Tuesday, April 26, 2011

What did it look like when I was happy?

What a powerful line. What a powerful question.

I'm not usually one for deep thinking an already deep subject as it seems rather redundant, but this is an exception. Tonight, is an exception.

I finally watched Eat, Pray, Love. And sadly, I can't help but ask myself the same question as the young girl in India, what did it look like when I was happy?

Because truth be told, and not many people admit this, I'm not really happy right now. Whether it be the lost love recently suffered, being laid off, homesick, or the bad luck I seem to always encounter, I'm just plain in a seemingly downward-spiraling rut. Whatever the reason, the current outcome and state of mind is the same - discontent, unhappy and more of the same.

The question in the movie is a good one. It speaks of a time in the future when the young girl knew she'd be happy, and she wanted so badly to feel it right that very minute. That's kind of where I am. Wanting to remember what happiness looks and feels like. Wanting to feel assured that it will come again.

I believe there comes a time in everyone's life, that in a time of negativity, in a time that when it rains it pours, that something or someone speaks to us. I can't help but have this jealous craving for wanting what Liz Gilbert (played by Julia Roberts) has in this movie. She has the freedom to do whatever the hell she wants, no matter the cost in time or money. I wish life could be so easy. That I could pick up and go find whatever it is I've been missing. What I would give to be able to take a sabbatical from life - from all the mundane daily tasks on my to-do list, the people who have wronged me that I can't seem to forgive and move past, the bills I have to pay, the broken heart I seem to keep fixing only to be broken again - all of it.

While the movie did give me hope (which thankfully, I've never really lost even in moments of dire sadness), it's created this absolute monster in me that needs a break from life. I'm only 29, I get it. I'm not saying I've lived this sad, tragic life, but for whatever reason, it's been hard. My responsibilities are minor and scattered compared to that of other people my age, so maybe I should head off to some sort of mental or spiritual recess?
"Happiness is the consequence of personal effort. You fight for it, strive for it, insist upon it, and sometimes even travel around the world looking for it. You have to participate relentlessly in the manifestations of your own blessings. And once you have achieved a state of happiness, you must never become lax about maintaining it. You must make a mighty effort to keep swimming upward into that happiness forever, to stay afloat on top of it."
Like Liz, most of us go through moments in life where we feel we are nothing more than injured souls. My soul feels injured on so many levels which makes it hard to know just where to pick up and start fixing. Watching a movie like this, at a time like this in my life, makes me realize how guarded I should have been of my soul, of my happiness. Before you know it, you end up feeling like a cross-country spiritual journey is your only saving grace to get your balance back.

Smile with your liver. That line in the movie was so permitting. I truly can't remember the last time I smiled so hard and so full of meaning that I smiled with my liver, can you? This is my personal quest - to find things and people in my life so substantial that when I smile, I smile with my liver and it becomes second nature.
"Hey groceries, believe in love again..."
While it may not be reasonable for me to take an entire year off from life simply in hopes of learning more about the subject by traveling abroad, I feel compelled to do something to make me feel again. I'm just not sure what that is...

And a line from the movie I feel was scripted just for me...
"It's not that I need easy right now. It's just that I can't do so hard."