I have always wanted to punch people in the throat who say that happiness is a choice. It took me 39 years to succumb to that philosophy. You see, I have this nasty, hissing, hateful voice in my head that tells me, " Not today, Erin. Today you are weak, worthless, hideous. Today you are a failure and you should review each and every one of your shortcomings and hate yourself for them." The guy in my head is a real asshole. Some days he wins. Some days i can barely get out of bed. I don't answer my phone, i hate everyone for existing and doing it better than me. I avoid the mirror so I don't have to see all of the years that I wasted making bad decisions. Like I said, that guy in my head is a dick. Some days, however, I tell him to fuck right off. Out loud, fuck you, go back to your demon's lair and fuck with someone else.
These are the days that i choose to see the light instead of the dark. My teenager is wearing her makeup like Divine? Let me take a picture so we can have something to laugh about in 5 years. My son looks like he combed his hair with a piece of fried chicken and we're late for school? Fuck it. Let me take a picture so we can go over it again when your balls drop. And those mornings when my baby squeals with joy as he finger paints his crib with poop? I can hardly wait to tell this story at every family gathering from here until I die. On these days I look in the mirror and am pretty impressed that this girl survived. Her body made 3 brand new humans, her heart still loves, and if you squint just right and dim the lights, she's still kinda smokin'.
I am learning to savor the days. The tiny spaces in between the chaos. I have learned the importance of forgiving myself and everyone else, because all of us are just trying. Some more than others, but we're all paddling up the same shit creek. I have learned the joy that can be had in cooking a meal for someone you love, or having a stiff drink and a hard laugh with someone who has the same battle scars. I have learned that love doesn't always work out. That those halcyon days of new love are as precious as life itself, but they don't last forever. Love is the hardest thing i've ever attempted, and I have mostly failed miserably at it. I am learning that the reward of it is in the struggle. It is the resin that holds you together when you have to move mountains for one another. If you find yourself with a person who's resin doesn't stick, leave them and move your own mountains, and at the end of the day, look around at the space you have carved out for yourself, and take a moment to be thankful for it, because it can all be taken away in a beat of a heart.