  It may only be home for a few years, or it may be home forever.  The fact is, I don’t know, but if I don’t take some action, I’ll never know.  I have to take the chance.  I have to take a risk if I am going to be happy.  I can never be happy if I always have to ask myself, “what if, what if?”

Every time I talk to Veronica, I am more confident I want to have her at my side through this journey of mine.  We’re not perfect and we will have disagreements, I can see that, but I think that’s a good thing to see now instead of discovering it down the line.  No real relationship goes without disagreements.  What makes a strong relationship is how those disagreements are resolved, and so far, we have done well with that.  Anything is possible, this I know, but given both of our desire to share ourselves with one another, I finally feel like I have found someone truly special.  We are comfortable with one another and that is crucial.  She trusts me enough to come here in October and I look to that as a chance to really develop what we already have.  At first, I was worried she would come here and be disappointed in me.  I’m not rich and I don’t have fancy things, but the more we talk, the more I see how that doesn’t matter to either one of us.  We want to make each other happy, and it’s those quirky little silly things that we do for one another that makes us happy.  I want to make her happy and I think she feels that way about me.  I don’t expect anything from her and I don’t think she expects anything more from me than unconditional support.  We’ve seen through pictures how each of us lives, and we’ve even made videos for one another.  Sometimes she says we don’t know each other that well, but I disagree.  I think we have gotten to know one another very well and I can not wait to hold her in my arms on October 22nd.  It’s going to be painful to see her leave a week later, but I keep assuring her, we’ll be together in Spain soon enough.

Anyway, it’s bedtime for me.  Tomorrow begins my journey once again.  Each day is a new challenge for me, and thanks to some much needed inspiration, I am ready to take it on.  Until we meet again.

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~ by James on September 3, 2015.

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