MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “happiness”

The dog in the window

©MCD

He was present everyday in the shop that dealt with pain and mourning. At first, when he first arrived he was the happiest dog most people had ever seen. He never stopped wagging his tail and seeking attention, jumping happily on its two feet.

But as the days passed, he noticed that people who entered the shop were not happy. And no matter how hard he tried, how much he jumped around, wagged his tail, tried to transmit his energy, they would hardly ever smile. Instead they were sobbing more often than not, drowning in a misery that was evident in the aura that accompanied them both upon their entry and their exit from the shop.

He preferred to sit at the shop window, gazing outside at the passers-by. They seemed to be happier. Every so often someone would stop and say something with a huge smile as if waiting for it to be reciprocated.

But the little dog had lost its spark. His eyes no longer had that glow anymore. And his tail did not wag that often.

That’s what usually happens when you surround yourself with misery for too long. You give up trying to float and allow yourself to get drowned into it too.   

All that matters

©MCD

For the majority of people, holidays – especially Christmas and New Year – means home. It means being surrounded by your loved ones, the people who know you best and who will be next to you no matter what. They are the ones who stay whatever the situation is and who remind you that you are stronger than you think and can survive anything. You did so far, and you will continue to do so.

There is no place you feel safer than being at home. Because here, nothing can touch you, nothing can hurt you or make you sad. You have a safety net of love that acts as a shield, helping you cope with whatever is causing havoc in your mind. And you can get lost simply staring at a burning fireplace, wrapped up in a fleece blanket on the couch.

When you have a birthday on Christmas day – like I do – you feel this season more deeply. It is your season, your time, your day. Because you have no other all year round. No one is entitled to ruin it for you and you shouldn’t let anyone do so. After all, people hurt you only as much as you allow them to.

When I tell people I have a Christmas-birthday. I get two types of reactions: one is – ‘oh how lovely to have a birthday on this special day, you’re really lucky’; and  the other – ‘that sucks, you have everything crammed in one day and don’t get all the attention you deserve’. My view is somewhere in between. I’ve said it before, there are pros and cons to having a Christmas birthday. But when you get to share this very special day with people who really care for you and you’re overwhelmed with love and wishes, that’s all that matters.

A person feels happy when they feel safe and loved. Everything else will come at the right time.

Stay positive and happy holidays everyone!

Dear Santa

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Dear Santa…

It was strange for an adult to write such a letter. She had stopped since a few years ago when the child inside her wrote a sweet letter to Santa together with her partner at the time, but she never received a reply despite the elves’ reassurances that she would. Disappointment got the better of her.

But the truth is, she stopped writing to Santa because she didn’t know what to ask for. Or rather, she didn’t feel the need to ask for anything.

This year was a bit different.

I don’t want you to bring me anything. But I don’t want you to take anything away from me either”.

She could feel the emotional charge sliding through the pen into the ink on the paper.

I don’t want things anymore. I want people, emotions and experiences. I want the things that will remain intact in time and my heart. I want to be surrounded by people who love me and who stay around for the hard times. People who love in a similar way as I do – with all their heart, unconditionally and without expected anything in return”.

She remembered how easily she could get hurt from those she loved the most, because to them she never raised a shield of protection. She left too much of her heart and soul exposed. It’s something you can’t get back. Because that is how some people love: purely.

But in reality, everyone expects something from others. It’s the source of all disappointment. That we expect and anticipate others to act in the same way we do. But not everyone has the same heart or viewpoint we do.

My wish this year is for things to fall into place. For our souls to be filled with love and serenity, for those who care for us to be strong and healthy, for all the things that cannot be bought to make us happy.

After all, the magic only happens if you believe in it”.

She signed off “with love” and let it fall in the post-box full of anticipation that this time it would be different.

The quiet friend

©MCD_Bruno

He sat there quietly. Always on the same spot on the couch where she paused for a rest from her tiring and incessant schedule.

She lightened up every time she saw him. And when they hugged, she would inhale deeply letting out a faint sigh with that exhale.

He had a way of easing the tension she inexplicably carried on her shoulders. She burdened herself with too much stress for her own good. Even he could see it.

But it was enough for him that he made her smile. And that, even if just for a little while, she would let her troubles slip away from her mind. For those few seconds she could empty her head. She found comfort in him and was grateful for his presence.

Even if he didn’t say much. Or anything at all for that matter.

It would be a little strange if he did.

After all, he was just a fluffy teddy bear.

But the person who gifted it to her knew he was much more.

Humor me

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Having a sense of humor is a trait not many are able to master. Because it requires intelligence to be able to spark a wit with effect at the right time.

People with a sense of humor are the ones you see laughing most often, even if only by themselves.

They are the ones with the greatest self-acceptance, because they have come to terms with who they are and what life has handed to them, and are brave enough to not only overcome the challenges but even to make fun of them.

They are creative – after all, it takes a lot of mental energy to come up with quick-witted jokes that put a smile on everyone else’s face. It is thus also associated with wisdom and love of learning.

People with humor understand the difference between laughing at someone and with them. They are conscientious in that they don’t need to hurt anyone’s feelings in order to make a joke.

Laughing is a state of life and it also keeps you fit physically and emotionally. 

