“Happiness is a choice.”
That’s what the sign says on my sister’s kitchen counter. My eyes are drawn to it every time I climb up on one of her tall kitchen bar stools when I visit. It’s placement is perfect. It’s right next to the coffee pot, just seemingly taunting me and asking me if I’ve made the right choice today. Well, duh. Of course, I have. I see the sign in my sister’s kitchen next to the coffee pot. Obviously, I chose to come see her AND have a cup of coffee; two things that really get my happy on.
But there are days when I don’t. There are days– okay, EVERY day– when my neighbor opens her front door to let her dog “walk” himself down to poop in front of my mailbox that I really want to choose rage and cursing. And this is usually the same day that I find an empty fast food drink cup that my son’s best friend tossed out of his car window the night before in front of my house while he was waiting to pick him up. And this is after I realize that the kids have drunk up the last of the coffee before I have a second cup. And all I see is red.
And I remember to breathe in and out. And I imagine that sign in my sister’s kitchen. And I remember that it speaks truth. “Happiness is a choice.” And I breathe in and out again. And I relax my throwing arm and put my favorite coffee cup in the sink. I put on my hijab and grab my purse and car keys and head out to put my things in my car. I walk down to the curb in front of my house and pick up the empty cup from the gutter. I walk over to the mailbox and scoop up the neighbor’s misplaced dog poop and walk two doors up and return it to its rightful place: In front of HER mailbox. Then I toss the empty cup over the fence to my backyard for proper disposal later. And I realize that I AM happy. I have chosen my happy. I reach into my glove box and pull out my hand sanitizer and clean any garbage/fecal germs from my hands. Then I start my car and head happily to the supermarket to buy more coffee.