I am constantly inspired by the beautiful humans who surround me.
This month I’ve asked my favourite girls to tell me, ‘What does happiness mean to you?‘
Emotions are just as uncontrollable as the weather, the way our life is played out. We can only aim to improve our situations in the hope things will either fall apart or improve. Happiness is one of those emotions we strive for, the emotion we want to feel constantly without the pain, but how do we know what happiness feels like if we don’t experience the lows, the heartache. They say life is like a roller-coaster with its ups and downs and you don’t have a rainbow without a little rain. I guess there’s a point to those.
The last couple of years I’ve endeavoured through several issues all resulting in me savouring every moment I feel happy, treasuring the happiness. The dark days have surrounded me, followed me, loomed over me, and haunted me. Why? I’ve blamed a lower self-esteem, fatigue, health issues, school, stress, myself.
The 18th of March, a day where I was full of excitement as my butterflies disappeared, I watched my hair fall onto the ground, I felt the weight lift off my shoulders. Friends and family watched, more nervous than I was, strangers cheered and congratulated me. I was filled with pure happiness created from the feelings of joy, excitement, and the knowledge that I was making a difference to the suffering from blood cancer. I participated in the World’s Greatest Shave 2017.
I sit in my bedroom like I’m doing right now and smile. I feel at home, at peace, happy. The candles are burning, music is playing, the sky darkening, the rain falling, and a cup of tea. Often, I’m working on The Warmhearted, working on what keeps my soul ablaze. Today is no different, a smile has grown across my face after a tough day at school. That’s the way things go, I feel inspired, I feel happy whenever I’m creating something I love.
I’ve come to know that my happiness is currently temporary as I balance out several things I dislike with the things I love. I know that my happiness will be different from yours, as different things set our hearts on fire, but one thing’s for sure, I’ll always be down to dance in the rain as the thunder and lightning create the vibe.
What comes next? Who cares. All I know is that our eyes will be sparkling, our laughter will linger, our smiles forever growing, our cheeks sore, and our hearts will be full of love. Whether we’re still dancing, on the road going nowhere in particular, talking to strangers, wandering an art gallery/museum, or just watching the sun say goodbye for the day.
That’s happiness for you, constantly changing.
Being an English major kid, I’m always told not to say ‘I think’, because it loses the authenticity in what’s being said. This sounds VERY naïve, however I think that’s what makes me happy; the phrase ‘I Think’. OK, hear me out – I think happiness is being able to be confident in your uncertainties.
Happiness and uncertainties, I know, I know – they don’t tend to find their way next to one another in any given phrase. I think happiness is being able to take those uncertainties and build on them – for me, that’s through art. Photography, painting, writing, music; all of that stuff leaves me vulnerable and uncertain, but it gives me a sense of euphoria.
So, for me happiness is (I think) the power to illustrate the things that make you seem ‘weak’ to others, through creative avenues.
I thought I would quickly share a few photographs that make me happy and why they evoke happiness through my veins.
This is a photograph of me wearing a shirt that my favourite band sent me. It makes me happy, because, well, I make myself happy AND who doesn’t love free merch and a lead singer’s signature?
OK, so that band I mentioned – yeah this photo is me front row smiling so hard my cheeks felt as if they were going to fall off. This photograph makes me happy because of the memories it holds and also my boyfriend bro shook with Joe and felt his dad’s ass. I feel so proud and happy every time I remember that night.
This last photograph is of a friend – Selina. This photo evokes happiness as it was my first ever photoshoot. I also got accepted by Substation Art Gallery for a 5 day art exhibition that I’m hosting in September/October.
Moral of the photographs – There are so many memories within the photos we take, and I feel like we are wasting our moments kind of being ‘happy’ – posing / pretending. Each of these photographs have a story behind them – none are forced, and all make me feel joy and proud of who I have become.
As human beings and souls on this earth we all have our own joys in life. That’s what makes us different. You can either choose to be sad for the rest of your life, or you can just tell yourself ‘You know the Sydney Harbour bridge? Just get over it.’ Because you know that things will not stay dark forever, and that staying happy will make you a much better person. You can choose to stay within a negative little world, hiding behind your fears. Or you can look life in the face and say, ‘Yeah, I’ve had bad shit happen to me, but you know what, I’m just gonna laugh it out and stay positive.’ Happiness is a choice that sits inside all of us. What does happiness mean to me? It’s a gift that comes from within, it’s in all of us. It’s something that brings us together as human beings. To me, it’s the feeling of summer air that you breathe within a field of sunflowers. An indescribable thing that is easy to conjure, and once conjured it’s hard to keep down. Always keep smiling and laughing, because you only have one life, and to be honest I’d rather live a happy one.
(Answers have been edited)