It could be true that “a sense of humor is God’s antidote for anger and frustration” (Rick Warren).

Humor is one of our fundamental character strengths and an important survival tool. It helps gain intimacy, build connections and often buffer stress. But it is also what helps us remain optimistic. And like Elbert Hubbard said, “do not take life too seriously, you’ll never get out of it alive”.

Conserving the summer vibes

©MCD

It isn’t really the return that hurts the most. It’s the crash landing that you feel you subject yourself to when the holiday ends. Because now you have to return to everything you were trying to escape from, to hide from, to pretend they don’t exist. You have to garner the strength to face it all. The reality, the routine, the “normality” you allowed to fade away while you were enjoying the sun, the sea, the fun, the new relationships and experiences the season brings.

We easily fall into depression when the summer ends and we are forced to return to our “ordinary” lives with whatever that entails. Because “normal” has a different definition to each person.  And we strive, at least for the first couple of days, to maintain that optimism and joy the sunlit weeks brought upon us. We struggle to maintain not only the memories of the most enjoyable season of the year, but the mood it brings along. We hope it won’t fade as soon as our tan-line does.

But the thing is, every season has its perks. There is something to enjoy every month of the year – every day, even. We simply need to have the determination to put all those dreams we make when we’re relaxed into concrete actions at any time. Our goals aren’t really seasonally. We can dream and make plans and set targets all year round. And if we’re decisive and courageous enough to take the risk, we can make them happen. We may even be able to conserve that summer optimism and cheerful mood.

The most important medicine

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They told him he would be foolish to abandon everything he had spent his whole life creating. He had a successful legal office and had a good reputation among his peers.

But when his wife got sick, he didn’t consider it at all. For him it was obvious that his place was by her side. Always and at all costs. It was what they had vowed to each other so many years ago.

He didn’t see it as making sacrifices. He saw it as standing by and supporting the person he loved.

He didn’t care that he spent his whole life being next to her, even when she stopped remembering him. He continued his efforts to remind her of his love for her every day and refused to stop trying or to not be there, for her. So that she would feel safe and cared for.

He believed with all his heart that when you love someone you dedicate to them a part of your life, your time and your interest.

For him being with the person he loved and shared his life with was much more important that work, money and material goods.

Love is sometimes the most important medicine.

The actions we do voluntarily

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Every time you bend down to pat a cat or a dog, to take care of a wounded bird or an animal that needs you, you grow taller as a person”.

Daisy’s uncle was a vet and he had witnessed many examples of human cruelty. Behaviour he could neither explain nor understand.

He used it to teach his niece about life in general.

People always say a lot. They announce promises they don’t intend on keeping. And make statements simply for pleasing others. They tend to speak what they believe others want to hear”.

As Daisy grew older, she understood more of what he was trying to say.

It is people’s actions you should look for. How they behave when they have nothing to gain in return, what they do to keep you happy. It’s their actions that define who they are. Not the words they say”.

With the onset of her first heartbreak, Daisy realised that it is the simplest of things that can touch a person’s heart. Just like the attention you give to a stray, people too want to feel loved and cared for.

It is the “good mornings” and “good nights” you exchange with someone you love regardless the distance that is between you.

The fact that you tell them how much you miss them and all of a sudden they appear shortly after unannounced at your door so you won’t feel that pain any more.

It’s that hug you so long for after a difficult day when you feel broken and insecure.

It’s the things you do without being asked that show how much you really care.

Her uncle used to say, “In every relationship, be it with humans or with animals, the magic only lasts as long as you maintain the effort and believe in it. Indeed, ‘forever’ only has the duration you assign to it.

Life is the moments we spend being happy. Everything else is just a waste of time”.

The happiness we refute

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“Do you want to go outside and play?” “No,” he replied irritated.

“Do you want to watch a movie?” “No”. His agitation increased with every proposal he refuted.

The truth is, little Josh didn’t know what he wanted. He was in one of those moods were nothing was good enough but even that nothing could not make him feel better. He was missing something but could not precisely state what that was.

His aunt came in the door after leaving him alone for five minutes petting Thunder, the small poodle that was lying on the couch perplexed with the situation.

She brought him a bowl with two scoops of ice cream. Ice cream always made things better for young and old. It was a sort of remedy for whatever you had, no matter if you couldn’t even define the problem yourself.

Josh relished every spoonful he tasted. When it was over, he turned to his aunt and said “Can we take Thunder out for a walk?” She nodded relieved and satisfied.

Sometimes it’s not the details that we’re missing, but the action. When our mental or sentimental world is in turbulence, our mind gets upset too. It’s not that we are not content with what we have. We are just longing for the reassurance that we matter and that things are not as bad as we often make them out to be. After all, we are only as happy as we allow ourselves to believe we are.

The meaning we give

©Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

It was on the dining table. A constant remind of the feelings that characterised that house. Passion, love, caring, sensitivity.

Inundated with colour, the crystal vase featured seven gold-tipped roses. Perfectly stemmed, with petals opened just enough to demonstrate their purity and elegance; the roses were a gift from the heart.

They enclosed a memory of a day overwhelmed with emotions, happiness and optimism. Of a day that brimmed of hope for what was to come. For a future full of colour and love.

They were an everyday cue that love is just a word until someone gives it meaning.

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

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