I have positioned myself perfectly to be perplexed, as I often do.
At 21 years old, I am revisiting one of the most powerful lessons in my life, one that continues to circle back for me, as I haven’t seemed to fully learn from it: the grass isn’t greener on the other side.
Where did that saying come from? It’s hard to believe that a sentence so silly and seemingly childish continues to find me in my life. Continues to reveal that I am quick to decide I lack fulfillment where I am.
Because of this, I struggle to know when I really should change my environment. It forces me to twirl around a few times and question if I have really tried to find happiness where I am. Am I grateful? Do I understand all that I have to be grateful for? How much am I overlooking? What am I blind to?
I wish I would have always twirled. Maybe then, I wouldn’t distrust myself the way that I do now. Maybe I would know with certainty when it is time to move on.
Because due to my quickness to need new grass, I went half way across the country to get it. Certain that there was no grass comparable to the grass that I once had.
What is it with grass? (Of course, I know that the grass is just a metaphor, but bare with me for a second.)
To me, I chased familiar grass. A grass I grew up with. A grass that left for the winter, but always came back in the spring. Maybe I thought for a moment that I was the grass. That I had left, but just had to go back. That I could only grow there.
I made a list, as I often do, of all of the reasons I needed to leave what I had. That made it even easier to disregard what I DID have. I couldn’t see what I had. At lease I didn’t try.
As soon as I could, I packed up my things and left for the only grass that would fulfill me. Pennsylvania.
Texas doesn’t really have grass you know? The constant warm weather tends to put a damper on grass growth. Typically, places in Texas are surrounded by artificial grass. And while I did miss the frequent smell of fresh cut grass, I understand now why people were okay with artificial grass. They had grasped (that felt like a pun) that real grass just wasn’t gonna grow there, and came up with an alternative solution that would allow them to have what they wanted without leaving where they were.
People make decisions like this everyday, about things as simple as grass, and yet, I gambled my whole life on being convinced that the grass was gonna be greener somewhere else.
I could say I feel stupid about this, but I do not. I am not gonna say I regret it either, because life is short, and regrets can consume forever.
Instead, I accept and appreciate that this lesson that I have repeated many times, but never to quite the scale that I did recently, has forced awareness. A gratitude. An ability to rationalize and compromise. Most importantly I have grown tremendously. I see the value in the time I spent in Texas. I have acknowledged the happiness that found me there. I miss it. I wish that I had held on tighter.
I flat out missed it while I was there. I didn’t see it. I didn’t look for value.
Today and everyday, may we acknowledge compromise is a thing. May we meet happiness right where we are. The phrase “life is short, so be happy” is wrong. It implies that you will only “be” happy if you do something to be happy.
Happiness is a choice. We are free to make choices in life, it can be a gift and it can take everything away. The power to choose is POWERFUL. Did you know you could choose happiness?
Choose it. Find where it really is for you. Do not miss it. Do not chase it. Acknowledge its presence. Find it where you are, or where you need to be. Do not stumble. Go boldly, or stay boldly.
Friends, I am finding & choosing my happy. I am still figuring out what it means and where I am supposed to be. But for now, here in the city of Philadelphia, I am acknowledging that grass doesn’t mean a thing. Heck, I left one grassless place for another, and guess what? Fulfillment didn’t suddenly find me in Pennsylvania.
There is power in compromise, acknowledgment, and most importantly, gratitude.
SO… Here we are. Here I am. There you are. Wherever you are, have you twirled around? Do you need a twirl? Have you tried to find happiness where you are? Are you grateful? Do you understand all that you have to be grateful for? How much are you overlooking? What are you blind to? And if you have met all of those questions and found that there is still something out there that cannot be brought to where you are, move. Boldly. And remember that regret only consumes you, so learn instead of regret. Because learning GROWS you. And that is far more useful than being consumed by something you cannot have. Isn’t that how we got to this in the first place?
Choose happiness. Acknowledge where it is.