Finding happy where I can, because F#@K sadness

I spent most of yesterday in a haze of misery, sadness, and surprisingly, moments of quiet gratefulness. Eventually, the soul-sucking day took its toll and sleep, sweet sleep found me.


A young person from our community center died Thursday. I’d say of natural causes, but there’s nothing natural about having to call for an ambulance…twice. There are lots of whys. Was it that the call came from public housing? Or that it was a 21 year old having an asthma attack that might have seemed less intensive on the triage priority scale? Or was it merely the unfortunate confluence of events and circumstances that ended in senseless tragedy?

Friday was spent in efficient zombie mode.

  • Chairs? Check.
  • Tables? Check.
  • Cookies? Check.
  • Coffee-tea-cocoa? Check.
  • Tissues? Check. Check. Check. Check.

By 3pm, the doors were open and the next 4 hours were the hardest, saddest, yet most emotionally gratifying of recent memory.  A sacred circle was convened at our center, which is the symbolic home for so many young people and adults in the community for so many reasons. Shoulders were offered, hands were clasped, boundaries and artifice stripped away, and the tears, they flowed.

This morning, I received texts from a coworker, who was a mentor to the young man. Her words aren’t mine to share in this space, but I will offer mine to the void, in case it might mean something to someone else, but mostly, so that I can be reminded to learn from all things.



So I’m going to try to take my own advice. I’m going to look for joy. I’m going to look for happy. Not because I’m going to forget him, or what happened. But I can’t take for granted that there is a tomorrow where good things and bad things might happen. I’m going to be the strongest me to be ready for all of it. I’m not alone, and I want to make sure others feel the same way.

Here’s my happy. Where’s yours?


[The featured image happens to be a shirt from Pink Martini’s “Get Happy” tour. They are always a deep breath of happy for me.]