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Confessions of a realistic pollyanna

making mole hills

You are having an ordinary day. Then all of a sudden, out of the blue, something fantastic happens.  A surprise of some sort. Unexpected recognition. Words of praise from an unlikely source. Just something extraordinarily nice. It is a wonderful feeling isn't it. It lifts your spirits. It makes the whole day worthwhile. It puts a smile on your face for the rest of your day.

But we know such feelings can't last forever. At some point your run of good luck will run out. Maybe if you are lucky things will just go back to normal. Maybe something awful will happen that will jar you back to reality. Whatever the case, there is no way we can go on living on life's plateaus all of the time. Life can't be terrific all of the time. But while we are on the plateaus of joy, it certainly does feel very good. Perhaps when we are feeling joy and exhilaration we might share that good feeling with others; our joy can become infectious and lighten everyone's day. Even though we learn that terrific moments are only temporary lifts, they do feel great.

The same holds true with negative things. You are having an ordinary time. Everything is going as per plan. Then all of a sudden disaster strikes: bad news about a friend or family member, you hear that your services are no longer required, you suddenly are given 50 hours worth of work that must be completed and on the boss's desk by 9am tomorrow morning, etc. How quickly an ordinary day turns into a very bad day. We grumble, we rant, we rave about how awful things are; we might even say that we wished that we had stayed in bed. We can easily pass on our negativity to others making their days bad as well. Some people have something traumatic happen to them one day and never rise above the pain that it causes. They want to share their pain with others just so others will feel like they do. Like good news, bad news can be infectious as well.

Life is a series of peaks, plains and valleys. But some people get stuck on their journey. A person who is fired from their job may never quite get over it. The anger, pain, and loss affect them for the rest of their lives. They never quite dig themselves out of that ditch. A retired athlete might never quite recover from the lofty heights of winning many trophies when they put up their cleats and begin non-athletic humdrum lives. Life for them will never be as good as when they were named number one.  People like the person fired or the retired athlete have let the events in their life mark them forever. People with certain mental illnesses also get stuck in deep depression or in lofty exuberance that they can't free themselves from either. But for most of us, life is a constantly changing journey. We will have good moments and bad. We will go through tranquil patches and life changing patches. When life is very good let us be thankful. When we struggle through rough patches, may we know that it won't be forever.  Let's just hang on and wait for the next dip or climb on life's journey. Blessings.

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