Life is never a bed of roses. This is even more so when you have seen autism eye to eye. I get that. There will always be challenges in our day to day living. Happiness, however, is a state of mind—and a choice. While March 20 is touted as the International Day of Happiness, you can actually celebrate “happiness” year-round, on a daily basis.
Happiness doesn’t come easy though. Like pesky gnats, annoying circumstances can push us to our limits that even the best stuffs tend to lose their luster. From financial issues to challenges in autism services and acceptance, meltdowns and adult autism woes, the idea of living life happy just seems so far out.
Over the years, however, I have learned how to cultivate a happy disposition. I have learned to acknowledge the good amid the negativities and that wherever life drags me, whether up or down, I know precisely that I am where I’m supposed to be. I keep a daily journal (in the same way as my book, Living Autism Day: Daily Reflections and Strategies to Give You Hope and Courage) noting down at least two good things that happened in a day. This is also the perfect time for me to think of new projects to enhance my advocacy, of letting people accept autism as it is.
Unlike before, I take in everything in a stride nowadays. I wake up earlier than everyone and practice the “no-rush” routine. I could stare forever in the glimmering lake water from my favorite window in our kitchen thinking nothing but pure gratitude of what life has to offer while offering deep prayers for my son and daughter who are away from home. It’s a common pain among parents, particularly mothers, to see children spread their wings and soar high. Yes, I have raised my kids well. They are grounded individuals who are deeply rooted to their ancestry.
While there are some potholes along the way, 2016 is quite great for John. Aside from graduating high school, he was awarded top student for Open Communication in his Technology class. He was also able to get his Beginner’s License in driving after trying out 4 times. Yes! That’s how persistent he is. But what made me and the whole family beam with glee is that he had started WORKING as chef’s assistant at Dougall’s Restaurant—doing what he loves best! He is currently on waitlist for Durham College’s Enhanced Culinary Course. I believe that thoughts about my children and how far they’ve come made me feel grounded and complete.
The pursuit for happiness, for me, is never a conquest. Happiness presents itself to all of us every day. We always have a choice. We can shun it or embrace its full glory. One thing for sure though, it is when we give back and connect with others that often, make living life happy more worthwhile.
So, come and join me in welcoming 2017—bring it on!
Read more about living life as it is by Pamela Bryson-Weaver, bestselling author of Living Autism Day: Daily Reflections and Strategies to Give You Hope and Courage, on http://livingautismnow.com/.
#Autism #Acceptance #Happiness