What does it mean to be happy?

Happy. A pretty normal term to describe your mood. You could be happy you finally got that promotion, or that your team won, or happy that you’re having take-away for dinner that night.

happy

(ˈhæpɪ)

adj-pier or -piest

1. feeling, showing, or expressing joy; pleased
2. willing: I’d be happy to show you around.
3. causing joy or gladness
4. fortunate; lucky: the happy position of not having to work.
5. aptly expressed; appropriate: happy turn of phrase.
6. (postpositiveinformal slightly intoxicated
interj
(in combination): happy birthdayhappy Christmas.
-Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014

I’ve always been a happy person. Even through some of the hardest of times, I’ve put on a smile and carried on helping everyone else with their problems. I couldn’t be depressed. Not me…

If I’m honest with myself, I’d say the depression and anxiety started about 4 years ago. I was planning a wedding with someone I wasn’t even sure if I wanted to be with. At 20 years old, it felt like I had the weight of the world on my shoulders.

I carried on as everything was fine and I buried my sadness deep down, where I thought it would never surface. And I did a pretty good job at keeping it that way at first.

After deciding I was no longer willing to live in a shadow of my former self, I walked away from my marriage for my own sanity and my happiness. I finally began getting my life on track and things were looking up. I had found someone and we had moved in together. It felt like things had fallen into place.

Despite feeling the happiest I have felt in years, I can’t shake this niggling darkness inside. I lost both my grandmothers within a few months of each other, which of course has taken its toll on our family. Work feels like a constant battle and added to that I feel constantly exhausted. I’ve never been a great sleeper, often getting up 2+ times during the night because I can’t switch off. I feel like it’s all now just a bit too much. As well as feeling extremely down, I’ve also been suffering with overwhelming anxiety attacks.

At times, I feel guilty for feeling sad or anxious. Like I already have everything I ever wanted, so what is there to be sad about? I can honestly say that I am so happy with the way my life is at the moment, how could I be depressed?

My own mental health is not something I have ever talked openly about, not even to Nick (or random people on the internet). But now that it is starting to have a real impact on my life, I know that I need to get help, and I want to share my journey.

So what does it actually mean to be happy? I guess there is no definitive answer.

As well as seeking professional help, I’m working on doing things that will (hopefully) get me back to being me. I’m starting to run and also doing yoga from home.
I’m setting out to create my happiness.

So let’s see how this goes…

happiness

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