"People don’t notice whether it is winter or summer when they’re happy." – Anton Chekhov
OK, today’s posting is a little late. You see, I was reserving Tuesday’s act of JOY for an event that I had scheduled for that night. I was sharing my book, “Dear David: Dealing with My Son’s Addiction One Letter at a Time”, with a group of parents whose children suffer from addiction. These parents were pretty new to this world of addiction, as their children were currently in treatment. I was sure my talk would bring JOY. When you are in the midst of “Is this really my life?” craziness, there is no better feeling than knowing you are not alone. Normally my stories elicit smiles and nods of the head. But this group was different; they were of the “I can’t believe I am a part of this group” variety. I am certainly not saying they were not a welcoming group. It’s just that they are so new to this addiction stuff, that at this point, they fail to see any redemption, humor, much less JOY in my stories.
So, I have to cheat a little and tell about JOY from the night before.
There is nothing, absolutely nothing that gives me more JOY than my Soul Line Dancing class. Thus it was with great sadness that I learned it had been cancelled. I was so disappointed, I wandered around the house with a frown on my face, like a child who has just been told she cannot go visit Santa today (“But you promised!”)
Since I was feeling so distressed, I decided to call my friend, Gloria, to ask if she wanted to go see a movie with me. Gloria is always up for an event, and I thought this would be no exception. To my surprise, she said no, the weather was too darn cold. I reminded her that we live in Minnesota, and this dreadful cold weather has never deterred us before. I am happy to say she came over to my thinking almost instantly.
So, today’s act involved turning a sad disappointment into an anticipated JOY. It was giving me JOY to be with Gloria, it was giving Gloria JOY to get out of the house (and perhaps to be with me). And the movie, “Loving”, was good to boot, with a JOYful ending, although it did take an awful long time to get there.
The icing on the cake? One of the most JOYful people I know, my friend, Pastor Lois, was walking out of the theater at the same time, having just seen “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them”. I was overjoyed that two of my favorite people, Gloria and Lois (“Marty talks about you all the time!”) were able to meet.
So, sadness averted. JOY wins out.