Friday, May 24, 2013
Finding the joy
This gorgeous photo is of my aunt, I wrote about her here, do have a read, she's very special to me for many reasons, but when I saw this photo of her, for me, it summed up the way she's chosen to live her life. Because this is a photo of a woman just turned 70 who is having a moment of joy. And my aunt has gone chasing joy in her life. Only recently she married her extremely long term partner and took themselves on an extended honeymoon to Paris, where they explored, they found new friends, they drank red wine in cafes while people watching and they immersed themselves for a few weeks in a life different to their own. They were newly weds and they were 70, and they were having an adventure. A joyous adventure.
There are only some people who hunt down joyous moments. For many of us, if we serendipitously stumble across such a moment, we cherish it, and breathe it in, but it's a happy happenstance we've found it.
But joy comes from the soul, it's felt rather than experienced. Everything needs to be aligned for it to be "just so", it's not just the event, it's about your attitude and your willingness to embrace this with happiness and excitement. It's all in your head.
You see in this photo, my Aunt could have chosen not to stick out her arm, she could have wanted to, but decided not to, or she could have watched others and envied them for doing so, or she could have stuck it out but been terrified. Instead my Aunt would have stuck her arm out roaring with laughter (I'm guessing that was fact), and embraced that moment. And then moved on to the next event to experience another moment.
Joy needs to be hunted down with passion. The mundane can transform into something special with a mere twinkle of an eye, and your head being in the right space.
I play a little drive way basketball with my littlest fella. We all do. It's just what we do at the moment. The passion which he throws himself into the game makes me chuckle and warms my heart. He walks around with a joyous spring in his step, his joy is infectious. My husband and I talk about protecting his joy, of nurturing it, of not shutting it down with our need to rush, and do stuff.
And my Aunt is an inspiration. Because if you believe in joy, you will always find it. Whether you're 7 or 70, it's always there if you want it to be.