• Jeimmy Grace

The Pursuit of Happiness

No one, I mean NO ONE can tell me about my happiness. I asked one Facebook today how people defined happiness for themselves. Two of you replied financial freedom. When I used to work at Starbucks (for eight years) and I was going to school for my medical degree, I met this lovely elderly couple named Jack and Linda. Jack sat with this his equally older friends, drank espresso and played chess or simply converse. This man was at Starbucks every single day and every day he taught me a new Italian word. He and I shared our love for Shakespeare and one day he gifted me the book The Taming of the Shrew deidication and all. He was always happy. and one day I asked him why he was so happy all the time, he replied "because I am debt free". To me that was great for someone like himself. I was 15,000 dollars in debt, driving a 1987 Toyota Supra that needed antifreeze every time before I turned it on, it constantly overheated and one time left me stuck in the middle lane of the 10 freeway during traffic hour.

Financial freedom (whatever that means to each individual), wether it's being able to purchase a Tesla and not have to worry about living paycheck to paycheck or perhaps you're like Jack, who owed nothing to anyone or any credit card companies or car payments. Maybe you mean financial freedom in an entire different way other than these two examples.

Other's replied with different answers that didn't involve money. Now for those of us who went to school and are still paying off their loans, paying your rent, and your car note all by yourself is a measure of happiness. Personally for me, happiness is being able to save lives at the hospital every single day. and being able to volunteer my spare time in on promoting mental health and helping those who feel they have nothing worth living for. As a rape victim myself, I am passionate about restoring Mental Health and passionately advocating in breaking the stigma that this individuals are "exaggerating" that their fears aren't "real". I dedicate my time in the latino community where Mental Health is the least recognized and misinformed.

Money comes and goes, In a blink of an eye you can find yourself broke and homeless if you can't manage. The homeless crisis has reached 60,000 people. If you have five dollars in the bank or in your pocket, you are richer than 60,000 people right now.

No matter what makes you happy, your children, your money, feeling like you have the answers to everything and being ignorant enough to think that everyone if the same and should follow your example is ridiculous. My day job and my volunteer job are both tangible. and they make me so damn happy that when my transplant patients hug me because they are happy to see ME. It makes me hoppy to be able to talk to someone about their troubles, cry together, and form a trusting bond between sharing our stories. There is this big difference when people come in down and lifeless and leave with a smile on their face, relieved and knowing that there have found a second family in promitng Mental Health. So much so that when they first arrived they sought help for themselves but then found comfort and happiness in helping other people too.

It's amazing for me to see the difference in these people. Weeks go by and their faces change from fatigue and hopelessness to a refresh face with faith that they too can get better.

My happiness does not depend on someone else's meter of happiness. If money makes you happy that's great, if you're all about investing and the stock market good for you. but don't ever diminish someone else's version of happiness. We all come from different walks of life. I also hate when people tell me about my insecurities. Tell me about yours. because the person who says they have no insecurities is a motherfucking liar. The person who says they have no fear, God is listening.

Some people think that love brings them happiness. This could be true. but love can be applied to different people. For me its my family, my closest friends and my pets. I have no desire for a girlfriend or s boyfriend for I have had my experiences in that department and choose to be single. but if you're the kind that's needy or promiscous then bravo to you. I don lt judge you, don't judge me for my choices.

Health is important physical and mentally,. I know stick thin people with diabetes. A nineteen year old that needed a transplant. A woman who works out almost every day and tries to eat healthy but still has high cholesterol. I know people who don't want to be obese and it's not because they spend all day sitting in the couch eating pizza and drinking beer. We have to stop judging those whose stories and struggles we know nothing about.

Someone said to me, in order to be a "10" you have to be able to control four aspects of your life....

1. Health

2. Wealth

3. Love

4. Happiness

I covered the health part. Sometimes people have no control over their health. How they got cancer or how they got to needing a new heart.

I also covered the wealth part, money comes and goes. There are things that you can't just put a price on.

Love, it's all about who you surround yourself with. Your family, your true friends. Those who truly love you. because lets face it, more than 50% of marriages end up in divorce. and someone once said to me, there are three ways to find out who your real friends are 1. you're broke 2. you're in the hospital, or 3. you're in jail.

Happiness, choose your happiness and don't ever let anyone make you feel invalidated. That you're wrong or fucked up because you're not just like them. You're actually better than them.

Bottom line don't be a douchebag, let people be and stop being a toxic person.


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