For nearly thirty years, ArLynn Presser avoided leaving her neighborhood in Winnetka, Illinois, as she would experience debilitating anxiety and panic attacks when visiting public places and interacting with people outside her home.
But once she turned fifty, the romance writer decided that she was tired of living in isolation, and ready to face her greatest fear. On December 31, 2010 she started a blog at ArLynnPresser.WordPress.com and wrote in her first post, “My New Year’s resolution is to meet every Facebook friend I have.”
And so she spent 2011 visiting friends all over the world (and meeting some for the very first time). Her son Joseph accompanied her on the journey, recording video clips for ArLynn to share on her blog, which she’s been updating regularly since announcing her resolution on New Year’s Eve 2011. By the end of the year she had been to 13 different countries and…
Here’s to Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, who just won not only her own first Oscar, but also her country’s first on Sunday. She won the Oscar for her documentary, Saving Face, which is about victims of acid attacks in Pakistan. Being a … Continue reading →
Today I came across a quotation that really resonated with me.
“There is no duty we so much underrate as the duty of being happy” – Robert Louis Stevenson
There is such depth in this thought. Indeed most of us take being happy for granted. I would say I am also one of those who does so. And when we aren’t happy, what do we do about it? Nothing, unfortunately. We just sit around waiting for something to happen that would make us happy. We don’t go out and make an effort to do something to make ourselves happy; just wait to *get out of our funk* and automatically go back to *being happy*.
Happiness is a choice. Plain and simple. It isn’t always easy to see it this way, but I feel it is important to train oneself to do so. With all the stress and drama that has been going on in my own life for the last few months, I have been wondering about *happiness*. A lot. About why it seems so easy for some to stay happy, while others find it difficult to be so. And I really believe it boils down to this – one has to make a choice of being happy.
I could, given everything life has to offer right now, sink into deep depression and despair. I certainly don’t think a lot of people could blame (judge?) me if I were to do so. But I don’t want to. I want to be happy. I want to love life and everything it has to offer. Because, when you think about it, happiness doesn’t necessarily mean the absence of problems in life. It means the ability to accept and deal with those problems. It means living life to the fullest – and choosing to be happy, despite the problems.
From now on, I am making a conscious choice to be happy. To find joy in the little things in life that makes it worthwhile. Like skyping with my nephew and family. Like catching up with old friends. Like reading new books and re-reading old favourites. Like eating mint choc-chip ice cream. Like taking out the time to treat myself to a pedicure. The simple joys of life (=
I have a flight in 2 days, and being the lit nerd that I am, I always get a book to read on the plane. So I went to the bookstore where a book titled ‘The Happiness Project’ just jumped out at me. It’s by Gretchen Rubin, about her own experience of realising that she had to make an effort to be happy, and how she spent the next year trying to achieve that goal. Seeing how I am starting off my own project to be happy I cannot wait to get started with this book… And I will definitely post a review once I am done!
Life has a funny way of taking a path you never expected it would. At times, we find ourselves going on a strange and winding road, with no clear destination in sight. This feels especially trying when you had previously thought that your destination was clear, and you were well on your way to it. I find myself in a similar circumstance right now.
Today is the second anniversary of my wedding. What should have been a day of celebration for my husband and myself, however, brings me nothing but pain. You see, almost 4 months ago I learnt that my husband wanted divorce. I didn’t learn this from him. He called and told my mother, who then made an understandably hysterical call to me while I was at work.
Why hysterical? Well, my mother had been under the illusion that I was happily married and that my husband and I were madly in love. Honestly, so was I. Hearing that my husband wanted a divorce (and had been thinking of it for months) was devastation. Why he wants one, I won’t get into. For one thing, that is something that eludes me. For another, this is not what my blog is about.
I am writing here, because I love to write. Because I was unable to write much, while I was with my soon to be ex-husband. Because I don’t want my divorce to be something that brings me down. Rather I want to learn from it. Be a stronger, wiser and better person out of this experience. I want to rediscover my love for writing, reading, the arts and myself.
I may write from time to time about my divorce when I feel comfortable about doing so, because I would also want to reach out to others going through the experiences I am going through. There certainly is one post I want to write about in regards to my divorce. About why it is now me pursuing a divorce from my husband. But that is for another time. I do not find the strength to write about that today.