Rules For Happiness . . .

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I have had an unparalleled 2015. There have been so many changes that I sometimes feel I’ve been in a dream state.

Changes I’ve experienced this past year are below. After those, are my experiences on how I gained some “real” happiness in life.

2015, January began with my being unemployed for the second month. I’d been a mortician for a year but, because of stress-related depression, had to quit the job I’d trained for extensively.

February brought the realization that I HAD to get out of a mentally abusive romantic relationship. I had to finally completely break off with this man and ended up having to get an Order of Protection from him -issued by the county court so the ex-boyfriend couldn’t get within 100 yards of me. After 4 slashed tires and numerous times I saw him stalking me, multiple texts over a short period of time, and parking in front of my house to intimidate me, I had to protect myself. We were officially over but my mind still held paranoia, fear, and anxiety over his possible presence. Changing the locks on the house just didn’t erase those feelings.                                                                                                                                  March began an unexpected chain of events that would forever change my life. A week before I celebrated my 51st birthday, I met David. It was intended as nothing but an innocuous dinner date to get me out of the house one Sunday evening. That meeting turned into a movie afterward and another date the next day. I had just broken up with a scary stalker. I was NOT looking for another serious relationship.

Over the next few months – April, May – David and I were always together. We couldn’t bear to be apart. Our personalities, goals, and morals were identical. He was eight years older than I and full of humor, sincerity, generosity, and affection. I had hit the jackpot this time. Never had I known this type of relationship. We had much in common and were quite attracted to each other. We shared respect and a thankfulness to finally find someone who would be honest, faithful, and loving (among other traits). We had discussions of possible marriage in our future – which was unbelievable since we had each told the other on our first date that we’d never wish to re-marry.  Never say never. God will show you otherwise.

June was a month of seriously tossing around the idea of marriage. We had spent every day and evening together since our second date. The mutual love and dedication we felt was alien to us. We quickly developed a strong and deep bond. We were in a tornado of new feelings, changes, and complete joy. Every day, I woke to see that rugged face of the unique man who had captured my every sense.

July gave us promises and me an engagement ring. Life was among fluffy clouds, sun shining on our faces, and constant smiles.

August was a month of planning, decision-making on honeymoon options, and finding a dress for the wedding day.

September was the month of joining lives – physically and legally. I married David after knowing him a mere six months. I would never suggest such a step to a friend after knowing someone less than a year but this was an entirely different situation. All of our friends and family saw the rare bond David and I shared. We were finally happy. Really happy. October = our first Halloween together. November = our first Thanksgiving together. December = our first Christmas together

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Now, it is January of a new year. David and I have been inseparable for over nine months and are still just as in love, just as entertained by each other, and just as sure we made the only decision that made sense . . . to join our lives and share adventures that lie ahead – together.  We’ve not once considered being with any other partner. We’ve found our “other half.”

To be happy . . .  ~ Free your heart from hatred, guilt, or resentment. ~Free your mind from worries and unnecessary stress. ~Live Simply. ~ Give more. ~ Expect less

I had to let go of deep guilt I carried over breaking up my previous (and only) marriage. I finally let my long-carried stress go. I think time passing and not encountering the ex-stalker, plus feeling secure and loved by David, allowed me to finally wake up one morning, have coffee, eggs, and go right back to bed. I was exhausted physically and mentally. This lasted almost a week. I couldn’t stay vertical for long before I needed to nap or just lie down. It was my relaxation after 7 years of built up stresses over money, relationships, unsure future, fighting Major Depressive Disorder with med after med that didn’t work, and gaining sixty pounds from stress eating. The following months brought me to enjoy simplifying my life. I donated much to local charities, and I sent the larger items to auction. I love not being surrounded by nick knacks that collect dust and grab my attention.                                                                                                                             I had often volunteered to deliver meals to hungry senior citizens and to teach adults how to read and write English. David, being retired, dedicated his time volunteering to helping veterans through his local American Legion. When you give, you don’t have time to think about “self.” That is a good feeling.                                                                                                                      Finally, when I learned to expect less from surroundings, pets, and people, I began feeling satisfied with this imperfect life. If we all do the best we can with what we have to offer, that is enough.

May your 2016 be full of happiness . . .

 

 

 

 

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