I bought a sign for our bedroom this afternoon. It says:
Do More Of What Makes You Happy.
When Briggs came into our room to read some books before heading into his room to go to bed, he asked me what the new sign said. When I told him, he had a pretty genuine response:
“Well, going to bed doesn’t make me happy. So, why do I have to do more of that?”
I explained how sleep and play and getting big for Kindergarten were all connected. And he explained:
“Well, playing, TV and hockey are the only things that make me happy. So, I should have more of those and less going to bed.”
I asked if he was sure that he was only 4 and not 14. He assured me that he’d be 5 on June 29th.
While I am quite certain that Briggs left off more than a few activities from his Happy List, his response made me truly happy nonetheless.
He answered on instinct, and with such simplicity and authenticity. My whole reason for purchasing the board in the first place was because it stumped me.
What Do I Do that Makes Me Happy?
Write? Stretch? Talk? Listen? Color? Cook? Coach? Host parties? Have sex? Hold space? Read, dance, breathe? Be together? Be alone?
I like to earn. Earning make me happy. Should I do more earning? Is happy the right word? Yes – maybe. It makes me feel good. Are good and happy the same, or just related?
I decided I wasn’t going to figure it out right there and then. So, I brought the sign home, hung it up and adorned it with three pictures. One of Briggs. One of Kenny. And one of me.
In each picture we’re silly, happy kids – finding our joy without even looking.
More Finding, Less Looking…I think, as far as happiness goes, there’s something to that.