We Can Choose Joy

October 24, 2012

If  you’re lucky, you’ll fall head over heels in love at least once in your life with someone who returns the favor. On the way to that joy you’ll likely experience many brokenhearted moments. So many things have to fall into place to find a life partner. Right person, right place, right time. Timing can be especially tricky in our modern world. Young people are always moving, moving on.

There will be more unhappy endings than happy ones, and no one is immune, unless you sit it out entirely. You’ll get there, but it will take patience, self-awareness, a willingness to take risks and make someone else’s happiness a  priority. 

Last weekend I spent a little time with a young woman I know. She was feeling blue about an ending, but she was still able to hope for something better down the road. She said:

Making the best of a situation is a choice. Maybe some times are difficult but we can choose joy, you know?

I do know, and I also know she’ll find what she’s looking for. 

James Mercer of The Shins is one of my favorite musicians. I’m currently obsessed with the song It’s Only Life from their latest album, written as Mercer reflected on his struggle with depression as a teen. It’s a hopeful and encouraging song written to his young, desperate self. 

“We all spend a little while going down the rabbit hole.”

 

Died in the world, you’ve been cornered by a natural desire
You want to hop along with the giddy throng through life
But how will you learn to steer when you’re grinding all your gears?

You’ve been talking for hours
You say time will wash every tower to the sea
And now you’ve got this worry in your heart

Well I guess it’s only life, it’s only natural
We all spend a little while going down the rabbit hole
The things they taught you, they’re lining up to haunt you
You got your back against the wall
I call you on the telephone, won’t you pick up the receiver?

I’ve been down the very road you’re walking now
It doesn’t have to be so dark and lonesome
It takes a while but we can figure this thing out
And turn it back around

You used to be such a lion
Before you got into all this crying on my lap
Back when you thought I’d never get this far

But did you really think I’d shut an open door?
The future’s calling and Imma answer her
The wheels in motion, I never drank your potion
And I know it breaks your heart
Open up your parachute, something’s gotta stop the freefall

I’ve been down the very road you’re walking now
It doesn’t have to be so dark and lonesome
It takes a while but we can figure this thing out
And turn it back around