Along with feeling disheartened by the many challenges of a seemingly endless quarantine, I’m also experiencing happiness. How is that possible?
Two happiness high points occurred during this otherwise gloomy week. Both provided glimpses of the world creaking open, offering re-connection to community.
These were simple events – a neighbor bringing a surprise flat of flowers and another who’d never called before, requesting a 6’ social distance walk together – both hardly earth shattering. But somehow, they rocked my constricted world with optimism, providing renewed connection and hopeful hints at lockdown’s impermanence. I was surprised and grateful for suddenly feeling happy.
So, if social distancing lasts longer to ensure that we can all be safe, I’m working at paying these good feelings forward, working to provide glimmers of hope for others as well as myself, cracking through our collective isolation.
Lately I’ve been on the lookout for ways to share and connect with others, starting with baking cookies for neighbors and cutting flowers tied with ribbons, leaving them on doorsteps. Widening the circle, I now add extra groceries to my own weekly list to give to the local food bank (Narberth Food Bank) and also contribute online (Philabundance and Eldernet Food Pantry) I’m happy doing these things and am now reaching out more frequently to friends, relatives, neighbors and community with my voice and my actions.
It’s ironic and pleasantly surprising that in the midst of a crisis, happiness can arise. I discovered that it is possible to keep it going but it takes awareness and practice.