I am feeling happy today. I have many reasons to be happy, but I think that might be true almost every day, but today I am happy for no particular reason. Not giddy happy. Not high happy. Just pleasantly happy, enjoying the patterns of clouds in the skies, the warm sun, my daughter’s little body in the giant jacket we borrowed from her brother, and my son’s lovely face as he proudly explained to yet another group about broken bones (Human Body Symposium this morning).
I am happy because I love and feel loved. I feel healthy and strong and grateful for the health of my loved ones. I feel happy because I am writing to you about love and how to express love, and I realize that just thinking about this subject fills me with a joy of life.
Giving love, I know, increases happiness. Feeling grateful increases happiness. I want my son, my daughter, my boyfriend, my parents and siblings, my entire huge family to feel secure in the knowledge that I love them. And I want to show them love with more than just words. Sometimes it’s nice to show love when the object of it doesn’t expect it. A hug, a kiss, a squeeze can mean so much.
From Gretchen Rubin’s Happiness Project I learned to wake up my daughter with a song. Eden is often grumpy in the mornings, but I noticed that when I sing for her, her little face, her cheeks puffy with sleep, lights up, and she opens her eyes to the morning with happiness and joy, secure with the knowledge of my love.
At eleven, my son is a little more reluctant to hug and kiss, but every once in a while he cuddles up to me. He leans his head on my shoulder and just sighs. I find little ways to show my love: making his favorite cheddar cheese bread sticks. Buying him those jello containers he likes. Telling him I love him. Coming to events in his class. Listening when he plays his two instruments. Accepting his little gestures of love.
Gretchen Rubin chose as one of her keys to feeling happier to “hug more, kiss more, touch more.” With the kids, with Dar, my parents and even with the dogs this is great advice! This morning I sat with Chaim, my alpha dog, and I petted him for ten, maybe fifteen minutes, just him and I. The result: I felt quieter, calmer and happier. And if a dog can make me feel so much love, how much better with every hug or kiss from the children and Dar!
So today I feel happy, and I wanted to share the love with you. I hope you can find someone (appropriate) to hug today. Share a kiss with your loved ones. Get that amazing feeling of completeness with someone, human, cat a dog. I wish you a love day, love week and love year. And please remember to spread the love to everyone you hold dear. (Hey! That rhymed!)