You know those "Duh" moments? Sometimes it's a truth you didn't understand until a certain point in your life, sometimes it's something completely out of left field, and sometimes it's something so simple you probably were born knowing it but got so tangled up in the programming of life, you forgot it until just the right moment.
If you've been a reader for a while, you know I'm a believer in putting it out there, positive or negative, since it might help someone else process a piece of his or her life or it just may be relatable.
My big revelation?
Being around happy people is good for me.
I know. I know.
I'm not talking happy like every day is unicorn rides and tacos; I'm talking happy like healthy and balanced. Happy where good and bad don't have to be this completely black and white emotions that one vacillates between like an emotional ping pong match. (Chinese National Team Ping Pong, not frat boys at 2am.) Happy where workouts are a part of life and who wins the game doesn't matter at the end of the day.
Sure, part of my happy was new geography. I need a change of scene and warmer weather. But a big part of it was who I choose to date. After all, it's who you spend a lot of time with, so it's not like you need to be a high-level empath to have your primary companionship build you up or wear you down.
So simple. I know.
His attitude is one of my favorite things about my guy. He doesn't see life as something that happens to him. He's healthy and happy. He runs with Joey and me, which makes me smile, so I make sure he knows that. And that's really good for me.
Dating addicts was my MO for way too long. I was harm reduction in dating, thinking that finding someone whose drug of choice or pattern of behavior was a little better than the last one was progress. The ugliest truth of loving someone in active addiction is wondering if death would be easier for that person. I had days where I wondered if I should have let someone die on that couch. If the pain was just too much. If that person even wanted to live. Having those thoughts swimming around in my brain made me feel like a monster, especially because I know how many of us come out the other side and start living again. We live on our own terms, in ways we never imagined possible when existence meant misery.
But maybe that's just me overthinking.
I had a conversation with a stranger yesterday, who in the course of 15 minutes, told me about her mother's addiction and how she preferred it when her mother was smoking crack instead of using pills because with crack, her mother understood it was an issue. Her mother couldn't see the addiction with pills because they come from a doctor.
I felt lucky because when I've been in those situations, it was fairly easy to cut ties and get along with my life. But the daughter seemed happy. She was an adult and clearly taking care of herself. And I could relate to her story without having to get wrapped up in it. That's happy.