The other day someone asked me: Genevieve, how do you stay so happy?
I was uncertain as how to respond. I kind of chuckled and thought do I really seem happy? This was the day after the funeral of a very close friend’s baby sister. I was rather stunned that this person asked me this question when deep inside I was falling apart. I thought for a second, then replied: Because I focus on the positive.
The person quickly asked: And what are those?
I replied that I am healthy. I am not dying. I have friends. Family. And my God who love and care for me deeply. I didn’t think much of our little encounter until afterwards. As I was leaving work, I began thinking about that question. I thought to myself: what made him think that? What about my behavior/attitude made him think that? I was perplexed since I didn’t view myself as being very happy. I feel stress, overwhelm, hurt, and lonely. The last feeling I had was happiness. Yet something about my attitude made this person think that I was happy. Something I either said or did made others think that I was happy. Maybe it was my smile. My hearty good-morning to them. Or, maybe it simply was because I am happy. Since if I really sit down and think about everything that has happened in my life, there has been sorrow and pain, but truly I’ve had moments of true happiness.
From the moment my parents baptized me, I’ve had the opportunity to experience true happiness. Happiness that comes from within. Happiness that is lasting. Since God is true happiness and He gave Himself to me so that I can possess the ultimate happiness. The happiness of being with Him forever. As we are taught in our early years of Catechism, if you were the only person, Christ still would have died just for you. It’s a simple way of explaining God’s love for us, yet it is so accurate. I have to remind myself of that simple phrase sometimes, and I will admit sometimes it does not seem to be enough. But if I actually took the time to think of all that has happened in my life–the good and the bad–I would have to admit that I am happy.
And because of all that, I stay happy. I know times get hard and rough, but they get better. This has been proven to me from time and time again. And, as I think about this, I realize just why one would think I am happy… because I have no reason not to be.