Do You Squash Your Joy?

I cried with joy last night.

Let me explain because for me this is a big deal.

Whenever I had joy when I was young, I was told not to get too attached because it wouldn’t last. Hard work is what brought dreams I was told. It turned out to be true too. So after a few disappointments, I learned to hide my feelings, stuff them, ignore them or settle for them if I had to. I found ways to avoid them by working or with distractions. I was raised a warrior. The emotions of the lover archetype did and still do not come easy to me and that definitely includes tears – especially of joy.

I cannot remember a time before my husband (big-time lover) when I would have felt ok, or even the urge, to cry with joy. Sadness absolutely. Anger - almost always. But joy? I would squash that joy just a bit and tell myself all the things that could go wrong so that I didn’t ‘get my hopes up’. Practical, right?

The thing is, even when we plan for the demise or change, it doesn’t make it hurt less. It just prevents us from really feeling the joy while it’s available.

There’s risk in feeling joy so sweetly, so deeply and so perfectly.

The risk is we know it will change. Each moment changes and with a blink, pure joy can move out of sight again. This isn’t really a risk as much as an unspoken law of the Universe. It will happen whether we avoid the joy that’s here, ignore it, belittle it, chase it away or sit back and freaking love the monkeys out of it. The only difference is the joy we allow ourselves to feel as we have it.

So I ask: Are you allowing joy in or are you minimizing it in hopes the pain will be lessened when things change?

All things are momentary - that's the bitter sweet of any beautiful thing - it fades. It's what we do with the beauty and the magic while it's here. Roll in joy. Bask in the warmth. Grab every little bit of goodness out of it - that's how we justify the pain later. Enjoying it makes it worthwhile. Otherwise, we are just spending time waiting (and looking for the impending doom).

When we sit around planning the end, we’re already half out. We’re already misusing energy that could be directed to the joy present now.

Stay fully present to embrace all the joy. I challenge you.


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