I have been thinking about what makes me happy or at the least, content, as I whiz through my 70’s and it’s simply put, simple. It’s little things in life. You would think that as we age we would want or have big houses, fancy cars, lots of clothing and jewelry galore, shoes and on and on- which is fine, -but for me I am celebrating little moments or feelings. Like the other day, I got a new mattress pad cover. I washed it, dried it a long time and took off the old, shredded, matted, dull mattress pad and threw it in the trash. Good riddance scumbag. I ecstatically shook out the new, fluffy, clean bright white one and gently put it on our queen sized mattress. It looked fabulous. Welcome, lovely, soft pretty new cover. I just left it all day, tucked neatly around the corners of the mattress, lying there perfectly spread out in it’s perfection. I didn’t put any sheets or quilts onto the bed which would cover this new glorious item. I left it like that all day and enjoyed walking into the bedroom seeing it. I stared at it. What a focal point. I was happy. Why hadn’t I replaced the crummy old mattress pad cover sooner? It was all so simple yet had taken me years to replace and all for $31.99. Simple.
There are many examples of times I have felt joy over just a quick fleeting moment of something easy and peaceful and beautiful. Here’s a picture of something that a friend gave me as a gift about two years ago, however, I tucked them into a drawer and forgot about them.
New, pink and purple and black feet hugging sports socks. Ahhh, comfy.
I was so happy to find a clean new pair of socks tucked under other clothes in my drawer. Who cares about the colors! Actually the zappy colors make me even happier. I texted my friend a thank you for the socks even though she had given them to me a couple years ago and I had forgotten about them. Doesn’t seem like much, but those socks made me smile as did my feet, if feet can smile.
But you say that these examples are materialistic. That is true. Even better in 70ish life, there are moments when one tiny thing happens and it brings pure joy and contentment. Like just hearing our grandson giggle is a fabulous picker upper, immediately immersing us in pure joy or seeing him concentrate while playing with his toy trucks and cars is another shared feeling of happiness. He is a clean slate of innocence and discovery. You can’t buy happiness given to grandparents from a little child. Simple yet joyful.
During our awful winter storms here in California and with rain coming in buckets, I kept seeing these ducks swimming out in the fields where we live in a farming community. I would drive by the flooded fields on the local highway and smile broadly as I saw the four or five wild fowl swimming around where normally onions or garlic or peppers were planted. I have always loved ducks and am a big fan of all birds. We raised chickens and baby chicks and ducks when our kids were little. So you can imagine my surprise when each time I drove by, observing these ducks, they would always be in the center of the flooded flat field. Then later I’d notice they were always in the same position. Then as the traffic slowed, I could see they weren’t moving. Could it be these beautiful creatures weren’t real? Could they be someone’s whacky joke? Were they decoys? No quacks coming from them. Yup. But you know, it didn’t matter to me. The ducks, real or wooden, had brought me real happiness. I’m at that age where even fake stuff can be uplifting not upsetting. Swim on, sweet featherless decoy duckies, and do your best to keep me looking out for you, because you make me smile. Thanks, ducks, for a bright spot in my dull days driving by. Ahhh, the 70ish life.
We’re real and feeling just ducky