what is happy?

I made a new friend. Here, I mean. Not offline. If you thought that, you give me way too much credit. Hell, I can’t even take credit for this new friend. He found me. And he talked to me. Yeah, I don’t know why either.


He asked me questions no one has asked me for a long time, and in most cases, ever. Questions like:

Why do you hate yourself?
What makes you happy?
Do you do anything for you?
If I could reset my life, what would I do differently?

I had no problem answering the first question. In fact, I think I could (and might) write a post dedicated to it. Not sure if that’s a good idea. I don’t want to give anyone a reason (or twenty) to hate me, but we’ll see.

The last two have one word answers, no and everything, respectively.

Okay, lets be fair. No could be modified to not really. I guess writing and reading are things that I do for me? Occasionally a coffee from the outside?

And I could go into detail on the everything answer, but I won’t. At least not right now, but that is fuel for a long fucking post.

The second question, however, is a problem for me. What makes you happy?

The truth is, I really have no fucking idea. I can list little things… coffee, Coldplay, writing (unless I get frustrated), Shawn Mendes, reading, those guys at the bottom of every one of my posts, cake. But from there, my answer takes a turn. And that turn is to other people, in a couple of ways.

First way: It makes me happy to see my kids laugh—to see them happy. It makes me happy to make other people happy.

Second way: It makes me happy when people like me, support me, talk to me, are there for me, care about me, love me.

In both of those ways, my happiness is dependent on others giving it to me. Is that really my happiness?  And even if I feel happy in these two ways, I would never be happy alone. I could never make myself happy on my own. I can’t find happiness within myself. (I guess that goes back to the first question: why do I hate myself?)

This may sound ridiculous, but sometimes I don’t even think I know what happiness is. I don’t think I know how it feels to be happy. Right now, the word happy is beginning to really annoy me.

1. feeling or showing pleasure or contentment.

I don’t know. Contentment? I don’t remember the last time I felt content. Maybe I never have. Pleasure? If this includes enjoying some cheesecake, sure I’ve had pleasure. But I don’t think that counts. I don’t think that means I’m happy. Or it means I’m happy, but only for the amount of time it takes me to eat said cheesecake. Let’s face it, once the cheesecake is gone, I’ll probably feel guilty for eating it so any potential happiness goes right out the window.

So I’ll repeat my question.

What is happy?

I don’t fucking know.

• • • • •

Yes, they make me happy. Like, just looking at them. (I guess I’m shallow.) But that happiness is fleeting. Unless I have their pictures tattooed on the inside of my eyelids or something.

p.s. — If you want to know what sad is, though, I’ve got your back.

©2021 what sandra thinks

About what sandra thinks

Sandra is a writer, sometimes blogger, poet, artist, emotional disaster. She thinks far too much and sleeps far too little. Sandra lives in the Northeastern U.S. but dreams of an oceanfront home in Italy, but she would settle for a non-oceanfront home in Italy. She loves books, brutal honesty, coffee, and the color black. She hates insincerity, beer, whipped cream, and facebook. And she is uncomfortable talking about herself in the third person.
This entry was posted in anxiety, depression, life, writing and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to what is happy?

  1. Pleasure is overrated, I feel. Just watched a podcast on addiction, and apparently there’s this little part of your brain that handles equilibrium, and every time you swing too much to one side, your brain makes sure you swing back the other way, just to find your balance.

    So I’ve begun to feel that perhaps the happiness lies in the work. Work of doing the right thing, be it taking care of yourself or making the world a better place. Thanks for this post, Sandra!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Simon says:

    It’s a big question… what is happy. I don’t think happy is those moments of pleasure where you get a hit of niceness in some form or other I think it’s more than that and simpler. I believe that if we look inside ourselves there’s an us that we’re supposed to be, our real self and when our life doesn’t align with that we’re not happy.

    This is what I think it means to be true to ourselves regardless of what others think. This might also be the key to why you hate yourself – maybe deep down you know you’re not being you – the real you?

    Just a thought… I hope you’re well and I wish you didn’t hate yourself – I think if you wrote a post on why, no one would hate you 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Happiness comes in all shapes and sizes and one person’s happy can be other person’s sad. No-one can make you happy, you can only achieve that yourself. Others can help towards that but they can’t do it for you. I don’t have the answers but they are out there waiting for you to discover them. I really hope that you do, and soon. Hugs as always.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. M says:

    Its hard to determine what makes you happy when you’ve been that for others but have never done it for yourself. For me, happy is more like “peace”.

    Liked by 1 person

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